A Complaint Free World

“I complain therefore I am.” Will Bowen

Have you ever met those people that when you see them coming down the isle at the grocery store, you turn around or try to disappear into the background so that you don’t have to talk to them?  I know it sounds terrible, but I’ve met people that I try to avoid because they are EXHAUSTING to be around.  What is it about these people that turns me off so much?  And what can I do to assure that I don’t become one of these “energy-suckers”?  These are questions that I’ve had for years and after talking with one of my dearest friends, Elisabeth White, I’ve come to the conclusion it is the constant complaining that I dislike so much.

Elisabeth turned me onto a book called “A Complaint Free World” by Will Bowen.  The author basically challenges the reader to purge complaining from their lives for 21 straight days.  For example you reach complaint free day 8, and complain about how slow the grocery store clerk scanned your items, then you have to start all over again!  Needless to say, not matter how positive you think you are, when you really start paying attention to the energy of your words, you will find there is always room for improvement!

Elisabeth, one of the most positive people I’ve met, was willing to share her thoughts on the book:

“I just finished reading “A Complaint Free World”.  Wow!  What an amazing way to live!  When I first started this book I thought, how can I change the world or help out if I’m not allowed to complain?! In the worlds of Eckhart Tolle “Complaining is not to be confused with informing someone of a mistake or difficulty so that it can be put right.  And to refrain from complaining does not necessarily mean putting up with bad quality of behavior.”  This makes sense.  Remember as you move forward into your complaint-purge that it doesn’t mean you become a door mat.  You use positive words in place of the critical words.
As a person who practices a lot of yoga all around the city, I’ve become familiar with the certain teachers and fellow practitioners that carry a negative energy around with them.  What I have come to realize is that yogis too have to make a choice to be cheerful and joyous in their words and actions.  Being a yogi does not shelter you from being around negative people, or being negative yourself.  And being a yoga teacher carries with it a lot of responsibility because the people that come to class mostly want to soak up some good energy!  I have seen the effects of a negative teacher on her students but also the influence of a positive teacher.  Although both teachers may be teaching the same information, it is in the delivery and tone that makes the energy positive or negative.  Powerful or weak. 
A thought by John Milton “The mind is its own place and in itself can make a heaven a hell, or a hell of heaven.”  Perhaps this IS heaven, or at least I can make it so.

Elisabeth and her furry family!

 Elisabeth White is a Dallas native, who spends her time taking care of her own furry family and also any animal within a 7 block radius of her house!  On any given day you can find her either in a downward dog, stretching out her body, and quieting the mind or strolling thru her beloved neighborhood on a personal crusade to rid the streets of Oak Cliff of trash!  Elisabeth has been a true friend to me and continues to inspire me everyday to be a better person.

3 responses to “A Complaint Free World

  1. Thanks Shanell for the kind words! Your amazing spirit and sharing down dogs throughout the metroplex is inspiring as well. The divine in me recognizes the divine in ALL of you!


  2. I love the wonderful face of your furry friend on the far right of photo (your left). Can’t wait to meet that one and see all my old pals.

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