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Sometimes there are things we do that are just so easy.
It is so easy to check our phone first thing in the morning, instead of doing a meditation practice.
It is so easy to binge watch Netflix, instead of doing our yoga practice.
It is so easy to microwave something out of a box, instead of cooking a meal from scratch.
Really, sometimes all it comes down to is that some of the things that aren’t that good for us are just really easy to do.
I think the biggest one is complaining.
Complaining is so easy.
All day we see things we don’t like, don’t agree with and wish were different—and the easiest way to dispel this uncomfortable energy from our systems is to complain about the situation.
That is why I don’t judge complaining. It is a natural form of energy release, but over time, if we keep using complaining in this manner it becomes a habit, and we all know how hard habits are to break.
Every moment of everyday we have an opportunity to choose what we want to create in the world.
We can choose where we want to put our attention, what we want to say, how we want to react and what we want our intention to be behind our thoughts and actions.
These choices are creating our lives, our selves and the outcomes we are going to experience.
How does it feel to complain? Does it feel like we are celebrating life with balloons and candles, or beating life down with the back of a wooden spoon?
This is the type of noticing we need to bring to this entrenched habit of complaining. We need to look complaining straight in the eye, and ask ourselves some hard questions about what this habit is actually offering in our lives.
We all need to vent sometimes. We all need a friend or loved one we can talk to—to let out all the pain of our human days, in an uncensored way, to help us make sense of how we feel about our world.
But all the little complaints, such as–-this is too cold, this is too hot, I like his voice, I hate his jeans or nothing is going my way! Where does this take us?
When we stop complaining, what can naturally arise is more gratitude, appreciation, pleasure and generosity.
Really, not complaining is one of the most generous actions we can take.
When we stop complaining, we stop making other people “wrong.” We stop projecting our judgement and frustration out onto other people, and we start to take responsibility for our inner responses.
How we respond internally is the core of everything—it’s the core of how we think, act and react.
When our internal responses stop being opinionated complaints, and start being neutral noticing, we start to realize that most of the things that happen around us are none of our business. Someone else’s jeans, a little comment someone made, a smell—essentially, these are just things going on in our periphery, and a big response from us is unnecessary.
Experiencing the world without complaints can feel a little lonely. We are accustomed to connecting with people through our observations of the world, and we have formed the habit of these observations often being of a complaining nature.
That is why the only way to get a sense of how our perceptions can change, when we cease to complain, is to give it a try.
What happens when we turn our attention away from our complaining thoughts and comments, and instead, offer the generosity of compassionate observation to the mundane moments of our day?
Give it a try, and let me know how it goes for you!
Author: Ruth Lera
Editor: Yoli Ramazzina
Photo: Flickr/Umberto Salvagnin