My husband and I were recently on a road trip to Houston, he was kind enough to drive so I could relax and prepare for work. About the time we reached the outskirts around 10 PM on a weeknight, the complaints about other drivers started flooding in. I was annoyed, complaining doesn’t fix it – all it does is draw more negativity to it!

As the trip progressed he continued to comment on how awful the driving was and spent a lot of our car conversation on the comparison between Bad Dallas drivers and Bad Houston drivers – apparently Houston drivers still won as better drivers since they would let him over when he had on his turn signal.

A day and half into the trip I wanted to call someone and complain about his complaining – didn’t he see that it was causing more stress? Which is when the light bulb went off for me. If I called someone to complain then I was doing the same thing. Does any of this sound familiar to you?

When we experience something undesirable it is more than likely an opportunity to take a look inside and see what has brought about this circumstance. We can use the frustration we feel about things as a sort of mirror with which to asses and correct things within ourselves that are less than what we wish ourselves to be.

For me in this situation I realized that I wasn’t saying the most positive things, it does not matter if his negativity kicked it off, if we picked it up at a restaurant or if I myself had started it – the cycle could end with me.

I knew that in order to stop this cycle I needed to shift to a place of gratitude. So I looked at what I had to be thankful for. I was in fact very thankful that he is such an aware driver which makes me feel very comfortable when he is driving. I am also very thankful that he is willing & able to drive me on these road trips. Every time I started getting frustrated with a complaint I thanked him again for driving or commented on how aware he was and how I was always able to relax when he was driving.

So how is it all our fault? Well, that much information won’t fit here. Next time you consider complaining about something just remember to shift yourself into a place of gratitude. It may not be easy, but it is worth the effort.