Today, I’m going to ask you to make a pledge – Declutter all complaining and negative talk for the next 7 days. No undesirable, harmful, or otherwise destructive words shall come from your lips OR through your fingertips. No, not one!
But just a second!!! If you are tempted to move along, thinking this isn’t worthwhile or a ‘big deal’, I encourage you to read on and give it a shot for 7 days. THEN tell us how you feel!
Until you reveal a problem, you may be completely oblivious to the fact that you have one. Or perhaps the ‘Ah-ha’ moment will come when you recognize damaging patterns of conversation in your family and friends.
This is a major, life-changing, important journey and I simply cannot express to you how eye-opening this challenge is, and how beneficial the results will be.
You just have to try it for yourself!
What’s Wrong With a Little Complaining Anyway?
The problem is, there is no such thing as a little complaining. Complaining is like a disease. Left untreated, it spreads like wildfire to every area of your life, and before you know it, you feel emotionally and physically shortchanged, every day is a disaster, and every person you know is a jerk. Your life stinks and hope has evaporated because you’re so busy infecting your life with a stream of negativity that there isn’t room for any good stuff.
I’m telling you from experience, it can happen to the best of us.
- Complaining leaves you in a constant state of unhappiness and discontentment. It will wreak havoc in every area of your life, including personally, in your home, at work, within family and friend circles, and even in the midst of your church life. Your personal self-worth will plummet and your goals and dreams will never be realized. Your reputation will suffer. Respectable friends will walk. No area is left untouched. Negative talk will suck the life right out of you and never look back. It’ll leave you miserable, alone, deflated, hopeless, and disenchanted.
- Complaining about someone, let’s say your spouse for instance, makes them look poorly in the eyes of other people. Why would you want to do that to someone you love?
- Complaining about people breeds an air of negativity. And unfortunately, if and when the problem or situation blows over, the negativity remains in the air, stale and stagnant, for a very long time.
- Complaining is a way to seek attention. It takes the focus off of the problem and puts in on you. My husband and I call this becoming a ‘Professional Victim’. Trust us, this is not an occupation you should aspire to have.
- Complaining isn’t productive. Problems aren’t solved and relationships aren’t saved. It’s a draining waste of energy.
Nothing good comes from complaining.
Yet so much good will come from NOT complaining.
- Your outlook will be more positive. Self-esteem will rise.
- Hope will increase.
- Your joy level will soar.
- You’ll make room for good things to happen.
- You’ll invite success.
- You’ll be forced to find healthier, positive, more productive topics to talk about. Motivation, inspiration, service, and rewarding action is spurred from positive conversation.
- Remove complaints from the mix and you’ll generally end up problem-solving and fixing an issue or perhaps moving on, but you won’t stay stuck in a damaging cycle.
- People will want to be around you. You’ll be more fun, enjoyable, and pleasant. Optimism is contagious.
- Your spouse, family, and friends will trust the words you speak about them.
- You won’t be reliant on a body part, situation, or person to change or make you happy. You’ll be in control of the decision to refrain from complaints and choose joy! Choose peace!
Not everyone will be delighted with the change, and the reaction to this new direction in your life will be very telling.
People may find you boring without all the drama and gossip. There’s a good change they may be irritated if you don’t join in on theirs. Misery loves company after all. The good, comparatively speaking, will be inspired by your efforts and will likely rise up and want to join in on your endeavor. They will be supportive. Understand that you’ll be creating a new environment and not everyone is going to want to stick around for it or be excited by it. And that’s okay. This will definitely separate the good influences in your life from the draining ones.
Some people find comfort when others beat themselves up. Either they don’t feel so alone OR it elevates their own warped sense of self-confidence. If they aren’t ready to embrace your new journey, they will likely walk. And this needs to be okay.
Taking the Leap!
Begin by writing a contract with yourself stating that you won’t, regardless of circumstance, utter any complaints, verbally or otherwise, for the next 7 days. Furthermore, you won’t engage in negative talk of any kind. Date and sign it. You must make a commitment to yourself with the full intention to follow it through. Write your own or use the one that I’ve provided here.
Can you think negative things? Why of course you can, but as you have to continually squash the thoughts because you aren’t allowed to speak or write them, they will eventually diminish. It isn’t nearly as much fun to complain without an audience.
Can you listen to negative comments as long as you don’t respond? Again, I would say if you really want to, yes, but I’ll also suggest you that once you aren’t engaging, this sort of talk will seem irresponsible, immature, boring, and you’ll relish separating from it. You’re going to be more apt to seek out fun conversations that you can join and feel good about!
Make it a FAMILY AFFAIR. Include the kids!
Explain what you are doing to your family and friends. Ask them to support you. Even to hold you accountable. Perhaps start a campaign in your own circles and ask people to take the challenge with you.
Don’t cave to temptation. Regardless of how disappointed you are in yourself, how angry you feel, how terribly you’ve been wronged, or what negative opinion you feel inclined to share, discipline yourself. Reroute your thoughts. Bite your tongue. Walk away. Leave the room. Shut your mouth. There will be some moments much harder than you anticipate, but rise to the challenge.
Redirect conversation. Initially, this may be one of the hardest aspects of the challenge. Long ago, when I first gave myself the challenge, my initial thought was, “What in the world will I talk about? Do I have enough ‘good stuff’ to share? I love juicy conversations with my girlfriends; will we have to be boring now?” In short order, the answers are – Everything good! Absolutely! And No Way! Boy, didn’t my concerns alone speak volumes to the problem I had?
My sister, Kelly, has been working through her first week of the challenge. She said it’s already changed her attitude at work and has made a difficult situation far more manageable. Kelly also said it has made her think before speaking. So while she might initially be saying less, what she is sharing is intentionally more positive! I’m praying every day for her to keep on going!
This old saying still holds true today…
And after all of this, if you still think taking the 7 Day Challenge isn’t really a big deal, then all the more reason to take it. If it’s not such a big deal, give it a shot. You’ve got nothing to lose! Or perhaps there’s someone in your life you feels would benefit from this challenge. USE ME! This is an opportunity to share the challenge with family and friends and not directly call someone out! Don’t waste time! Let’s get going!
During the week we’ll be posting ecards to help keep you motivated. And we’d LOVE you to share your experience along the way. You have no idea how much your words can help someone else. Whether it’s discussing a struggle you’re having, a tip you’ve uncovered, or a success you’ve realized, someone will need to hear it.
If you find the first seven days beneficial, by all means, DON’T STOP! Consider this just a launch pad for a consistently more positive and rewarding life experience!
Start the ‘Change your Ways – No Complaints for 7 Days’ challenge TODAY and share it with your family and friends. We’d love to have you join us! And we’d love to hear from you!