Who Makes Your Lunch?

In a classic Peanuts cartoon, Charlie Brown complains to Linus that every day his lunch is the same. When Linus asks Charlie Brown who makes his lunch, Charlie Brown says, “I do.”

Image via Jeffrey Beall

Charlie Brown’s complaint seems really silly after hearing his answer to “Who makes your lunch?”

He’s the one who gets the ingredients, puts them together, and puts them in the lunch bag. Yet he’s unhappy with the results.

Results that he has total control over.

What could he do differently?

He could pack a different lunch. He could go out to eat. He could even ask to swap his lunch with a friend.

Any of those things would change his lunch but he chooses to complain about it.

Are you like Charlie Brown?

Do you:

  • complain about situations that you could change?
  • do the same things over and over again and expect different results?
  • go with the flow and expect the situation to get better?

If you do, you’re a lot like Charlie Brown. But the great thing is you’re the one “packing your lunch.”

That means you can change what you’re having and experiencing!

  • Are you stuck at a job that you hate? Change it!Start researching your options. Make a list of companies you would like to work for. Create a new and improved resume. Begin your job search!
  • Are you tired of being alone? Change it!Look for groups you could join. Is there a local book club, sports team, or social club you could join?

    Well, go do it. Find a group of individuals that can keep you company.

  • Are you frustrated with the results of your team? Change it up!You may have to get rid of a few players. Roles may need to be switched around. Or you might need to lay down new ground rules.

    If you’re the leader of it, lead it in a new and better direction!

Many issues in our lives will be ones that we have created. Yet we will sit around and complain about them.

Today, let’s make the change. Decide that you’re not going to complain about the lunch you packed. Commit to making the changes that you are able to.

Start packing a new lunch.

Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.
— Albert Einstein

Question: What do you do when you find yourself complaining about a situation that you created? Please share your thoughts in the comment section below.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • I imagine that it takes me a while to realize that I created the problem myself. Once I realize that I’m the reason for my own problem, I’m generally pretty good at making the necessary changes.

    By the way, I do pack my own lunch, and it’s usually the same every day. I’m definitely a creature of habit.

    • That’s something we all struggle at, realizing we’re the ones causing our problems.

      Haha, that’s great Jon! Do you ever complain about that packed lunch? I’m lucky, I get to bring leftovers from dinner for lunch the next day. Always changing, always good. (-;

      • I rarely complain about my packed lunch. Occasionally, I complain that we don’t have something in the pantry or refrigerator to bring for my lunch, but that’s usually my fault for not writing an item on the shopping list. (My wife does most of the grocery shopping – for which I am very thankful!)

  • You got me laughing- I can picture someone I know perfectly who is like Charlie Brown! Love that person to death, but sometimes things do seem a bit silly.

    I don’t think I am like Charlie Brown, I like to go, to do and to take action…which can cause a whole different type of mess.

    • Always glad to bring laughter to someone TC!

      I can imagine going and taking action can cause a mess too. But at least there’s forward motion and change happening.

  • Great reminder, Joe. I reminds me of how it’s best to take 100% responsibly for our lives and the situations we find ourselves in.

    That’s actually the only way things are going to change. Otherwise, we sit around blaming others and do nothing.

    • Right on Michael! It’s easy to do nothing while you’re blaming others.

  • This is a great topic! I must admit, I find myself fixing these areas and others. But what I don’t like is that it takes me getting frustrated before I do anything. I’m always looking at what I can fix before the situation gets bad.

    • You’re on the right track. Looking towards the preventative rather than intervention works wonders. Imagine if Charlie Brown had looked at what he could change and took action? He wouldn’t have complained about the lunch!

  • I complain and am unhappy about things, yet I do nothing to change the situation. According to the definition of insanity, I am insane. But I am doing one thing today to address a particular situation you’re familiar with, Joe, and hopefully will get some kind of resolution. I hope that I will continue to pack a new lunch in other situations as well.

    • Praying for you my friend! I hope you’ll get the resolution you’re looking for. But remember, even if it’s not what you thought it would be it could still be a blessing.

      • Sometimes when you don’t get the resolution to what you’re looking or hoping for may be the clear indicator a person needs to pursue something better.

        • That’s truth Thomas. Hope things went well and you know the direction you need to move in.

          • It didn’t but I do now.

            • Sorry to hear things didn’t go so well. I’m praying for you and direction in your life.

  • I like the Charlie Brown story:)

    The phrase that comes to my mind as the answer is: “Get over it!” I got to do what I know I am supposed to do.

    • I like that answer Joe. It requires you to get on with life.

  • Kenny Silva

    Great thoughts, Joe. You had me at Charlie Brown… It seems so silly, but this is what we do to ourselves all the time. Tell me if you’ve heard some variation of this one a thousand times, “If all you do is what you’ve done, then all you’re gonna get is what you’ve got.” We need to get to a point where those words sink in and we identify repetitive unfruitful behavior at its inception. For me, I’m constantly asking myself questions about what I’m doing, why I’m doing it, where I’m at, how I got there, etc. Taking the time to evaluate and maintain self-awareness is vital in my opinion.

    • Kenny, I have heard that phrase or an iteration of it. I love it. So simple yet so profound!

  • One of the things we complained about for several years was not having “friends”. Sure, we were friendly with people, but we couldn’t seem to find a couple or couple of couples to hang with. It took us going to a new church and now we are finally starting to have friends. It just took changing our situation.

    • Glad you were able to make the change and overcome your complaint. Sounds like you decided to “pack a new lunch” by switching churches.

      If you don’t mind me asking, what do you think held you back from making new friends at your old church? It’s something I see a lot of with the students we work with and with our young adults. They switch churches and are surprised by how many new friends they get.

      • Two things really. Everyone had their own “group” of friends and we never could really break through into any of them. It was in a small church and a small town and friendships were established.
        The other thing is that we were really unhappy for a long time in that church. I think that caused us to further hold back.

        • Thanks for sharing Larry. That can be so hard to deal with and I know it happens frequently. I feel like I’m almost at the point you are in having to make a change to create true friendships.

  • Great Word Today Joe…

    I feel like my creativity was running dry….put I just needed to explore other sides of my creativity…to refresh my other creativity…if that makes any since! lol…
    I’m a song writer. A blogger. And Story Teller…so I created a blog for Story Telling…and i’ve seen the creativity in my other areas bloom as a result of “expanding” if you will.

    God bless!

    • I can see your creativity is flowing Arny. I’ve enjoyed reading your Story Telling blog. The stories are engaging and exciting!

  • I love the issue of this illustration Joe. I remember that I do have the power to change my situation and I work on changing it!

    • And you’re doing an awesome job Kimanzi. Reading your blogs and your emails have been a true inspiration to me. Keep it up my friend!

  • Great story and point. I once heard some one say, “If I could kick the person most responsible for my problems I wouldn’t be able to sit down for a week.” It’s the personal choices we make that can change our situation or circumstance. If we want to make tomorrow a better future then it requires making changes today.

    • Haha, maybe I should add that quote into the blog post. It would fit perfectly.

  • Great post Joe!

    Love the example..it’s sticks to the mind so well!

    Thanks for the reminder.

    • You’re welcome Ngina. Do you ever find yourself being like Charlie Brown?

      • Unfortunately yes 🙁

        There are days when it feels easier to blame, criticize, agonize, grumble and stay sour at everything and everybody else except the one most responsible – yours truly 🙂

        Not liking my lunch is the easiest thing.

        Getting up to make mine (or trade) is harder!

        But thank God i don’t always go the easier road. I have gotten better.

        Am a better chef (& trader) nowadays 😉