Do you know people who are highly skilled at complaining? Of course you do. You probably also know people who are highly skilled at appreciation. Here's a simple question...Who do you choose to spend more time with? I hope it's with people who are more appreciative.
"THE WORST PERSON TO BE AROUND
It's been said that some people are a joy wherever they go; and some people are a joy whenever they go. I like to periodically ask the complainers in my life "What's going well for you today?" They often don't have an on the spot response, and sometimes their face twitches a little because appreciation is not their default setting. So I tell them that I don't need an answer this minute. But I do want them to think about what's going well for them today and to come back to me at the end of the day with a response.
They generally do come back and share something that's happened in their day that has been a bright spot for them. Something they can appreciate. Shifting the chronic complainer's focus to look for something that is going well, or is about to go well, causes people to anticipate and expect something great to happen. It doesn't work for everyone though. I used to work with someone who was a complainer by default. I remember being out in British Columbia for a business trip on a beautiful summer day and I commented to this person how nice it was outside and how breathtaking it was to see the mountains in the distance. His responses was, "Well, it might be nice out today, but we're definitely going to pay for it in the winter!" Talk about a conversation killer...exit stage right!
For some people, complaining is like a recreational sport which they love to play. I'm not saying that I never complain and I believe that a good complaint now and then helps get things out in the open. It can bring about positive change. What I am saying is that I think we have much more to appreciate in our lives than things we have to complain about. If I am going to be known as a person who is appreciative and grateful, I need to be around grateful and appreciative people on a regular basis. What do you think?