In our life, we may come across many noble souls who despite hardships and challenges refuse to complain. They may be among those we know, like my elderly childhood nanny who never lost hope or complained about her healthy yet unemployed son. A son who after the age of 45 eventually focused on his responsibilities towards life and family.
One of the most moving stories that I’ve come across appeared on June 3rd 2007 in the newspaper, Khaleej Times. It was the case of a Polish Railway employee, Jan Grzebski. He fell into a coma when he was hit by a train in 1988. After 19 years, Grzebski not only awoke from his coma but leads a healthy life today. What is amazing about Jan’s story is not just the fact that he is well now, or that his wife, Gertruda never gave up the hope that he will eventually pull through but the fact that he has no complains about what he went through.
After awakening from the lost 19 years of his life, Jan remarks how it shocks him to see people complain about smallest of things. He insists that he has no regrets or complaints about what happened to him. ” I’ve nothing to complain about”, says Grzebski.
Its not that we all never grumble or complain. We certainly do, but what is critical is how often do we indulge in it? Do we enjoy it or is it merely the occassional grumble that allows us to relieve our stress? To whom do we pour our complaints to?
Letting out our concerns to someone close to us is natural. In fact, it is important that we have someone in our life that we can relieve our stress or anxiety. If we don’t have that someone to complain then approaching a therapist or counsellor is an effective method to relieve stress.
It is disheartening to observe how those who complain or moan are most often left alone. Sometimes, they may not even be aware that their complaints drive people away from them.
What can we do to complain less and become more cheerful and positive?
The first step that is extremely helpful in enabling us to complain less and enhance our well being, is to build a positive frame of mind by taking care of ourselves.
Make the time for yourself. Spend some invigorating “me time” to relieve the monotony of the busy life we all lead. Do something everyday that you enjoy. It could be going for a walk, spending some time reading or any activity that you accomplish for your happiness.
Meditation is an effective tool against our susceptibility to complain or grumble, thanks to its deep impact on our emotional and physical well being. I enjoy meditating before I sleep everyday. Why before I sleep? For the simple reason that it makes it easier for me to manage my time during the day when I meditate at night.
Meditation can make it easier for us to tune out negative and stress inducing thoughts. It can also help improve our attitude towards the day and situations. Meditation has the ability to induce an awareness of ourselves , see things with better clarity and an appreciation for the freedom of thoughts. It is not that our thoughts do not attempt to enter our mind when we meditate, but it allows us to accept the thoughts and focus better on the now and the state of serenity. Best of all, meditation is an opportunity to self reflect and tune our mind to positive thoughts that enhance our pleasure for living.
Creating a list of our blessings is a powerful way of inducing more appreciation for what we have and less protest about things we do not have.
The more we acknowledge how much we have and enjoy the less we would be tempted to utter ungracious words of complaints. Looking around, we can certainly notice several reasons to be grateful for who we are, what we are and what we have in our life.
Being responsible for our actions and behavior can lead to us to accept the control we have over our life. We are then less likely to indulge in the blame game or involve ourselves in complaining about others or situations. Imagine if we went for an interview and we were not selected for the position we had sought? It is perfectly natural to feel disappointed. However, it is the positive action we make after this situation that would determine our success the next time we attend an interview and not by whining. Resorting to a structured critical analysis of our performance would not only help us perform better the next time we attend an interview but give us a sense of personal responsibility for the outcome of our actions.
We may have heard of the proverb, “The grass is always greener on the other side (of the fence)”. For us to enjoy viewing the health and vitality of the grass we stand on, we only need to make the steadfast decision to take care of our grass with utmost attention and care.
The moment we begin this process, we will find ourselves miraculously having no time to complain, to gaze or compare our grass (state of life) to the grass on the other side (another’s life).