Since the start of this writing challenge, I’ve prompted myself to be doing research and to challenge my writing. As a result of this, there have been many revelations that I’ve had and the research has helped a good amount in understanding other things.
One big thing that I came to realize (that’s not part of these seven things) was that many of our perspectives on things can be spun around.
I know this isn’t some mind blowing thing, but for a long time I only saw fear, doubt and excuses as things that we can grow from. For example…
- Fear can be a harsh mentor.
- Doubts can be sources of motivation to propel you forward.
- Excuses give us reasons to believe further in our convictions.
However throughout this challenge I’ve been using those grounds to twist other things into a positive thing.
For example, weeding out toxic relationships can help you to find true friends as you understand more about what sort of people you need in your life.
But one thing that I’d like to revisit is complaining.
Of course that is one thing that is negative and we’ve all heard that complaining doesn’t get us anywhere.
I’m a firm believer that is the case and there are many self-improvement blogs and writers who say complaining doesn’t help.
But is it truly something that is all that bad?
Because as I’ve been venturing through this journey of mine, I’ve been opening myself to interpreting things a bit differently.
Not to a point of toxic optimism mind you, but at least ironing out the good and the bad of certain things.
Furthermore, I’m not going to start openly complaining about things, nor do I suggest that.
But I think with everything, something in moderation can be good for you.
- Spending a little bit of time on social media can help you stay connected. Too much can affect your life dramatically.
- A little bit of chocolate is good for you. Too much will mess up your heart.
- A little bit of stress can motivate you. Too much can overwhelm you and tire you out.
The list can go on and on.
But with complaining…
A Little Complaining Can Encourage Change
A little complaining, under certain circumstances, I believe can encourage us to change.
And I mean under strict circumstances.
Complaining about things that are out of our control will yield nothing at all.
Complaining about how fucked up the US is isn’t going to change it.
Complaining about the environment or even the weather will not do you any good.
In those situations you need to work as a collective group, to gather people around a certain cause.
But that is honestly my point.
Alone, complaining can not do much but drag people down. It’s baseless and needless.
However like our fears, doubts, and the excuses that we come up with, we can mold it however we like.
Think about it.
With every business out there it can be easy to say that at one time someone took a complaint and spun it a different way.
From a business perspective, there are several models who have been taking up complaints and tailoring them to better fit their customers. 99designs.com was one such company who took their graphic design contest platform and developed further based on the complaints.
You can even look at Zara who tailors their clothing based off of feedback from customers.
It’s these particular examples that companies took complaints from others and spun it into feedback. They didn’t sit on it and milk it as a flaw of their company. They used it to create change within the company.
Pay Attention To Complainers As Idea Makers
I agree there are people who have baseless complaints about things. I’ve gotten some criticism in the past that I simply couldn’t use.
That being said, there are others who complain but have good reason behind it. I’ve gotten complaints that have been constructive and made me pause and think.
In those kind of situations, I encourage you all to not label those complainers as troublemakers or people who are out to destroy your brand. Even though there are certainly those who do that, it’s also important to look at the premise of what they are complaining about.
Again, some complaints are baseless and you can’t do anything about. On the other hand, some are actually legit and can be taken constructively.
In the end, it’s about leveraging a complaint.
If it’s a legit issue that you can fix, then put some effort into fixing it. Figure out exactly what the complainer is talking about, then fix it.
Surely you can get a quality customer out of them for years to come when you do.
Complaints Can Find You New Passions
The last reason I believe complaints can help us is that they can help us discover more about ourselves. Complaints, when used properly can help us in various ways and can ultimately lead us down a new path.
There have been so many stories about people who create a product or service just because they complained about something.
Whether it’s writing a children’s book that empowers little girls to being more independent…
Or perhaps starting a non-profit to aid the homeless…
Complaining can prove to be a powerful motivator.
In essence, it can be a reason why to start a business or to take action of those things in our lives. Over time, that complaining can lead to a company vision that rallies people rather than pushing them away.
Be Cautious With Complaining
Thinking about it now, complaining can help in some situations. That being said, it still is something that can hurt people as well when used incorrectly.
Complaining can lead us to be paralyzed, much like I have for several years of my life.
Complaining doesn’t lead to anything good when you complain but don’t hold yourself responsible for it. It’s where resistances can build up and we start to victimize ourselves.
But a tiny bit of complaining, with the right amount of pressure, can lead us to action. It can get us moving in the most difficult of times.
If you feel stuck, there is always a way out. As many businesses and others understand it, a complainer is someone who is deeply passionate about something and can propel you to new heights when you leverage it.
To your growth!
Eric S Burdon