Complaining about something you don’t like?

Dislike button

Some time ago I wrote in my notebook “Change things to complain about by different things to complain about”. As almost always, it was in the night/morning time —I was sleepy—, and by the time I woke up the next day I forgot the meaning of that. It sadly happens a lot, but just few times I change the forgotten meaning to something else.

What’s the point of changing a state of being A by a state of being B, if you don’t like either? Sure, if state B is less bad than state A, why not, right? That was one of my thoughts deciphering the note. It was actually the idea behind writing it. But I don’t like it anymore, because I started thinking if that statement should make sense for two states of being, A and B, that are equally disliked. And it turns out it does.

People complain about things. We complain about everything. For several reasons we find and use a bad “characteristic” of an object or a person against it, as well as events, emotions, or anything else. The fact is that we have understood as a society that everything has a darker side, along with the bright side (not always seen…).

Now, we complain based on us disliking for some reason the “thing” of complaining, the “state of being”. I call “state of being” to a specific state you are, with specific objects, people and everything else taking effect over you. And state of being could be [you] in a library, surrounded by people reading, the sound of paper, the feeling of… and so on. The thing is that the “state of being” encompasses anything that have a present effect, even the tiniest, on you.

Adding all those things up, a normal person is apparently able to rate a “state of being”, and classify all of them ranging from “dislikable” to “likable”. We can say we like or not something based on that information. It’s all an automatic process, but it lets us say “I’d rather do X than Y” or “I’d rather be X than Y”. Going back, if for some reason X and Y are equally rated, like “I’d don’t mind doing Y instead of X, or the other way around”, there’s a point in getting rid of something you complain about, even if you have to complain about something else, in the same way.


Complaining about the same thing for some time is normal. Yet, complaining about it for too much time is bad, as the “bad thing” you’re complaining about starts to become normal. You complain about it because you find it abnormal and you dislike it. With time it will become normal, which could be good, but not when you won’t like it more.

The “bad thing” will become normal, and the bad things in general will become normal. That’s quite a bad thing, considering bad things, although normal, shouldn’t feel like it: you might start thinking bad things are normal, as good things are not.

The point of changing anything you complain about for anything else you would complain about too, is to change, to not feel like the “bad thing” is normal, to not make it part of your life. Of course, that’s sometimes impossible, and yet it won’t end your life if you don’t, but it’s always better to think you can get rif of bad things, don’t you think?

To wrap it all, we all complain about stuff, and some times we tend to change a bad thing for a less-bad thing. The thing is that, regardless of badness, or anything, changing things you complain about in your life for anything else (even other things you’ll complain about) have a purpose: to not feel like bad things should happen instead of good ones.

Image by Sean MacEntee.

Have some thoughts about this? Share them!