Life Lessons from Anne with an E

Anne Shirley, aka Anne of Green Gables, is my kindred spirit. Sure, she’s a fictional character, but I feel like she’s been my role model and best friend for years. Author LM Montgomery invented her character in 1908, but Anne is still so modern and relevant for me – I’m always forgetting she’s 103 and I’m 24.

We hang out for hours when I watch the Anne of Green Gables television movie trilogy created in Canada between 1985 and 2002. I believe there are like, 10 hours of Anne between the three and I obviously own them all. The set makes a great gift. If you aren’t willing to make the investment, you can catch them frequently on PBS telethons – although you’ll have to spend the entire day indoors to see all three, which to me is an added benefit of the series.

Here are some life lessons I’ve learned from Anne:

Make the most of your life situation.

Anne Shirley was an orphan. When she finally gets adopted, she finds out it was by mistake. The family (brother and sister Cuthbert) had wanted a boy. She doesn’t let that discourage her and always lives her life with a vibrant imagination. People come from all different types of families or create families made up of the people around them that they care about. The ability to move forward made Anne a strong person.

Additionally, imaginations are incredibly important to me. What I may project as sheer insanity is actually just me continuing to use an imagination and I think that’s perfectly acceptable at any age. I learned this from Anne.

Adults aren’t always right.

Anne had to deal with plenty of nosy and gossipy people in Avonlea. She lived her life with her chin up and did her thang. Adults make mistakes and if Anne ever feels like she’s being taken advantage of by an adult who should just mind their own business, she tells them. You better believe I’m all about that. It’s pathetic when you encounter an adult with less maturity than you have, but it happens all the time.

Learn to love your weave.

Anne has some crazy red hair, giving her the nickname “carrots”. She often imagined she’d awake to a head full of hair that was raven black but like, that wasn’t happening. She even dyed her hair once but it turned green.

The thickness of my hair is my problem. I think I have the hair of about 5 normal people on my head. It’s so bizarre and I nearly pass out every time I blow-dry. However, I’ve accepted the fact that hairstylists are not going to be my BFF like other women because they are to exhausted by the process of highlighting, cutting and blow-drying my hair. That’s fine, I hate small talk anyway.

Strong writing is an important and powerful skill.

Anne excelled in academics and was at the top of her class. She worked hard and had an accomplished educational career for a girl during her time period. Outside of academia, Anne was passionate about writing. It became an excellent outlet for her to channel her imagination and wild thoughts.

I love to write and always will. Whether it be creative stories, blogging, sketch comedy – it’s all therapeutic and a great creative outlet. Anne taught me how powerful writing can be for yourself and for those around you.

Look for a man like Gilbert Blythe.

Don’t ask about this photo of me and Gil (you can make your own here.) Instead, focus on Gilbert. He is perfect: incredibly sassy, romantic, smart and adores Anne. I also value his persistence.

Anne is a strong and independent girl and most guys around her just don’t cut it. Gil was Anne’s soulmate. I like how he can handle Anne’s bold personality and I love that they challenge each other. I’m serious here – they are my favorite fictional couple. I think a lot of guys date girls that are wet blankets because they don’t like to be challenged. Not Gilbert.

Hopefully, these lessons from Anne will be inspirational. Let me know if you have others to share and if you haven’t seen those three movies- track them down.

Kindred Spirits 4 Life,

PS. I need to go visit Prince Edward Island soon.

Images via,,,, and

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