“What you focus on expands, and when you focus on the goodness in your life, you create more of it”-Oprah

All of us complain. Many of us do it and don’t even realize it. But I want to show you today is that even though sometimes in the moment it feels good to complain, it often makes things worse.

To start let’s define what complaining really is. Complaining is the expression of dissatisfaction or annoyance about something. In essence, it is having a negative thought about something and expressing it out loud to yourself or someone else. 

The trouble is what you focus on expands so the more you complain about something, the more attention you are giving the annoyance, and the more it grows. If you are focused on how much you dislike your boss, for example, the more your brain will be focused on it and scan for and provide more and more examples of what you dislike.

I had a coach who did not allow me to say anything negative during our calls which was a more daunting task than I originally thought it would be. I really thought I was an optimistic person, but I was surprised at how often my brain wanted to tell her about something negative and was frustrated in the moment that I couldn’t. 

Instead of complaining that the rose bush is full of thorns, be happy the thorn bush has roses”-Proverb

Many of us are complaining, and we don’t even realize it. We just think we are reporting the facts. We had a bad date, the weather is awful, the server was unfriendly etc. These are opinions and judgements of events, and are not facts themselves. These complaints often zap our energy and sometimes the energy of the people around us.

Most of us don’t like it when we hear children whine and complain, so why do we tolerate it with ourselves so readily?

Gratitude helps tremendously in this effort. When you are trying to pivot from complaining ask yourself what is there in this moment to be grateful for or to appreciate instead. There is always something if you look for it.

Doing this has really forced me and my clients to be less judgmental. It offers space for people, places, and things to flow in their own special way without it needing to meet our narrow expectations. 

This doesn’t mean we don’t express our needs and desires, but it can mean that we focus on what is working so we find more of it.

What I challenge you to do is to stop complaining for a full day. Pick one area of your life, your children, your job, the traffic and see if you can catch yourself before you attach to those negative thoughts. Train your brain to notice the annoyance and quickly pivot to something else. You notice and move on.

Don’t focus on all the bumps in the road but rather on the destination ahead. If you want something to work better, focus on what is working vs. what isn’t. You may be amazed at how things change.

Take me up on my 24 -hour complain free day and see what treasures you might find. It could be a simple tool that transforms a relationship that you thought wasn’t working whether it be at home, the office, or in public. Or it could change your perspective on a situation you usually would get upset over. 

If you want something to improve in your life, you have to train yourself to focus on what part of it is working.

If you want to see better in your life but are struggling, reach out for a complimentary consultation call so I can help you find it—->https://mindyourstrengthcoaching.as.me/

Melanie Shmoi

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