Effect of Complaints

Button to push for service is on a mouse trap.

“Constant complaint is the poorest sort of pay for all the comforts we enjoy .”
~ Benjamin Franklin

I used to greet friends with, “How have you been?” The vast majority replied with all the “bad” that happened. “My co-worker got me in trouble.” or “I lost my job.” or “I had a fight with my spouse.” are examples. I got tired of hearing about all the “bad”, so I changed my question to, “What good has happened recently?” I am still astounded by the number of individuals who stop to think before they answer. Only once did someone say, “Nothing, absolutely nothing,” and I’m glad she is now outside my sphere of interactions. Everyone else smiled and shared the good, which felt really wonderful.

Why not start greeting your friends and co-workers with, “What good has happened recently?” It will likely shift the mood to the positive. When someone cannot think of anything, ask if they were able to drive to work without having an accident, or if they received their paycheck and were able to pay their bills. Even those who cannot see the positive in their own life can usually be coached into seeing some good. And, focus on the positives in your life.


photo credit: Local Complaint Dept. via photopin (license)

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