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31 Life Lessons We Can Learn From Robin Williams’ Movies

31 Life Lessons We Can Learn From Robin Williams’ Movies

Robin Williams lived out loud as a messenger. Robin’s movies are filled with life lessons and profound wisdom. They made our hearts skip a few beats. They made us think. And even though he was just an actor playing his part, each one of us felt as if he was speaking directly to us when he delivered his lines. His words came from the depths of his soul, jumped out of the screen and went straight into our souls. His roles were unforgettable like memories from a family scrapbook. Although he was here on this planet for too short a time, he was here to teach us. Why was he so powerful making us cry from laughing so hard or crying so hard? Maybe it’s because we knew that he wasn’t acting at all.

1. Popeye

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    “Even though you’re bigger than me, you can’t win, ’cause you’re bad, and the good always wins over the bad.” Lesson: Believe in goodness. It can conquer over anything.

    2. The World According to Garp

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      Remember, Helen.

      What, my love?

      Everything.

      Lesson: Too often, you focus only on the bad and forget the good times. Remember everything.

      3. Moscow on the Hudson

       

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        “This is a free country, welcome to almost anyone. Yes, in America almost anything is possible.

        ” Lesson: Appreciate your freedom.

        4. Awakenings

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          “What we do know is that, as the chemical window closed, another awakening took place; that the human spirit is more powerful than any drug – and THAT is what needs to be nourished: with work, play, friendship, family. THESE are the things that matter. This is what we’d forgotten – the simplest things.

          Lesson: The human spirit should not be forgotten. Simple things matter the most.

          5. Good Morning Vietnam

          GoodMorningVietnam_image

            Good Morning Vietnam: Goooooood morning, Vietnam! Hey, this is not a test. This is rock and roll. Time to rock it from the delta to the DMZ.

            Lesson: In the midst of scariest times (even war); a positive attitude, humor, and sharing laughter can get you through the day.

            6. The Adventures of Baron Munchausan

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              “Because I’m tired of the world and the world is evidently tired of me. Why! Because it’s all logic and reason now. Science, progress, laws of hydraulics, laws of social dynamics, laws of this, that, and the other. No place for three-legged cyclops in the South Seas. No place for cucumber trees and oceans of wine. No place for me.”

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              Lesson: Everyone doesn’t fit into the same mold. You must find a place for your creativity to run free.

              7. Dead Poet’s Society (This entire movie is one huge life lesson.)

              dead poet image

                “They’re not that different from you, are they? Same haircuts. Full of hormones, just like you. Invincible, just like you feel. The world is their oyster. They believe they’re destined for great things, just like many of you, their eyes are full of hope, just like you…. Go on, lean in. Listen, you hear it? – – Carpe – – hear it? – – Carpe, carpe diem, seize the day boys, make your lives extraordinary.” And the human race is filled with passion… O me, O life?” Answer. That you are here – that life exists, and identity; that the powerful play goes on and you may contribute a verse. That the powerful play *goes on* and you may contribute a verse. What will your verse be?”

                Lesson: Every person has the potential for greatness. Be extraordinary. Make an impact on the world. Do something meaningful. Leave your mark.

                8. Good Will Hunting

                good will hunting 2 image

                  “But you’ve never looked at a woman and been totally vulnerable. Known someone that could level you with her eyes. Feelin’ like God put an angel on Earth just for you, who could rescue you from the depths of hell. —And you wouldn’t know what it’s like to be her angel, to have that love for her there forever. You don’t know about real loss, ’cause that only occurs when you love something more than you love yourself.

                  Lesson: True love is being vulnerable enough to love someone more than you love yourself. 

                  9. Dead Again

                  DeadAgain image

                    “You take what you’ve learned from this life and use it in the next. That’s karma.”

                    Lesson: Learn from your mistakes. What you give out, comes back to you.

                    10. Aladdin

                    Aladdin-aladdin-16708450-958-602

                      “But oh, to be free. Not to have to go “Poof! What do you need, “Poof! What do you need?” To be my own master. Such a thing would be greater than all the magic and all the treasures in all the world.

                      Lesson: Freedom comes from living your truth. Be your own master.

                      11. The Fisher King

                      the-fisher-king

                        One day a fool wandered into the castle and found the king alone. And being a simple-minded fool, he didn’t see a king. He only saw a man alone in pain. He asked the king, “What ails you friend?” The king replied, “I’m thirsty. I need some water to cool my throat”. So the fool took a cup from beside his bed, filled it with water and handed it to the king. As the king began to drink, he realized his wound was healed. He looked in his hands and there was the Holy Grail which he sought all of his life. And he turned to the fool and said with amazement, “How can you find that which my brightest and bravest could not?” The fool replied, “I don’t know. I only knew that you were thirsty.”

                        Lesson: See a person as another human being without judgment. Do not treat people according to their job or role in life.

                        12. Hook

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                          Granny Wendy: So… your adventures are over. Peter: Oh, no. To live… to live would be an awfully big adventure.

                          Lesson: Life is an adventure. Live it to the fullest.

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                          13. Toys

                          FILM 'TOYS' BY BARRY LEVINSON

                            In the words of Mahatma Gandhi: “We are toys of tolerance, but there’s only so much that a toy can tolerate.”

                            Lesson: Accept that life becomes intolerable sometimes but continue to push through it.

                            14. Mrs. Doubtfire

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                              There are all sorts of different families, Katie. But if there’s love, dear… those are the ties that bind, and you’ll have a family in your heart, forever. All my love to you, poppet, you’re going to be all right… bye-bye.

                              Lesson: No matter what type of family you come from as long as there is love, everything will eventually turn out alright.

                              15. Being Human

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                                There’s never enough time. No time to stop and think, “What have I learned?” Try to stay in control. It’s not as easy as it sounds. Is this the same for everyone? Are we all doing this to one another? This bickering and mocking? Can it be better than this? We’re all in it together, making the same mistakes, getting into the same jams, having lousy Fridays over and over and over and over and over…

                                Lesson: Everyone is struggling to get through life. Become compassionate. Stop fighting and start learning how to make life better.

                                16. Jumanji

                                jumanji gif

                                  “Twenty-six years buried in the deepest darkest jungle, and I still became my father.”

                                  Lesson: Free yourself from the pain of your past or you may become a person you don’t want to be.

                                  17. The Birdcage

                                   

                                  birdcage gif

                                    “Yes, I wear foundation. Yes, I live with a man. Yes, I’m a middle-aged fag. But I know who I am, Val. It took me twenty years to get here, and I’m not gonna let some idiot senator destroy that.”

                                    Lesson: Be yourself and don’t let anyone take that from you.

                                    18. Jack

                                    jack movie image

                                      “Have you ever seen a shooting star, Jack? It’s wonderful. It passes quickly, but while it’s here it just lights up the whole sky – it’s the most beautiful thing you’d ever want to see. So beautiful that the other stars stop and watch. You almost never see one. Because they’re very rare. But I saw one. I did. Jack: I just want to be a regular star. Lawrence: Jack, you’ll never be regular. You’re spectacular. Jack: What do I want to be when I grow up? Alive.”

                                      Lesson: Light up the sky. Be your spectacular self. Live your life to the fullest.

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                                      19. Father’s Day

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                                        “For years I’ve thought about killing myself. It’s the only thing that kept me going.”

                                        Lesson:  Sometimes you become attached to your sadness, that it becomes all you think about.

                                        20. Deconstructing Harry

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                                          “All people know the same truth. Our lives consist of how we choose to distort it.”

                                          Lesson: You have the power to choose your perspective.

                                          21. What Dreams May Come

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                                            “That’s when I realized I’m part of the problem. Not because I remind you. But because I couldn’t join you. So I left you alone. Don’t give up, okay?”

                                            Lesson: It’s easy to become part of someone else’s problems, fearing that if you leave them, they might give up.

                                            22. Patch Adams

                                            Robin Williams In 'Patch Adams'
                                              “You treat a disease, you win, you lose. You treat a person, I guarantee you, you’ll win, no matter what the outcome 

                                              Lesson: If you treat a person as a human being and not focus on their problems, flaws, burdens, or illness, even if things don’t turn out great, you made an impact on someone else’s soul.

                                              23. Jakob the Liar

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                                                “Hunger for hope may be worse than hunger for food.”

                                                Lesson: There is nothing worse than living without hope.

                                                24. Bicentennial Man

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                                                  “I try to make sense of things. Which is why, I guess, I believe in destiny. There must be a reason that I am as I am. There must be.”

                                                  Lesson: Every person has a purpose. Find yours.

                                                  25. A.I.

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                                                    “Come away O human child / To the waters and the wild / With a fairy hand in hand / For the world’s more full of weeping / Than you can understand.”

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                                                    Lesson: Don’t be afraid to experience all of life. Lessons, clarity and understanding come from pain.

                                                    26. One Hour Photo

                                                    one hour photo

                                                      “The shutter is clicked. The flash goes off and they’ve stopped time, as if just for the blink of an eye.” Lesson: Memories stop the clock. In a split second, moments last a lifetime.

                                                      27. Insomnia

                                                      Insomnia-robin-williams-23618425-2560-1697

                                                        “You’re a good man. I know that. Even if you’ve forgotten it.”

                                                        Lesson: Other people can see the good that you can not see in yourself.

                                                        28. Night at the Museum

                                                        Night-at-the-Museum-robin-williams-23589979-852-480

                                                          “Some men are born great; others have greatness thrust upon them.”

                                                          Lesson: Some people are born with special talents, gifts, and abilities. Even if you are not born with greatness, great things can happen to you.

                                                          29. Death to Smoochy

                                                          death to smoochy image

                                                            Friends come in all sizes/ One might say grasp while the other says snatch/Size doesn’t matter/ When you want some friendly patter/ From a pal who is true/ And will lift you up when you’re blue/ You can count on him/ He can count on you/ It’s true/Friends come in all sizes!/Yes, they do!

                                                            Lesson: A true friend is someone you can count on. Nothing else matters.

                                                            30. August Rush

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                                                              “What do you want to be in the world? I mean the whole world. What do you want to be? Close your eyes and think about that.”

                                                              Lesson: What do you want to be? Think about that. Become it.

                                                              31. World’s Greatest Dad

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                                                                “I used to think the worst thing in life was to end up all alone. It’s not. The worst thing in life is to end up with people that make you feel all alone.”

                                                                Lesson: Reach deeper into someone’s soul. Connect with them. Let them feel your presence. Tell them you love them and show them how much you care.

                                                                Not only were there profound lessons in his roles but ironically, they were all too prophetic. Robin Williams left us with messages, memories, and movies that will live on. He will be there for us whenever we feel dark and alone. All we have to do is just turn on movie and listen to the lessons he wanted us to learn.

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                                                                Last Updated on September 18, 2020

                                                                13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way

                                                                13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way

                                                                For the original article by Celestine: 13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way

                                                                “We all have problems. The way we solve them is what makes us different.” ~Unknown

                                                                “It’s not stress that kills us, it is our reaction to it.” – Hans Selye

                                                                Have you ever experienced moments when things just don’t go your way? For example, losing your keys, accidentally spilling your drink, waking up late, missing your buses/trains, forgetting to bring your things, and so on?

                                                                You’re not alone. All of us, myself included, experience times when things don’t go as we expect.

                                                                Here is my guide on how to deal with daily setbacks.

                                                                1. Take a step back and evaluate

                                                                When something bad happens, take a step back and evaluate the situation. Some questions to ask yourself:

                                                                1. What is the problem?
                                                                2. Are you the only person facing this problem in the world today?
                                                                3. How does this problem look like at an individual level? A national level? On a global scale?
                                                                4. What’s the worst possible thing that can happen to you as a result of this?
                                                                5. How is it going to impact your life in the next 1 year? 5 years? 10 years?

                                                                Doing this exercise is not to undermine the problem or disclaiming responsibility, but to consider different perspectives, so you can adopt the best approach for it. Most problems we encounter daily may seem like huge issues when they crop up, but most, if not all, don’t have much impact in our life beyond that day.

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                                                                2. Vent if you have to, but don’t linger on the problem

                                                                If you feel very frustrated and need to let off some steam, go ahead and do that. Talk to a friend, complain, crib about it, or scream at the top of your lungs if it makes you happy.

                                                                At the same time, don’t get caught up with venting. While venting may temporarily relieve yourself, it’s not going to solve the problem ultimately. You don’t want to be an energy vampire.

                                                                Vent if there’s a need to, but do it for 15 to 20 minutes. Then move on.

                                                                3. Realize there are others out there facing this too

                                                                Even though the situation may be frustrating, you’re not alone. Remember there are almost 7 billion people in the world today, and chances are that other people have faced the same thing before too. Knowing it’s not just you helps you to get out of a self-victimizing mindset.

                                                                4. Process your thoughts/emotions

                                                                Process your thoughts/emotions with any of the four methods:

                                                                1. Journal. Write your unhappiness in a private diary or in your blog. It doesn’t have to be formal at all – it can be a brain dump on rough paper or new word document. Delete after you are done.
                                                                2. Audio taping. Record yourself as you talk out what’s on your mind. Tools include tape recorder, your PC (Audacity is a freeware for recording/editing audio) and your mobile (most mobiles today have audio recording functions). You can even use your voice mail for this. Just talking helps you to gain awareness of your emotions. After recording, play back and listen to what you said. You might find it quite revealing.
                                                                3. Meditation. At its simplest form, meditation is just sitting/lying still and observing your reality as it is – including your thoughts and emotions. Some think that it involves some complex mambo-jumbo, but it doesn’t.
                                                                4. Talking to someone. Talking about it with someone helps you work through the issue. It also gets you an alternate viewpoint and consider it from a different angle.

                                                                5. Acknowledge your thoughts

                                                                Don’t resist your thoughts, but acknowledge them. This includes both positive and negative thoughts.

                                                                By acknowledging, I mean recognizing these thoughts exist. So if say, you have a thought that says, “Wow, I’m so stupid!”, acknowledge that. If you have a thought that says, “I can’t believe this is happening to me again”, acknowledge that as well.

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                                                                Know that acknowledging the thoughts doesn’t mean you agree with them. It’s simply recognizing the existence of said thoughts so that you can stop resisting yourself and focus on the situation on hand.

                                                                6. Give yourself a break

                                                                If you’re very stressed out by the situation, and the problem is not time sensitive, then give yourself a break. Take a walk, listen to some music, watch a movie, or get some sleep. When you’re done, you should feel a lot more revitalized to deal with the situation.

                                                                7. Uncover what you’re really upset about

                                                                A lot of times, the anger we feel isn’t about the world. You may start off feeling angry at someone or something, but at the depth of it, it’s anger toward yourself.

                                                                Uncover the root of your anger. I have written a five part anger management series on how to permanently overcome anger.

                                                                After that, ask yourself: How can you improve the situation? Go to Step #9, where you define your actionable steps. Our anger comes from not having control on the situation. Sitting there and feeling infuriated is not going to change the situation. The more action we take, the more we will regain control over the situation, the better we will feel.

                                                                8. See this as an obstacle to be overcome

                                                                As Helen Keller once said,

                                                                “Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experiences of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, vision cleared, ambition inspired and success achieved.”

                                                                Whatever you’re facing right now, see it as an obstacle to be overcome. In every worthy endeavor, there’ll always be countless obstacles that emerge along the way. These obstacles are what separate the people who make it, and those who don’t. If you’re able to push through and overcome them, you’ll emerge a stronger person than before. It’ll be harder for anything to get you down in the future.

                                                                9. Analyze the situation – Focus on actionable steps

                                                                In every setback, there are going to be things that can’t be reversed since they have already occurred. You want to focus on things that can still be changed (salvageable) vs. things that have already happened and can’t be changed. The only time the situation changes is when you take steps to improve it. Rather than cry over spilt milk, work through your situation:

                                                                1. What’s the situation?
                                                                2. What’s stressing you about this situation?
                                                                3. What are the next steps that’ll help you resolve them?
                                                                4. Take action on your next steps!

                                                                After you have identified your next steps, act on them. The key here is to focus on the actionable steps, not the inactionable steps. It’s about regaining control over the situation through direct action.

                                                                10. Identify how it occurred (so it won’t occur again next time)

                                                                A lot of times we react to our problems. The problem occurs, and we try to make the best out of what has happened within the context. While developing a healthy coping mechanism is important (which is what the other helping points are on), it’s also equally important, if not more, to understand how the problem arose. This way, you can work on preventing it from taking place next time, vs. dealing reactively with it.

                                                                Most of us probably think the problem is outside of our control, but reality is most of the times it’s fully preventable. It’s just a matter of how much responsibility you take over the problem.

                                                                For example, for someone who can’t get a cab for work in the morning, he/she may see the problem as a lack of cabs in the country, or bad luck. However, if you trace to the root of the problem, it’s probably more to do with (a) Having unrealistic expectations of the length of time to get a cab. He/she should budget more time for waiting for a cab next time. (b) Oversleeping, because he/she was too tired from working late the previous day. He/she should allocate enough time for rest next time. He/she should also pick up better time management skills, so as to finish work in lesser time.

                                                                11. Realize the situation can be a lot worse

                                                                No matter how bad the situation is, it can always be much worse. A plus point vs. negative point analysis will help you realize that.

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                                                                12. Do your best, but don’t kill yourself over it

                                                                No matter how bad your situation may seem, do your best, but don’t kill yourself over it. Life is too beautiful to worry so much over daily issues. Take a step back (#1), give yourself a break if you need to (#6), and do what you can within your means (#9). Everything else will unfold accordingly. Worrying too much about the outcome isn’t going to change things or make your life any better.

                                                                13. Pick out the learning points from the encounter

                                                                There’s something to learn from every encounter. What have you learned from this situation? What lessons have you taken away?

                                                                After you identify your learning points, think about how you’re going to apply them moving forward. With this, you’ve clearly gained something from this encounter. You’ve walked away a stronger, wiser, better person, with more life lessons to draw from in the future.

                                                                Get the manifesto version of this article: [Manifesto] What To Do When Things Don’t Go Your Way

                                                                Featured photo credit: Alice Donovan Rouse via unsplash.com

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