There is no question that in today’s day and age we are surrounded by complaints. In fact, it is commonplace for entities to make our complaining easy by creating outlets that are conducive to doing so – openly, anonymously, via social media. It is so normal, that every single one of us is guilty of it in some capacity.
Four years ago I was a major complainer. I was 21 years old, straight out of college, and completely absorbed in my own world. Luckily, I had a strong sense of the value of networking and went on to meet several people who would (thankfully) train me to become mentally tough. The tough love and things my mentors have taught me resonate in all aspects of my life, both professionally and personally. Getting to a stronger state has involved concepts from which anyone can learn and grow. It has been close to 2 years since I have changed my mindset, and I am by no means an expert, but I feel compelled to share in hopes of others finding similar peace.
Don’t be afraid of or ignore your emotions. Identify and embrace them!
It sounds silly, but this is the hardest part. Everyone has heard the phrase “the first step to recovery is admitting you have a problem”. This holds true for your emotions. Don’t take the easy road by ignoring them! It is always simpler to put your emotions aside, especially negative feelings, and let them fester. Or, on the other end of the spectrum, it is easy to overshare your excitement or happiness.
Instead, think about what you are feeling and why you are feeling that way. Become an expert at quickly, yet effectively, identifying your emotions. You’ll know you’ve mastered this when you’re able to identify others’ emotions in similar fashion, and use that skill to develop a deeper understanding of people and to foster better relationships.
Find your purpose and create your mantra.
Think about what makes you tick. What makes you get out of bed every morning? What drives your desire to succeed? Why do you work hard? Understand your purpose and write it down next to your goals.
Once you’ve got this *figured out*, understand that your purpose can and will change with time. Create a mantra or phrase that will stand as a regular reminder of your . Think of something you can privately reference anytime you need a reminder or confidence boost. For me, my mantra is something that I remind myself of daily and it keeps me level headed in any situation.
Practice being mentally tough.
Once you have honed in on your emotions and developed an understanding of your purpose, use this information to control your actions. This can be a true test of strength. Anytime you feel yourself getting anxious or wanting to complain, make it a point to keep it to yourself. Get comfortable having an internal dialogue.
Instead of voicing the first thing that comes to mind, think it through. The more you think it through, the better you will become at quickly changing your attitude and solving the problem, all while maintaining a calm and collected presence. By not complaining or relying on others to change your mindset, you will ultimately change your reputation. Think about it – as humans we are wired to expect acceptance of our own complaints but shrug off or harshly judge the complaints of others.
It works, no matter the situation!
Overall, use these guidelines to become tougher, and success will follow. These three concepts are applicable to literally ANY situation you will find yourself in. I have applied this to everything from training my dog and running half marathons to building new relationships and gaining new business. Over time you will have a new found confidence and find yourself teaching others your secret. When you get this point, remember to ignore the urge to judge the person next to you complaining – they simply haven’t owned their positive mental attitude… yet!