Hank Green, from the vlogbrothers channel on Youtube, said something interesting in one of his latest videos. He said, “It is more fun to complain than to appreciate.” And I agree. I think there is truth in that statement.
It is true. It is more fun to complain. We feel better after we complain. It is like venting out all your frustrations. It is therapeutic for the self. It is satisfying for the ego. But is that it? Is that all that we aim to achieve? Satisfying our ego?
What about the problem? Do we ever think about how to solve the problem and making the situation better? Complaining is not always bad, but in many cases it is. Especially when no alternative effort towards a solution is being given.
When is complaining a bad thing? When is complaining a good thing? It depends on the goal. Are we seeking to make the situation better or are we seeking to satisfy our ego? Because those two things don’t necessarily go hand in hand.
It is possible that the best course of action and the best method to make the situation better will go against the ego. It will go against what we want and it won’t make us feel better. But it does make the situation better.
So what is the focus? The situation, which includes ourselves and others? Or the ego, which only includes ourselves.
We have to move towards a different kind of approach. When an issue or a problem arises, we have to start thinking beyond ourselves and focusing on making the situation better.
If you have a problem with a friend or a spouse, talk it out with that person. Don’t post it on Facebook. That’s not going to make the situation better. It might make you feel better. But it won’t make the situation better.
If you have a problem with your boss and you have been treated unjustly, reach out to the relevant authoritative body to lodge an official complaint, because those people have the power to do something about it.
If you have a problem with an institution, call up the institution and give them a constructive criticism.
If you have an issue with the government that affects everyone, try to organize a peaceful and intellectual discussion or a dialogue with the government about that issue so that the people can listen from both sides, educate themselves about it, and make a well-informed decision.
The point is, focus on the solution.
Focus on making the situation better. Avoid just simply making ourselves feel better because we are doing something. There are situations where doing something doesn’t improve the situation.
If you can’t make the situation better, don’t make it worse.