If you are reading this article, you probably have a lot to complain about. You are a small business owner and you are not making as much money as you would like. Or one of your clients is asking for way more than you bargained for. Or your child got sick, making a deadline next to impossible for you to accomplish. These things suck, I know, they happen to me all the time.
I have been noticing a trend, however, amongst people I know. It is a phrase that burns when it hits my ears. “I have no right to complain.”
The reasons people say this range from being financially sound to having good health. I have heard a mother say this about her child, and a man say this about his country. They are talking to themselves, trying to convince themselves that in the grand scheme of things they don’t have it so bad.
And they are right, things may not be so bad, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t complain. “The squeaky wheel gets the grease” is another saying. It is the saying I like better. Here are the reasons I feel keeping quiet when things are tough is a mistake:
- Complaining could be all you needed to feel better. I will often sit with my husband at night after the kids go to bed and talk about our days. Sometimes it is funny stories, sometimes it is annoying customers. When we are done, we feel heard and validated. Nothing changed other than getting the bad stuff out of our system.
- Complaining can be a bonding experience. One of the great things about the Entrepreneurial Think Tank for Women is our meetings where we share our celebrations as well as our challenges. That is a nice way of saying we get a chance to let off steam. We talk about how we have dealt with similar situations and connect on a deeper level. No one is dismissive and are more then happy to help with solutions.
- Complaining to the right person could make change happen. It could be as simple as getting your order wrong in a restaurant, if you wanted the chicken but got the fish, you would say something, right? Tell your waiter and you get what you wanted. You don’t need to be rude, just ask for what you need. Of course this is a lot harder in personal situations but the same rule applies.
So I want to hear, what do you have to complain about?