Historically I have, on occasion, been “a bit of a whinger”.
In my defence, this really only happens if I get stuck in a strongly negative head-space, which is not common, thankfully. If something is bothering me heavily or strongly upsetting me, I can occasionally spiral, and then talk excessively about that subject.
On the rare occasions I’m really struggling with something, this outward vocalisation can get pretty overwhelming – and especially for whomever is being forced to listen to me. Ha ha, sorry my friends.
I think part of me hopes that by talking it out I can get it all clear in my head (ie, I’m trying to figure it out). Partly I’m looking for sympathy, compassion or support from whomever I’m talking to (ie wanting approval).
The other day though, I had a bit of a realisation.
If I’m complaining about something, it’s because there’s negative energy there. Pretty obviously, otherwise I wouldn’t be complaining, right?
So, since this energy has already come up, rather than expressing it through words, what I should be doing is just bloody well healing it. Surprise!
This is much faster, plus, when it’s done, the desire to complain will disappear along with all that negative energy. It also has the ever-so-slight benefit of making me less miserable to be around. So, another win!
Of course, the trick is catching myself before I start spiralling and talking too much. But that’s just practice. The advantage is, the energy coming up is what motivates me to talk, so really, I only have to watch for moments where I start feeling overwhelmingly shitty, or obsessive. With practice it’s also generally pretty trivial to dump stuff immediately, even if I’m in the middle of interacting with someone.
Now, this isn’t to say there isn’t real benefit in talking something out with a close friend, confidant, or therapist. Talk therapy is popular at least in part because it can be very helpful.
However, there is a point where really, we’re just going over the same old ground, or telling someone new an old problem. We’re merely expressing existing prejudices & emotions, not making any forward progress at all.
This is point where just shutting the hell up and healing whatever is coming up is much faster and better for all of us.