Life Lessons I Have Learned from Star Wars

Turns out "a galaxy far, far away" can teach you a thing or two about the complicated thing that is life…

From 1977 all the way to the present, the Star Wars films have been a major cultural phenomenon. From their unpredictable plot twists to their extraordinary characters, the Star Wars films are not only a must see for their stories, but also the lessons one can learn throughout the saga.

The following are some of my personal favorites and of course *SPOILER ALERT* for all eight Star Wars Episodes (including The Last Jedi).

Let's get started!

1. Get a good mentor.

Find the Qui-Gon to your Obi-Wan, the Obi-Wan to you Anakin, the Yoda to your Luke…

In the films, we see the importance of having a mentor — someone who will ultimately be there for you to show you the way. Whether they teach you the ways of the Force or simply how to nail that interview, mentors are there to help you get on your feet and reach your goals.

2. Every last Yoda quote should be "preached."

From "Judge me by my size, do you?" to "When nine hundred years old you reach, look as good you will not," Yoda quotes can bring out the greatness within you and remind you that anything is in fact possible — no matter how big or small the challenges are.

3. It is never too late.

Anakin Skywalker, the "Chosen One" who became the Sith Lord known as Darth Vader, ultimately still had light and conflict within him. He could not change the past and his mistakes, but he could help the rebellion and ultimately bring balance to the Force. Anakin proves to us that we have the power to make a difference even when we have reached rock bottom.

4. You can be a hero, regardless of your background.

One of the biggest shockers for some in Episode VIII is that our protagonist Rey's parents were "nobodies," as expressed by her counter-protagonist Kylo Ren. Showing us that Rey did not have to have a reason for why she is strong with the Force, such as being a Kenobi or Skywalker. She is simply just Rey — a Jedi whose story will continue in Episode IX — and I cannot wait to see what awaits her.

5. Pay your dues.

Han Solo owed over 10,000 Imperial Credits to Jabba the Hut, which ultimately led him to a lot of trouble in Episodes IV-VI — both having to deal with bounty hunter and ultimately getting frozen. Overall, we can learn from Han that you should always pay your rent, your bills, and your tuition on time, or else you will have to face some consequences.

6. Life and people are full of surprises.

I think it is safe to say, like Darth Vader being Luke's father, no one saw Kylo Ren forming an allience with Rey and ultimately murdering Snoke. Life is full of surprises and alliances where and when you least expect them; you simply have to accept them and make the most of them. Oftentimes these surprises lead to a wonderful outcome, such as the beautifully choreographed throne room scene in which two opposites joined forces — even if it was only for a few minutes.

7. A girl can be a princess, a senator, a rebel and a general.

Who run the galaxy? Girls! Among all the powerful ladies in the Star Wars universe there is the one and only Princess Leia, also known as General Organa in Episodes VII and VIII. Since 1977, Leia has set a new standard for princesses across the galaxy, demonstrating to us that we can be classy, intelligent, and beautiful, but also a fierce warrior fighting for what’s right.

8. Be loyal to your friends.

The original trio taught that friendship can truly survive it all, even three Episodes of nonstop chaos. Be there for your friends, support them through their high and lows, and, ultimately, be loyal.

9. Let go.

In Return of the Jedi, Luke did not angrily demand his father to return to the light, or to even stop. Instead, he calmly told him to "Let go." In life, there is no room for hate, regret, or fear — we simply have to live and let go.

10. Hope.

Take a moment and realize where Leia's message of "Help me Obi-Wan, you are my only hope," got us. Think about Padme's final words, "There is good in him." And finally, consider Leia's and Rey's belief that Ben Solo (Kylo Ren) could still turn to the light. All of these represent hope and just how far it can get us. Sure, we are still waiting for Ben Solo's final outcome in Episode IX, but for now we know that hope saved the galaxy once, and it just might do it again.

Star Wars is filled with countless more lessons, but if there is one quote you should always remember, it’s the following:

Cover photo by James Pond. None of the images used here belong to Her Campus or the author.