Being Happy – Stop Complaining

This post is third part of a series on Being Happy.  Links to the other posts in this series are at the end of the post.

Before I started working with my first coach (who had me stop complaining, you can read about it in the About Me section) I had worked on not complaining before.

The first thing I did was identify where I complained the most and came up with a few strategies for handling it.  I quickly realized that I complained a LOT when in the company of a couple of co-workers.  It was how we interacted.  I figured I had a couple of options. One was to avoid those co-workers and situations entirely. The other was to talk about our personal lives more (without complaining!) instead of our work lives.

There was one exception I made to no complaining.  If there was a problem that needed to be addressed I would bring it up to my boss.  Technically, that is complaining. defines complain as: “to express dissatisfaction, pain, uneasiness, censure, resentment, or grief; find fault.”  The rule I imposed was I could complain to my boss if I had come up with at least one possible solution to the problem.  This worked pretty well.  In retrospect, I should have slightly expanded this exception to also bring my boss issues that I wanted to brainstorm solutions for.

Another tactic is to say nothing when others complain or you feel a complaint coming on.  Don’t forget to move on.  Don’t dwell on the complaint even if you didn’t verbalize it.  A complaint in your head is still a complaint!  Even better, find something nice to say about the situation or person the complaint is about.  It will give you a different way to look at it.

To sum up:

  • Identify the situations you complain in the most
  • Avoid those situations
  • Find another way to act in those situations
  • Come up with solutions to resolve the complaint
  • Say nothing when you feel the complaint coming on and move on
  • Say something nice about the situation or person the complaint is about
Other posts in this series:
Being Happy – The Start
Being Happy – Saying No
Being Happy – Stop Complaining
Being Happy – Change Your Negative Self Talk
Being Happy – Have Fun
Being Happy – Decluttering
Being Happy – Gratitude
Being Happy – The Conclusion

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