In every situation we are given two choices — change the situation, or accept it. Unfortunately, we’ve created a third choice — complain. We complain as if somehow the situation will magically change from our bitching about it. But it doesn’t. It doesn’t change the situation, it doesn’t improve the situation, and it certainly doesn’t make us feel any better about the situation. Frankly, it makes us feel crappy! When we complain, we become a victim. When we’re a victim, we are helpless! Crappy, and helpless!
I find that this is a subject that comes up a lot in my coaching practice! So I decided, today this will be my topic —
Just for today, don’t complain.
As I sat down to write, my husband informs me that he’s not feeling well. We had dinner plans tonight with 3 other couples. Our friends were leaving for Florida and won’t be back until the Spring. We had made these plans well in advance, so that we could have dinner together before they leave. I was really looking forward to this dinner, especially since last night we had a houseful of family over to celebrate the holidays. I had worked very hard preparing for the day, and then hosting. I love having company, particularly this time of year, but it certainly is a lot of work. I was really looking forward to this dinner out. Do you think that this is a coincidence, that just as I sat down to write about why we should accept, and not complain, this happens? Funny, right?
Bob suffers from gout. While I’ve never experienced gout, I know that this a man who has never taken a sick day (and I mean never) in over 40 years of his accounting practice. So if he tells me he’s in pain, I’m pretty sure it’s bad! But I wanted to go!
Here’s where “change the situation or accept it” is put to the test. Lord knows, I was not happy, and wanted to complain (I did grumble a bit — Can’t you just limp?).
I could have changed the situation by going alone. But the reality is, I wouldn’t have enjoyed it without him. I also could have continued grumbling, as if that would somehow make the gout disappear. Madness, for sure! I wasn’t willing to change it, so instead, I opted to accept what was, and let it go. (No, I didn’t cook; we ordered in. There’s a difference between “accept and let go” and losing one’s mind 😉 )
There are so many times when we’re presented with a situation that is less than favorable, and we resort to complaining. (Just think about when you’re stuck in traffic and you have someplace you need to be. Unless there are wings on your car, there’s really not much you can do!) Well, just for today, make the choice to either accept the situation or change it.
Just for today, don’t complain — because, frankly, it is Madness!