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A Complaint Free World
Cover of A Complaint Free World
A Complaint Free World
How to Stop Complaining and Start Enjoying the Life You Always Wanted
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In your hands, you hold the secret to transforming your life. Big words? Yes, but this is a plan that has already proven itself with millions of people around the world. Pastor Will Bowen developed the life-changing A Complaint Free World plan based on the simple idea that good things will happen for you in abundance if you can just leave your grumbling behind. In a Sunday-morning sermon, Will told his congregation he wanted to make the world a complaint-free zone and, to prove he was serious, he passed out purple bracelets to each church member and offered them a challenge. "If you catch yourself complaining, take the bracelet and move it to the other wrist."
Now, less than a year later, more than six million people have taken up the challenge, trying to go twenty-one consecutive days without complaining, criticizing, or gossiping, and in so doing, forming a new, positive habit. By changing your words, you can change your thoughts and then begin to create your life by design. People have shared stories with Will of chronic pain relieved, relationships healed, careers improved, and becoming an overall happier person. Less pain, improved health, satisfying relationships, a better job, being more serene and joyous—sound good? It's not only possible, it's probable. Consciously striving to reformat your mental hard drive is not easy, but you can start now by using the steps Bowen presents here.
In this book, you can learn what constitutes a complaint, why we complain, what benefits we think we receive from complaining, how complaining is destructive to our lives, and how we can get others around us to stop complaining. You will learn the steps to eradicating this poisonous form of expression from your life. If you stay with it, you will find that not only will you not complain, but others around you will cease to do so as well. In a short period of time, you can have the life you've always dreamed of having.

In your hands, you hold the secret to transforming your life. Big words? Yes, but this is a plan that has already proven itself with millions of people around the world. Pastor Will Bowen developed the life-changing A Complaint Free World plan based on the simple idea that good things will happen for you in abundance if you can just leave your grumbling behind. In a Sunday-morning sermon, Will told his congregation he wanted to make the world a complaint-free zone and, to prove he was serious, he passed out purple bracelets to each church member and offered them a challenge. "If you catch yourself complaining, take the bracelet and move it to the other wrist."
Now, less than a year later, more than six million people have taken up the challenge, trying to go twenty-one consecutive days without complaining, criticizing, or gossiping, and in so doing, forming a new, positive habit. By changing your words, you can change your thoughts and then begin to create your life by design. People have shared stories with Will of chronic pain relieved, relationships healed, careers improved, and becoming an overall happier person. Less pain, improved health, satisfying relationships, a better job, being more serene and joyous—sound good? It's not only possible, it's probable. Consciously striving to reformat your mental hard drive is not easy, but you can start now by using the steps Bowen presents here.
In this book, you can learn what constitutes a complaint, why we complain, what benefits we think we receive from complaining, how complaining is destructive to our lives, and how we can get others around us to stop complaining. You will learn the steps to eradicating this poisonous form of expression from your life. If you stay with it, you will find that not only will you not complain, but others around you will cease to do so as well. In a short period of time, you can have the life you've always dreamed of having.

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  • From the book

    Chapter 1
    I Complain Therefore I Am

    Man invented language to satisfy his deep need to complain. —Lily Tomlin

    Complain: (verb) 1: to express grief, pain, or discontent <complaining about the weather> 2: to make a formal accusation or charge —The Merriam–Webster Dictionary


    There are four stages to become competent at anything. In becoming a Complaint Free person, you will go through each of them and, sorry, you can't skip steps. You can't jump over them and effect lasting change. Some of the stages last longer than others. Everyone's experience with them varies. You might soar through one stage and then become stuck in another for a long time, but if you stay with it you will master this skill.


    VOICES
    Like most of the other folks who took up the Complaint free challenge, I quickly discovered exactly how many of the words I spoke in daily interactions were complaints. For the first time, I really heard myself when I vented about work, whined about my aches and pains, bemoaned political and world issues, and complained about the weather. What a shock to realize how many of my words held negative energy–and I considered myself such a positive person! —Marty Pointer, Kansas City, MO


    The four stages to competency are:
    1. Unconscious Incompetence
    2. Conscious Incompetence
    3. Conscious Competence
    4. Unconscious Competence

    In "On a Distant Prospect of Eton College," Thomas Gray gave us the saying "ignorance is bliss." As you become a Complaint Free person, you begin in the bliss of ignorance, move through the turmoil of transformation, and arrive at true bliss. Right now, you are in the Unconscious Incompetence stage. You are unconscious about your being incompetent. You don't realize (are unconscious) as to how much you complain (are incompetent).

    Unconscious Incompetence is as much a state of being as a stage of competency. This is where we all begin. In Unconscious Incompetence you are pure potential, ready to create great things for yourself. There are exciting new vistas about to be explored. All you have to do is be willing to go through the remaining steps.

    Many people are an "ouch!" looking for a hurt. If you cry "ouch," the hurt will show up. If you complain, you'll receive more to complain about. It's the Law of Attraction in action. As you complete these stages, as you leave complaining behind, as you are no longer an "ouch" looking for a hurt, your life will unfold for you like a beautiful spring flower.

    One of the questions I'm often asked is "Can I never complain...ever!?" To which I answer, "Of course you can complain." I say this for two reasons:

    1. I'm not out to tell you or anyone else what to do. If I were, I'd be trying to change you, and that means I'm focusing on something about you I don't like. I'd be expressing discontent about you and, by inference, complaining. So you can do whatever you want. It's your choice.

    2. Sometimes it makes sense to complain.

    Now, before you feel you've found your loophole in number 2 above, consider that word "sometimes" and remember that I and many, many people have gone three consecutive weeks–that's 21 days, or 504 hours in a row–without complaining at all. No complaints, zero, I Complain Therefore I Am 25 zip! When it comes to complaining, "sometimes" means "not very often at all." Complaining should happen infrequently; criticism and gossip, never. If we are honest with ourselves, life events that lead us to legitimately complain (express grief, pain, or discontent) are exceedingly rare. Most of the complaining we do is just a lot of "ear...
About the Author-
  • Will Bowen is the lead minister at Christ Church Unity in Kansas City, MO. Prior to entering the ministry, he spent many years in radio and in sales and marketing. His passions are exercise, Bible history, juggling, horseback riding, traveling, and reading, He and his wife, Gail, have a daughter, Lia. The Bowen family live in rural Missouri with several horses, dogs, and cats.
Reviews-
  • AudioFile Magazine In a charming audio production that never runs out of steam, Christian Pastor Will Bowen explains how not complaining for 21 days can change the way we think, the kind of people we associate with, the goals we set for ourselves, and the way our very being impacts the world. He distinguishes between complaints--which are usually futile or manipulative--and statements aimed at improving a situation. Writing colloquially and speaking with clarity in a charming, comfortable tone, he offers timely quotations and stories that shape the flow of the lesson much more than the actual advice. The wisdom expressed in all of it persists long after the lesson runs its course. The production includes recordings of individual parishioners describing how they coped with and benefited from not complaining. T.W. (c) AudioFile 2008, Portland, Maine
  • Publisher's Weekly

    August 27, 2007
    Brown is a minister with a very simple message: quit complaining. If you do, you'll be happier and healthier. Hence his Complaint-Free World challenge; the goal is to stop for 21 consecutive days. Why 21? That's how long it takes to break a habit, according to Bowen, who has appeared on Oprah
    and The Today Show
    discussing his challenge. And while there's no scientific proof his program works, he includes testimonials from people who've stopped their chronic carping and now lead more positive lives. As for issues that might make you complain about not complaining—e.g., how do you enact social change without first finding fault with the present situation?—Bowen points to Martin Luther King Jr. and his I-have-a-dream speech. He “did not stand on the steps of the Lincoln memorial and say, “Isn't it terrible how we're being treated....” Not to be critical (“Criticism is complaining with a sharp edge”) but how could Bowen forget King's great rousing line that day: “America has given the Negro people a bad check, a check which has come back marked 'insufficient funds.' ”

  • Gary Zukav, author of The Seat of the Soul and Soul to Soul

    "A Complaint Free World is an engaging, enjoyable, easy-to-read reminder that the only permanent, constructive changes you can make in the world are the changes that you make in yourself."

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A Complaint Free World
How to Stop Complaining and Start Enjoying the Life You Always Wanted
Will Bowen
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