I happened to be in Miami, Florida during the summer holidays, and visiting Miami without going to the south beach is pretty much incomplete. I was really looking forward to a relaxing afternoon at the beach with just family and friends.
When we got to the beach, it was quite a challenge looking for a parking spot as there were a lot of fun seekers there too and most of the preferred spots were already occupied. Just as we were about to give up on the search, we noticed that a drama was brewing just behind us; a lady’s car had broken down on the main way and it caused quite a traffic.
The guy directly behind her kept honking on his horn and shouting at her to move her car to the walk path so he could move, but obviously, she couldn’t; her car couldn’t even start. He continued his rant, questioning her on why she drove out with the car if it had issues. Amidst the already growing tension, a guy whose car was also affected by the ‘sudden’ traffic, stepped out of his car, walked over to the lady and asked her to open the car trunk so he could help her out. He did what he could do and fortunately, moved the car to the side.
After eventually getting a parking spot, I reflected on the event; often times we have plans of what we want to accomplish on daily bases, but the unforeseen can happen and disorganize our plan(s) or cause a setback. In such situations, what we do will determine how our day will end. Will you keep complaining and criticizing like the guy directly behind the lady? Or instead, be like the other guy who just walked up, fixed the obstacle and moved on. “You cannot have a productive day, if you keep complaining.”
WAYS TO HAVE A MORE PRODUCTIVE DAY
I have compiled a list of ways you can prevent nagging over issues from ruining your day:
- BE PROACTIVE WITH A POSITIVE ATTITUDE
Like the scenario above he approached the lady and tried to figure out what he could do, if he had chosen to do the opposite by sitting down in his car, or go on a ‘road rage’ like the other man, that car would still be stuck in the same spot.
According to Dr. Travis Brad-berry, who quoted in his book; How Complaining Rewires Your Brain for Negativity, “repeated complaining rewires your brain to make future complaining more likely”. So over time no matter what happens to you whether positive or negative, you will still complain and that’s how people will perceive you. Nobody likes to work with a negative person.
- TAKE CARE OF YOUR HEALTH
We tend to neglect our health in pursuit of the demands of life. Your health is your responsibility. Whenever our body is stressed in the form of headache, muscles tightness, high blood pressure or digestive issue, studies have shown that it can affect the brain. (Read more http://bit.ly/2idzSRk).
This study shows that complaining shrinks the hippocampus, which is the area of the brain that is critical to problem solving and intelligent thoughts. Therefore next time you want to complain, criticize or blame, think of what it does to the brain.
It is advisable to eat nutritious food, sleep for at least 6-8 hours in a day and make out time for exercise to keep your body and mind in check.
- HAVE A PURPOSE AND A PLAN
Rick Warren once said; “the greatest tragedy is not death, but a life without a purpose”. If you can’t identify your purpose, there is a good chance that you will be very good at complaining.
Steve Maraboli was also quoted as saying; “you were put on this earth to achieve your greatest self; to live out your purpose and to do it courageously”. A plan without a purpose is a mere wish.
Imagine what you want your future to be in every aspect and then work every day towards that distant vision or goal.
- MANAGE YOUR TIME PROPERLY AND FIND A HOBBY YOU ENJOY DOING
Whatever activities you enjoy doing, be it biking, hiking, gardening, reading books, or even cooking, find time for it. But you must not compromise on your daily priorities.
You must focus on your priorities and take control of your day by having a to-do list for the day which keeps you organized and provides a direction on how your day should be.
- DO NOT COMPARE YOURSELF WITH OTHERS AND AVOID NEGATIVE PEOPLE
You may ask; why should I distance myself from complainers? To that, I’ll answer: It is very important because our brains naturally or unconsciously mimic the mood of those around us, especially those we spend time with. This is called NEURONAL MIRRORING
Focus on how to improve yourself and do not compare yourself with others. The only person you should try to be better than is the person you were yesterday.
Generally, if we have to complain at all, we should adopt the “positive complaining” or “effective complaining” approaches whereby we don’t sit around and admire the problem, but actually do something about it.
You can learn more from this additional link and resources that will help you gain more knowledge on how to have a productive life and also on how to stop complaining.