A survey taken near 6,000 people by scientists in psychology from the German University of Lena would tend to demonstrate that complaining is good for your health and your life span according to an article in the French newspaper Parisien.
The survey also concludes that to bottle-up your emotions could lead to cardiac acceleration which could increase the risks of hypertension or health problems in the long run. Apparently, we all agree that containing our frustrations inside would be far more dangerous than to express them. The article then ponders if complaining “which is considered like a French national sport” has become the norm. The article forewarns us that the act of complaining must respect certain rules…”
The method shared in J’arrête de râler! aka “I Quit Complaining and Bitching” (over 150 000 copies sold) invites us to give ourselves the means to take care of our needs. Many readers have testified to tell us how this challenge had allowed them to really get a handle on their negative complaining and their lives. We are far from the idea of not expressing our frustrations which could lead to depression.
The challenge makes us take a real look at our complaints so we can become aware of them, take charge and not suffer from them. We seek to understand why we complain and to express our frustrations without complaining.
Why, you may ask, without complaining? Because we learned and found out that complaining, although it expresses our need, is really not very good strategy to obtain what we really want in the long run. If complaining really worked, then we would have no other reason to complain since all our needs would be met. Often complaining doesn’t provide lasting real change and we find ourselves again complaining about something else or the same thing over and over again. We cultivate and get stuck in a spiral of frustration that drains and pollutes our life.
TO QUIT COMPLAINING DOESN’T MEAN BOTTLING-UP OUR EMOTIONS
It really is an art to know how to express ourselves without complaining!
Life will bring us trials and difficulties. People will upset us and prevent us from doing what we’d like to do. And it’s frankly aggravating, but true… However, we cannot accept everything. We cannot allow others to walk all over us and treat us like doormats. It’s important to be able to express what we don’t like and what doesn’t suit us. If we keep our feelings bottled in we risk exploding in what I call the ” pressure cooker” effect where our only outlet and alternative is to complain and vent out our frustrations too often contained.
The I Quit Complaining Challenge invites us to express our emotions more appropriately with less aggression. We learn to ask others what we need with force and determination without any drama. We realize then that we greatly increase our chances to be heard and our needs to be really taken in consideration .
TO QUIT COMPLAINING IS A CHOICE AND A WAY OF LIFE
Serenity is a choice that we can make today, whatever our circumstances. We can choose to experience our frustrations differently and realize that complaining is a habit deeply anchored in us ( just like smoking) which cannot disappear overnight. During 21 consecutive days we learn to change our outlook on our daily life, we learn to delve into our resources so we no longer suffer the problems of life and so that we can better savor all the hidden treasures.
To quit complaining is of course, choosing to see life in a positive light and it’s an important lesson… however seeing “life through rose-colored glasses” is not enough. To quit complaining is really about putting an end to acting like a victim of everything and everyone. We stop pointing the finger at the guilty people in our life and we devote our resources and energy to become actors and co-creators of solutions.
When we quit complaining, we eliminate a big layer of pollution in our life so that we can finally take advance of the blue sky. We spend our energy on what propels us forward and we can have enjoy the freedom to take advantage of what life has to offer us.
4 TIPS TO EXPRESS OUR EMOTIONS AND GET WHAT WE WANT:
1. Identify the real need hiding under the emotion. For example: am I complaining because I asked my child several times to empty the dishwasher, or am I really complaining because I feel the whole housekeeping logistics is on my shoulders and this is not working for me?
2. Use the rights words and resist the tendency to exaggerate. Example: often when we complain we are so afraid that we won’t be heard that we exaggerate and amplify. We transform the problem in a drama, we say :” I asked you 100 times to do this or that” or “It’s always the same thing” , “It’s killing me!”
3. Express our frustration without the need to make the other guilty is an art to establish our limits and make our demands without accusing the other. Example: instead of saying ” You never help me ! “, I can say ” I feel like I am speaking in a vacuum and that every thing lies on my shoulders and I don’t like it. I don’t want to be in this position. I need your help.” Of course this takes more self-control, but I can guarantee that it’s much more effective to obtain what we want and need.
4. Accept that we cannot force others to do what we want when we want (really ? ) It is exhausting to try to coerce others to do certain things. It is much more effective to try and negotiate with them. Be aware that everyone must be in agreement and be weary of so-called agreements which are in fact disguised obligations. You need to remain firm on the fact that you need their cooperation so that your needs are met, but also remain open to your needs being met differently than originally planned.
It’s not an easy process and this is why I often intervene and speak on this subject and train in people in business and why we also have in place workshops to accompany those who want to follow this path for their business or their families.
What lessons have you learned with your I quit complaining challenge?
Love and Respect,
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