Vent Less and Be Happier
I had a colleague at my last job, before I started Candid Culture, who was a peer and a friend. We were at a similar level and would periodically sit in one of our offices, with the door closed, talking about the bad decisions our company’s senior leaders made. One day I realized that these conversations were exhausting to me. They were negative and didn’t make me feel better. In fact, they made me feel worse.
Some people assert that venting is cathartic and makes people feel better. It doesn’t.
I’ll use an analogy I read in one of Deepak Chopra’s books. When you put a plant in the closet and don’t give it light or water, it withers and dies. When you put a plant in the sunlight and water it, it grows. And the same is true for people. What you give attention to gets bigger. What you deprive attention goes away.
Your life is made up of the people you spend time with and what you talk about. What are you talking about?
If you’re complaining, unless you’re planning a conversation to address a challenge or problem, you’re venting. And talking about what frustrates you will only make you more frustrated.
My advice: Do something about the things you can impact and let the other stuff go.