There are situations when complaining is the best way to get things fixed. Sometimes, you do need to vent and talk about all the things that are bothering you to get it out of your system. But complaining all the time and about all things can lead to negative outcomes.
Here is why it’s better to avoid complaining too much.
It amplifies our negative emotions
The first reason why complaining is not the best solution is that it can make our negative emotions greater. It encourages ruminating on the same thing time and again and build it up in our heads. Then, we might feel that the situation was more important than it actually was and experience a more intense sense of fear or anger than it merited.
Complaining can make the emotion more real and more significant as well. We might be compelled to deal with the situation as if it was more important because of how we are feeling.
It makes us less pleasant to be around
Complaining every once in a while is normal. However, doing so constantly can be exhausting to those around us. People rarely want to hear negativity, especially when it comes their way all the time. It makes conversations more difficult and unpleasant.
If we get a reputation for complaining too much, others might start avoiding us or be less willing to let us vent, because it can feel like we are always doing this. It can hurt our relationships in the long term and leave us with a negative label that can be hard to shake off.
It stands in the way of forgiving and letting go
Complaining can make it hard to let go of a situation. We talk about it time and again, so we don’t let ourselves release it in any way. We keep hanging on to have reasons to complain or bring it up in conversation and, as a result, the situation continues to affect us for a longer amount of time than it would otherwise.
By forgiving and letting go, we also relinquish the right to keep complaining about the situation and gain back whatever energy we were placing in worrying about it. If we don’t, it stays in the back of our minds.
It makes us overreact
When we complain, we are giving the situation merit. We are acknowledging that it was, somehow, wrong or harmful. It can make us build up the situation and overreact to it, for instance, by demanding restitution or seeking change when things are really not worth the time and effort it would take.
We should feel empowered to make changes and take action when it’s important and likely to have meaning. But wasting our time and energy on situations that don’t matter is not productive.
It makes us focus on the negative
Complaining centers the negative aspects of your life. It makes you focus more on the bad than the good, because you can’t complain about the positive aspects of your life. While it’s OK in small doses, when it becomes a habit, you get used to seeing the negatives rather than the positives. It can become more natural for you to recognize the bad of a situation rather than the good, and even seek the downsides for mostly positive events or occurrences.
It becomes a bad habit
Complaining is not a constructive habit to have because of the reasons above. But it is an easy habit to acquire. We can find ourselves complaining more and more without noticing. Because of this, it’s important to moderate our words and not complain in excess.
We can decide to complain sometimes, when it’s constructive or a situation that bothers us, and then stay away from the topic for the rest of the conversation. We might also use other tools, like journaling, to express our negative emotions when we don’t want to do it through conversation.
Complaining occasionally is healthy. However, we should be careful not to make it a habit because of all the negative effects it can have.
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