Is It Time You Went On A 'Complaint Cleanse'?
According to author and poet Cleo Wade it's time we stopped whinging. Even for a week. Who's in?
Ever had the feeling you're whinging a little too much? Or worse, that those around you are whinging at you far too often?
You're not alone -- you see, complaining is wildly contagious and, just like yawning or colds, when one person starts, others will soon follow.
Poet and author Cleo Wade posted on Instagram on Monday that she too was guilty of complaining, so was taking some time out -- and suggested to her followers that they do the same, calling complaints out for having "no magic" and not "making anyone's day better." She suggested a "complaint cleanse" and -- just like that -- 20,000 people got on board with the concept.
A few had a laugh at the concept -- comedian Mindy Kaling saying, "Will I even have anything to say?!" -- but most took the idea seriously.
"Last year I learned something incredibly valuable, @cleowade. I learned that complaints are riddled in expectations—and, as @kerrywashington said, “Expectations are resentments in waiting.” Once I heard her say that and deeply took it in, my life changed. I wish you well in your journey." commented one.
"I'm going to work on this all April!!" said another.
And the idea is not without merit -- according to psychologists.
"We usually complain after-the-fact, meaning whatever we are complaining about has most likely come and gone," Lysn psychologist Noosha Anzab told 10 daily. "We normally can't change things that have already passed, and we certainly can't change things through complaining."
"When we constantly complain, we are not only going over the annoyance over and over again, we are hopeful that this will make a difference. Which it won't. If we don’t try to change our mindset or actions around things that facilitate complaining then we will only be left going over that same annoyance time and time again!
Instead of complaining -- even for the length of the complaint cleanse alone -- Anzab suggests we try something else.
"We can work on controlling the controllable -- giving ourselves back some much healthier headspace by practising gratitude. For example, if getting your coffee meant you were running a little behind on time, it could just be acknowledging gratitude towards being able to actually grab a coffee in the first place, or the taste of the delicious cup of coffee rather than complaining about being late," she told 10 daily.
She also suggested you should look at the reasons for your complaining in the first place.
"Sometimes you need to stop yourself and have a think about why it might be. What are you trying to achieve by complaining? Is it to let off some steam? Get some sympathy? Or validation from someone else that what you're complaining about is warranted? In most cases, you’ll find that the reasons don't make much sense, and it's likely that the person on the receiving end of your complaints won't be getting much enjoyment out of the situation either."
You know it.
Try to go back to your intentions for complaining and work on fixing the cause, she continued.
"Always remember that in most cases, complaining simply doesn't fix anything, rather it keeps you in a negative frame of mind where you're blaming instead of taking responsibility or accepting the facts as they are. Be mindful about where you gear your attention and energy -- instead concentrating on acknowledging the annoyance, being curious about other alternatives to it and getting back to the here and now."
Try it for a week. We're with Cleo.
And if you can't do it, maybe her other words will inspire you.
Feature image: Getty