Why We Complain And What To Do About It

We all complain at some point in our lives. About the weather, politics, our partners, our families or our boss. And we all hate to listen to others complaining. But we still do it. Is there a way to understand what complaining is, when and why it happens?


Complaining is understood as expressing dissatisfaction verbally as a response to a negative situation. But some of us complain more than others.

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Why do we sometimes hold our tongue and sometimes cannot refrain from complaining? There are many factors involved, from how much control we feel we have in a certain situation, to how able we are to tolerate conflict and present ourselves to the world.

There are 3 kinds of complainers in the world:

1. Chronic complainers

These people are extremely difficult to satisfy, since they see the glass as half empty. They have trouble seeing the progress and instead concentrate on the obstacles they encounter.

2. Venting complainers

For them, complaining is a way to seek attention and sympathy for their problems. Expressing anger or frustration becomes a way for them to feel validated.

Both types are not very interested in solving the problems they have, they are less inclined to accept advice or alternative solutions to their problems.

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3. The strategic complainers

When you confront your boss about mistreating you or a restaurant owner for the bug in your food, what you do is signal a problem and try to solve it. You show the other that you had a negative experience and try to find a way for it not to repeat itself.

The difference is what these types of people want to achieve. The first two types need an emotional release, no matter the result. The third type of people want to bring about change with a particular goal in mind and they are ready to cooperate for that to happen.

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Here are some tips about how to complain more effectively:

  • Remember that your emotional baggage is yours to carry
  • Evaluate the chances your complaining has to produce a real and positive effect
  • Be careful how you express your complaint so that it creates the change you need without being disrespectful to others.

We won’t complain if you share this!