Did You Know that Listening to People Complain All the Time Costs You Energy?

· July 23, 2017
The problem with being surrounded by people who complain all the time is that it can wind up influencing your mood and bringing you down with problems that aren’t even your own.

Our modern lifestyle has become so demanding that everyone, at some point, inevitably will complain about the things they have to deal with.

This is a natural response that allows you to release tension during complex or painful situations. However, sometimes – and without recognizing it – it steals your energy.

It’s not bad to feel empathy when your friends are going through a tough time. Nevertheless, listening to people who complain about nearly everything can be more harmful than you can imagine.

The most troubling aspect is that this behavior can become so toxic and manipulative that you start to think you’re insensitive or selfish just because you no longer want to be there.

This is why it’s important to learn how to identify a chronic complainer and understand the effects of their negativity on your life.

The profile of the complainer

This person lives in denial of the life they lead. He or she is always trying to become the victim by complaining about what they have or don’t have. Above all, they never do anything to change the things that torment them the most.

It might seem normal at first. However, over time you realize that instead of being a result of a difficult situation they’re going through, their complaints arise from a habit that’s already a part of their lifestyle.

It’s either a conscious or unconscious form of manipulation. During it, the complainer tries to generate guilt, compassion, or solidarity to avoid having to assume responsibility for their own life.

Suddenly, you feel like it’s your duty to help them solve their problems, or at least be there to wipe away their tears at all times.

Did you know? 5 exercises for managing anxiety


The consequences of being around people who constantly complain

People who complain all the time are so negative that you might suddenly begin to feel like you’re burdened with much more than you should be.

Even if you have the ability to advise or help this type of person, being exposed to their nature is enough to sap a significant part of your energy.

Although it might be hard for you to see, this causes your brain to undergo changes due to the emotions that are being generated as a result of someone else’s situation.

Feelings like frustration, guilt, and sadness alter the processes in the brain that release hormones. This increases your risk of suffering from:

  • Emotional imbalances
  • Difficulty solving problems
  • Decreased concentration
  • Negative thoughts

What can you do to confront a complainer?

Not everything in life is the way you planned it to be. After all, you often have to face challenges that you didn’t want or even expect.

However, it’s useless to lock yourself away in frustration and bitterness. After all, these are the attitudes that keep you from coping and moving on.

The energy that you expend complaining is exactly what you need to overcome the situations that seem like obstacles.

For this reason, in addition to avoiding becoming a chronic complainer, it’s essential that you also understand that you’re not required to sit there and listen to those who are.

You can’t pretend to be able to solve other people’s problems when you need that energy to deal with your own life.

So, what can you do?

1. Get some distance

Whenever possible, try to avoid these people because they will only try to manipulate you.

The less you pay attention to them, the faster you’ll understand that you don’t need to invest your energy in listening to their negative thoughts.

2. Make them understand that their problems are their own

Even if you take the time to listen to their complaints, let the person know that they are having these problems because of their way of thinking.

Most importantly, make sure that the situation doesn’t begin to affect you and advise them to take steps to resolve it by their own means.

3. Don’t show weakness

These people have shown an ability to manipulate others with their negative attitudes. That’s why it’s essential to have a shield up to show that you’re not willing to help them with every single problem that arises.

Although empathy is sometimes unavoidable, try to control the situation so that you don’t feel the need to help when the problem doesn’t even concern you.

See also: Defend yourself against negativity

4. Set boundaries

Finally, remember that you’re entitled to demand that a person doesn’t share their tragedies and complaints with you. If you’re tired of hearing all their negative thoughts every day, tell them that you don’t care for it and you’d prefer not to be their shoulder to cry on.

Do you have a friend or relative who complains all the time? It’s time to act! Avoid following their lead. Otherwise, at some point you’ll start to feel like all their negativity interferes with your own life.