Habits are powerful. If you do something one way for a long time it becomes almost automatic. You don’t need to even think about it.
We all have a lot of habits that serve us. It’s nice that you don’t have to put too much effort into brushing your teeth every day. This habit helps you keep them clean without even thinking about it.
Habits form over time and we learn them from our environment. It’s just the way you learned to do things. It is your obvious way of approaching something.
A few years ago I read a story about a peculiar family tradition. And since it’s about a turkey and today is Thanksgiving (for all of you living in US),so it’s a perfect match.
At the Thanksgiving dinner, a husband asks his wife why she always cut off the end of a turkey. She wasn’t really sure about that. She was doing that for years and she learned that from her mother.
She decided to call her and ask the same question. Her mother didn’t know either. She was always preparing a turkey this way. They decided to call grandma.
“Grandma why are you always cutting off the end of a turkey?”
“Well, because my drip pan was always too small”
Most habits are created this way. We’re learning them by watching someone we consider an authority. When we’re young it’s usually a parent, later on it can be anyone that we look up to.
It’s all well and good if our habits help us live better lives. But because they work in a background we don’t usually verify if they’re helpful or not. They simply feel normal and it’s all we know.
There’s this one habit that a lot of people have that makes finding a better job very hard. Maybe they learned it from their parents. Maybe everyone around is doing the same.
Complaining people are everywhere. Big or small city. Rich or poor country. It maybe justified by the personal circumstances or the economic climate. But most of the time it’s just a habit, no matter how good or bad the actual situation is.
Unfortunately it won’t help them find the solution. If your mind is full of complaints there’s no space for anything else. The solution might be in front of you, but you won’t see it.
If you find something to complain about in one place you usually start finding it everywhere. It’s a habit.
Notice that people who complain about lack of opportunities don’t even try to find one. And if they do and there are still in complaining mode they will just try to prove to themselves that they were right all along. Complaining simply doesn’t work.
As kids, most of us learned that if we complain loud enough about not having something we want, our parents will notice that and react. But things doesn’t work that way in the real life.
If you are complaining and are waiting for someone to give you a better job you’re up for a disappointment. You’re an adult now. It’s your responsibility to get yourself what you want. No one else’s.
The good news is that you can unlearn habits that works against you. It’s easier to observe it in others rather than in ourselves.
Look at people who have complaining habit and ask yourself how is it working for them? Would you want to work with someone like that? Would you hire someone like that?
You can change a habit by replacing it with another one. A much more productive habit to develop is the habit of appreciation.
If you think that appreciation won’t change anything look at yourself when you’re in complaining mode. You’re heavy. Your can’t really think straight. If you practice it for a while you will probably be tired. You don’t really feel like doing anything that will get you closer to what you want.
Appreciation is the opposite. You feel light. You probably are eager to do something about a new job. Your are clear minded. You are full of energy.
There is probably a reason why all around the world there are traditions similar to Thanksgiving. It’s to remind us that there is always plenty to be thank for.
Maybe our ancestors knew something that we tend to forget. They knew what gives them strength and what makes them weak. And it can be something as simple as choice between complaining and appreciation.
The choice is yours. I have been on both sides. I see people on both sides. For me the choice is obvious. But don’t take my word for it. Test it and see what works better for you.