Life’s Too Short to be a Constant Complainer

gene neighborsCurmudgeons are a dime a dozen. Maybe it’s me but I seem to keep running into people with a chip on their shoulder who want to complain about something — everything. More often than not these are middle age folks or older. Younger people, like in their thirties, seem to have a better attitude in general.  Again, this is my observation.

I often visit a web forum where all sorts of topics are discussed. I’m taken by how many people seem to consider themselves to be victims.  They seem to have been wronged by everything….it doesn’t matter. It could be the school, church, their sports team, government in general, the weatherman, the postal system, their bank, anybody and anything.  The worst thing that you can do is say something that somehow pulls their chain because they will unload on you and not let to drop.

gene pedestalOf course, the huge cadre of Obama haters are spending most of their waking hours complaining about every little thing…including a raft of complaints that are just made up. They feed each other this way. They are an unpaid conduit for crazy wing-nut talk radio. People — Give it a rest!!!  The man is leaving office in less than two years.  He is not a Muslim and even if he was, so what. He’s not coming for your guns so you can put them away. Michele Obama is not out to harm your kids. Nancy Pelosi does not fly on a broom.

geowashingtonI’ve never seen a happy politician…not really happy. The Republicans are constantly complaining about one thing or another even with or about each other. Then there are the “conservatives” who are sure that any and all “liberals” are the spawn of the devil and most certainly “atheistic commies” and probably “homos”.  And God help the Libertarians…I’ve never met a happy or cheerful Libertarian.  The Democrats are no shrinking violets…they have their own pet peeves. They could win every election and still be unhappy. All of these folks think that they are entitled to air their complaints by any method possible. You don’t have to go to a forum — I’m sure you have seen this stuff on Facebook or on Twitter. Hold on –  election year is just around the corner.

carving-of-CupidAnd then, God bless ’em, there’s the religious nuts. They come in all flavors. It doesn’t matter what religion you are or denomination or whether you are an atheist or agnostic…you are somehow doomed to eternal hellfire. They have their Bibles out, cocked and loaded, and will quote scripture forever even though it has no relevance to anything under discussion. No matter…God has you in the crosshairs and is getting ready to blow you to kingdom come…or wherever.

colorful-tai-chi2Life is way too short to be a self-proclaimed victim of every possible wrong that you can imagine. This is especially true of the crabby Baby Boomers who need to realize that they will be extinct in a few decades. Do they really want to be spending their “golden years” complaining? It seems that some do. I know a few personally who seem to be committed to being unhappy. They identify with their grievances. It’s what keeps them going — what gets them out of bed in the morning. Baby Boomers were once labeled “The Me Generation” and the focus back then was on self-fulfillment, enlightenment and a healthy dose of idealism and far-out possibility. Does anyone recall The Age of Aquarius? Those life goals seem to have soured for many people over the years. Younger folks look at their elders and see a lot of unhappy people.

During my work career I retired twice. Once, the last time, just because I was bored and wanted to enjoy retirement. The first time, after 30 years of working in this one career, I realized that I was angry all the time. I was angry at work and I was angry at home. I went to bed angry and woke up angry. This job that had once been a joy and something to look forward to each day was transformed into a dungeon where every day was a horrendous  burden. I was constantly complaining. This was government work and it once had meaning and purpose but somehow, over the course of about four years, it became nearly unbearable. It is a long story and involves several factors that I won’t complain about now (….I’m starting to get worked up).  But I realized that going through life as a victim and having that victimization define my existence was not what I wanted to do. Absolutely nobody wanted to hear it and in the end it was a great emancipation for me to walk away from it.

I have my complaints. I’m not overly pleased with the way things are going. But I learned a while ago that preaching and complaining has no effect. Even if I was able to convince “the powers that be” that change or correction is needed and then get things moving toward an acceptable solution I would be in a nursing home or worse before anything measurable happens. It is the young people who have it in their power to make meaningful change and all the curmudgeons in the world won’t make a difference. Instead of complaining, use that energy and time to help a cause that you believe in and that might allow your kids or grandkids to have a better life. That is the legacy that people should aspire to.

So here I am complaining about complainers.  It’s a slippery slope.

gene missing years