One interesting thing about having kids is it holds a mirror up to our own behaviour.


We’ve written before about how we have expectations of the kids that we don’t meet ourselves.


How we tell them about the importance of healthy eating and exercise but might not be doing that ourselves, for example.


One thing that I’m trying to ‘train’ out of my kids is the whinging.


The pointing out of a problem with no attempt to fix it.


“My food is too hot”


“He hit me”


“I can’t get the TV on”


“I’m hungry”


“I’m cold”


“I’m tired”




Nearly always in a whingey voice.


I particularly hate the meltdown.


Prostrating themselves on the floor over the most minor thing.


Or the sulk.


Head down, bottom lip out, silence.


Nearly every time my reaction is something along the lines of:


“I can’t tell what you’re saying when you talk like that. Use your normal voice and tell me what the problem is please.”


Followed by:


“And did you think behaving like that was going to help?”


And then:


“What do you need to do to …. [solve the problem]?”


They’ll usually then ask for help or propose a solution they can do themselves.


“I’ll go a fetch a jumper” or


“Can you help me with the TV” for example.


And, bit by painful bit, they’re learning.


Taking far longer than I ever thought it would.


But the solution comes out straight away more than it used to.


And the whinging is getting less and less.




It’s funny though.


On a daily basis I find both myself and others doing the same.


Going home and complaining to the wife about the person that annoyed me that day for example.


Completely pointless.


Do I expect it to help?


Or I’ll whinge about how annoying the kids have been.


Before realising that a better approach would be to discuss how we can address that behaviour.


I talk to people on a near daily basis who are, essentially, complaining about their situation.


Pointing out how unfair it is that some people seem to be able to eat crap and not get fat.


Or complaining about how busy they are and how hard it is to get a workout in or eat healthily.


Again, compelled pointless.


Do they / you think that’s going to help.


It’s human nature to complain, sure.


Especially British humans.


But we can train ourselves out of it.


Searching for the solution, not the problem.


If there is no solution (ie: your ‘bad genes’) then there’s no point mentioning it again.


It just is what it is.


If there is a solution and you’re not willing to resolve it (you’re choosing to watch TV, have a lie in, go out, etc instead of exercising or sorting healthy food out) then it’s obviously not that big a deal.


If there is a solution and you’re solving it, then brilliant – crack on!


The more time we spend whinging, the less anything actually changes about the problem.





Much love,


Jon ‘Ninjas, Not Whingers’ Hall and Matt ‘Jon’s kids annoy me when they whinge too’ Nicholson


P.S. That meeting’s next week, remember –


Jon Hall
Jon Hall

When not helping people to transform their lives and bodies, Jon can usually be found either playing with his kids or taxi-ing them around. If you'd like to find out more about what we do at RISE then enter your details in the box to the right or bottom of this page or at - this is the same way every single one of the hundreds who've described this as "one of the best decisions I've ever made" took their first step.