It looks as though I will be fortunate enough to have this lesson last for a loooong time! It is…somewhat challenging to never complain.
I have finally arrived at day 3. Honestly, this is the furthest I have made it so far without having to reset. I have high hopes of making it to day 4.
Since this is going to take a while, once I finally get through with this, I might just have reprogrammed my brain. The repeated practice has already been more eye-opening than anticipated. I had assumed that my complaints would be extremely varied. About random stuff. Instead, I have found that they fall into a few main areas. Here are some typical things that might elicit an involuntary complaint, and have me switching over my bracelet in short order: a mild disagreement between my partner and I about how things should be done around the house, being a witness to poor driving during my commute, and any time I am feeling unsatisfied with myself.
Other than all of that crap, I’m golden. Clearly the solution is live alone in an isolated hut, doing nothing but eating salad, running, writing, singing, sleeping and practicing yoga. Problem solved.
Well, since that doesn’t exactly seem feasible right now, I suppose that I have to work with what life has given me. I can see that my complaints seem to spring from the places where I am rigid. The places where deviation is not desirable, and where I will protest a movement from the status quo. Interesting.
I know that I value needlessly rigid methods of organization. I can only load a dishwasher in neat lines. I believe that there is a “correct” way to fold towels. I read and follow laundry tags. I clean in a pattern. And then Jason comes along and he does things differently. And sometimes, I guess I resent that he has disrespected one of my precious systems. And, I don’t know, I suppose I wind up bitching because I take it personally. Game plan: Realize that everyone is different, and be more grateful that my partner is good at housework! Let go of what I can; the dishwasher isn’t personal.
As for driving, well…that’s obvious. I really value safe driving because I am an anxiety-bag and I really like not dying. It angers me when people are needlessly reckless, or they’re distracted, or they’re throwing coffee cups out the window. Ok. Logical enough not liking bad behaviour isn’t crazy. Buuuut, complaining about it doesn’t help either. Game plan: Maintain a positive attitude while driving. If I see someone doing something truly inappropriate on the road, I can do what I can to get their plate number and report them.
I also know that I am more likely to complain if I feel like I am not achieving my fitness goals, if I’ve slept in too much, if I’m wasting too much time, etc. I need to take care of myself to be in the right frame of mind to do this. Game Plan: Do my best to live my best life. When something goes wrong, forgive myself. Also, take the time to work through/acknowledge negative emotions. Meditation=Better than bitching.
Is this enough to get me through 21 days? I hope so! It’s at least got to be enough to get me to Day 4!
Working to turn complaints into action,