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Are you a Chump or a Champ?!

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Chump or a Champ -Making this daily choice determine whether you will find fail or whether you will succeed. The choice is yours.

Look I get it, life is full of challenges. You are right–fear, death, and destruction besiege us. A life without problems is not even a remote possibility. Life can be crushing at times. Life is tough and then you die. Or as one little chicken famously said, “The sky is falling!”

That is how the 25-minute rant…err, the conversation ended.

With my ears ringing I set the phone down thinking, “boy, all that complaining he does is seriously contagious. I’m feeling slightly depressed”.

Nothing like being splashed in the face with a tall cold glass of ‘gripping’ to remind me how far I’d come from being the epitome of a complainer.

This conversation also reminded me all over again of the 3 key things that helped me stop complaining. The 3 things that helped me take to heart that I always, always have a choice and making a new choice is the difference between being a chump who complains or a champ who chooses.

Here is the thing, as horrible as life may seem, that’s life.

Man or woman, life is chock full of challenges. And we cannot send ‘life’ back to the kitchen just because that stuff is way too spicy.

But we sure as heck can make a new choice. We always have options. There is always a way to deal with what is on our plate.

The way we deal with what life serves up is the difference between chumps and champs.

Not who you know. Not your area code, sex, age, color or religion. The difference lies in realizing and making a new choice. Champs make a new choice. Chumps complain. Then complain some more. Then criticize. Then to mix it up, they whine.

Now before I get an email full of the terribly overused and least understood line, “stop judging”, let’s get something straight. Once upon a time, I got a trophy for complaining at chump camp. Sadly, as I have admitted, I am all too familiar with complaining.

I am not an expert on your problems. Nor do I claim to know how to overcome all of life’s issues in one nifty sound bite, like some all-knowing guru. But I do speak from personal experience and from what I’ve seen work in the lives of other very real people.

That is how I know to share the 3 key things below that will help you stop the complaining and be a champ no matter what life serves up.

Whether you like it or not, the majority of the time, remembering and making a new choice when faced with life’s curveballs will determine whether your life becomes a tragedy or a triumph.

Seriously think about these challenges – financial difficulty, divorce, addiction, job loss, depression, a death of a loved one and health issues; now tell me, which gets you further? Making a new choice or complaining?

Good, I knew we would agree. So here are the 3 things.

  1. Admit–This may not be something you want to do, but I have to ask you to be honest. Check yourselves. The first step in overcoming a problem (especially complaining) is admitting you have one.

To have the good life means you have to let go of every unproductive habit. Bad habits do not add up to the good life. You may want to move ahead in life, get promoted, get a raise, put a smile on the angelic face of your sweetheart but that’s not happening until the toxic habit of complaining stops. Eat the humble pie. Admit the issue. Let the healing begin.

Before we get to step #2….

Complaining also means sarcastic comments. Complaining, sarcasm and for that matter, gossip are all incredibly selfish behaviors. They are all forms of severe self-absorption, different expressions, but the same underlying issue. Which is spotting a problem or flaw in someone, then standing back and making fun, rather than making an effort to help?

You may think you are being cute, you may think you are a real comedian but complaining, sarcasm and gossip are nothing more than mocking and putting people down. The truth is, engaging in these behaviors doesn’t benefit anyone.

  1. Stop Scaling–Complaining is a sneaky habit and easy to justify because chumps scale every problem. They erroneously think that if every problem they have is HUGE, that justifies the gripping. So chumps scale the small things into big things, stacking one grumble on top of a gripe until the molehill appears to be a mountain. Chumps will keep adding to this mountain of BS until it blocks out the sun. When the chump is called out to cut the complaining, the chump often stacks the scale with, “you would too if your life sucked this bad!”

This is a classic chump line. Pretty impressive how that line makes things sound so much worse than they really are.

However, a clever complainer is still a complainer. So chose. Clever chump or champ?

When the chump gets serious about breaking the habit of complaining he has to recognize that he is stacking the scales with assumptions. The first and foremost assumption is that the chump’s problems are greater than everyone else’s problems on the entire, freaking, planet…ever!

I know, I know this step is like ripping the band-aid off. But remember the intent here is to stop complaining. So Stop scaling.

  1. Let It Go–This truth bites and no matter how hard you hustle, things will fall through the cracks.

Something, somehow, somewhere is going to get screwed up. Toilets and traffic back up. Budgets and lunch plans change. Trains and planes get delayed. Frustrating? Heck YES!

But don’t let those circumstances yank your complaint cord.

The truth is that the only way out of those situations is to think. When the unexpected happens the last thing you want to do is complain because that results in huge losses of energy that reduces your ability to problem solve.

A better choice is to breathe, count to ten, say out loud, ‘not my monkey’, whatever; but choose to let go of things outside of your control.

Stop the complaining and do as the T-shirt says, ‘stay calm and carry on’. That is the essence of letting go.

In sum –

Like getting rid of dandelions, when complaining has evolved into a habit, you don’t keep walking by saying “I’ve really got to do something”. You stop, reach down deep, grab that sucker and pull it up by the root.

Please don’t let this habit rob you of one more day.

I invite you to get started with these 3 steps; Admitting, Stop Scaling and Letting it Go.

Give your dreams what they need to grow by focusing on all that is possible.

Because you choose–chump or champ.

Follow Craig on Instagram @craiglboucher

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