I’m sure you have people like this in your life. Every day its the same gripe or complaint. Everyday there is something to gripe about it. And once the griping is done everyone feels down and frustrated and out of sorts and the person griping feels vindicated and better about their position in the universe. I get very frustrated with this process. Not that I don’t do my fair share of griping. That’s not what I’m saying. But I do try to keep it to the present moment and let it release the energy so I can move on to finding some kind of resolution to the situation or some way to move it in a positive direction.
So when I’m in a situation where someone has been griping for a bit about the same thing or has griped and gossiped about the same situation for several days, I ask them a pointed question: What are you going to do about it? I don’t ask it as a challenge, but because I’m really curious. If the situation is so frustrating that it is causing you this pain and causing you to expend all this energy, how are you going to change it? This usually stops the conversation dead in its tracks. Because a great majority of these conversations are not really explaining a situation that needs to be resolved. They sound like it, but the person really doesn’t want a resolution to the situation. If they get one they will just find something to replace the situation so that the process starts all over again.
The issue is not that there is something to gripe about, there’s always something to gripe about. It’s the fact that these people need to feel a certain way about themselves, about others, and about their lives and work situations. So they strive to find things to gripe about and create a social group that will aid them in that. I have found that if someone can’t answer “What are you going to do about it” or tells you, there is nothing that can be done, that’s just the way it is, it’s time to remove yourself from that conversation. Find something positive to do, like working on a situation you’ve been griping about. 🙂