Why do we do it? Have you ever asked yourself? What good does it bring ... Giving life to something through spoken word... Does it make the problem, ache, pain or situation go away or change? Does it provide solution? … Or does it make it more real? Perhaps even bigger deal then before the compliant? Does it really make us feel better ... Or worse? Do we complain if we have no one to complain to? Is it serving our best interest?... Most likely not, so then why do we feel the need to do it just because someone is around to listen?
Now I'm not talking about situations where we have a confidant that we go to when we genuinely need to vent or sort something out in our head, or seek council on solutions ... I'm talking everyday general nonsense, no solution oriented complaining "oh I'm so tired, oh it's cold today, oh this weather sucks, jeez it's been to hot, blah blah blah…” I’ve noticed lately that it’s an especially popular form of communication amongst strangers, perhaps as a way to relate, but can't we begin to relate to one another regarding all the greatness…the glory... the beauty... the blessings…the fortunes? Because perspective truly is everything, and what we focus on we give life to…In the end it becomes our perspective and our reality.
I went on a solo adventure this past weekend ... And as I was on my long hike up hill all of these thoughts and questions started running through my head....
It was an intense upward journey... Challenging to say the least, as I was dealing w some physical discomfort in some ways ... But for the most part I wasn't even acknowledging it, because I was too busy acknowledging the vast rich beauty I was surrounded by in every direction, focusing on the breath I took in and exhaled with every step... But as the aches worsened, it momentarily became more present in my mind, and that is when I found myself lost in thought over all these questions, asking myself IF I had someone with me would I feel the need to express my discomfort or could I hold my tongue and keep it to myself, letting it go, while continuing to reflect on the glory all around…and expressing to my body the appreciation I had for how hard it was working for me, and what it allowed me to accomplish and enjoy on this lovely day … The later was such a better option, at the time my only option, thank goodness, because it led to this level of awareness I get to write about today. In my aloneness with a need to get back up to camp, was left to simply be aware of the aches, accept them for what they were, notice they weren’t inhibiting me from moving forward, let it go, and continue on my journey gratefully.
However, upon pondering the complexities of my crazy mind, I recognized that if I did had someone with me in that moment, I might have spoken the discomfort out loud, bringing more life to it, ultimately resulting in making matters worse…Why? Because i complain. Wow. I am a complainer. Am I really? About what?… I ask myself, am I? Why? What good does it do? What is it serving? Not me, at least not in a positive way, nor anyone I might be with in the moment. I continue to ask… Would speaking a complaint do any good? Would it fix a problem? Would it lessen an ache or intensify it? Could the other person actually help me? OR, by speaking about my issues am I bringing life to it, and perhaps even creating awareness of someone else’s struggles, aches or pains as a result, making their journey more uncomfortable as well?
Is complaining about something I can't change adding value to our lives? No. Would it be an uplifting topic of conversation? No. Would it provide any solution? No. So then why do it? Just because we can... Until we can not…
Alone on my journey I could not, and quite frankly that was ok...more then ok - it was great - it was positive… it was peaceful - it was more comfortable, because it didn't escalate the problem...it was calming - joyous even... It allowed me to focus on everything else more satisfying around me - it shifted my perspective - altered my soul ... So again, I couldn't help but analyze then why I would in my past, throughout my life, and even up to that moment, feel the need to express an unnecessary negative out loud if given the chance, just because there were ears to listen?!? What is it about complainers? ... What need does it fulfill? Is it an attempt to bond over our mishaps, our issues, our pain? When we speak out loud we bring life to something - we intensify it - make it greater - it becomes our mind’s focus - and our thoughts are indeed our reality - so why give life to something we don't really want in our reality? Why speak out loud and give any level of dedication to something that won't lead to solution? Is it just for the sake of being heard? Having someone "understand"? Hoping they have some ailment or struggle or annoyance of their own to relate? Ugh maybe!!! BUT, to me that just sounds unappealing and unproductive…
In my upward journey I realized that I do NOT want to be the person who brings life to the negative, who complains just to be heard, who makes something a bigger deal then it has to be. Nor do I want to take away from an opportunity to bask in something great, to be in gratitude of all the amazingness I am blessed with and surrounded by, and who inspires and uplifts others on their journeys…Nor do I want to weigh other people down with negative when they have enough of their own crud weighing them down, enough of their own struggles they are growing through... I want to add value to the lives of those around me, not suck it away. I want to bring good vibes and positive energy, not negative nancy nonsense.
I know that the act of un-learning complaint could be a more rigorous upward journey then my solo hike the other day ... But it's a task worthy of work!!! I challenge all my friends, my confidants, my people, my clients, my co-workers, and anyone else in my life to call me out and hold me accountable any chance they get…Hear me complain? Remind me about my goals, my journey ... Unlearning lifelong habits is a tough feat for all of us ... So it takes all the support we can muster- so support me if you will... And let me know if I can support you too, because I would LOVE to !!! <3 <3 <3
"I know for sure what we dwell on is who we become” ~Oprah Winfrey
“What you're supposed to do when you don't like a thing is change it. If you can't change it, change the way you think about it. Don't complain.” ~ Maya Angelou
Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear. ~ Ephesians 4:29