Friday, April 13, 2007

liveSTRONG and don't complain...

I confess. I complain a lot. Mostly about the weather - something completely out of my control. But I can get in a serious rut where, even though I'm being humorously sarcastic or witty, I'm still complaining. And it definitely has an effect on me and the people around me. It's something I'm not at all proud of... and something that I'd really like to change...

I'm not a religious person at all. I'm not really even a spiritual person...even though I'd like to be. I'm a good person, a kind person, a compassionate person...and I work hard to do good and to be good... but Darwin is my guy. I heard on the radio the other day that something like only 13% of americans actually embrace Darwin's theory of the Origin of the Species...and that the rest, a whopping 77%, think that "GOD" had something, if not a LOT, to do with our existence on earth. Well, if it works for you, great - I'm happy for you and I certainly won't tell you what you should or shouldn't believe. But I'm sticking to the facts... and I think Darwin had it right... I'm already in that 10% minority of gay people...why not join the 13% of Evolutionists too? I'm all about the road less travelled...

Anyway - what's my point, you ask? Well, a few weeks ago I ventured into about the only spiritual realm that I'm likely to go and watched an episode of Oprah. And she had this guy, Pastor Will Bowen of Christ Church Unity in Kansas City, MO, as a guest. And I think what he had to say warrants some attention - mostly because it made me realize that I could really benefit from listening to him. I'll post it here but if you want to read more, go here.

Did someone cut you off on the freeway this morning? Was your coffee a little too hot? People complain about major and minor things every day. But Pastor Will Bowen of Christ Church Unity in Kansas City, Missouri, is trying to change all that.

In a Sunday morning sermon, Will told his congregation he wanted to make the world a complaint-free place. To prove he was serious, Will passed out purple bracelets to each church member and offered them a challenge.

"If you catch yourself complaining, you take [the bracelet] and you move it to the other wrist," Will says. "The idea is to ultimately keep it [on the same wrist] for 21 days." Will chose this length of time, he says, because scientists believe it takes that long to form a new habit.

Will believes if everyone would stop complaining, the world would be a much better place. "[I think] everybody agrees the world is not the way we would like it to be. I wonder if there's some relation between the two."

The congregation of Christ Church Unity has been handing out these bracelets at an amazing rate - so far they've given away over 4 MILLION. And they're free so the church relies on donations and volunteer help to purchase and mail them all over the world. Kinda like Pay It Forward....





I've decided that instead of a purple bracelet, I can use my LIVESTRONG bracelet in the same way - also because it will remind me that I'm healthy and really don't have anything to complain about... unlike all the folks that Lance has set out to help (my dad, brother, mother, cousin, and aunt included).

If you want to play along with me, here are the rules...and of course feel free to invite others to join you. Mental toughness and a positive attitude are essential in triathlon...and I think this will be a good way for me to work on both.

  1. "If you catch yourself complaining, you take [the bracelet] and you move it to the other wrist," Will says. "The idea is to ultimately keep it [on the same wrist] for 21 days." Will chose this length of time, he says, because scientists believe it takes that long to form a new habit.
  2. No gossiping!
  3. If you see someone wearing the no-complaint bracelet and they start complaining and you point that fact out to them, you've gotta switch your own no-complaint bracelet to your other wrist and start the 21 days over -- because you've just complained about their complaining!
  4. Pay attention to how you're speaking. If you blithely say, "Oh, my leg hurts," that might just be a statement of fact. But if you're droning on about the pain in your calf, that's probably a complaint.
  5. If you want to know the difference between a comment and a complaint, Pastor Will says to pay attention to your feelings about the issue. "If you're putting a lot of energy into it, if you want it changed, you're complaining," he says.


Good luck, train hard, and be strong in mind and body...

2 Comments:

Blogger Phoenix said...

Uh, hi. My name is Larissa and I'm a Complainer (Hi, Larissa). I'm in. I so need to do this.

Thanks for the challenge!

4:46 PM GMT-5

 
Blogger MartyTheFool said...

I've heard it said that if you take away the reasons some people complain, you take away their reasons for living.

I like it....I think maybe some of us complain without realizing it. It's a great exercise.

Now I won't be able to complain about the weather any more.......

8:37 PM GMT-5

 

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