“Enough is enough”, a very common expression that is usually not enough. Not enough to explain “what is enough”.

A fresh graduate gets a starting salary of one million rupiahs per month. Is it enough? Perhaps not, but does he have a choice? He looks around and finds most of his friends getting same salary as starters. Is it enough? Well, for now, okay, fine.

A laborer gets the same salary after having worked for years, and although it is not enough to take care of his household, he does not complain much. He knows many people who earn less than him, so he tries to make both ends meet with what he gets. But, is it enough? Well, ok, enough.

Ask someone who works as a house maid; she is on duty around the clock. And, she gets less than what a fresh graduate gets for working 8 hours a day. Does she complain? Is she jealous of the graduate? No, because she knows that he deserves it, “He is educated, I’m not.”

A year later…..

The graduate is no longer “fresh”, his salary is increased by 50%. And, he looks around; he finds some of his friends getting more. “What do you say friend? Is the increase enough?” He replies, “No, look at my friend working in another company. He is now drawing 2 million rupiahs every month, plus benefits.”

And, we meet the laborer who hardly gets 10% increment, similar to what the house maid gets. Both of them are excited, “We just got an increment of 10%. Not bad, thank God!”

So, how do we justify the graduate’s complain?

In the first place, is it justifiable at all?

And, if the graduate’s complain is justified, then what do we say about the laborer’s and the house maid’s sigh of satisfaction at what may seem to us a negligible increment of mere ten percent?

The question is, when enough is enough?

And, when it is not?

The question is, when complain is justified?

And, when it is not?

Complain is only justified when it is made by a deserving person. It is not justified when made by a non-deserving.

Has the graduate improved over the year? Has he worked well? Has he been able to deliver some results? He must also consider the size and the potential of the company he is working with. If his senior is drawing 2 million after having worked 4 years, then definitely he cannot claim the same for having completed one year in the company. In that case, the company is perhaps too small for him. Either he works to help it become big, or finds another company.

If he has not improved, he is still making mistakes, and his work is not really appreciated by his employees – then his complain is totally not justified. He cannot expect higher salary just because his friend working in another company is paid more. That would be jealousy.

We should consider our ability before complaining.

For, what we get or what we should get entirely depends on what we do – what we have done. Do not expect a good output, if the input has been bad. Do not expect a raise, if you have done nothing to deserve it.

The word “enough” is actually misleading. It is a misnomer. It is meaningless. For, it carries no yardstick.

If you want to use the word, then you must define it yourself. Give meaning yourself. Set your own yardstick. What is enough for you may not be enough for me, yes…. How you define it may differ from how I define it, yes….. But, both of us must know exactly our abilities before defining it, before even deciding on a yardstick.

Foolish people say “not enough” foolishly.

Foolish people complain foolishly.

The wise do not complain.

They do not have time for that. They do not waste their energies in that. Instead, they work hard to change “not enough” to “enough”.

So, finally what is enough and what is not enough?

We only complain it is not enough when our own ability to grow, to develop, and to change is not enough. In which case, our complaints actually mean nothing.

Those who are confident of their ability, those who are willing to grow, to develop, and to change – never complain.

“What I get is not enough to take care of my family at home and an ailing mother back in the village,” says a friend.

“So, find a better job.” I advised him.

“But, it is hard to find another job.” He explains.

Do you see the point here?

If it is hard to find another job, then you are just a commoner. The market does not very much need you. So, what are you complaining about?

But, he has a wife and three children to take care of.

He also has to help his ailing mother….. Well, well, well, your employer may sympathize with you. But, there are 999 other employees having similar problems. And, the company has certain salary scale. After all, a business institution is not a charity institution. Its objective is clearly commercial.

When you find it hard to get another job, a better job – then your complaint ceases to make any sense at all. Then, “enough is enough” – at least for time being.

When you do not find it hard to get another job with better prospects – then you do not complain. You move on to that job.

In either case, your complaint is not justified. It is not necessary.

So, enough of complaining, enough is enough…. Use your energies to work your way up, instead of wasting it in complaining.