10 Lessons Grey’s Anatomy Taught You About Growing Up

#TGIT – Shonda Thursdays are the absolute best but also super frustrating. While I love her other shows, my number one Shonda show will always be Grey’s Anatomy. It’s hard to believe that the show has been around for more than a decade (FYI, it’s already on its 12th season). This show is one of the only constants I can count on in life. So many of us are invested into this show and its characters. I’m sure you just want to yell, cry, and throw things at the television every Thursday. There always seems to be so much heartbreak, but so much happiness at the same time. As extreme as the show can get, it’s core values are so relatable to life.

Let’s break it down, here are ten of the most important life lessons we’ve learned so far from Grey’s Anatomy:

  1. Secrets have a way of coming out – the truth is necessary
    Anyone remember the time when Addison introduced herself to Meredith, “Hi, I’m Addison Shepherd and you must be the woman who’s been sleeping with my husband” ? Secrets have a way of coming out, and while the truth may hurt, it is necessary.
  2. Growing up is inevitable
    We’ve seen the original crew go from interns to attendings, to chief of staff or head of departments (those who lived anyways). Growing up sucks, and you will always have responsibilities, but that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t stop and slow down. Hidden beneath all the craziness of life, being a grown up is also kinda fun.
  3. You will fail, do not give up
    April Kepner is the perfect example of this – the one who killed a patient, failed the boards the first time, and her personal life is a mess. Through that entire shit show, she became an attending, did two military tours, got married (her marriage is a rollercoaster but still…), and never gave up on her dreams. You will fail in life, but that’s no reason to give up. In fact, it should motivate you more to succeed no matter what and return with a bang to anyone who doubts you.
  4. Everybody needs somebody
    Shonda made the world believe in the idea of a “person”. Everyone needs their “person” someone they can depend on no matter what, whether that’s a parent, sibling, significant other, or best friend. Just because you’re used to being alone, doesn’t mean that you should always be alone.
  5. Life is a bitch but things will pass – don’t run away
    Don’t pull an Izzy and run away. Life is a rollercoaster and some days will seem to never end  and you’ll want to give up – don’t. Remember all the good days that you’ve had, and the ones that are waiting for you. Life is hard, but it will all be worth it. You may have a string of bad days, but that doesn’t mean that good days aren’t near.
  6. Show your feelings
    Whether it’s through post-its, a lavish wedding ceremony, or the simple everyday things – make sure people know how you feel. If you’re feeling angry, upset, happy, loved, or thankful, let them know before it’s too late. In Shondaland, you never know if you’ll be around for the next season. Life is unpredictable and as cliché as it sounds, you never know when it’s the last time you’ll see someone, so be sure to always show your feelings.
  7. It’s normal to be unhappy
    Sometimes you’re dark & twisty like Christina & Meredith and other days – you’re sunshine like April Kepner and that is okay. You don’t have to force yourself to be happy every single day because you feel like you need to. Everyone has bad days, embrace them. They make you appreciate the good days even more.
  8. Be selfish, be proud of yourself
    It’s nice to be needed, and to need someone else, but don’t diminish your own success because of someone else. Be proud of yourself, and go after your dreams. Live life for yourself, and remember that it’s okay to put yourself first.
  9. Work hard, play hard
    How the staff of Grey Sloan Memorial  have managed to be doctors and deal with all their drama really amazes me. I can barely manage a student schedule, but you do you Grey’s. The truth is, work will probably consume most of your life and stress you to the max. It’s important to remember to still enjoy life. Whether that’s dealing with ridiculous drama, going on a trip, going on a date, or pampering yourself – just do it.
  10. Lastly, dance it out
    Because life will always be moving. It’s okay to pause, de-stress, gather your thoughts and take a moment to breathe.

With 12 seasons under its belt, Grey’s Anatomy does not seem to be stopping anytime soon. As dramatic as the show can get, Shonda Rhimes has a way of applying art to real life at the most basic level. Here’s to hoping for many more seasons of life lessons from our favorite surviving characters.

Featured image via screen grab from Grey’s Anatomy.



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