Counseling A Chronic Complainer

Constant grumblers live to complain chronically. If you are one of the chronic complainers, perhaps you should read this article and learn more about constant complaints.

What are the reasons why chronic complainers are so hard to talk?
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Chronic Complainers

When I became a licensed psychologist and counselor, my brother dealt with me to visit his company once or twice a year and assess his employees’ mental behaviors.

What is it with constant complaints? How do we cope with constant grumblers every time we come across them?

How do chronic complainers affect one’s daily life?

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Chronic Complainers

It was set to be an informal setting where I could go through various departments, talk to chronic complainers during breaks, or even chat with chronic complainers up in the hallways. The goal was to know how chronic complainers felt about their jobs, projects, and even coworkers – perhaps distinguish chronic complainers from those who were not.

Chronic Complainers

During my first few visits, chronic complainers were a bit guarded about their words and emotions. As you must know, many chronic complainers saw mental health professionals as no different from law enforcers. Chronic complainers knew that I could see through their lies and that my presence could cost their jobs. But once I established that I was there to help chronic complainers and not snitch on them to their big boss, chronic complainers grew to trust me and sometimes even confide their worries to me.

Furthermore, I wanted to see the difference in perspective between the chronic complainers and the chronic worker – the person who works and is happy about it.

“It was set to be an informal setting where I could go through various departments, talk to chronic complainers during breaks, or even chat chronic complainers up in the hallways. The goal was to know how chronic complainers felt about their jobs, projects, and even coworkers – perhaps distinguish chronic complainers from those who were not.”

Chronic Complainers

How To Spot Potential Chronic Complainers

In my brother’s company, they accepted part-timers and interns of any age. My brother did not care if the person was fresh out of high school as long as they were willing to learn and be good to the other employees.

On my previous visit, I met an 18-year-old part-timer named Jane. She did not know who I was and assumed that I was a senior employee from another department. She was nice and sweet once we talked, and then I asked her how her first month was at the company. That’s when a slew of complaints flooded my eardrums. Was she one of the chronic complainers? 

Chronic Complainer Jane 

“Well, you know,” Jane started, “I am still learning everything, but I have a hard time dealing with different managers here. They all have different techniques for doing their jobs, and I was expected to learn all of them. I mean, why can’t they pair up one manager per intern so that my life would be easy here?”

I tried to understand her- the chronic complainer. “I hear you, but I don’t see what’s wrong with any of them. Isn’t it good that you have managers who are doing all these things to ensure the project’s success?” I said.

“…chronic complainers were a bit guarded about their words. Many chronic complainers saw mental health professionals as no different from law enforcers. Chronic complainers knew that I could see through their lies and that my presence could cost their jobs. But once I established that I was there to help chronic complainers and not snitch on them, chronic complainers grew to trust.”

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Chronic Complainers

Jane sighed dramatically.

“It takes a lot of time to watch presentations or go to meetings or learn things by myself. I could have used that time to start the project already.”

Spotting A Constant Complainer

I realized right there and then that Jane was a chronic grumbler – one of the chronic complainers. Complaining too much is that it is technically not a mental disorder, but it can be brought about by childhood issues or lack of confidence. Instead of admitting that a task is challenging for her, Jane complains and blames the managers who are merely doing their jobs in the best way they know. This is one of the starking signs of chronic complainers.

So, I told Jane, “If you must know, I am a licensed counselor and psychologist. I cannot resolve your issues regarding your managers – you may have to take it up to your supervisor – but I have an office here, and I would love to accommodate you this afternoon. We can talk more about your issues if you like.”

Chronic Complainers

More Complainers

Of course, Jane seemed surprised by my revelation, but the possibility of complaining some more to a willing soul was attractive to chronic complainers like her. And that’s what I would do – listen and sympathize with Jane’s chronic complaints because there was no other way to handle chronic complainers. But when Jane arrived and repeated the same chronic complaints about her managers, I had to ask her why she had not done something about her chronic complaints already. She had no response to that.

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“Sometimes, problems remain as problems because we do nothing about them. Things may get better if you speak up during work,” I advised.

Chronic Complainers

Insights About Compliance For Chronic Complainers

I was no longer shocked when I did not see Jane anymore on my next visit. That’s how chronic complainers usually worked – chronic complainers could be excellent at airing out their issues and complaints, but chronic complainers are awful at heeding suggestions.

What’s my advice to all the young individuals who want to succeed in life? Please don’t be like Jane.

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