Tomato complaints (time-boxing whining sessions)

There is much out there about time-boxing, and the Pomodoro technique. Most often you hear about this as a productivity hack, and over the past few months I’ve been enjoying it myself. But today, I had an idea for another use of this little trick: whining.

Whine on, you crazy diamond

What I mean by this is: use a timer to control the length of your complaint sessions. Whether it be with a friend, or a colleague, or sig-fig, try the following:

  • admit that you’re about to do some complainin’
  • tell the person how long you think you need(and ask if they’re ok with that)
  • set a timer for that time
  • complain
  • stop when the timer ends

What I like most about this is steps 1 and 2. I’ve been complimented a lot on my listening capabilities, and I’ve also been known to drone about things I’m annoyed by. Seeing both sides of this, I think these first two steps go a long way towards establishing a healthy space to rant without feeling like it’s prattle!

Thanks to Anna for the conversation that inspired this, and for pointing out some typos in the first version of this post.