Any fool can criticize, condemn, and complain but it takes character and self control to be positive and optimistic.
Complaining is the absence of thankfulness. I cannot even begin to explain the level of rampant complaining I witness on a daily basis. It’s the begginning of almost every conversation. Here are a few examples I heard this week (myself included):
- “Dude, my freaking iPhone 5’s battery life sucks compared to the 4S. Is yours this bad?”
- “I hate traffic so much, I have to leave 45 minutes early just to be on time.”
- “I’m so tired of my car, it’s such a piece of crap.”
These are small, common complaints, but we must realize that complaining is extremely dangerous for our minds. It’s a viscous cycle of negative energy and a reoccurring reminder to us and everyone around you about “how bad life is”. This is the last thing people need to hear. Even more, it’s so selfish in light of the world’s less fortunate. My guess is that the children of India are not complaining about their bed being on concrete.
It’s important to note the difference between complaining and an intimate conversation with a friend about personal struggles. This is a great practice and should happen often.
At Sevenly, we’ve made the decision to crack down on complaining. To do so, we’ve labeled one room (actually a closet) in our office the Complaining Room. If we hear any staff member complain, we send them off to the Complaining Room where they can write their complaint on a wall covered in photos of people living in developing countries, fighting disease, or suffering from oppression. This gives them the time to think about why they are complaining and come out with a humbled and thankful heart.
*Room is being built this week (photos to come).
What ideas do you have to help people to stop complaining?