Have you ever been around a group of people that seem to do nothing but complain? They aren’t trying to find a solution, they aren’t trying to get to the bottom of a problem. They are complaining. While we all need to vent from time-to-time, what happens when the venting isn’t just release, but constant negativity and complaints?
It is all too easy to let our emotions take over and our judgement fly out the window. We allow ourselves to wallow in our situation. An especially important side effect to our constant grumbling, is that soon our children begin to take notice. They observe we having nothing good to say; not about them, our spouse, our house, or our life situation.
Soon, our children begin to see life through our negative lens. They start to bellyache about their situation. They, too, begin to complain their days away, wading in their troubles.
What if, instead, we tried to accentuate the positive in every situation. What if we chose to be more like Pollyanna and play the “Glad Game“. Hypothetically speaking, what if we handled situations more like this:
- No, my car isn’t working right now. But, you know, the Lord is using this situation to teach me patience. It hasn’t been easy, but we’re getting there.
- My daughter is struggling with arithmetic right now. I know she is really smart, we just need to keep working on different ways to do our homeschooling. I am sure, with time, we’ll figure it out!
- Things has been really difficult with my husband out of work right now. We are praying for him though and we know something good is going to come along. For now, we are just trying to be more careful with our budget and learn to be resourceful.
See the difference? Yes, I could complain my car is in the shop again and my life is being inconvenienced. I could complain I have tried explaining the same topic to my daughter, again and again, and I don’t understand why she just can’t get it. Yes, I could vent my frustrations about how my husband still hasn’t found work and I hate things being so tight. But is that the best solution?
Is my constant negativity going to make the car get fixed, my daughter learn faster, or help my husband get a job? No! Trust me when I say, our complaining is a pain… very literally. It hurts the hearts of those who hear our complaints and it hurts us to dwell on them.
When my children hear me complain about them, their hearts are injured. When my husband hears me complain about our situation, it hurts him. When I continually focus on the negative, I am hurting my own peace of mind.
While I have not, by any means, conquered this area completely; I am very happy to say I am intentionally trying to win out. I am choosing to downplay the negative and choosing to focus on the good. It might be hard to find, but every situation has a silver lining.
“Do all things without grumbling or questioning,”
~ Philippians 2:14
📢 Chime In!: Do you find yourself focusing on the negative aspects of life? What helps you to refocus and accentuate the positive?