A Complaint Free World: How to Stop Complaining and Start Enjoying the Life You Always Wanted by Will Bowen
In July 2006 Will Bowen (a minister at Christ Church Unity) offered a simple idea for people to monitor their success at eradicating complaining from their lives by doing a 21 day challenge without complaining, criticizing or gossiping.
Scientists believe it takes 21 days to form a new habit and complaining is habitual for most of us. Will used a purple bracelet as a tool to remind you of how well you are creating your life with positive intention. Here are his suggested rules:
- Begin to wear the bracelet, on either wrist
- When you catch yourself complaining, gossiping or criticizing (it’s ok, everyone does) move the bracelet to the other arm and begin again.
- If you hear someone else who is wearing a bracelet complain, you may point out their need to switch the bracelet to the other arm; BUT if you’re going to do this, you must move your bracelet first (as you are complaining about their complaining)
- Stay with it. It may take many months but when you reach 21 days you will find that your entire life is happier, more loving and more enjoyable. (The average person who really gives this their best effort usually takes 4-10 months to go 21 consecutive days without complaining.)
- Two-thirds of illnesses originate in the mind. What the mind believes, the body manifests. Dozens of research studies have shown that what a person believes about their health leads to that belief becoming real for them.
- A story on the radio said that in a particular study – doctors found that if they told patients the drug held great promise in curing them, the drug had a far greater beneficial effect than it did for patients who received the same drug without the suggestion.
- Bowen tells us that we start in “Unconscious Incompetence.” In other words, we’re not even aware that we complain as often as we do.
- When we take up the Challenge, we move into “Conscious Incompetence.” In this stage, we become aware of just how incompetent we are—we see just how much we complain.
- EMBRACE the awkward Conscious Incompetence phase with this Challenge moment-to-moment.
- From Conscious Incompetence we’ll then move into Conscious Competence and ultimately into Unconscious Competence (naturally complaint-free).
Bowen, WIll ‘A Complaint Free World: How to Stop Complaining and Start Enjoying the Life You Always Wanted’, Feb 2013