5 Life Lessons from Harry Potter

I have read all of the Harry Potter books many times since they were published. After reading them and watching the movies I came to realize the important lessons that were weaved into the storyline. J.K. Rowling did (as Ron Weasley would say) bloody brilliant job at creating this amazing story and giving good life advice.

1. With the support of friends, anything is possible.
Harry, Ron, and Hermione complete each other. Each is very brave, but the talents that make them successful are unique. Without Hermione’s brilliance or Ron’s creativity and support, Harry would not have been nearly as successful in his endeavors. Through the hardest of times, they were always there for each other, and even when they had their fights, they always found their way back home.

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2. Never judge a book by its cover.
Snape is one of the best examples of a character with the ultimate plot twist. Although it is known throughout the series that Dumbledore trusts him, I personally developed a strong hatred for Snape throughout the series because I felt that he betrayed Harry. However, in the end, he redeemed himself by proving that he was always protecting Harry. Despite his greasy hair and obnoxious manner, Snape is a hero. Harry even names one of his children after him. It can be hard not to make judgments, but sometimes, people may surprise you.

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3. It is great to be smart, but sometimes, that isn’t the most important thing.
As Hermione says in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, “Books! And cleverness! There are more important things — friendship and bravery.” As Hermione pointed out, sometimes knowing the right answer is not enough. Although Harry never would have been nearly as successful without the expertise of Hermione, it is his bravery that makes him able to fight for what he believes in. In terms of real, non-magical, high school life, a high value is placed on intellectual ability and getting into college. Although this is important, other personality traits can be equally as vital, if not more crucial, than being on the honor roll.

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4. You control your future through the choices that you make.
Sometimes it may seem that everything is out of your hands. However, with the right mindset, you can control fate. Although the sorting hat typically decides what house each Hogwarts student is placed in, Harry sways it with his own two cents. For teenagers, everything seems to be controlled by pressure from parents, teachers, and friends. It may seem like everything is out of your control, your thoughts, and ultimately, your actions, can change what may seem like a predetermined fate.

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5. Love is the most powerful weapon you can have.
Love was Harry’s savior many times throughout the book. His mother’s love protected him until he moves away from home (and, spoiler alert: it is why Voldemort was unable to kill Harry way back in the Sorcerer’s Stone). When he moves away from his aunt and uncle’s house, Harry comes to the realization that the power he held over Voldemort was not in who was a better wizard. What gave Harry so much power was the fact that Voldemort will never know love. Harry’s love for his friends allowed him to put them before himself when making the ultimate sacrifice. Knowing that there are people out there that love you and loving others provides the support and motivation necessary to make it through hard times.

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