At the beginning of NOCNOM (No complaining, no masturbating for one month), I wrote about how difficult it is to avoid complaining. Until last week, I didn’t know how much I complained.
As I turned my attention towards complaining, I started to notice how much others complain. When someone says “it’s too hot out today”, it’s easy to agree or add to it. It’s even a way to relate to other. If you know that the person you’re with dislikes the cold, you can bring it up because you know it will facilitate conversation.
While this sounds a little ridiculous, I had no idea how often I complained. It even surprised me how much others complain. When you abstain from something, you get an outsider’s view of a situation. If you’re fasting, you can pay special attention to how you eat. If you’re a shopaholic, abstaining from shopping may show you how much time you spend in stores.
It doesn’t take much, only a bit of motivation, to start a goal like NOCNOM. It brings greater understanding to a situation and can help you make better decisions in the future. Maybe you don’t realize how late you stay up at night, abstaining may teach you how a good night’s rest can change your mood. It could even be simpler like abstaining from eating junk food at breakfast.
Anyways, I encourage you to abstaining from a habit for the next 7 days. Below are a few examples of things you can try out. Remember that none of them are bad but taking a break can give you insight about each of them.
This one’s tough because we don’t realize how often we do it! No using your cell phone while you eat or brushing your teeth in the shower. Take each task individually so that you can put your full attention on it. I know it’s not exciting to eat without looking on your phone, but you could abstain for just one week!
-Shopping more than one day a week
For some people this is easy because they already do it. Unfortunately when I walk by a store, I like to look around and explore. This leads to my wallet shrinking and my room filling up with extra knicknacs. Just one week of no shopping can show you how much you mindless shop.
-Listening to music
Again I want to reiterate, there is nothing wrong with putting on some jams. However, I think that sometimes we fill our lives with static because we can’t stand silence. Now I’m learning to sit in the quiet more often. I love listening to house music because it’s motivating but somedays it’s better to just sit with your thoughts. Try taking a 7 day break and jam out on the 8th.
No matter what you abstain from, I’m sure you’ll gain a newfound appreciation for it. Living without teaches us to appreciate living with. Whether it be complaining, multitasking, or NOCNOM, there’s always insight to be gained.