I make it a point to try to not complain a lot. I try to handle things myself and when I can’t I ask for help. If something someone else is doing is irritating me, I wait at least 24 hours before breaching the topic with whoever is responsible. If I still care in 24 hours it might actually be worth talking to them about and I’ll be calm enough to talk about it rationally. If it isn’t still irritating me in 24 hours, thank goodness I didn’t shriek at the person over something petty and dumb. If it’s that time of the month I wait until it’s over.
Why do I do that? Because I have better things to do than complain and I don’t care to be a thorn in someone’s side. Because no one likes a complainer.
Sure, I could find things to complain about and sometimes I do (mostly feminists), but there’s no fun to be had or value to be gained by complaining. Usually. If there is a cow tooth in your hamburger by all means complain. But endlessly complaining does nothing good to your character or personal outlook. It generally means you are constantly and/or easily offended, which is the exact type of person no one wants to be around.
If you find yourself constantly complaining, take a moment and ask yourself some questions:
Are these things actually important?
Is my complaining helping anything?
Do I need to change some things in my life so I have better things to do than complain?
The answer to the first two is probably “No”. As for the last one, that depends on you. Maybe your life is legitimately abysmal and you need to take some time to change things. Maybe it’s great and you just don’t realize it. Regardless, here are some things you can do to improve your outlook:
If you tend to complain because you get offended, ask yourself these questions:
Why am I offended?
Does that thing really apply to me/people I love?
Then, avoid complaining and do something about it if it is legitimately offensive. Maybe calmly correct the person who is speaking or write out why that irritates you. Then, this is the important step: Leave it behind you. You can’t get bogged down over a comment or a joke. If you’re going to get outraged over something, let it be something legitimately awful and then take action to help stop it or at least help those being harmed. An example of the difference: Girls being called “bossy” is not anything to be offended or outraged by, on the other hand young girls and boys being sold as sex slaves is.
Another thing you can do, it’s so simple and you were probably taught this as a kid:
Count your blessings. Look for things to be happy about. It’s really not that hard to do.
And finally, look for a way to make things fun. NSR is something of an expert at this. Just today he turned a trip to Walgreens into a regular day out to enjoy the beautiful weather. I’m getting pretty good at it too, since I have to figure out ways to enjoy cleaning house and washing dishes. Instead of griping that I’m stuck here washing dishes I can rejoice in the fact that I have my own home to run or that I have so much time to think and create. I could gripe that I need to care for NSR by doing X, or I can realize that if I didn’t have to do X it would mean that I didn’t have NSR who makes my life so much better.
Something else I do to avoid complaining is this:
I don’t do anything I can’t accept the consequences of or live a lifestyle that requires people to cater to my personal desires. Basically, I realize actions have consequences and the world doesn’t revolve around me. I don’t get drunk because I know I’ll get a hangover. I’m not going to move into the city and then demand that a stable be built for my horse. If you think that people should cater to your every little desire, you better be ready to pay them to do so, because they aren’t going to do it just because you feel they ought to. We can’t cater to everyone and we never will.
You could complain about that, but I think you have better things to do.