Note: This post does not contain any spoilers for The Force Awakens.
I know you’re sick of hearing about Star Wars. However I’m gonna ride that momentum for this one. I remembered writing this Toastmasters speech from the Competent Communicator series and decided to repurpose it. This speech focused on using different voices to make your points. It’s hard to beat Star Wars when it comes unforgettable voices.
Here are 6 lessons I’ve learned from Star Wars:
1. Believe in something greater than yourself
Luke says, “I don’t believe it,” after Yoda brings his ship out of the swamp. Yoda replies, “That is why you fail.” The characters in Star Wars who had faith in the force were very strong, whether on the dark side or not.
My personal experience shows that believing in a power greater than myself, a spiritual power, offers a way to get through difficult times and everyday life. This belief opens up a fellowship of humanity which offers support, knowledge through shared experience, and friendship.
2. No one likes a know it all
C3PO loved to let everyone know that it was fluent in over 6 million forms of communication. C3PO was constantly calculating the odds in scenarios which Han Solo didn’t appreciate.
If you know something, you don’t always have to share it. If the odds are against someone, you don’t need to tell them. They are probably quite aware the deck’s stacked against them. No one likes to be told they cannot do something and that taking risks are dangerous.
3. Do or Do Not. There is no Try.
This is my favorite! Remove the word “try” from your vocabulary. Try is an excuse to fail. When someone says they’ll try to do something I take that as a no. Saying, “I’ll try to come to your party,” means they won’t show up. Either you do it or you don’t, there is no in between.
4. Listen to your teachers
Luke provides great examples of what happens when you don’t listen to your teacher. Luke leaves his training with Yoda at Dagobah to rescue his friends, but it’s a trap. When Luke goes into the cave he takes his weapons. He fails the test. When Luke does listen to Yoda he succeeds. When Luke begins his training with Obi Wan lowering the visor on the helmet, Luke gets his first glimpse into using the force, following Obi Wan’s lead. Almost every time Luke ignored his teachers and acted out of his own self-will, he ended up in a bad situation.
5. You must unlearn what you have learned
This is another favorite. Information changes constantly. I can become stagnant and irrelevant if I hold on to old ideas. We believe stories about ourselves that are completely false and hold us back.
I saw this amazing photo which says, “In a society that profits from your self-doubt liking yourself is a rebellious act.” We’re sold a lot of BS in this culture. These false narratives repeat over and over, seeping into our subconscious, beating us down. We are all worthy of love. We all have the ability to bring joy and love into this world. We all need to do the work to heal ourselves from the lies we tell ourselves, and the lies others have told us. We’ve got to let go of beliefs which do not serve us.
6. There is always a chance at redemption
The story of Darth Vader’s redemption is one of the most inspiring, and important, plotlines of Star Wars. Luke never stopped believing there was good in Vader. Never. Luke believed he could redeem Vader and turn him to the light. The pivotal moment comes when Luke removes Vader’s mask. Vader says, “Let me look on you with my own eyes,” and the redemption is complete. It’s late in the game sure, but it happened. Luke was right.
What are some life lessons you’ve learned from Star Wars?