The Benefits of Complaining

It is so easy to slip into complaining.

Do you have this problem? Complaining more than you want?

I know that sometimes I am complaining, and I don’t even realize I am complaining. Other times I know I am complaining, but it is hard to stop until I have vented my frustration.

Anyone else raising their hand?

There seems to always be something to complain about.  Big things and small things. Though I tend to favor small things.

How about you? Big or small things?

Learn the 4 benefits of complaining. Then take complaining to the next level and do something about your complaints.Learn the 4 benefits of complaining. Then take complaining to the next level and do something about your complaints.Learn the 4 benefits of complaining. Then take complaining to the next level and do something about your complaints.It’s easy to complain.

 

I am trying to get ready and the phone rings. The bird needs to be put in her cage. Someone asks where their shoes are. I realize I haven’t yet brushed my teeth. And oh yes, what am I going to wear?

Stress builds. Frustration rises.

Then as we are leaving the house someone says, “I thought this started at 6pm.”

I look at the clock. It says 6:05.

I glance at the calendar. Yup, starts at six. Which means we needed to leave at 5:30.

In the car I complain about people distracting me. How I need people to take care of the bird and get themselves ready. And anything mildly related.

We arrive half an hour late, and in a bad mood, mainly because I have complained and vented.

I apologize, but we are all a bit somber. All because I mixed up the time to go and arrive as one in the same. And then complained to a car-captive audience.

That time it was my fault.

But sometimes it is not my fault.

I complain because it seems no one in my house can return an item back to its original and designated spot.

Or because I get tired of waiting for people to show up at the dinner table.

Or because my day has gone nothing like how I wanted it to.

Yup.

So many things to complain about.

In fact, the list seems never ending. We can complain about life, others, circumstances, our day, work, pets, health, politics, laws, food, movies, service, accommodations, traveling, technology, ourselves, and much more.


Learn the 4 benefits of complaining. Then take complaining to the next level and do something about your complaints.Why we complain.

 

We often complain because we have a sense of entitlement. We expect things to unfold orderly, and ultimately go a certain way. We expect (and think) people to act certain way. We expect (and think we deserve) to be treated a certain way.

In short. We complain because things, people, or life is not going as we expected.

I know. It sounds a little shallow of us, doesn’t it?

And it reveals our selfishness and that we are thinking mostly about our self.

Ugg. Not pretty, I know.


Learn the 4 benefits of complaining. Then take complaining to the next level and do something about your complaints.The benefits of complaining.

 

I did say there were benefits of complaining, so let’s get to them.

1. Complaining can highlight the things that irritate us and identify what we consider to be a problem.

2. Complaining can help us label our feelings.

3. Complaining can illuminate the expectations we had for that situation or person.

4. Complaining can point out our self-focused heart.

In short, complaining can help us get to know ourselves better and shine a light into our motivations, feelings, attitudes, and expectations.

But how are these a benefit?

Has this ever happened to you?

You are complaining to your friend about your mate always being late. You are ready early, he has never been early to anything. And as you are describing your frustration about waiting for him and explain how you feel about arriving late to most things, you feel your blood pressure rise.

Presto! You’ve identified what you consider a problem.

You dislike being late. And he is late.

And you have begun to identify your feelings about this problem.

You hate waiting. You feel anger. Frustration. Annoyance. Maybe slighted because he doesn’t consider that you want to be early to events. Not late.

And if you were to probe further, you may find that waiting for him makes you feel disrespected. Not loved. Or maybe the cardinal rule in your childhood was never be late. So, you relate being late to breaking a rule of life.

See all the good information you have learned about yourself? {Stuff you can use to help you not get upset next time this predictable late dance happens again.}

Now let’s dig a little deeper.

You have looked at being late from your point of view, now let’s try to look at it from his viewpoint.

Your mate probably doesn’t see being late as a problem big enough to change. Or he probably wouldn’t be consistently late. Maybe he grew up in a family where they were always late. Or maybe he has no sense of time. Or maybe he has anxiety about being early.

Like I said, this is a problem to you. And why? Because it bugs you.

And it bugs you because you are an early bird married to a late bird. It bothers you because he is different than you. It bothers you because you hate being late. And in your rule book (your expectations), one needs to be early.


Learn the 4 benefits of complaining. Then take complaining to the next level and do something about your complaints.Looking closer at the benefit of complaining.

 

Complaining has identified three important things we need if we are going to change or fix something in our life.

First, we need to identify the problem.  We can’t change a problem without identifying it.

The more we can identify the things that irritate us, the better able we are to address those situations and take steps to not be irritated. We cannot take steps to prevent, sidestep, or change until we have identified a problem.

Second, we need awareness. We need awareness about how we feel, our actions, motivations, expectations, and personality. The more aware we are of how the problem makes us feel, act, and why we feel this way, than we can choose the next step and figure out what to do about the problem.

If we can identify our feelings, and work through them, we will rule them, instead of them ruling us.

Third, after gaining awareness of ourselves, we can gain awareness of others. After we look at the problem or situation from our point of view, we can step back and gain perspective by examining other viewpoints.

The more we can figure out the other person and why they act or think a certain way, the easier it is to give grace, understanding, and decide how to go about compromising and trying to solve the problem. Trying to understand their viewpoint also helps the situation be less of an I-am-right point of view, and they-are wrong point of view (or the winner / loser scenario). It also helps us not take their actions so personally.

We can also look at the problem or situation through the big picture of life and gain insight on how important the thing we are complaining about really is in the scheme of life.


Learn the 4 benefits of complaining. Then take complaining to the next level and do something about your complaints.Complaining never solves a problem.

 

Usually we like to complain. Then after we have vented, we feel better.

Until next time.

But you see. Complaining never solves a problem. It takes no action.

My sister told me this one day and it made a big impression on me.

Complaining just exercises our tongue. And often it encourages us to shame and blame, or lecture, those involved, but there is no plan developed. No steps taken to alleviate or live with the problem.

It is time to take complaining to the next level. After we have identified the problem and our feelings concerning the problem, let’s take some action.

Let’s attempt to solve (minimize or deal with) the problem and eliminate further complaining.


Learn the 4 benefits of complaining. Then take complaining to the next level and do something about your complaints.Solving the problem.

 

Here is the action part. The brain work.

It is time to reap the benefits of all that complaining and move to solving the problem. To quit being the victim and move to choices.

Back to the problem of the early bird and tardy bird. There are many choices available.

You can discuss it with him and tell him how his lateness makes you feel. You can come to a compromise. You can take separate cars. Maybe reward yourself with something enjoyable while he is taking so long to get ready. Tell him things start 30 minutes earlier than they really do. Decide to just   overlook it and live with it. Catch yourself getting irritated and decide not to let it ruin your day. Catch yourself wanting to nag and complain him into moving faster, and instead name two things aloud to him that you appreciate about him.

The one thing you cannot do is change him. He has to do that himself.

The thing to remember is that you have lots of choices.

When we feel we have choices, we can quit complaining and instead choose to do something different.

Not all problems we complain about can be changed. Sometimes we need to find ways to deal with the problem in the best possible way. But we never get to dealing with the problem in a better way, until we identify the problem, our feelings associated with the problem, our expectations concerning the problem, and then take action to do or try something different.

I am not encouraging you to complain, but once you have, use the benefits (the knowledge learned) of complaining to your advantage.

Move to the next step of dealing with or solving the problem.

You’ll be happier, and so will those around you.

Learn the 4 benefits of complaining. Then take complaining to the next level and do something about your complaints.P.S. Possible questions to ask yourself to help you solve your problem and benefit from complaining.

1. What do I really feel about this topic / problem?

2. Why might I be feeling this way?

3. Why does this problem bother me so much?

4. What are my expectations for this problem? Why or how did I develop of choose those expectations?

5. What might the other person’s viewpoint be?

6. What might their expectations be?

7. What have I learned about myself (or them) that can help in the future?

8. Do I want to address this topic / problem with the person? What would be the best way of doing this?

9. How do I want to address, or react, next time this problem / situation comes up? (Come up with a plan of action.)

Helpful tip: Complain to a person who will listen, ask similar questions, and help you figure out your answers to these questions.

My sister and I call each other to complain, and then often we ask some of these hard questions of each other. This helps us identify the problem, and then decide what we are going to do about the problem.

Thanks for stopping by. Keep remembering what’s important.

Theresa

 


If you need some weekly encouragement and hope, tied up with some humor? Subscribe and join the journey. Life is sweeter when we walk alongside one another.


Join the Discussion: What are some benefits you have noticed about complaining?

Learn the 4 benefits of complaining. Then take complaining to the next level and do something about your complaints.May link up at Holley Gerth (#coffeeforyourheart), Lori Schumaker (#Moments of Hope), Crystal Storms (#HeartEncouragement), Maree Dee (#Grace & Truth).

Learn the 4 benefits of complaining. Then take complaining to the next level and do something about your complaints.We can't spread peace around the world. But we can spread peace to those around us. To our little neighborhood, one peaceful act at a time.

15 Ways to Kill a Friendship (What Not to Do)

Perhaps you are someone with too many friends.

They flock to you like ants to chocolate frosting. They take your time and energy, giving little in return. Instead of being a joy, they are turning into a chore.

Well I am here to help.

Follow these 15 steps and you will kill your current friendships. Even halt future friendships. And don’t worry, these steps work on all types of relationships. Mates, co-workers, besties, children of all ages, peeps, pesky you know who’s, and neighbors. Pretty much on anybody, except maybe your loyalist dog.

I do have a few warnings. Make sure you are ready to start?  Killing a friendship can take some concentrated effort. Sometimes even some hard work. It can also take some time. Some friends drop quickly, others take longer. Make sure this is what you want. Once you start implementing these 15 ideas, you won’t be able to return to the earlier days.

Wondering how to kill a friendship? Here are 15 things you can do to guarantee your friendships dissolve. Or you can do the opposite of this and build and encourage your current friendships.Imagine being resurrected. Maybe you are happy. And then you look around and remember your old life and problems and you wonder, "Why oh why did this happen to me?"Wondering how to kill a friendship? Here are 15 things you can do to guarantee your friendships dissolve. Or you can do the opposite of this and build and encourage your current friendships.15 ways to kill a friendship:

 

1. Compare yourself with them. Always and for everything. If you win, you can feel smug and superior. Don’t forget to point out to them that you are better than them in this area. If they win, you can pout, dislike them, and be jealous. Either way, it causes friction between the two of you and helps the friendship turn south.

2.Make them feel guilty for their good fortune. Whine, complain, and show them the injustice of their place in life whenever they are doing better than you. Play the victim. Question why life is so hard on you in multiple texts and conversations. Wallow in your envy. The goal is to make them feel bad

3. Always think the worst of them. Are they late for your date? Assume it is because they are avoiding you. Did they forget to wish you happy birthday by 8 AM? Assume they hate you and are trying to ignore you. Did they buy their favorite ice cream and not yours? Assume it is because you don’t matter anymore, and they have a new and better friend.

You may have to work at this. But eventually with practice you will get the hang of assuming the worst. Remember every action, communication, manner, and situation can be seen negatively.

Wondering how to kill a friendship? Here are 15 things you can do to guarantee your friendships dissolve. Or you can do the opposite of this and build and encourage your current friendships.4. Don’t ever make the first move. We are playing a game of chicken here. Don’t call first (unless you are calling to whine and complain per #2). Instead, make them call you. Don’t text to see how they are doing. Make them text you to see how you are doing.

Think about it this way. You are to busy and important to think about them. Wonder about them. Or plain spend any time on them. When, and only after they have made the first move, then get back to them. But not to quickly. Remember, their job is to pursue you, not the other way around.

5. Never encourage or compliment them. There are enough special snowflakes already. Don’t make any more.

Your job is not to hand out false praise and dangerously build them up. No, be practical and helpful. Offer liberal criticism and let them know their faults and where they need improvement. You can be the friend that helps them reach their potential and teaches them that life is not eating a bowl of cherries on an amusement ride. Life is hard, demanding, striving for perfection.  Teach them their best is never quite good enough for you.

6. Focus on yourself. Talk only of yourself. Brag about yourself and your accomplishments. Promote your ideas and opinions. The last thing you want to do is ask them a question or their opinion. Remember, it is all about you.

7. Never apologize or admit you are wrong. If they try to point the accusation spotlight on you, blame and shame them. Intimidate them. Make excuses and then point out how they are more in the wrong than you.

If they apologize first, still don’t apologize. Step back and thank them for their apology. Then focus on how they were wrong, giving suggestions on how they can do a better job in the future. Make sure they are penitent enough before once again extending the olive oil of friendship.

Wondering how to kill a friendship? Here are 15 things you can do to guarantee your friendships dissolve. Or you can do the opposite of this and build and encourage your current friendships.Wondering how to kill a friendship? Here are 15 things you can do to guarantee your friendships dissolve. Or you can do the opposite of this and build and encourage your current friendships.8. Put them down and make fun of them. Take every possible opportunity to make them the heel of the joke. If they don’t laugh, tell them you are just joking. Then accuse them of being to serious and not having a sense of humor.

9. Pretend you are perfect. Show no vulnerability. You want them to think you have life figured out and you have everything together. If you don’t, well don’t tell them.

10. Be kinder to yourself than you are to them. Give yourself grace and patience and many tries to get something right. But don’t extend these to them unless they really have worked hard and deserve it. Give them an inch and they will want the Grand Canyon.

11. Hold a grudge for as long as you can. Show them you have more will power than they do. And when you finally decide to loosen the grip of your grudge, bring the incident which prompted the grudge up on a continual and regular basis.

12. Expect more from them than you do yourself. You have high and exacting standards and expectations for yourself, and that has made you into who you are today. Do them a favor and have high expectations and standards for them. You will be helping them see where they have room for improvement.

Always find something they didn’t quite do right and point it out to them. Remember you are doing them a service and trying to get them to achieve their potential. Being disappointed in them is a great motivator.

13. Gossip about them. Feel free to share all the gossip you hear about them (or you learn about them firsthand) with your other friends and acquaintances. If you are trying to help them, or someone in the process, gossip is good.

14. Make everything in life a competition. Provide some friendly fun by competing in every area of life with them. Make sure you have the greatest husband. The cutest dog. The best dressed children. The most volunteer hours. The highest heels. The reddest dress. The sexiest smile. The most social likes.

See number 6. Brag and then brag some more to encourage them to strive harder. Which in turn keeps you working and doing your best to win. See number 2 if they are pulling ahead in any category.

15. Constantly correct them. Especially in front of others. This will alert them to areas where they need improvement. Correct their grammar. “The correct word is ‘affect,’ not ‘effect.'” Their posture. “Stand up straight. You look like a limp pole.” Their stories. “It was January and the time was 3:52.” Their facts. “Everyone knows people love chocolate ice cream more, not vanilla.” Focus on all the glaring little faults you see.

Little things can make or ruin an image. Once again think of it as doing them a service. Sure, they may glare at you in the moment, but years down the road they may be contacting you via Instagram to thank you for helping them become a better and sharper image of them self.

 

It’s your choice.

 

Now that you know what will make many of your friends start running for cover and away from you, leaving only your toughest skinned and ready to grow and improve themselves friends, you can start implementing these 15 items.

If on the other hand, you want a few more friends. Or want to encourage the ones you currently have, then I suggest you do exactly the opposite of the above. Not only will you be well liked. You may win the best friend of the year award.

And as you will have not driven all your friends away, you can host a large party and celebrate together. Because that’s what real friends do.

Wondering how to kill a friendship? Here are 15 things you can do to guarantee your friendships dissolve. Or you can do the opposite of this and build and encourage your current friendships.

Thanks for stopping by. Keep remembering what’s important.

Theresa

 

P.S. Want to know why we need friendships, take a look at The Friendship Moment of Change. And if you are looking for ideas about what you and your friends can do, see When Was Your Last Playdate?


If you need some weekly encouragement and hope, tied up with some humor? Subscribe and join the journey. Life is sweeter when we walk alongside one another.


Join the discussion: What things have you seen dissolve a friendship faster than a melting ice cube?   

Wondering how to kill a friendship? Here are 15 things you can do to guarantee your friendships dissolve. Or you can do the opposite of this and build and encourage your current friendships.May link up at Holley Gerth (#coffeeforyourheart), Lori Schumaker (#Moments of Hope), Crystal Storms (#HeartEncouragement), Arabah Joy (#Grace & Truth).

Wondering how to kill a friendship? Here are 15 things you can do to guarantee your friendships dissolve. Or you can do the opposite of this and build and encourage your current friendships.

Wondering how to kill a friendship? Here are 15 things you can do to guarantee your friendships dissolve. Or you can do the opposite of this and build and encourage your current friendships. #relationships #friendships #humor

What I Wish An Older Woman Had Told My Younger Self

Like most things do, it slowly snuck up on me.

There were a few warning signs, but I am not that observant.

I had noticed I wanted and needed more naps to stay alert, but I was just thinking naps were one of my best friends.

I had noticed I had less energy, but after all I am no spring chicken. I also reasoned I was also doing more. And I could still do hard things, like hike 14 miles on the continental divide in less than 7 hours.

I had noticed I seemed to be shedding a bit more hair. But I reasoned it was spring, and I usually shed more every spring.

9 things I would give as advice to my younger self. Everything from mental health to checking my iron and hormones, to setting boundaries and playing more.9 things I would give as advice to my younger self. Everything from mental health to checking my iron and hormones, to setting boundaries and playing more.9 things I would give as advice to my younger self. Everything from mental health to checking my iron and hormones, to setting boundaries and playing more.9 things I would give as advice to my younger self. Everything from mental health to checking my iron and hormones, to setting boundaries and playing more.2 weeks later I was getting my hair cut. At the end of the session my stylist pulled his stool up and sat down to face me.

“I am a little worried,” he said. “You are shedding more hair than normal. If I were you, I would get this checked out by a doctor. My mom was shedding lots of hair and it turned out to be her thyroid.”

I was now sitting up and listening.

I saw my doctor two days later. She ran some blood tests and it turned out my thyroid was fine, but I was low on iron. Very low. And yes, hair loss can be one of the symptoms of low iron. I was suffering from anemia, caused by low iron levels. Low energy, hair loss, and being sleepy and some of the symptoms.

Every few years I get blood work done, but because my doctor had never checked my iron, so it had slipped by unnoticed.

Thankfully, 4 months of taking a high dose of iron had my iron levels back on track. I noticed I had more energy and don’t need to take naps anymore.

Ladies, sometimes we are so busy taking care of everyone else, that we forget self-care—taking care of ourselves. We need to take care of ourselves, or we can’t take care of others.

I know life is busy. And getting to the doctor can seem like another chore in a long line of to-do’s, but we need to make it a priority. We need to buckle down and not let things slowly slide until we are having real big problems. 9 things I would give as advice to my younger self. Everything from mental health to checking my iron and hormones, to setting boundaries and playing more.9 things I would give as advice to my younger self. Everything from mental health to checking my iron and hormones, to setting boundaries and playing more.9 things I would give as advice to my younger self. Everything from mental health to checking my iron and hormones, to setting boundaries and playing more.

Here is what I wish an older woman had told my younger self:

 

1. Get baseline tests in your 30’s, but especially by your 40’s. Test your thyroid, vitamin D, iron, and hormones. Get a lipid profile to check cholesterol. Get pap smears. Don’t forget skin checks for moles and skin cancer.  Test for diabetes. Get your vision checked. Get a mammogram. Schedule regular dental check-ups. Don’t forget to have your blood pressure and heart health checked.

Also talk to your doctor about other tests you may need.

The goal is to see what your numbers are when you are healthy and feeling good. Then when you recheck later, you will know how far your levels have dropped or risen and you can take action before things get so low you are exhibiting many of the symptoms of something.

Some of these tests may cost a little out of pocket money, but remember they are to determine your baseline when healthy. For example, you want a baseline of your hormones before you enter menopause.

2. Address your mental health. Emotional and psychological issues creep back to the surface if they are ignored and not dealt with. This means we have to deal with past loses, abuse, trauma, unhealthy relationships, and more, or they will eventually affect our current life and patterns of acting and thinking.

This may mean talking to a close friend, seeing a therapist, seeking out a psychologist’s help. Several times in my life I have benefited from seeing psychologists. Both individually, as a couple, and as a family. They provide a new perspective and help us better understand our self and others. They can help us find new ways of dealing with patterns and obstacles we have given up on ever changing.

9 things I would give as advice to my younger self. Everything from mental health to checking my iron and hormones, to setting boundaries and playing more.3. Study yourself. Discover who you are and what brings you joy and sadness. Learn your faults and good traits. Are you a people pleaser, perfectionist, an optimist, encourager, problem solver, an introvert or night owl? We are better able to change for the better when we are aware of what we need to change. And likewise, we appreciate our wonderful and unique self if we know what we are good at and enjoy.

4. Exercise. I know it is hard. But walk a little. Dance in the kitchen. Garden. Do squats while the pasta is boiling. Run up the stairs. The goal is to move. And to move in different ways.

5. Form meaningful relationships. Make friendship a priority. Friends to do things with. Friends to share good and bad with. Friends that will listen to you and help when hard times hit.

6. Learn about menopause long before it hits. Read about it. Talk to older women. Discuss the symptoms and treatments. Find out all you can so you are prepared. It’s kinda like childbirth. Everyone’s experience is a little different, but there are enough commonalities that overlap that you won’t be the only one going through what you are experiencing.

9 things I would give as advice to my younger self. Everything from mental health to checking my iron and hormones, to setting boundaries and playing more.7. Engage in self-care. All the above is taking care of yourself. Now add a few other ways to care for yourself and nurture your soul. Like quiet time each day. Drinking your favorite tea. Reading. Calling a friend. Sleeping on your favorite sheets. Painting. A girl’s night out. Playing the flute. (As we are all different, your self-care will look different than other women’s self-care.)

8. Learn to love yourself. Realize your worth. Whose you are. And how valuable you are. Deal with your insecurities and critical voice. Replace lies with His truth. For when we are less hard on our self, we are less hard on those around us. And we are better able to love and care for others in the way they require or need.

9. Set boundaries. On your time, emotions, and life. Don’t let yourself get worn out by doing too much or by not saying no. Refuse to feel responsible for things you are not responsible for. Practice self-control.  Remember to control what you can and leave the rest in God’s control.

When we take care of our bodies physically, emotionally, and mentally, we are doing ourselves a favor, and those around us a favor. We will have more energy. Feel better. Enjoy life more. And be better at loving and serving those around us.

Let’s commit to doing this.

I’ll take care of myself.

You take care of yourself.

9 things I would give as advice to my younger self. Everything from mental health to checking my iron and hormones, to setting boundaries and playing more.

Thanks for stopping by. Keep remembering what’s important.

Theresa

 


If you need some weekly encouragement and hope, tied up with some humor? Subscribe and join the journey. Life is sweeter when we walk alongside one another.


Join the Discussion: What do you wish your younger self had known ?

9 things I would give as advice to my younger self. Everything from mental health to checking my iron and hormones, to setting boundaries and playing more.May link up at Holley Gerth (#coffeeforyourheart), Lori Schumaker (#Moments of Hope), Crystal Storms (#HeartEncouragement), Arabah Joy (#Grace & Truth).

9 things I would give as advice to my younger self. Everything from mental health to checking my iron and hormones, to setting boundaries and playing more.9 things I would give as advice to my younger self. Everything from mental health to checking my iron and hormones, to setting boundaries and playing more.