Freedom Blog

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Never Complain, Never Explain

No Limits | The Freedom Blog

Never Complain, Never Explain

Written by Steven Griggs |

People asking questions, lost in confusion, well I tell them there's no problem, only solutions
John Lennon

Problems, problems we all have so many problems.

But do we really? 

What would you classify as a problem? I mean a real problem?

Put it in the context of knowing someone who has cancer or some other deadly disease or is crippled or handicapped. Not to mention the billions of people on the planet who don’t have enough food or clean water, let alone any form of a sanitation system.

Knowing this, can you still whine about your little problems or would you just keep your mouth shut? Or can you just accept your problems?

Of course some problems are more difficult than others. Major life changes like the death of a family member, the loss of your job, or a divorce are events that seriously affect people. They can shut you down for a minute.

But the truth is anything less than a major issue really should be called a nuisance.

And why do we like to whine and complain so much anyway? Do you whine?

I’ll bet if you’re honest with yourself you've been a whiner. We all have: the weather is bad today, you have to work on your day off, you aren't getting a raise this year, your plumbing is backed up, the car needs major work”….. the list is endless.

But again, why do we do it?

Because it validates us, it tells us we aren't the only ones with problems, there are a lot of us!

You've watched a whine fest and probably been a part of one at some time. You get together and whine.

Misery does love company so we tend to find other whiners.

It’s a gripe session.  It can be at work or with a group of friends at a party. You get in the whine groove and go for it. Everybody and everything is fair game.

But what is really happening when you join the Whiner’s Club?

First of all, it feels good. It feels like connection. You aren't the only one, you have co- whiners! And your ego personality loves to feel sorry for itself, it can wallow in self- pity for days on end.

But really, if you stood back and watched yourself wouldn't you be horrified?

It is so self -indulgent.

Living in the abundance of this country, with the opportunity and gifts we have does not allow any of us to utter one peep of complaint.

Second of all, if you were honest with yourself you would realize that maybe you really aren't looking for a solution because it’s much more fun to feel sorry for yourself and whine away.

Besides if you had a solution you might have to take action and making an effort might be uncomfortable…..

But lastly, it keeps you safely and comfortably locked into the problem, not the solution

So what’s the answer?

I think it is a process of reasserting yourself, of regaining a little bit of self- control. You need to set some ground rules for yourself.

Years ago I learned the concept of staying contained, staying within your zone of control. That is a very small area, basically just your body and your mind. Commenting, trying to control, voicing opinions or complaining, are out.

It means staying true to your agreement with yourself and monitoring everything that comes out of your mouth (brain). Self-censoring if you will.

If your words do not add positively to the conversation, if you are going to say anything negative towards anyone or anything, don’t say it.

Years ago I began instilling in my mind the words: “Never Complain, Never Explain”.

This does several things. It creates a mindset of control. You don’t whine about things and when invited to join the whiners club you don’t.

You just don’t complain.  And you don't explain.

Keep to yourself. Create an air of mystery about yourself. When someone at a party engages you in a conversation, join in. But if the conversation drifts into whining or complaining (or religion or politics for that matter) drift away. When someone asks you if everything is alright, you don’t respond other than to say something neutral, something positive, “Boy the food is sure great tonight. “I love the way the house is decorated”, anything other than responding to the question.

Because you can’t explain it, no matter what you say, the minute you start explaining yourself to someone you’re in trouble.

You see, most people won’t get it. All it will do is make you stand out and be different. You make yourself an outsider. And that’s scary for the mainstream.

And really that’s what you become, an outsider. Gaining control of yourself and stepping back from the mindset of the mainstream sets you apart, and once you know, you can never go back.

You become what Stuart Wilde called a "Fringe Dweller". We dwell on the fringes of society. We are in it but not of it.

It takes constant vigilance. I slip off my wagon all the time, but when I do I tell myself "nope, we’re not going that way" and jump back on.

So the next time you feel a whine coming on try to nip it in the bud.

Or promise yourself that you will supply at least one solution to every whine you have.

I’ll bet you eventually stop whining altogether because, really, what is there to complain about?