I complain a lot. I can’t help it- it’s my coping mechanism. I know it gets on other people’s nerves and quite honestly, it gets on my own. Yet, I have so far been unable to stop myself from doing it. My attention was especially drawn to it when a friend of mine told me that she had given up complaining for lent. It somehow heightened my sensitivity to my own vice.
It’s totally a habit of insecurity for me. When I am able to find negative things to say about certain issues or circumstances, my own shortcomings don’t seem as bad anymore. It is also an issue of caring too much about pretty much everything and the only way I know how to deal with that is to verbalize negative thoughts. I have noticed that the more comfortable I am around a particular person, the more freely I feel I can complain. Which of course is awful because that makes me be a total downer to the people I love the most.
Thankfully, my husband is able to tune out a lot of my nonsense. He is able to take my comments and turn them into something constructive or just ignore them when there is nothing constructive to be done. He is more of an optimistic opposite of me, which I am very grateful for.
So, I really want to stop the complaining! Not just for the listeners’ sakes, but for my own. I dwell on negative things too much and it isn’t good for me.
Help me out, people: What are your coping strategies when it comes to emotional stress? How do you keep from complaining?