Whiners and Winners

It is so easy to focus on the negative obstacles in life.  Some people make these challenges even bigger by digging a hole of deep self-pity.  They complain that they do not have the same education, privilege, money, opportunities, or whatever else that other people get.  Heck, it is easy for any of us to fall into this trap.  

When we do so, it is easy to fail to count the blessings that each of us has right now.  When I was a teenager, we had a pastor visit our church who had Down Syndrome.  The man hobbled up to the pulpit and in broken English would exclaim, “God don’t like no belly-aching, no complaining, no griping.”  Clearly when the congregation saw the condition that he was in, who really had a better reason to complain than any of us ever had, it put us to shame. 

My younger son is in college studying to be a pastor.  He is also interning at a church.  One of the pastors there was born with spina bifida.  He walks with a limp and tires out easy.  When he was young, he could not enjoy sports like the other kids, so he worked on training his mind.  He developed a tremendous memory and is very sound in his logic.  He also is a powerful preacher and very clear in his oratory.  Here is another case of someone who had a lot more reasons to complain than I ever will, but did not. 

Another example I think of is my mom.  She was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis when I was a freshman in college.  She lived with that disease that robbed little by little of her ability to control her muscles.  She lived with that disease for thirty years.  Yet she would sing as she went through the day and would smile and laugh a lot.  It could be convicting to be around her at times, especially when you were complaining about your lot in life.  

Complaining takes valuable energy and wastes time.  Have you ever spent more time complaining about work than it actually took to complete the task?  I did once in college with a surprise term paper that was sprung on us that was due in a week.  I spent the first five days griping about how unfair the exercise was only to finish the paper within a day once I started.  It took me more time to gripe than to finish the job!

Whining and quitting takes a lot of energy and time and robs it from productivity.  Whining never overcame the obstacles to create the light bulb, invent the airplane, or explore space.  All happened with continually chipping away at the obstacle until it was eventually overcome. 

Griping make us ungrateful, and focuses on the problem and not solutions.  If you ever want to conquer a complaining spirit, just be thankful.  Even be thankful for the challenges, as you learn more in struggle and failure than you ever will in success and ease. 

So this next part is an extra.  I know some of you tend to hate Mondays.  You may use it as a way to coast in a lower gear instead of really kicking it into high gear on your efforts.  I saw an interesting acrostic for Monday:

Make it happen because you

Only live once, and there is

No time for whining…

Don’t make excuses, just

Ask yourself, do

You want it bad enough?

Maybe that will make your Monday a bit more productive.  In a couple of other things, we will be at the CUNA Government Affairs Conference in Washington DC next week.  Stop by our booth #550 and see us!  Better than that, bring us one of your CU friends from around the country who would find it valuable to meet us.  We want more friends!

We are also hosting our MBL Boot Camp in Sioux Falls, South Dakota on March 20 and 21.  This is a great opportunity for business lenders who are starting out, or those with little experience, or business support staff to pick up some good skills and knowledge from some of our fabulous team members.  We look forward to seeing you there.  Contact us for reservations.