Monday, June 18, 2012

A Week of No Complaints Completed

I extended my “week” of no complaints to more than ten days. I found that it took me at least six days just to hear myself and to see the many ways that complaining snuck up on me. And to see how often my complaints were gossip and my gossip was complaining. Yeah.

Perhaps my biggest learning was that –and I hate this—I had to slow down, slow waaaaay down, to hear myself complain. I found that I had to move a lot slower—and I like moving fast—to be aware of where my mind and mouth were headed. If I moved and spoke slower there was a better chance that I’d catch a complaint or a criticism before it fully emerged.

But the other big lesson was that I needed even more quiet and even more slowing down in order to discern what was a necessary truth versus what was a complaint. At work, and sometimes at home, there were things that just were not right or not OK with me that I needed to address. I didn’t want to avoid those because of the “no complaining” rule, but similarly I had to really get quiet to sort out what was just me being cranky about stuff not going my way.

Discernment requires quiet and quiet follows slowing down. Well—there’s the next challenge: A week with more quiet.

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