I know this sounds harsh, but for real, if all you want to do is complain and never change your way of doing things, then shut up!
How many people do you know who grumble about their lives when simple changes could solve their perceived problems? How often do you listen to the same old grievances over and over, then offer suggestions only to be told, “Yes, but…” when you say “How about trying this?”
It’s a waste of time to listen to these people, for nothing will ever change because they really don’t want anything to change. They much prefer to suffer. And then talk about their pain over and over and over again.
Change is easy for me. I thrive on it. However this attitude of mine isn’t coming from a love of change. It’s coming from the realization that I’ve just spent another hour of my life listening to someone who actually seems to enjoy their dilemma. God forbid they should do anything differently.
I think I’m basically a kind person, so I refuse to back down from this stance. Anyway, I don’t think it’s doing this type of person any good at all to allow them to wallow in their self-pity. I know all too well – having become a widow at age 47 – that life is too damn short for this stuff.
So, my advice to one and all is if you refuse to make changes yourself, then suck it up and accept your life the way it is. If you’re the listener, point out that you’ve heard this all before and flatly tell your “friend” that you’re not going to spend any more time on the issue unless they are serious about changing their situation.
Just to be clear, I am not talking about those poor souls who really ARE stuck in a scenario they cannot change. For them, I will listen all day.
So, now it is on me to change my own behavior and point out to this person that my life is slipping away while I listen to her bemoaning her own.