There are lots of kinds of people in the world. This entry divides them into two kinds: builders and bellyachers.
By “builder” I mean someone who works hard and contributes positive energy to others. Buy “bellyacher” I mean someone who complains, drains energy from others, and doesn’t work hard.
Everyone makes mistakes. Everyone makes big mistakes. Builders are deeply troubled by mistakes. But they don’t waste energy and other people’s time making excuses or complaining about it. Instead, they focus on trying harder, determined to move forward and improve with a purpose.
Builders don’t complain about failures, bad luck, crises, injuries, or other problems. They don’t waste time with frustration, or blaming others. Builders focus energy to quietly fix mistakes, recover from failures, and improve every facet of existence.
Builders are on the alert for ways to do better. Builders constantly upgrade the experience of life and all its ingredients by appreciating each step in a driven and disciplined pursuit of all that is well done, good, and accurate in this life.
No amount of life experience can enlighten naturally dissatisfied or frustrated people—bellyachers don’t learn lessons. They blame others for forcing them into a lesson from which they belligerently fail to benefit. They compulsively drag others down to compensate for never improving themselves.
Bellyachers’ unhealthy response to negative experience is to share the bellyaching energy with others, sharing misfortunes, headaches, bad decisions, to release negativity and to let others absorb it.
Basking in frustration and sympathy hides the absence of discipline, effort, or striving to improve. Bellyachers mask laziness and carelessness in deflective sympathy-seeking emotion. Guilt dissolves in a wave of sympathy from enabling friends. The bellyacher’s life will suffer the worst frustration of all: non-maximized-potential, which waters down the experience of life, and the meaning of it. Bellyachers will never live life to the fullest, never put the most into it, and never get the most out of it.
The difference, of course, is discipline. A bellyacher’s mode of travel through life is static self-conceit, a builder’s mode of travel through life is discipline.
You’ll never see the sweat and blood of a builder, because builders don’t show it. They make it look easy and build up others at the same time. Bellyachers make easy things look hard, by complaining about every hiccup, showing every minor strain, making sure everyone around shares the discomfort.
Bellyachers don’t look in the mirror and say “I’m a bellyacher.” They practice denial. Denial leads to self elevation with sympathy-seeking negativity. “Feel sorry for me—I endure such hardship that I constantly complain about.”
Builders practice effective development, humble alertness to improvement, helping others, always progressing. Builders share positive energy with others, without exhibiting any sign of the effort going on inside.
Here are two life lessons:
1. Sympathy is hollow, development is fulfilling
2. Easy is empty, difficult is rewarding
Mistakes can produce two kinds of responses:
1. Negative response: “I’m only human (I accept the lesser me)”
2. Positive response: “I’m fully human (I can do better)”
This entry partly from my book
Potential of an Active Mind: How to Recapture the Magic of Everyday Life
© copyright Robert Rose-Coutré 2009, 2011, and 2012