If you are between the ages of 18 and 30, you are probably part of the Harry Potter generation. The series has gained a huge following since the first book was published in 1997. What has made this story so relevant throughout the years is how incredibly relatable it is to so many people. If you’re a Potterhead like me and have read all the books and watched all the movies, then you know that there are a few things you can learn from this group of wizard friends. Whether you are a stan, a fan, or just getting into the series, here are the best life lessons Harry Potter taught us over the years.
1. Stand up to your friends when they are wrong.
Our first lesson comes from the lovable Neville Longbottom who taught us that sometimes to do the right thing, we have to stand up to the people we love. Back when they were all fresh-faced first years at Hogwarts, Neville made the tough decision to try and stop Ron, Harry, and Hermione from breaking the rules. If you know Neville, then you know he was an awkward and nervous first year who would have had to summon a great deal of bravery to stand up to his friends. The point is that sometimes in life, you are going to have to do things that make you uncomfortable. Doing the right thing won’t always be easy, but it will always be rewarding in some way. This is one of the life lessons Harry Potter taught us!
2. Happiness can be found in our darkest moments.
In the Prisoner of Azkaban, Dumbledore famously says, “Happiness can be found even in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the light.” It is a dark time at Hogwarts with Dementors taking over the grounds and a pronounced murderer on the loose. What Dumbledore tries to remind us of is that dark moments do not define us. Just because you are going through a hard time or you have an obstacle that you can’t seem to overcome, that doesn’t mean that you won’t be able to succeed in the end. You can find the good in those dark moments. This is one of the life lessons Harry Potter taught us!
3. It doesn’t matter who you are, but who you become.
In a fiery speech to Minister of Magic Cornelius Fudge, Dumbledore angrily exclaims, “You fail to recognize that it matters not what someone is born, but what they grow to be!” Of course Dumbledore is making a reference to Cornelius’ prejudice against muggleborns, but it is something that is relevant in today’s political climate. This quote reminds us that we can be whoever we want to be. The environment into which we are born, does not define who we will become. It also teaches us that our race and our gender should not put limits on our success. Big props to Dumbledore for keeping it real with this one! This is one of the life lessons Harry Potter taught us!
4. “People find it far easier to forgive others for being wrong than being right.”
Dumbledore spit some real knowledge throughout this series. This quote from The Half Blood Prince makes us evaluate the ways in which we view ourselves. It helps us look at the ways we tend to treat others and think about the reasons we find it so hard to accept truths about ourselves from others. People who speak truths we aren’t willing to accept find it harder to gain our forgiveness because we are not willing to believe that we are not always right. It is far easier for us to forgive someone who is in the wrong because our forgiveness gives us a sense of superiority over them. It’s a hard pill to swallow, but its true. This is one of the life lessons Harry Potter taught us!
5. Anything is possible.
Throughout the series, we were exposed to the many antics of Weasley twins, Fred and George. The twins went from troublemakers at school to owning their very own joke shop. This goes to show that you can achieve anything you set your mind to if you are willing to work hard and use a little imagination. Even Ginny found living with her brothers an inspiring experience citing, “The thing about growing up with Fred and George, ‘Is that you sort of start thinking anything is possible if you’ve got enough nerve.”