You know them. The people who spend more time bitching about others, griping about situations and yes, complaining about their own aches and pains on the daily. The folks who belt out an orchestra of negative notes in response to a simple ‘how are you doing’. The individuals who make you want to run to the hills.
They exist everywhere. In fact, YOU may be one of them.
I fully understand how easy complaining can be. How perfectly primed, how activated some humans are when it comes to riding the wave of negative energy.
The dark wave of destruction.
Complaint after complaint after complaint.
Do YOU EVER STOP BITCHING about your pains? Your family drama? Your dislike for a certain group, organization or person? Your personal struggles? Your stressed out life with your job, your relationships or your finances?
How do YOU respond when someone asks you how you are doing? Are you sarcastic, rude or mean, popping off with a list of current ailments; a different list than yesterday?
Complaining is the expressive and patterned art of bringing to attention any situation that is deemed ‘unsatisfactory’ or ‘unacceptable’ to the complainer. It varies by person and by situation. However, the truth is that it takes a lot of practice to master the art of complaining.
Just like any artist, albeit a writer or a talented baker, the skill required to express their art is often unrecognized by themselves, but seen by others as a dominant practice or gift.
I wouldn’t call complaining a gift.
Complaining is a normal and very natural response to certain discomforts that violate our own values and boundaries. A person may complain about a neighbor’s dog barking all night long for
weeks on end.
The dog’s barking negatively impacts the moment, creating disruption to the peace and disrupting the reasonable sleep we are all allotted. You may confront the neighbor, call the pound or even worse, you may choose to set the dog free! However, the complaint of the distribution is dealt with.
The art of complaining occurs when an individual REFUSES to take reasonable action to settle the unsatisfactory or unacceptable situation. To spend years complaining about the dog’s barking, losing sleep and a sense of peace, and yet doing nothing about it is the true art of complaining.
Unlike other talents that have the potential to bring great joy to a population, those who are skilled in bitching often do exactly the opposite. The aura that surrounds them when they walk into a room is often one of negativity, with people scrambling to get away from the complainer!
Complainers might choose one or two subjects to belabor, spending every opportunity talking about what they don’t like, such as their aches and pains or political issues. In fact, you can almost predict their thoughts, emotions and actions before they open their mouth.
Artists of complaining will spend endless resources, including time and energy, sharing negative vibrations in the space with anyone who will listen to their opinions and dislikes. Some refuse to engage, while others who haven’t mastered boundaries may be sucked into
a whirlwind of complaints.
This is quite different than venting, in that turning to a highly trusted companion or friend in order to bounce off negative situations and to help problem solve is actually a healthy and necessary means of growth and adaptability. It’s both the intention behind the expression and the relationship to the listener that delineates the two.
Are you looking for a solution, blowing off a little steam or are you just outwardly sharing, AGAIN, your dislike with someone or something?
Venting is a solution, complaint is a fruitless expression, while the art of complaining is an absolute waste of energy for the self and for others.
When we complain about a political movement without exercising any first-hand effort to solve it, we are wasting resources and the energy of others.
When we complain about our body parts, our energy levels or our lack of capability, we are revealing just how physically and emotionally weak we are. Powerless!
When we complain about an organization but refuse to remove it from our present, we only show our level of power, or lack there of, over our own peace.
In order to stop the art of complaint, one must practice daily the art of gratitude. Instead of bitching or putting energy into it about the things and people who created conflict, especially after the incident is gone, we must put energy into making note of what joys we encounter on the daily.
As simple as it seems, many people fail miserable at being grateful beyond selfishness.
For two years, I have maintained a daily gratitude journal, identifying the top 3-6 or more experiences in my day for which I am grateful. The most genuine and balanced people I know often express gratitude on the daily!
In addition, you must be willing to work on a solution for that which you find unacceptable. This may mean setting an intention with oneself, confronting the irritant or draining person through truth or it may mean ignoring them, shifting perspectives or walking away from the subject or the person for the moment or altogether. This is highly dependent upon the relationship itself and the value of the connection. If the barking dog is your best friend and roommate, your response may be one of greater compassion than if the dog is a mean neighbor who doesn’t clean his yard, parties well into the night and has his let chained up around a tree.
People are going upset you. You are going to find that you aren’t always in alignment with certain perspectives, such as religion, government, politics, finances or even education and parenting. Your morals and values will not align with everyone you encounter nor will they align with every situation in life. You will be challenged by irritants in life.
You hold the power within to find a solution to all that hurts, all that bothers and all that irritates. You also hold the power within to continue to facilitate the path of negativity and drama over those things you do not find satisfactory in your life.
You hold the power to choose the dark wave of destruction.