You have no doubt heard it said to bring solutions, not problems, which is really just a nice way of saying “quichurbitchin’”. We often have to remind people to bring solutions because honestly, complaining is just so easy. It is easy to open your mouth and talk about what is wrong with a circumstance, situation or person. It puts the onus on the person who you are complaining to. It takes the ownership away from us and gives it to someone else. At the same time, telling someone to bring you solutions, not problems, is essentially the same thing. You are telling the other person, the complainer, that you are not in the market to help them. You do not want the burden of coming up with a solution, therefore you are giving it back to them to figure out.
I heard it said recently said that “by definition, complaints are not creative,” which is so true. When we complain, we are not creating anything. Being creative is hard, because to be creative you have to create something. But, when you put in the effort to build something you are going to own it.
So, back to the earlier statement: don’t bring me problems, bring solutions. Looking at that statement now, I wonder how constructive this really is. When I say that, am I not just complaining that they are not bringing solutions for me? What am I creating with this statement? My challenge is, the next time this comes up, how can I work with the complainer to find a solution? To create a solution?