Just as dehydration wilts a flower, complaining wilts a conversation. Maybe faster? We might complain to express displeasure aspects of a current situation. It’s alright if you’re looking for possible solution. If not, if you’re just looking to spread negativity and hatred, get out! Just get your mind straight! Complaining is oppressive, disrespectful, yet with accepting any little help, you could start fixing it. It’s terrible being on the receiving end of complaining without acting.
We’re living such fast paced lives that when we get any opportunity just to relax, it almost seems we take it too far with relaxation compensation. What would just be moments of recreation turns into hours, days, or lifetimes spent doing nothing particularly productive. Years ago, I could do “nothing” all day. Now, I’ll find something to do if I’m idle more than 15_minutes. I’ll do something physical, nap, or as I’m doing now: write.
“We thought he was with you!” The suave, unkempt man had seen through another magician’s tricks and narrated each step of the trick. He traveled the world, going to cool shows, and “usually, you can get cheap tickets the day of the show. I got these two for free.” After realizing what was going on, I asked the scalper: “How do you pick your marks? What traits do you look for?” He left. Here’s why:
I’m paid to help people through their weaknesses. It’s positive when we break through a problem, I see or hear the relief, and maybe become friends. It’s negative because I am constantly criticized by others. My customers want it done quicker, my team doesn’t want to deal with it, and management doesn’t want to deal with it. Dealing with friction has helped me realize my strengths and weaknesses. Here’s the framework of what I learned:
I don’t engage in small talk. What’s the point of communicating irrelevant information? A seemingly trivial diagnostic question I will use is “how’s it going?” Most people will use that cue to tell me everything about a current pain point they’re either consciously or subconsciously trying to overcome. Since they complained to me, I’ll coax out hidden information to help guide or push them toward an optimal resolution. Here’s some of what I might do:
If there’s one concept I mastered within this field, it’s being able to quickly gauge how severely a situation might impact other people, while keeping myself removed from the emotional weight of unfortunate situation. I can fully empathize that a person has lost hours of time, however, I don’t let any sympathetic emotions overwhelm me. We’re all victims of circumstances. So, if you’d rather keep complaining about situations without trying to change, don’t read below.
Don’t let lulls in conversation overwhelm you. Most are innocent enough. You’re conversing, the topic runs out, then there’s what feels like an awkward silence that needs to be filled with any noise, so you might rush to fill the air with any topic you can think of immediately. Don’t! Let conversations rest and breathe. In less innocent conversations, like negotiation or dealing with manipulative individuals, filling air superfluously will put you at a disadvantage.
“Let’s make a list of everything that’s been happening. We’ll iron the issues out one-by-one.” “Let me just tell you the truth. This thing is a piece of…” That’s my cue that the issue is not technical. We aren’t troubleshooting a technical issue, per se, instead I’ve stepped into the role of therapist helping ease the technojunkie’s technological anxiety. Without getting into specifics, here are five strategies I’ve used to talk people off their cliffs.
In last week’s brainstorming update to “The Story,” I covered how main characters Trishna and John (left) would clash. Even the most connected people clash, after all, especially when both are fiercely independent. It’s about balance: if one is more comfortable jumping into the fray than thoroughly researching, let them perform their strengths to build a more cohesive team. Let’s see how they solve problems, and how teams solve problems, in this Applied Psychology crossover:
Spoiler Warning Scale: None! (just brainstorming)
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“Today, I helped maybe 10 people. Why not 10,000 people?” When I first started working, I was just happy to help anyone I could. As I become more experienced in both work and life, I see the value in both continually improving my work and the lives of others. This effort requires sacrifice. You might sacrifice leisure for study time or steady work for the chance to do more rewarding, better work. Bands are great examples: