The Key to Success, According to Charlie Brown


I’m thinking that Charlie Brown has the answer to most of the world’s problems. And I’m not being weird or trying to trivialize our societal challenges. I’m just telling you how important Charlie Brown really is.

When I was five years old, I can remember vividly when my mother decorated my bedroom with a new bedroom set, shaggy pink carpet, and sheets featuring Charlie Brown and The Peanuts Gang. Because they were in my room and a part of my daily life, Charlie Brown, Lucy, and Linus were my friends. And Snoopy was my dog.

And I have believed that ever since.

Since I spent most of the 70s and 80s watching every single Charlie Brown special, those television specials also transitioned with me into adulthood. Every October, I’m scouring the TV listings on-line so I can make sure that I mark my calendar with the date for “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown.” This year is extra special because 2015 marks the 50th anniversary of “A Charlie Brown Christmas.”

When my kids were little, I had an excuse to join in on the fun and watch the gang on TV.  Now that the kids are older, they are not as interested as they were 10 years ago. I am still excited to watch, I enjoy it, and I don’t care what anyone says about it.

As I said earlier, they are my friends and and Snoopy is my dog.

My excitement for the new Peanuts movie this fall could not be contained. I changed my Facebook profile picture to look like I was a part of the Peanuts game, I talked about the new movie to anyone who would listen. By the way, you too can transform yourself into a Peanuts character if you desire. All you have to do is visit You’re welcome.

When the opportunity to go see the movie arose, we were there. My kids have busy schedules, and it looked like we would have had to wait several weeks in order for all of us to go, so just three of us went with a promise to the child that missed it that we will watch it on Apple TV as soon as it became available. I was thrilled!

And right now, right here in this moment, I need to tell you. “We finally see the Little Red-Headed Girl!”

But beyond that, I realized that my love of the Peanuts gang is simple. Believe it or not, Chuck and the gang do use teachable moments to impart wisdom in our lives.  I have learned a lot from them over years. Here are 10 things I’ve learned.

  1. Always Set Your  Alarm. Of course set it in the morning so you can tumble out of bed, but more importantly set your inner alarm so you can make responsible decisions when at a crossroad.
  2. Never Give Up. Ever.
  3. Everyone has Past Imperfections. It is unfair to anyone, ourselves included, not to forgive.
  4. Standardized testing is the worst, but it teaches us to deal with anxiety. Yep, the Peanuts characters have even dealt with standardized tests. And for adults, those tests may not come with scantron answer sheets and number 2 pencils, they make look like marital problems, unemployment, chronic disease, and
  5. Girls should fix things. We should never tell them otherwise.
  6. Sibling code is very real. If you don’t have siblings (like me), still understand sibling code and don’t interfere.
  7. Always be happy to see the person who you know is in your corner. Even if you are tired. Even if they make you angry. Even if they left dirty dishes in the sink. Even if their laundry is dirty and smelly.
  8. Everything in life really is  connected. There’s a reason why we have those moments from time to time when we say, “it’s really a small world,” or mention something about 6 degrees of separation. We are all connected.
  9. Visualize yourself doing the dance of champions, and then do it! If you don’t know what the dance of champions is, watch any Charlie Brown television special. You will see it.
  10. It’s equally important to cheer for others as they cheer for us. Y’all, there’s a reason that sports teams have cheerleaders. And there’s also a reason that cheerleading itself is a sport. Cheering for other is important. It just is.

The Peanuts Movie is still playing in some theaters, so be sure to check your local movie times. A DVD release date has not been announced yet, but  either way, I want to encourage you to see it. You never know what you will learn!

If you have a Peanuts Gang aficionado on your holiday gift list, here are some great gift ideas!