Work Stress? Why complaining is a bad investment of time & energy.

Written by Tim Kight

BCD is a serious problem. It afflicts millions of people every day, and is often triggered by work stress. BCD is also known as Blaming, Complaining, & Defending. Sadly, BCD is the standard response for many people when they encounter challenges or difficulties in life. But blaming others, complaining about circumstances, and defending yourself is a bad investment of time & energy. Here are 7 reasons why…

1. BCD makes things worse. Everyone has challenges and issues. Every organization has problems that need to get fixed. BCD does not fix or solve anything, for anyone. It only makes things worse by adding a bad attitude to already existing problems. Don’t make a difficult situation worse by responding poorly.

2. BCD takes time & energy away from real problem-solving. The time and effort you waste on complaining could be invested in fixing problems, finding solutions, & achieving results. Complaining creates a culture of negativity which kills innovation & creativity. Negative people are quick to shoot down new ideas. Create a culture of positive energy. Focus your effort on finding solutions, not complaining about problems.

3. BCD is easy. It doesn’t require any effort or discipline. It’s always easier to complain about problems than it is to solve them. That’s not only lazy but also guarantees that the problem won’t go away. Resist the easy (and crowded) path of complaining and blaming. Take ownership to do the hard work of finding solutions.

4. BCD is habit-forming. Once you start, it’s hard to stop. It gets easier each time you do it. It becomes your default reaction when things don’t go the way you want. And there will always be things that don’t go the way you want. The habits you feed will grow. Stop feeding the BCD habit.

5. BCD is contagious. People feel compelled to communicate their complaints & criticisms. They want other people to share their negative perspective. This is completely counter-productive. It promotes unhealthy relationships that are built (and rely) on negative experiences. Do you have any of these relationships? Be more tenacious about being positive than the cynics are about being negative. Someone has to win.

6. BCD damages your credibility. The more you BCD, the more people see you as a defensive complainer. They don’t see you as helpful and they aren’t motivated to connect with you. Protect your most precious commodity — your reputation — by focusing on what you can control and take responsibility for your attitude & action.

7. BCD is bad for your brain. That’s right, neuroscientists have recently discovered that complaining, and being around complaining, has negative short-term and long-term consequences. Trevor Blake, author of Three Simple Steps, points out that complaining basically “turns your brain to mush.” Our brains were built to solve problems, not to hyper-focus on them for extended periods of time. Be good to your brain. Don’t complain.

BCD may be easy and popular and contagious and habitual, but it just isn’t successful. It never solves anything. It never changes anything. And if you’re honest with yourself, it really doesn’t even make you feel better. You know what makes you feel better? Solving problems so you don’t