So, we realized that complaining is hugely counterproductive to success, and made a pact. We'll toss money into the community kitty every time we do one of the "finable offenses" for the week. On Saturday, we go out to eat with the cash. So, whoever is complaining and being negative more is paying out more.
My goal with this is less oriented around the money and more oriented around habit change. I did it with Stepan. He wanted to set the price per offense at 10 RMB; I wanted 20 RMB since I thought 10 wouldn't be enough to push behavior as fast. So, mine's at 20 RMB per offense ($3.17 per offense) and his at 10 RMB. Progressive taxation, eh?
Here's the rules --
List of payable offenses:
*Putting the world down
*Putting other people down
*Putting self down
*Judging before understanding
*Beating down on self without a constructive action
*Swearing or vulgarity
--> [artistic exemption, particularly for writing, speeches, and negotiations; the committee decides]
*Justifying and rationalizing
*Unsubstantiated writing-off without specifying key issue: EX: "Whacky" should be "Overly eccentric and not focused on their needs," "Silly", etc.
--> Artistic exemption here too, for sending to the committee.
*Negative anticipation: "This is going to be hard," "This isn't likely to work," "This is going to be stressful," "I'm going to be worn out afterwards," -- etc. Can be realistic while still positive anticipating. EX: "This is going to be worth it, so we're going to do it."
*"Need" and "Should" -- replace with "I want to…" or "I choose to…" or "I'd prefer to…" or "The consequences…"
*Schadenfreude, cruelty, etc.
A note at the bottom of the page --
Complaining is masochism.
...and I think it is. Complaining, or negativity at all... it hurts you, and kind of sort of feels good. It's masochistic -- and we're cutting it out. And winning more.
Feel free to join in with your own version. I'm already out 180 RMB in the first 3 hours. And it feels great.
Wow I never thought of it that way - simple, but massive insight! I'm going to make a desktop sign of this.
"Complaining and negativity is masochistic. It feels good but hurts a lot"
Great post. Everyone complains too much (and there I am kind of complaining about people complaining....) and your exercise of putting money in a jar every time you complain is going to really bring awareness to your words. Reminds me of a similar exercise described by Will Bowen in his book "A Complaint Free World". He recommends wearing a rubber band on one wrist, and simply switching the rubber band from wrist to wrist every time you complain. His challenge is to go 21 days without moving the rubber band!
The good thing about this is that the exercise is always with you - you don't have to carry a money jar everywhere you go. Plus it does not cost you anything.
If anything, I think the challenge should be encouraging more engaging and high quality posts. Setting clear goals regarding the creation of these posts shouldn't hamper the ability to churn them out.
This is good, but I want more of it. Looking forward to when you're done 90days and start doing "regular" high quality interesting posts again.
Edit: I gave up on financial goals in late 2011 after some huge financial and artistic wins... money shouldn't be taken too seriously. For the record, they were all basically on track, some were being massively exceeded, others were a bit behind schedule, but were all happening.
I set my next 10 years of financial goals on June 28th. That was exactly a month ago.
1 year - Critical Thinking [my first book] out. Blog income trickling. Some info products. Some freelancing. Something else, some X-Factor thing bringing in cash. Net monthly income positive. Health insurance. $50,000 in the bank. Expenses = income per month minimum.
3 years - 3 to 5 books out, many products out, blog income robust, some working on big exciting deals. $10,000 per month total, $5000 passive at least. First property owned. $300,000 in the bank.
5 years - 7-10 books out, many many products out, many passive income internet properties, working on big exciting things, $50,000 per month total, $40,000 passive at least. $1,000,000 in the bank.
I was always a positive person. An optimist. The older I've gotten the more negative my thoughts have become.
Is it the people I'm hanging out with?
Is it a loss of innocence and naivety?
Am I just slowly becoming a pessimist?
The thing is, negative people still piss me off. I hate spending extended periods of time with negative people. I can feel myself becoming more and more negative as they express their thoughts and then I just get angry.