Life Lessons We Can Learn From Disney Movies

Being mum to a three-year-old, it’ll come as no surprise that we are slowly working our way through the back catalogue of Disney and Pixar movies. We have a mix of DVDs (Tangled, Toy Story…) and well viewed movies on Netflix (The Princess And The Frog, Tinkerbell…). A couple of weeks ago we took our daughter on her first trip to the cinema. We watched Frozen (which was all kinds of amazing) and the little one did so well sitting through it without getting too fidgety. We need to work on her eating-ice-cream-in-the-dark skills (I was covered in chocolate stickiness by the end) but she thoroughly loved it. So much so that after the credits ended, she dissolved into huge heartfelt sobs because it was over.

Frozen's Elsa

But Disney movies aren’t just for fun, you know. We can learn all important kinds of life lessons from them… *serious face*…

Life lesson 1: Follow your dreams

Learn it from: Cinderella

All Cinderella wants is to go to the ball, with her step-mother and step-sisters. After being promised she can go if she finishes her chores, her step-mother goes back on her word and leaves Cinders in tatters at home. When the Fairy Godmother turns up, Cinderella could have said “Oh forget it! I’m just going to stay home and play Scrabble with the mice by the fire” but she didn’t. She picked herself up, went along with a crazy plan, and her boldness was rewarded by achieving her goal (marrying the prince. Hey, I didn’t say this was a feminist-friendly life lesson.)

Life lesson 2: Be brave and face your fears

Learn it from: Tangled

Rapunzel wants to see the floating lights on her birthday more than anything else. When her mother (boo! hisssss!) reminds her that she is NEVER to leave her tower, where she lives in isolation, Rapunzel faces her fears and goes anyway. Clearly disobeying your mother’s wishes aren’t a great life lesson to teach kids, but the underlying theme of Mother Gothel having kidnapped and locked Rapunzel up means they get away with it. While out and about, Rapunzel has all sorts of new life experiences – all because she was brave.

Life lesson 3: Sometimes you have to say goodbye to people you care about

Learn it from: Toy Story 3

*Sob* I still can’t watch the end of this movie without crying. But as sad as it is, Toy Story 3 provides an important lesson – we all grow up and move on. Just as Andy outgrows his beloved toys Woody and Buzz Lightyear, our kids will say goodbye to friends who move away or to elderly family members who pass away. It’s so important to teach them that saying goodbye isn’t always a bad thing. *Sniff*


Life lesson 4: Don’t judge a book by its cover

Learn it from: Monsters Inc

The monsters, Mike and Sulley are scared of human kids and when they first come across Boo, they’re terrified of her. Of course, it isn’t long before they realise how adorable and lovely she is, proving you should always take the time to get to know someone before judging them. Nice one, Pixar.


Life lesson 5: Don’t marry a man you’ve only just met

Learn it from: Frozen

Spoiler alert! Princess Anna is a soppy romantic, excited by the prospect of meeting her one true love at her sister’s coronation party. So much so that she falls for a total stranger (granted, a handsome prince stranger) and agrees to marry him that same evening. *rolls eyes* No prizes for guessing whether it ends in happy-ever-after or said prince actually turning out to be horrible and selfish.


As Disney fans, we’re looking forward to going to Disney On Ice when it tours the UK again in April. After seeing the Dare To Dream show at Christmas, I know we’ll love the Worlds Of Fantasy show with Toy Story characters as well as Tinkerbell, Cars and The Little Mermaid. Tickets are on sale now if you fancy getting yourself along to see it too.

Thanks to Disney On Ice for inviting us to see the Worlds Of Fantasy show! 



  1. February 13, 2014 / 10:24 am

    Ah, all so true! We have only just started watching Disney movies but they’re quickly becoming a new obsession for the Wee Man x
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  2. February 13, 2014 / 11:48 am

    Why would you remind me about the end of Toy Story 3?! that film (along with Up) should have a big warning at the beginning, ‘will make all adults cry’!!
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  3. February 13, 2014 / 12:53 pm

    Awww what a lovely post, we love Disney here too!
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  4. February 13, 2014 / 2:18 pm

    I can’t wait until we get to the watching Disney stage! Lovely post x

    • Alison Perry
      February 14, 2014 / 7:19 am

      Ahh cute. We have Cars too – we’re fairly gender neutral in this house when it comes to movies 🙂

  5. February 13, 2014 / 3:32 pm

    All so true, I think back in the day Disney may have some explaining to do! I think its probably why my generation has abandonment issues 😛 with dumbo and his mum and Bambi and hers. Oh those were the days xx
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  6. February 13, 2014 / 4:16 pm

    I’m glad that, in Frozen, the marrying of a complete stranger turns out not to be a good idea. I’ve been so shocked recently while revisiting old classic tales with Austin. The female characters all seem to be rushing down the aisle with any old bloke they meet!
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    • Alison Perry
      February 14, 2014 / 7:18 am

      Yes, I think Disney have definitely started making their movies more “realistic” in that way. Thankfully.

  7. February 13, 2014 / 4:45 pm

    I grew up on Disney films, I think that’s why I love animals so much through wanting to be Snow White 🙂 The modern films are great but I do get all gooey about the old ones with their beautiful music – thinking Bambi and ‘April Showers’ .
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    • Alison Perry
      February 14, 2014 / 7:17 am

      You know I’m not even sure I have seen all of Bambi. It’s fab to rewatch them with our children isn’t it?

    • Alison Perry
      February 14, 2014 / 7:17 am

      True 🙂

  8. February 13, 2014 / 6:01 pm

    I love your life lessons. It’s not Rapunzel’s mother in Tangled so it doesn’t matter that she disobeyed her really is it. I don’t like the lesson from Frozen as I was pg and engaged after 3 months of meeting my husband – and we are celebrating our 11th wedding anniversary this year – I’m a romantic but sometimes you just KNOW when your Prince Charming comes along. Fantastic idea for a post.
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    • Alison Perry
      February 13, 2014 / 11:12 pm

      Three months seems like a long time compared with the one day that they know each other in the movie 😉

  9. February 13, 2014 / 9:26 pm

    What a wonderful post and oh so true! We too have a 3 year old loving Disney and Pixar. She went to the cinema for the first time recently and saw guess what Frozen – loved it. To be fair I did too *cough*
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    • Alison Perry
      February 14, 2014 / 7:16 am

      Er, I may have enjoyed it too 😉

  10. February 13, 2014 / 10:02 pm

    Great post! The toy story one brought a tear to my eye! I shouldn’t be reading things like that with hormones all over the place lol
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    • Alison Perry
      February 14, 2014 / 7:16 am

      It’s such a sad ending isn’t it? You feel daft crying at a kids’ movie though! 🙂

  11. February 14, 2014 / 5:55 am

    I adore Disney movies and think they all have good morals……..the latest fave is Planes which is a great one for teaching working hard will help you achieve your dreams
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    • Alison Perry
      February 14, 2014 / 7:15 am

      Ooh another lesson to add to the list! Thank you Kara.

  12. February 14, 2014 / 8:54 am

    We loved Frozen too – and I loved that it smashed the love at first sight thing away and that it was all about sisterly love rather than romantic in the end. Great film!
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