There’s complaining and then there is complaining and I am definitely not saying that there aren’t legitimate complaints in this world. In the last few articles in the positivity category, I’ve been sharing that complaining can become a bad habit that’s hard to kick, overshadowing all the good things in your life and causing people to avoid you. Sometimes airing your concerns is necessary and healthy. It’s important to do it in a manner that’s effective and doesn’t put the other person on the defensive. I have some tips on how to voice legitimate complaints.
Consider the Other Side
Something that can get forgotten is to consider the opposite side of your complaint. No matter if it’s a small issue or a big problem, taking time to think about the rationale for what it is you’re not happy with is necessary to determine if you have a valid complaint. Seeing things from another perspective and employing empathy is always a wise move. So think it through and try to figure out why a policy or decision has been made in a particular manner before moving forward with your gripe.
Determine Your Reason
Do you know why you are complaining? Yep, some things can be annoying. You might feel a bit better for venting about your frustrations. However, regularly complaining about things that are minor or that can’t be changed will likely gain you a reputation you don’t want to have. It starts to become a habit by creating neural pathways in your brain and complaining about things that aren’t particularly significant probably won’t lead to anything being done about the issue. You’ll just wind up feeling more frustrated.
Watch Your Tone
When you’ve decided to move forward and to make your complaint, be sure it doesn’t come across as whining. Your tone and the words you choose can go a long way toward ensuring this isn’t the case. When we’re frustrated, it’s easy to raise our voices, use strong words that provoke, and speak in a whiny or condescending tone. All of these are counterproductive toward complaining effectively and legitimately. Your recipient isn’t likely to want to listen to you if you come across as whiny or hostile.
Propose a Solution
Perhaps the most effective thing you can do to lodge legitimate complaints is to come prepared with some ideas to solve the issue. Complaining about the complaint’s sake really doesn’t serve anyone. The person or people listening to your complaint will take you more seriously if you have a proposed solution to the problem. They’ll also appreciate it and will probably be more willing to work with you, rather than to be on the defensive. Having a plan in mind shows you’ve thought the matter through and taken some effort, that you’re serious about your complaint.
These are just some suggestions of ways to make a legitimate complaint. Perhaps they will help you to voice your frustration with others in a more meaningful way than simply moaning and groaning about all that upsets you.