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Thursday, December 16, 2010

A little challenge

Last week, the lovely Chelsea said she "made a pact not to complain for a week." Inspired, I decided to do the same. It has been surprisingly awesome. When I get the urge to mention to Alex how sleepy I am or how our upstairs neighbors seem to be dropping bowling balls on the floor (seriously:), I just keep my mouth shut, and we end up having much more sparkling conversations instead (which we might not have had otherwise). And a funny note: When you don't complain about something, you weirdly forget about it two seconds later! It has been surprisingly liberating and has made me feel light and cheery.

So, thank you, Chelsea! Great idea!

Do you guys want to join in the pact? :)

163 comments:

Emily said...

That sounds like a great idea... I'm going to try it for the weekend!! (My word verification is "prickist" - that's pretty funny!)

Joanna Goddard said...

ps. i also realized i complain a lot, haha! :)

Joanna Goddard said...

(haha emily that's awesome:)

Mary said...

What a great - and challenging - idea! Especially nice this time of year, when we should try to focus even more on the good stuff. I'm in!

Diana Mieczan said...

That is a good pact especially around the Holidays as there is so much to do (and I mean complain about) and so little time. Im in!
Kisses

Tali Schiffer said...

I kinda' want to join, cause I know that would make my life a whole lot lighter, but I know it's impossible for me at the moment as I work 5 days a week as a manager in a high volume restaurant, and if we're being honest here, it's absolutely impossible to not complain about SOMETHING at the end of the day...
I am truly jealous though :)

Melissa Blake said...

This is a great idea! I've noticed I've been complaining more and more lately!!

chelsea said...

So glad you were inspired too! I realized that I was focusing on so many negative things when really I have this great life! A week seemed like an easy thing to do, but I am hoping to keep it up for longer. We shall see:)

LEAH said...

such a great idea.. it's all about your mindset and perception - think positively!

jora said...

ok, yes, i am in! i need to do this. :-)

Emma said...

Definitely going to try. Just maybe not til after Christmas. Too much going on!

Kathryn Elise said...

yes, sounds awesome! It should be especially challenging for me since I had surgery yesterday! ;)

Ashley Hasty said...

Such a fabulous idea! I'm definitely going to try this!

http://ashleyanderic.blogspot.com
ashley dot hasty at gmail dot com

Emikos Werid Unexplained thoughts said...

I would complain about this , but i will do it also. lol great post.

wonderchris said...

A perfect time of year to be complain-free. I'm going to see how long I can go. My back is sore from working out, but I'm not complaining....it is a sign of me getting stronger!!! You just have to put a twist on things. :)

renee said...

I'm in! What a great way to spend the holidays :)

Joanna Goddard said...

aw, kathryn, i hope you're ok! you will be a SERIOUS champ if you do this while recovering from surgery! :)

D&D said...

I uh, I dont think I can do it. I mean - it's the holidays! Come on now Joanna!

Joanna Goddard said...

me, too, chelsea! i started on friday but want to go through to jan 1...and maybe longer :)

Monica said...

This is an excellent idea! I wonder if I could go an entire week without complaining? Hmmm...

The Iconic Blog.com said...

That sounds like a wonderful pact! I will try, but no promises!xx

Joanna Goddard said...

haha, tali, well, sometimes alex and i will make "observations" to each other, versus complaints. so you can cheat a little, haha :)

Brittany said...

You know what? This sounds perfect! I'm in. :)

Nick Goddard said...

I'm doing it Nick, I'm doing it!

Lauren Elizabeth said...

Great idea! I'm going through a bumpy time trying to find new job (my current one is MISERABLE), training our adorable new puppy, and dealing with all of my friends moving out of NYC so I'm going to take a vow to try and not complain for the rest of the month (ambitious, I know). No one likes a complainer and there are too many things to be thankful for not only this time of year but every single day. Thank you for the inspiration! Happy Holidays!

LEW

http://laurenwierman.blogspot.com/

Jane M. said...

I will join you! My boyfriend gets so sad when I complain about things. It will force me to think about all the things I should be grateful for!

Kissy&Tutti. said...

I think I just might try that. Fabulous idea!

the lil bee said...

Yes, this is a fabulous idea! I am going to join you. My sister-in-law once gave up gossiping for Lent and found it liberating. {Maybe just one more day of complaining though? Simply because I'll need to recap my story to Paul this evening, as well as my best friend, and if you see today's post you'll understand.} Tomorrow=bitch-free!
xo

joanna kapica said...

This is awesome idea- I love it! It only confirms, what I have always believed in, that negative energy can be forgotten- and instead the positive will take over!

Joanna Goddard said...

lauren, i swear, it will make things seem so much easier! you've gotta do it :) also, good luck with your job search and how cute about your pup!!!

Chapstick Fanatic said...

this sounds like such a great idea! wonder if i could do it?
lachapstickfanatique
last day to enter my christmas giveaway!

cora d said...

Totally! I've needed a challenge like this for a while. I sometimes complain just to have something to talk about - but silence is better, I think.

Thank you!!!

Aimée said...

Excellent! Just what i needed, inspiring ideas to finish 2010 in a great way...
xoxo

Anna Walker said...

The pact seems amazing! :)
I'm pretty sure everyone needs to complain less and enjoy life more!

http://annawalker1992.blogspot.com/

Kate said...

My new year's resolution this past year was to complain less. It's kind of amazing what it does for your mood. However, it made me realize how much everyone else around me complains! It gets me down sometimes, I will admit, just wishing people would count their blessings a little more and pick their complaining battles. Good for you, Joanna!

Marion said...

It really does sound like a great challenge. I've never really noticed how much I complain all the time until my boyfriend pointed it out. I guess I should start this

Simon and Ruby said...

Definitely inspired by your commitment. I'm going to try to do it, too... perfect timing, just for the holidays!

Notes from Holly St. said...

that's a really great idea! i made this pact with myself wihen i first got pregnant and was complaining about every single ache and pain. i realized i was starting to sound really annoying and decided to not vocalize my complaints and it actually made me not think about my discomfort as much and my husband was much more attentive and loving when i didn't whine constantly. it really works!

p.s. i'm constantly complaining about our neighbors upstairs too. and it totally sounds like they're dropping bowling balls!! what's up with that?! (okay, that was my last complaint :)

sara said...

i think i definitely need to try this!

Anonymous said...

I'm so in! I was planning on doing something like this as a New Years resolution but why not start early? I think complaining and sarcasm is a comfort to me and I really need to break the habit!

stephanie Toole said...

wow what a good idea.. I am scared that this will make me realize just how much I do complain.. but I am ready to try it.. almost like an early new years resolution!

andra said...

GREAT idea - just yesterday my hubby and i were discussing how much happier i've been in the past year since ditching the corporate full time job and he said "you sure do complain at lot less"!!!! so now my goal will be to not complain at ALL (at least for a few days....)

benson said...

...and most likely you'll find that Alex/other friends, workers, etc...won't complain as much either. Isn't the saying misery loves company?

George said...

I love it! What a supreme pact! I'll totes try it and let you know how it goes. Thanks!

George
Raised By Wolves

warhawk42 said...

that's a great idea! I actually just heard about a similar concept - I'll try my best to explain: you wear a simple bracelet on your wrist, and you try to go to 30 days (or something like that) without complaining. If you find yourself complaining, then you switch the bracelet to the other wrist, and start over again. They say it takes about 30 days for something to become a habit, so that's why. Isn't that a neat idea? also potentially difficult

Lauren said...

Love it! I'm in! I always complain to my fiance how cold it is, but we live in Michigan so it adds up to a lot of complaining. My lips are now zipped (at least for the weekend).

PS My word verification is "coping" - it's like it knows!

Emelie - C'est LA vie said...

At 31 weeks pregnant, I complain like ALL the time now... It should - no must stop! Thanks for the inspiration :)
I hereby accept the challenge.
x Emelie

Megan Champion said...

I am doing this for sure! Its so odd how one needs to be CHALLANGED not to complain... I did this for saying anything negative about another human being that I would not say to their face.

Its been several months now and it has changed my outlook

rachel thurston said...

I read that and we have tried it as well. It has been great..and hard at times. Was excited to see others were inspired as well.

Manu said...

My boyfriend and I have this little exercise of telling each other the not so good things that happened to us during the day when we get home. And then we say: "Ok, we're home now, we're safe." And we turn down the page and start laughing and joking around.
I just emailed him this post, so we can do the challenge one of these days. Besos!

heart charlie said...

I need to try this!

Nicole said...

Oh my gosh, the world will be a better place!!!!!! It's tipping!
Lots of lucky husbands and boyfriends too :)
I'm IN!

Koru Kate said...

LOVE this idea! I'm going to try it for the weekend!

vivi said...

I am trying that from this moment for the next week!!

Erin LaDue said...

I have a very sick friend who is in surgery right now. I am joining the pact as I have NOTHING to complain about.
Thanks for the post

Joanna Goddard said...

manu, that is SO cute. omg, i love that.

House of Milk said...

I'm totally in! I'm excited to start focusing on the blessings and good things in life :)

craftysunday said...

i often complain about how much i complain...so...

count me in on the pact!

cheers,
mindi

j. said...

i'm in...especially since i know I used to be so optimistic and lately i'm not so much...need to get back to 'me' so this will be good practice :)

elisa said...

I'm in too! This is a great idea. I love Manu and her boyfriends end of the day ritual too.

roni said...

i am joining this pact! and thanks for a great blog rec! i'm sure my family will appreciate the break from mindless complaining :)

alex said...

i did that few weeks ago! i was completely shocked to see how much i complain. it was a great reminder to be more appreciative.

EMILY said...

I love this challenge and have been such a complainer all week. I made some mistakes at work and have felt down right grinchy since then. Okay... starting at noon on the west coast- no more complaints! x

Voni said...

love, love, love this!
I recently found out I am cursing a lot, and now that my son is almost three I really try to stop it when he is around, but so far it didn't really work out..
so, I will try this not-complaining-thing as well. Would be happy if it worked out for a day already ;)

Camille said...

That's an excellent idea, especially at this time of the year when it's cold, we're tired, and all that!

Betty said...

We've been doing this at my Center for Spiritual Living. There's a whole book about it called "A Complaint Free World" by Will Bowen. http://www.acomplaintfreeworld.org/

It is harder to do than you would imagine!

Deanna Pai said...

Oh, I definitely need to try this. My entire family will be so happy, haha.

Wendy said...

Count me in! Positivity begets more positivity.

rebeccaheartsslc said...

This is a great idea. I definitely want to try. What a perfect time if year for it, too!

dreamday said...

i'm not kidding joanna, nor am i pandering for your attention :)...but i have to tell you...
this morning while i was folding laundry i thought "for 2011 my motto will be less complaints, more sparkle." now i'm reading your post and it's all there in black and white. love that

Ashleigh said...

I would love to but I need clarification on complaining versus stating the facts. Such as when I come home from work & hubby asks how was traffic... It was horrible. Is that a fact or a complaint? I know I complain to much :)

J said...

I'm all for that! I'm in the middle of sleep training my daughter and I feel like my mouth is just spewing forth complaints all day long ... I'm going to begin the pact rig now. Thanks for sharing Jo!

Kate said...

I think this is an awesome idea- good time of year for it! And also perhaps a dare not to complain about the woman smoking in the photo above ;)

Fi said...

I will!
Just not this week...

MafiosaGrrl said...

I'm so in. I've been told I'm being quite obnoxious with my complaining lately. I feel like I have to be so perfect at work that when I get home it's ok to bitch about things. I guess it would be best for everyone if I just didn't at all. It's worth a shot!

The Pantry Drawer said...

oh man, great pact! that's a doozy.. I'm going to have to try it tho!

www.ThePantryDrawer.com

Sarah Bradley said...

Have you heard of the book A Complaint Free World. It's life changing.

Fifi Du Vie said...

What a great way to start the new year! I think I'm going to try this next week and see if it relieves some of that last minute holiday stressed ... sounds like it might just be the perfect medicine!

Ann said...

I'm so in on this pact...especially since I've been complaining so much lately thanks to being 35 weeks pregnant! I'm sure my husband (who has the patience of a saint, and NEVER complains) would appreciate it. I think this would be a good new years resolution, no?

Anonymous said...

I am absolutely going to try this starting right now! And - as an added 'bonus' i'm going to try to find the silver lining in every would be complaint, and say that instead.. IE: "i'm so sleepy" becomes "i'm going to sleep well tonight!"

katherine rose said...

this is absolutely lovely. well your blog posts are, but I'm utterly inspired. this comes at perfect time, being that I just got my wisdom teeth out this morning. but nothing but sparkles from me this week!

I hope you don't mind I reposted your post in my blog, with kudos to you of course, here: www.thatwhichwecalllife.blogspot.com

thanks joanna!

brlracincwgrl said...

Yes, I would love to join in! What a fabulous idea! I'm going to give it a try :)

Kelly said...

Oh my Jo! This might be the hardest thing ever.
Everytime I enter a social situation I remind myself to STAY positive but somewhere along the way someone asks me about something that brings out that serious critic...and then I realize I've lost again. Perhaps this will work as it is much more specific. xo

jess said...

i'm in, and have recruited some pals, both in real life and on twitter! i don't have anything against complaining per se (in moderation at least). but i am curious to see whether i can abstain and if so, how it feels. thanks for the kick in the pants!

Jamie said...

this sounds extremely difficult, but extremely worthwhile! cheers to framing things positively :)

my little apartment said...

YES!!! I love this.

my roommate/best friend has been complaining constantly lately . like, literally every other other sentence out her of mouth is how something is wrong or how she doesn't like something. if I had a $ for every time she said she hated something, I'd be rich!

it's made me be hyper-aware of how much I complain and I feel like I rarely do now. it's also really made me not want to hang out with her. bummer-town.

eek! sorry, guess I needed to vent :)

Susan said...

I already don't complain (enough)...so I'm the opposite. I look forward to hearing how it goes, though.

Cheers.

lynette said...

Great idea! I'm in!
(We have neighbours upstairs who drop bowling balls all night long too!!)

cassaundra said...

i think so! good idea!

Vanesa said...

I need to join this pact. I've been really cranky lately since finals are kicking my butt, I mean, haven't been very nice. (Darn. I still think that's a complaint...)

ALLY said...

Thank you for posting this! I will definitely join you. :)

Sera said...

i love that! i will definitely join in too!

bussbuss said...

I've done this before (after reading A New Earth a few years ago) and it feels SO good. I've been slipping into stressball/complainer mode lately with the holidays too, so I am in!

Also, a little tip from that book. When others complain, a good way not to get sucked in is to simply reply "Is that so?" Try it, it works!

Another tip/easy way to change your perspective is instead of thinking "I have to do..." think "I get to do..."

Those two small things help me a lot. Thanks for the idea xx!

TheSensesFive said...

Oh no, I LOVE complaining! I think this could be the hardest task I'll ever take on... but possibly the most beneficial to my mental and physical health. I'm gonna give it a go! What about shit talking? Does that count?

Jennifer Ament said...

Sooo hard when you are sleep deprived and have 8 million things that you are behind on..So seeing you get through your non-complaining time with a new baby, is truly inspiring! xx-Jen

Emma said...

Hmm I think I'll try the same. No one likes a complainer.

Marie said...

Great idea... I think I should try it at least for the weekend, I'm French after all and everyone know French people LOVE to complain, so it's all about baby steps ah ! xx

Sara @ House Bella said...

This is a great idea! I have been probably the least graceful and gracious person this week (issues at work that have driven me to the brink!), and I could use a little non-complain time. I'll try it!

P/S - I love the phrase "sparkling conversations." It makes me envision you having conversations surrounded by champagne bubbles! ;)

taysa said...

I've tried to do this with email to my boyfriend--I usually email him once a day at lunch and it always ends up being rant after rant. Today I wrote only positive things. It was a short email. :)

Caroline said...

I saw this over on Frolic too! My plan is to try from this Saturday leading up to Christmas. I tend to focus on the negatives a little too much at this time of year. I know it will be a challenge (especially when there's so much to be done before the holiday) but its the best time to start! I'm looking forward to really enjoying the wonderful and small moments that we ordinarily miss.
Thanks so much!

Grace said...

Its a great idea. I have a hard time keeping to it. Here's to trying again!

Design Scouting said...

I love this! I'm taking the pledge (I've been complaining non stop recently!!!). xoxoxo love to the baby

Tina said...

Love it! I'm in - not going to complain again in 2010.

I suspect it's going to be a challenge though, I think I've been in auto-complain mode for the last little bit...

Thanks for the idea :)

matitan said...

This is great!
It's easy to fall on this trap: a little complaining here, another one there...
I'm following your example and try not to complain for the rest of 2010. Hard task, huh? =)

Couve Illustrations said...

I am going to TRY this. let's see how long it lasts.

:)

Cat G. said...

I love this! I'm in. :)

Ana* said...

What a fun challenge

Mandy said...

Wow! Great idea! I really need to try this!

Xo Mandy
http://mandykoster.blogspot.com

Louise said...

Joined this instant. thanks!

Bronwyn said...

Wow, so cool! I think I'll try it!

windeater.blogspot.com

Zoe said...

I want to do it too! I complain quiite frequently especially about the cold. I thought hmm I would like to do it but maybe I should put it off, I have so much to complain about! Haha but I guess thats the point isn't it!

Dori said...

This is SUCH a good idea! Okay I'm going to do it starting..... NOW!

Tay Talk said...

The Radio station KLove did this a while back for a whole month! I think it would be hard to do it for a whole month, but a week....easy peasy! ;)

Kendall Marie said...

im in!

Katherine Doherty said...

sounds like a great NY resolution! I am defintely going to try it and will spread the word...what a great way to change your mood!

The Silver Sachet said...

Yes! I'm in! This is a much needed to-do! :D

Great and inspiring idea!

Kelly said...

I like that idea! Thanks for passing it on!

Mo said...

Ooh, I love this! I did this when I was younger (about 18) for three days. It was so hard, I didn't realize what a complainer I was. It is very liberating though. Gonna give it another go.

Alexis said...

I'm in! But I'm going to start tomorrow, because my neck really hurts tonight. :)

Anonymous said...

I think it is wonderful to only emphasize the positive. you keep yourself from falling into a complaining rut!

HereBeDragons said...

Great idea! I've tried this several times. Easier to promise than to follow through. But ALWAYS something good to try.

Soon, Then said...

I just might try it!

Monica from Hola!design said...

excellent, it's something I'm always trying to do, but sometimes is hard.

Besides, the more you complain about something, the more you have to deal with it, right?

Tanya (a Taste of T) said...

I love this pact! I'm going to do it.

Rachel said...

Ooh yes. Complaining about things is so addicting. It's a good habit to not have.

MY STYLE ADVICE said...

this is how i live my life. people alway ask me why i'm always so happy. :)
--
good post! the power of spreading positive energy... so nice.

Kimmielovesparis said...

I am in!

clementimes said...

Simple, but smart. I think we could all heed this advice. Duly noted! xo

Clips said...

I am trying this too! I live with two other girls and I realized we dont need another helping of drama on top of everything so I have decided that I am not adding to anything.

In the light, I feel better.I never realized how much I carry around everyday. I just wish they could join me now too.

Anonymous said...

What a great idea! I have a tendency to be critical even when I'm not necessarily dissatisfied or unhappy, and it reads as complaining even when it's not intended as such--this will be good practice for helping me *sound* as positive and happy as i feel!

Hannah Sullivan said...

This is such a great idea... we spend all this time complaining but how much time do we spend enjoying. And when we are enjoying- do we ever point it out?

okaycamille said...

The last week before the holiday break has been the worst - as in I've had the worst attitude about everything. Where did all this sudden negativity come from? I am used to all the slow Mozambican/ African way of getting things done (or not), but I guess the prospect of a break cut my patience in half. I had to remind myself to stop complaining and now suddenly things are working out so much better. Thank you for your reminder!!!

PoetessWug said...

But what if you think NON-harmful complaining is fun?! :-] {Like the way my hubby sings...or does his loser dance after I beat him at scrabble} Seriously...some complaining makes the day go by faster, and puts me in a very good mood! I think it's because once I "Say" it, it's all better! :-]

C said...

I am soooo trying!!!
http://buscut.blogspot.com/2010/12/happy-friday-and-no-complains.html
Thanks sweetie!
And have a lovely weekend!

ola appletea said...

Once I had a similar pack with my friend and I can tell you it is really hard in the beginning to not complain even on a small things, but than it's like you said Joanna... You forgot the things that bother you in a bad way... and the life is a little lighter :)

Nice post!

Best, ola

http://theappletea.blogspot.com/

asiajane said...

Great idea! I hereby make a similar pact.

cupidsbow said...

What a fantastic idea! I'd love to give it a go, but I don't actually think I complain that much out loud, I just do it in my head a lot!

mosey said...

I'm def trying this out. I've been thinking about it daily anyway. I'll try to extend that thought to an entire week.

lauren said...

OH! i love this idea... I have been trying to do it less... but I love the challenge of cutting it out all together!

let's start a revolution

after this we can take on gossiping!

I'm IN!

thanks you for posting
xoxo
L


http://www.thesphinxandthemilkyway.com/

aly english-murray said...

thanks for this joanna!
i definitely needed to read this.
trying to pt into effect immediately.

have a beautiful weekend,
aly

Jamie said...

I am sooo in! Thanks for sharing!

Cataloging My Life said...

this is a great idea! thanks for sharing. I'm in, starting NOW. :)

ashley mikell said...

i'm joining in!

Amanda said...

I like this idea :)

julia :: the long long swing said...

i apologize if someone has already posted this and i just missed it...

check out http://www.acomplaintfreeworld.org/

i gave this challenge a try a while back and it really is amazing how much making a decision not to complain changes your perspective on how much there is (not) to complain about. (and there are bracelets to help, for anyone who needs a little reminder!)

Mary said...

Mmm... I really like the idea! :)

Linnea said...

Sounds like the best idea ever!

jacque said...

adding this to the growing to do list - or is it undoing? - for 2011

thanks and happy new year!

Ange B said...

Oh YES PLEASE! If only there were an international day of "No Complaints"! Imagine if all the negative comments made were replaced with positive ones how much more pleasant the world would be. I'm definitely going to try this and for every failure a $1 into the tips jar!!

Is it rude to suggest this to others???

debbie powell said...

my upstairs neighbors also seem to drop bowling balls on their floor - must be a universal thing!
going to give it my best shot not to mention it to my boyfriend..

Lilly said...

I'm going to try to do this! It's a challenge (I know it will be) but such a good idea! Let's see how it goes!

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London man with van said...

I'm going to try to do this! It's a challenge (I know it will be) but such a good idea! Let's see how it goes!
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Lexie said...

This sounds awesome! :D

Lindsay said...

Doing this!!!

Jordan Marie @ hottlt.com said...

Day one of week one starts tomorrow! THANKS!! <3xojo

http://holdingontothelittlethings.typepad.com/blog/2012/10/participating-in.html

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