Have you seen the Trolls movie yet? A few weeks ago my kids begged me to take them to see it. At first, I was taken aback because when I was growing up in the 80s, trolls were mean, scary, and unappealing.
Before I even considered buying any tickets, I watched the movie trailer. I was shocked at how colorful the trolls were and that the theme of the movie seemed to center around happiness. All of a sudden, I was geared up for this movie and ready to take notes, being Happy Science Mom and all.
Well, I was blown away by this kid’s movie, much in the same way that Inside Out and Zootopia touched my heart. It was filled with so many compelling lessons about happiness, which I am excited to share with you.
Power Of Music And Laughter
So much of the Trolls story relies on the power of music and laughter to show how the characters feel and relate to each other. Poppy, the troll princess, leads the other trolls in singing and dancing throughout each day. She is always throwing festive parties to express her joy and excitement for life.
She tries to cheer up Branch, the only grumpy troll, by giving him silly party invitations and telling him jokes. For much of the movie, Branch is reluctant to let in any of this fun. Shockingly, he ends up breaking his musical silence towards the end of the movie by singing the touching song True Colors.
A major theme addressed throughout this film is bullying. The troll community is threatened by the Bergens, large monster-like creatures, who believe that eating trolls will make them happy. It really struck me how the Bergens so blindly believed that they had to destroy trolls for their own happiness even though they didn’t have any real evidence that this approach worked.
This is a bit of a heavy theme to teach children about, but a critical one indeed. So many times we see bullies go after others thinking it will make them happier. However, in the end, we find out that eating a troll is not how Bergens can find true happiness. We can really take this opportunity to talk to our children about the reasons for bullies’ behavior and how to best address them.
Happiness Can Be Found Within
So, how do the Bergens find happiness? They learn that happiness can only be found within their own heart. This is such an important lesson pointed out in this movie because it helps children understand how they can control their own lives. We often hear that our happiness and inner peace depend on our reaction to what is happening around us. We have the power to guide our thoughts and feelings during challenging and stressful times.
One way that we can all get in touch with our inner voice to find happiness is through mindfulness. Children can learn how to manage their emotions using yoga, mindful breathing exercises, lovingkindness meditation, and color meditation.
Overcoming Fear With Self-Esteem
Another key topic addressed in the movie is how to overcome fear by feeling better about ourselves. Bridget is a Bergen who struggles with her unappealing looks and feels badly about her lowly job as a maid. She is pretty down on herself until Poppy and the other trolls dress her up and even use themselves to give Bridget beautiful rainbow hair. She wins the king’s love and realizes that she is special and important, even without the fancy clothes and rainbow hair.
We can use this scene to talk to our children about loving and appreciating themselves, no matter their flaws. Let’s teach our children that when we know our purpose and have confidence in who we are, we can go out in the world and accomplish our goals, which will ultimately lead to finding true happiness.
Positive Peer Pressure
The movie also focuses on how vital friends are in boosting our mood and making us feel happier. To explore this in more detail, check out an article that I wrote for Parent.co called The Good Kind Of Peer Pressure: How Friends Impact Happiness.
I can honestly say that I was crying happy tears by the end of this movie. I was so incredibly grateful for the writers and artists who put this film together because it truly is an incredible teaching tool for our children. It is uplifting, inspiring, energetic, and colorful. With so many lessons about how we can live happier lives, I have a feeling that my family will be watching this movie many more times in the future.
Bonus Tidbit: Color plays an enormous role in this movie and in our lives. The creators clearly put a huge emphasis on color because it can really change how we feel. Learn how to improve your child’s mood with colors.