10 Important Life Lessons in AMC’s The Walking Dead
Years ago The Walking Dead was my absolute favorite show on television. Though I have not watched the latest seasons as the show comes to an end, there are some lessons that have stuck out to me in the earlier seasons of the show.
Warning: Spoilers Ahead
- Family is not blood
The show begins with Rick Grimes searching for his wife and son at the beginning of a zombie apocalypse. While family remains a core focus of the main character, the definition is altered. The Walking Dead leans heavily into the idea of having a “found family.” He treats Daryl Dixon as more of a brother throughout the show than Daryl’s brother Merle did. The characters grow to love the people around them and consider them family rather than friends. We do not have to be living in an apocalypse to love people coming into our lives as family.
- There is strength and safety in numbers
While it is important to be strong and independent, it is impossible to do everything alone. In the show, the characters need to take turns keeping watch so the others can sleep. The group need to stay unified in case they come across another group of survivors or zombies. Though we do not have zombies roaming the streets (as far as I know) there is still safety in numbers. Walking the streets of Los Angeles at night is far safer with a few friends than walking alone.
- It is okay to trust people
If somebody earns your trust, it is okay to give it to them. Yes, there are cruel people in the world, but there are also amazing people too. It may be difficult to trust someone new after your trust has been broken in the past, but it is possible. Rick deciding to trust Michonne ended up being one of the best decisions he made on the show. When in doubt, trust your gut.
- There is light to be found, even in the darkest of times
There are many scenes that show the characters smiling and having a good time, despite their dire circumstances. Look for the glimmers of hope in your own life and cherish them. Judith being born brought along a lot of uncertainty in their new world, but more importantly she brought joy and hope.
- Expect the unexpected
It is important to think two steps ahead. Being impulsive may sound enticing, but it is not the safest option. Trust your instincts, but always use your brain. When the group comes across Aaron from Alexandria, they consider his possible motives before considering his offer to join his community.
- It is okay to have “weak” moments
It is impossible for humans to be strong for one hundred percent of our lives. There will come a time where you reach your breaking point, and that is okay. Even though Rick was the leader of the group and the one that was looked at to solve problems, he was struggling too. This does not take away from his strength or leadership capabilities.
- There is always room for improvement
It is important to learn from your mistakes. As the show goes on, the group sets up camp at several destinations. When zombies overran the Greene’s farm, it became abundantly clear that walls were not to be overlooked. The walls surrounding their future bases become increasingly safer and more fortified.
- It is better to be safe than sorry
When Aaron offers up applesauce for baby Judith, Rick makes Aaron eat it first and even tests it himself before giving it to his daughter. It didn’t matter than Aaron seemed trustworthy, he was not willing to take the risk.
- There are some things you can never prepare yourself for
Rick Grimes lost his son Carl to a zombie bite. Though they had been living in the apocalypse for years and knew deep down that it was a possibility, it did not make it any easier.
- No skill is useless
In the show and in our lives, there is no skill that is useless. Having a good hunter on your side is useless if you do not have somebody around that can cook. Beth being a natural babysitter seems trivial when you first think about an apocalypse. However, if she was not there to look after Judith and especially to keep her from crying, they would be in critical danger. Everybody has a part to play and they are all crucial.