7 Critical Lessons About Emotions That Make Pixar’s INSIDE OUT a Must See for All Ages (by Laura Jac


The movie Inside Out is phenomenal for many reasons. As a mother of a young son (and a widow), I am so thankful for a movie that helps illustrate the natural emotions we all learn to process but often suppress. Laura Jack’s article below brings forth “lessons” about emotions that we all should consider. There are myths about grief that go against the natural feelings we process as humans. This movie, and this article, provide an amazing outlook on how we should really process our emotions in order to remain balanced, especially while grieving.

7 Critical Lessons About Emotions That Make Pixar’s INSIDE OUT a Must See for All Ages by Laura Jack

Spoiler Alert: This post contains details about the plot. We walked into the theater for date night, and my husband jokingly said, “We can tell people we are vetting this movie for Ayla.” Ayla (pronounced eye-la) is our 10-month-old daughter who is a ways away from Inside Out, Frozen, Cinderella or any of the other fan favorites. The truth is, Aaron and I have been excited to see this movie since its preview came out over a year ago.

As a Certified Grief Recovery Specialist and Transformational Life Coach who specializes in loss, grief, and transition, I was curious to see how this movie was going to depict the different emotions and reactions that Riley, the 11-year-old protagonist, would experience.

So many movies send the wrong messages to young people about how to deal with their emotions. These messages reinforce core myths about grief and sadness.

When Inside Out was over and Aaron and I looked at each other, it was clear that we both agreed: This movie did it right!

I was thrilled with the meticulous and smart way in which the movie set up Riley’s internal landscape, full of varied emotions, memories, core values, imagination, subconscious, etc. all with character and dynamics of their own. But it was not only this internal, carnival-esque landscape that excited me, it was how well the movie depicted Riley’s reaction to the loss of her former, comfortable life.

For days, I could not get this movie out of my head. As I began taking notes to clarify my thoughts, I realized that there are seven critical lessons we can learn from Inside Out:

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