I see statements all the time exhorting people to stop complaining, or suggesting that complaining isn’t the result of unhappiness, it’s the cause, blah blah blah.
Sorry, but I don’t buy it. Every now and then, there is something worth complaining about, and it feels good to hit the rant button.
Yes, it’s true that happy people aren’t complaining all the time, and it is not good for you to be thought of as a big whiner, but if you don’t do it that often, and you have just cause, go ahead and get it out. When everyone on the highway is going faster than you and you’re the one who gets the ticket, or it’s 8:45 and you haven’t been seated yet for your 7:30 dinner reservation (welcome to LA), or you buy a Nabisco product you’ve been buying for years and they’ve shrunk the amount in the same-sized box, so it’s not enough for the recipe you’ve been making since childhood (yeah, I’m talking to you Honey Maid Graham Cracker Crumbs!) – let loose the krakken. Why not?
That’s what friends and Facebook and felines are for – to listen to you bitch (now and then…) Finding kindred spirits, or simply venting, can feel really good, and bottling it up can make you even more unhappy. You have my permission – grumble, whine, bleat, carp, grouse, gripe, lament, kvetch. Just keep it civil and don’t burn any bridges in the process and you’ll be fine.
I’ve opened more than one conversation with, “Do you mind if I vent for a moment?” No one minds, as long as it’s not too frequent, too long-winded or too personal. It can be fun, so go ahead. And if you’re really peeved, and there’s a target for your ire that might want to do something to fix it, sit down and write a good old-fashioned letter. You’ll definitely get satisfaction, and who knows? You might get a free box of graham cracker crumbs.