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How to Establish New Patterns When Loving Others Has Left you Hurting
That probably sounds like a silly question, especially if you are saying “Courtney, I am not really a big complainer”. Today, I am not actually talking about your habits, I am talking about the habits of those you surround yourself with! Are they complainers? Do you have someone in your life who you know each time you pick up the phone, or meet for coffee, they will have something or someone to complain about? Maybe the entire visit (every visit) goes a lot like that.
The hard news that I have for you today is that complaining is contagious. When we spend time with people who constantly gripe about their problems, it’s not only natural for us to join in but it can actually negatively impact our life in ways you may not have known. It’s as if complaining spreads like a virus, infecting those around us. Before we know it, we’re caught in a never-ending cycle of negativity and no way out! Here are the hidden dangers:
- Bonding over mutual hate:
- Bonding isn’t real when it is centric to something or someone you dislike. Chances are, if you have created a friend out of a shared adversity, the friendship is no deeper than that. It takes A LOT to transform this kind of friendship into one that is deep and meaningful. You want to be friends that have deep roots, not shallow ones surrounding a singular topic.
- Your emotional health:
- Did you know that your emotional health and wellbeing is negatively affected when you are surrounded by complaining? Ouch right? Even being in the presence of complaining causes your body to release a stress hormone called cortisol. So even if you aren’t the complainer, being around it doesn’t spare your body the stress!
- You have decreased productivity:
- You might be thinking… what productivity do I need and how is me complaining with my friend harming it? Well, turns out you need a lot. You need productivity in every part of your day to complete the tasks that have to be completed and feel joy and contentment in completing them. If you are constantly listening to complaints about work with coworkers, it is shown to have a dramatic decrease in your joy at work and your ability to get things done.
Does this mean that all of life needs to remain positive? Not at all. We are no strangers to struggle, and you will have safe people in your life to be able to talk with it about. The key is just simply being mindful. Ask yourself:
- “How much of my conversations have encompassed this problem? At what point am I holding onto something that needs to be let go?”
- “Do I need to find a new date for coffee for a while?”
- “Does this conversation leave me feeling peaceful or stressed?”
- “Am I engaging in authentic relationships that go deeper than our problems?”
If you’re around a friend who wants to complain about marriage, does that actually serve you? If you are in a church group that complains about the sermons or staff, are you being poured into in the way you wanted to be when you signed up for the group? Your peace and positivity are worth holding onto friends. Stay mindful of who you surround yourself with and remember that saying “no” to engaging in things that being you down is never unkind!
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Now is the time to Discover Your Worth.