There is nothing that drags me down more than blaming other people for things that go wrong or complaining about things we don’t like.  This is the ultimate morale killer.  You might think I am venting about others but I am as guilty of doing this as anybody.  It drags me down to hear others doing this but it drags me down more when I do it.

We all have our weak moments and need grace when we are in a bad frame of mind.  I am giving everyone, whether they read this blog or not, permission to call me out when I am caught blaming someone or complaining about something.

What do we complain about?  Here are a few things to get started.

  • Things other people do that we think they should know not to do.
  • Aspects of our job that we don’t love but are a fact of life.
  • Having to do something that another person could have done instead (but chose not to).
  • Cleaning up other people’s messes.

Blaming and complaining has its origin in an unhealthy focus on oneself.  This could also be called pride.  To be perfectly honest, it takes a lot of self-control to not complain.  I find that I am most likely to complain when I have a lot of things competing for my attention. In these situations I feel my heart rate increase.  I am not able to concentrate.  I get more active but not more productive.  I limit my interaction with others.  The limited amount of interaction I have with others is brief and shallow.  I’m aware of my stress but feel helpless to deal with it.  But I am not helpless.

In these times I need to take a break and prioritize my responsibilities.  Usually I realize that much of what is distracting me is not high priority or can be easily dealt with.  When I sort through my thoughts and responsibilities I am able to focus and my attitude improves.

What I just described is the ideal way of handling distractions but it is easier said than done.  Which is why I not only give permission to others to call me out when I complain but ask them to do me the favor of calling me out.  Its not always easy but its best for everyone.