I often see “lifestyle architecture” articles, whether they are in my Facebook News Feed, or just under recommended articles in places like LinkedIn or different business and tech websites I visit. One thing that I saw today was about a “no complaining” campaign, which challenges those who participate to not complain about anything for an entire month.
How do they define a complaint? Is saying that it’s cold outside a complaint? No, the rules say. A complaint in this case would be, “It’s cold outside, and I hate this weather so much.” Complaining is negative, the campaign says, and listening to other people complaining is just as bad; second-hand complaining is like second-hand smoke. It’s still bad for you.
At its core, it seems like a great idea. It would make us more cognizant of our words, who we are saying them to, and what exactly we are saying. But then there’s this fuzzy line I imagine, especially when I think about my family. If I just report back to Chris or my friend that my uncle said this thing (which is clearly dumb) or that my mom did that thing (which is rooted in negativity and cannot be misinterpretted), is that complaining, or merely reporting the facts? What that ends up being is just a discussion of negativity, which I’m not sure I would characterize as “complaining.”
My family really does complicate everything, even when they don’t realize it.