Complaining seems to be a favorite pastime with many people. People will complain about their boss, their employees, their spouses, their parents, their government or just about anything to anyone who will listen. A major reason why people choose to complain is because it’s very easy to do. It’s much easier to point your finger outward than inward. It’s much easier to blame someone else than it is to look at yourself and make some changes. And since it’s easier, people will tend to do it. In this lesson, let’s look at a hot topic of modern times: Obesity.
Many people are challenged with being obese and are trying to slim down. Unfortunately, the easy road of pointing fingers outward has taken hold and fast-food restaurants like McDonald’s have come under attack. It’s much EASIER to complain about McDonald’s for “making” people obese. But is this possible?
The answer is no! It’s impossible for McDonald’s to “make you” go in and get a burger. You do so at your own choice. I have yet to see a McDonald’s employee drag resistant people off the streets into the restaurant to force burgers down their throats. McDonald’s does not have the power to make you eat their food.
It is the consumers who have the ultimate power in the marketplace. Consumers have the power to REFUSE exchanging their money for fattening foods. The “all-powerful” McDonald’s could be put out of business overnight if everyone stopped going there. So, the “all-powerful” McDonald’s is not so powerful after all, is it?
Many, after reading the above, would agree, but would still keep pointing outward by complaining, “Well, of course they don’t drag you into the McDonalds off the street. It’s the ADVERTISING! Yeah! The advertising makes people eat there!” But is this possible? Again, the answer is no! If you see a Ford Truck commercial on T.V., do you jump out of your chair and run straight to a Ford dealer to buy that truck? No!
If you watch T.V. you see commercial after commercial. Do you act on all of them? No! If you act on any of them, it will be whichever one YOU CHOOSE. The movie starring Eddie Murphy called “The Adventures of Pluto Nash” cost $100 million to make and had an advertising budget of $20 million. That’s a lot of money to spend on advertising. Yet, world-wide, the movie made $7 million. That’s it! How come the advertising didn’t “make” people go to see the movie? Advertising is just another complaint that doesn’t hold water.
So why do people continue to eat at McDonald’s? They eat there because they provide good-tasting food; at a low price; very quickly. In other words, McDonald’s provides a service to people who need to eat quickly and don’t have time to sit down for a time-consuming meal.
It’s not McDonald’s responsibility to make sure that you stay healthy. It’s YOUR responsibility. No amount of laws, or “fat taxes,” or regulations can change that responsibility. None of that will SOLVE obesity. Obesity will be solved when an obese person decides to change his or her diet and exercise habits. “Fat taxes” and regulations will only shift money from McDonalds to lawyers and the government. That’s all that occurs. Millions will still go to McDonalds because McDonalds provides something of value. It saves time. And many people LOVE the food.
Most complainers rarely do anything to remedy all the things that are wrong with everybody or everything. Like all the other attitudinal diseases, complaining just wastes your valuable time. It also steals your valuable energy that you could use to do positive things that can make a difference in your life and for those you love. Winners spend very little time complaining. They spend their time growing, practicing, and performing their skills. They spend their time looking for ways to do things better today than they did yesterday.
There are many things and circumstances in our lives that you can neither change nor do anything about. You must sort those items out and write them off like a bad debt. Complaining won’t help. It’s best to stop talking about those things you can’t change and concentrate on the things that you can change and make better. Start with YOURSELF.
The next time your favorite complaining partner begins whining, just listen, don’t answer, and cut the conversation short. Save your energy for taking action on positive things. In time, you won’t be the target for complainers and they will find others to waste time with. Make every attempt to avoid playing the blame game. And BE HAPPY!