I'm a complainer by trade, and I'm always looking for ways to better my craft. Do I hear you saying that I should simply stop complaining? Thanks, but that wouldn't be bettering anything; it would only be eliminating something.
May I suggest that anyone with a character hang-up like this (better known as "a defect") finds it not just difficult, but nearly impossible to change. Why? It's a bit of early learned reaction, perhaps an innate way of expression, a defense mechanism (in opposition to just whacking those who annoy or offend us). In other words, it is part of our fabric now. So, what to do?
What the saints did! They attempted, not to stifle, but to convert the tendency to let loose some juicy complaint with an occasion to pray. Will it be easy? No! Will it be worth it? Yes! So, whenever you feel a complaint coming on, practice turning it into a prayer.
For example, "That person is so annoying. Their whining gets on my nerves " Conversion: "Thanks, Lord, for letting me reflect on this and thanks for the gift of nerves. Whatever would I do without them." So, go ahead and practice, practice, practice. When you notice that your prayer can outrace your complaint, you are becoming a perfect complainer.
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by Sr. Mary Lea Hill, FSP