What Purpose Does Complaining Serve?

Q: What purpose does complaining serve? Is it ever useful or helpful?

For some people, it can be a form of attention-seeking. Of desiring empathy or understanding from others, “See how hard I have it? See all that I’m trying to do? See how much others aren’t doing?”

For others, it can be a form of boundary-setting. “Don’t ask me to do one more thing because look at all I’m already doing.”

In your life, it’s the release of pent-up emotions. It is the anger at what you perceive as an obstacle, injustice, or unfairness. The frustration at what doesn’t work or what is slow or inadequate change. The procrastination to avoid facing what you don’t want to face in a constructive or creative way.

Q: So it’s nothing but a waste of time?

Eventually, you will come to see it as a waste of time. But for now, it is part of your process of accepting what you can’t accept.

Q: Should I?

Sometimes in life, it’s smarter to walk around the obstacle and let it lie rather than to confront that which can’t be changed in the way or the timeframe you are trying to change it.

The lesson is to learn when it is a waste of time and when you need to face something head-on.

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