Meet my long time buddy Phil.
“Hey there, Siva. Long time no see,”
“Yes man! Been busy. My life sucks.”
“What happened are you all right?”
“Nothing much Phil! It’s just I can’t get used to this 9 to 5 work schedule and my dream of becoming an actor is totally crushed, blah, blah, blah… (I continue to blabber for the next 5 mins). And how is your life going on for you Phil?”
“It’s good. To be honest, it’s damn fantastic man…”
Seems like an ordinary discussion? Let me get to the specifications.
Siva works at a well paying IT Firm. After work he goes home, sits passively before the TV, eats and falls asleep on that damn couch. This guy doesn’t have any chores other than his job.
It’s Phil now.
He works in a Hotel as a waiter. He lives in an old, dungeon’d basement with his two kids. A lone parent. Works over 10 hours and returns home only by 7pm, helps his kids with their homework, makes dinner, eats with his kids, plays with them, tells them a story before he comforts them to sleep. It’s already 11pm.
Now he goes back to the other part of his house where his rusty desk lay there in a corner waiting for his arrival. He takes his seat, turns on that vintage lamp and starts writing for his first book (which he is striving hard to publish).
He winds up his work by 1 am and goes to sleep. By 6.30 am he wakes up, makes breakfast and lunch, gets his kids ready for school, packs their lunch, leaves them at the bus stop by 8.35am and runs back to the hotel before 9am.
(Phew! So damn hard right?)
Crybaby vs The Optimist
The former one complains for anything and everything, the bird-poop on his bike, the food, clothes, in a nutshell his entire life is nothing but a big ball of complaining.
But the latter one doesn’t cringe for the responsibilities he ought to do
Why the one with everything is dissatisfied with his life, whereas the guy with little to nothing is much fulfilled with his life?
Is materialism is the only thing that spoils our lives or is it something else?
What complaining does to us
We complain to vent out the anger inside of us, to make us feel relaxed. Seldom complaining helps us, but its cons outweighs the pros to a considerable extent.
When it becomes an integral part of our lives, it becomes tragic.
We love complaining because
1. It takes the responsibility off our shoulders
2. Helps you become the center of attraction
3. Excuse poor performances
Crybabies complain about everything in their life. They never seem satisfied both emotionally and materialistically.
I categorize complaints into three different ways.
1. We have full control over them
“I have no time to work on my passion X. My day job kills me.”
We have full authority over these type of complaints.
Accepting the fact that we are just a stinking, couch potato could help us get out of this infinite, down spiralling loop of negativity.
Stop making these complaints and get your fat ass up and moving.
2.We have partial control over them
“My boss may not like my new assignment. It’s because of this stinky cabin I work this way, had my cabin been better I would have…” (add up all the stinking excuses please!)
How the hell do you know that your boss would hate your assignment? and why the hell do you curse your damn office for your inefficiency.
Stop complaining, give your best shot at it and let it go.
3.We have no control over them
“Not Again! It rains all the time. I wish it was sunny today.”
You don’t control their outcomes, so why the hell do you even worry? Just let it go (It’s harder than it sounds!)
To sum up everything, complaining makes your life worse. Period!
Why is tough to let go of the habit of complaining?
We have a lot of disguised addictions (Shopping for example…)
And complaining is one of them.
We know that it is easy to complain and cringe, but have we ever wondered why?
Let me invite you backstage of the three and a half pound meat loaf that lies between our ears…
There are over a 100 billion neurons in our brain and in between every neuron there is a gap called the synaptic cleft. It passes informations through the neuron, the cleft, the neuron, the cleft,… until it reaches the destination.
When the same information gets passed again and again, (with time) the synaptic cleft becomes smaller and smaller until the point where the neurons are almost touching each other.
Among all the paths present in your brain, the path where the neurons are very close or covers the shortest distance becomes the most desirable path to travel.
When you cringe about everything in life, the path becomes much smaller and might even form a permanent bridge. This bridge is the one which is much shorter than compared to that of other paths present in the brain. The brain chooses the shortest path and we end up complaining repeatedly.
“Synapses that fire together, wire together”
Let’s ditch the science and let’s think in terms of mathematics and numbers.
An average human being makes about 15–30 complaints a day.
“What’s wrong with that, just 30. Everybody has their issues in their lives, man.”
Did you expect a bigger number? Let me give you the stats
Assume, person X makes 22 complaints a day.
22×365 gives us (5 times 2 is… let me spare you with the calculation part)
WHAT THE HECK? 8030 complaints a YEAR?
For a decade, it becomes 80,300.
80,300 complaints is good enough to make us a narcissist/a persistent pessimistic whiner.
At some point we might end up hating ourselves.
With an increase in the complaining frequency, studies show us that the hippo-campus (the region responsible for cognitive function) becomes smaller and taking such decisions becomes much harder.
This causes difficulty in adapt to the new things.
Now imagine a generation doing this. (Phew! It’s better to not think about it)
“I don’t complain Siva, but I have a friend who doesn’t stop”
Passive complaining (just like passive smoking) is bad too.
It aids you in creating a negative environment around you.
Regardless of active or passive complaining, it increases self loathing, anxiety, depression, physical and mental stress, etc…
Moreover complaining does not take you anywhere. Just like quicksand, the more you complain, the deeper you go in and the more difficult it becomes to get out it.
The interesting part is that you never run out of things to complain about. The more you complain, the more does your reality gets altered.
“What should I do now, man?”
The first step in getting out of that never ending, down spiraling loop hole is to realize that you are in one.
After realizing that you are bitching about your life you have to try not doing it. The following ideas could help you.
The first one is my personal favourite.
The easiest, priceless act yet it is the thing which is looked over the most.
Its benefits are far higher than we could ever fathom.
To meditate you needn’t wear a robe and sit atop a mountain, just like the monk below.
Do it the first thing in the morning, just 5 minutes. And I dare you to say straight to my face, looking into my deep, bloodshot and furious eyes that you don’t have time.
You need not concentrate on your breathing(although it helps) and cringe when a new thought comes up. Be in the present, that is what meditation is all about. If something pops up, just let it go. Bring yourself back to the present
2. Change your lens
The way we wish to view our lives defines ourselves as a person. It defines our character.
Start being optimistic about life and realize that nothing is permanent
“Happiness”, melancholy, anger, hatred, love, lust… its all part of our lives and it’s how we handled these emotions defines our lives.
WARNING! Being optimistic differs from being a “Positivist”.
Optimists understand and they try to resolve the conflicts. They feel sad when they are supposed to and fulfilled when they are. After all being sad isn’t a crime right?
Positivists live their entire life being ignorant of their emotions. They try to please themselves by staying happy all the time and end fucking themselves up.
3. Define what success really means to us.
We have to define what success means to us.
Living in a mansion with yachts in your backyard and working with the greatest film industry may be successful for you.
Spending more time with friends and family, living peaceful happy lives may be successful for another.
Before you define success ask yourself this question… How much is enough?
Is it 500 dollars a month, maybe a $1000 or a $100000000… (with zeros which is longer than your name)
Sure there is nothing wrong in having big goals and there is nothing wrong in having the small ones either. There is nothing right or wrong it just depends.
Zero down on your priorities.
If you haven’t achieved your goals stop complaining and start working your ass off.
If you have, appreciate what life has provided you and realize that your hard work has paid off.
4. Being Grateful
Cringing about what we don’t possess is one good way of losing sight of what we have.
Start being more grateful.
Remember, If you have a roof above your head, clothes to wear and eat three times a day then you are above 38 percent of the world population.
Many don’t get the basic facilities we have.
Let’s together start building a grateful community with good human values instilled in them and help them create a better society.
A note to readers: What I write isn’t the gospel truth. These are values which I found to be helpful and has improved me grow as an individual. They may be right or wrong.
With constructive criticism growth occurs.
So feel free to criticize my ideas. After all better living is what we are aiming at.
If you liked the post, consider giving it a share.
Your shares are greatly valued.