A Complaint Free World by Will Bowen


“What the mind believes, the body manifests. Dozens of research studies have shown that what a person believes about their health leads to that belief becoming real for them.” – Will Bowen
The PN goes deeper into a study conducted by scientists at Baylor College of Medicine. This study contained 165 patients with oesteoarthis of the knee. There were 3 options – two of which were actual surgury and one was a placebo surgery. After assessing the outcome of the procedures over a 24-month period, they reported that at no point did the patient who had the real surgery have less knee pain or better physical function than the placebo group. The researchers concluded that there was no clinically meaningful difference among the three groups. In fact, they said, at some points during follow-up, objective physical function of the patients was significantly worse in the debridement group than in the placebo group!
That is a powerful concept. The power of our mind is severely underrated and so if you’re going to feed your mind with negative or weak thoughts, you will not only mentally get weak, but physically too. This is why it’s so important to catch yourself when you’re starting to form negative thoughts. Will takes it one step further in not even allowing a complaint to escape the mouth.


“If you study the lives of successful people, you will find that often their success was not in spite of their life challenges but because of them. They took what happened to them and used it to help them grow. They stopped telling everyone how much they were wronged and began to look for the blessings in their challenges. And looking, they found them. Their slingshot was pulled back far, but as a result, they soared even further.” – Will Bowen
We are always faced with challenges in life. Some are minor like getting stuck in traffic, and some are much better such as being born into a less fortunate family. However, nothing will ever improve if all you do is whine and pity yourself. Instead, look hints of things that resonates with you and make it a part of you.
I’m actually going through something similar right now. I’m currently faced with a challenge of not getting where I want to be due to a time issue. However, instead of me sulking the whole time, I’m actively looking at my options to go around or to find a way to leverage it. Of course, it’s not easy – it’s an internal struggle each day, but I know I’ve made progress since the first day this challenge appeared.

“Were the great leaders of the United States also great complainers? I’d have to say no. These important men and women allowed dissatisfaction to drive them to great visions, and their passion for these visions inspired others to follow them. Their relentless focus on a bright future raced the collective heartbeat of this nation. Their method of transforming our consciousness as a country and, as a result, our future, was best summarized by Robert Kennedy: “There are those that look at things the way they are, and ask why? I dream of things that never were and ask why not?”” – Will Bowen
There will always be things that we’re dissatisfied with. However, the goal is to stop complaining about it and start doing something constructive about it.


“After you have gone the months it takes to become a Complaint Free person, you will find that you will have changed. Just as, over generations, the blind cave fish left behind what was no longer needed, you will find that your mind no longer produces the deluge of unhappy thoughts you used to live with. […] It has now become Unconscious (you don’t notice) for you to be Competent (not complain). And as a result, you are a different person. You are a happier person.” – Will Bowen
We’ve all heard of the phrase “you don’t know what you don’t know”. Well, up until now, we were in there when it comes to complaining – we don’t know just how much we complain. However, to get to unconscious competent (that is, we don’t know that we’re not complaining anymore), it’ll take you months of hard work (Bowen mentions that it’ll take an average of 4 – 8 months to go 21 days without complaining). However, what lies beyond that is a whole new world.

My Take Away

So listening to the audio version of this, I didn’t realize just how powerful this concept is (maybe it’s because I was walking to work so there was quite a bit of noise from the vehicles). However, after reading the PN, I’m in sheer awe in terms of just how powerful this is. I know I just started meditating maybe 4-5 month ago, but I already know that this would be a whole new level simply because you would have to be present and aware of yourself at all times. This is actually quite an exciting experiment for myself and I look forward to trying this in the new year. That said, I will definitely need to read this book before beginning to soak in all the tips and tricks of getting there.

If you are also interested in taking yourself to a whole new level, A Complaint free World might be the perfect book to start with. You can purchase it on Amazon through this link (please note that I will be getting a small amount from Amazon, though it does not affect how much you pay – Amazon just makes less money than if you were to go onto the website yourself). I also suggest you check out the actual Philosopher’s Notes (note they even have courses that consolidate many of the concepts in the books that Brian Joshnson covers and puts them into videos that are really easy to digest). This is the first program that I’ve signed up for and am definitely getting my money’s worth!

How many times do you think you complain a day? If I were to wager a guess, I’d say I’m around 70ish / day. Looks like this will be a long road!


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