What Buffy can teach you about life

2013 - Buffy

I grew up loving Buffy – The Vampire Slayer. She was my heroine. I escaped in her world when my reality seemed to completely go off the rails and I spent years learning everything about vampires and what it means to be a slayer. I was, yes, obsessed.

Of course, I was secretly – or not so secretly – in love with David Boreanaz, who played the mystical Angel and who truly broke my teenage heart. Now, about 10 years after my crazy obsession, I can look at the series with more distance and skepticism. However, even today, I remain in awe of the message, a message so different than the ones you see on most TV shows.

So, what can Buffy teach you about being life? A heck of a lot.

1. You need a team.

One of the most blatant lessons that the show establishes from the very beginning is that you can’t fight any fight on your own. Buffy is surrounded by a gang of friends and mentors who stay with her through the good and the bad and only collectively can they save this world.

Whenever a villain threatens to destroy our world, Buffy doesn’t rely on her wits and knowledge alone, but she takes comfort in the fact that she has the combined wisdom of her friends and that together, they’ll find a solution for anything.

Life is not meant to be lived alone. We’re born to have friends and family to lean on, learn from, heal with and grow with. Be assured that whatever you’re going through will be easier if you share the burden with someone you trust and love. Trust in the knowledge that you don’t have to do it all on your own, ever.

2. Nobody is perfect.

Buffy is anything but perfect. Even though she has supernatural powers, she makes wrong decisions and struggles just as much as we do.

It’s easy these days to make an idol of people on the internet or on TV, thinking that they have it all figured out because they might have money, fame or the perfect body, but the truth is that we’re essentially all the same. We’re all perfectly imperfect. If you listen and look closely, you’ll see that even your seemingly most perfect role models have struggles and turmoils in their lives. So, try to cut yourself some slack and be kind to yourself and your mistakes.

3. Excellence needs practice.

Being a vampire slayer requires a lot of work. Buffy trains in the early mornings and late at night. She hones her skills continuously, never resting on her gift.

That’s true for anything in life. You can have a beautiful gift, maybe you’re a musician, maybe you’re a dancer, a writer or a poet, but if you don’t practice every single day, you won’t get excellent at it and won’t succeed. One thing many people forget when they look at super successful people is that they work harder than anyone else. Yes, they may have been given a gift that you don’t have, but you can rest assured that they refine their talent every single day.

4. The body needs the connection to the mind.

Buffy’s body is strong beyond human measures, but without the connection to the power of her mind, her body is only half the weapon it can be. That’s why she meditates, does Tai Chi and has other spiritual practices.

Obviously, you don’t have to save the world by killing vampires and such in order to benefit from the power of your thoughts and your mind. A daily meditation practice and a belief in something, really anything beyond your own self, will enrich your life and create a deep trust in the process of life and the universe. Even just five minutes of meditation in the morning will help you create more balance and more peace of mind and you’ll be able to transform your life in ways that you’ve never thought possible. Try to incorporate a regular meditation practice in your daily routine and see for yourself how your perception will change.

5. There’s a dark and a light side: You’ve got to choose.

In season 6 of the series, Buffy, as well as Willow, her best friend, retreat more and more to the dark side, confused as to who they are and what their true mission and purpose on this earth is.

Living your life, you always have choices that may lead you down the wrong road and that may contribute to the darker energies of our world. I strongly believe that you cannot leave this world without making an impact and you decide whether that’s a positive or a negative one. Staying passive, reactive and playing a victim will cause you to put more negativity on this planet, but if you choose to be proactive, to respond with positivity, no matter what is happening, you will leave a positive mark.

6. Self-love is the only real love.

Buffy goes through many romances in the seven years of the show. She has heart-wrenching affairs and horrendously difficult relationships that account for many tears and lines like: I don’t know what to do. I feel like I can’t breathe anymore. Anyone can relate?

In the end though, Buffy stays alone. She finds peace of mind in being with herself. She acknowledges her own value and worthiness and looks to the future with confidence, knowing that self-love is all she ever needs. As self-love leads to all other kinds of love.

7. Women are incredibly powerful.

Buffy is an incredibly strong woman. As a young girl, she’s put into a role that radically changes her life forever and she has to deal with the emotional repercussions, as well as with the daily challenges of fighting mystical creatures. She masters these difficult circumstances with grace, humility and intuition, showing that women can save the world.

It’s time that women learn of and acknowledge their own power. Instead of playing small, standing on the sidelines, it’s time for us to stand up tall, accept our potential and change this world. We need women to follow Buffy’s lead, be courageous, self-confident and finally save this world. It’s time for you to take action and leave the excuses and fears behind.

Have you ever watched Buffy? What did you learn from it?

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About the JOY Coach

Anne-Sophie Reinhardt

Anne-Sophie Reinhardt is a body image expert, self-love advocate and the author of Love Your Body The Way It Is. Join her newsletter and receive your free 3-part video series helping you to break free from your obsession with food and your body.

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