To Kill A Mockingbird is the first novel I fell in love with – and is still one of my absolute favourites. I know that I’m not the only one who feels this way.
Harper Lee unknowingly ignited some deep passions within me as a little girl and I’m still carrying them with me today.
When I learnt of her passing away this weekend, I found myself reflecting on all that she taught me about myself and the world.
I thought I would share five of these lessons with you today.
1. Choose to live by your values and be guided by your conscience
Atticus Finch didn’t follow the crowd or make decisions based on what others would think of him. He seemed to tune in to himself and his conscience and make decisions based on his values. After reading To Kill A Mockingbird, I would often find myself reflecting on my own values and how I could live more (and work) in alignment with them.
2. Be an advocate for human rights and equality
As a young girl, I had a deep desire to make a difference in the world. The first time I can pinpoint having these thoughts were around the time I read To Kill A Mockingbird. Maybe I loved the book so much because Atticus Finch was in my eyes a superhero, a world changer – or maybe I loved it so much because it inspired me to liberate my inner superhero too. Regardless, from around that age on, I knew that I wanted to actively make a difference when it came to human rights and equality. This deep desire continues to drive me today and is a big part of my long-term vision for my business and aspirations as an activist and humanitarian moving forward.
3. Empathy and listening to understand are essential
Like many To Kill A Mockingbird readers, a quote that has always stuck with me was when Atticus told Scout: “You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view – until you climb into his skin and walk around in it.” For most of my life, I have had a real passion for listening to understand, and have made a conscious effort to practice this skill, especially when I most resist it.
4. Be curious
I really admired and resonated with Scout’s child-like curiosity and thirst for knowledge – a trait that her father Atticus also seemed to hold. This curiosity is contagious – each time I read the book, I find my own curiosity running away with me and a real need for self growth and expansion and child-like wonder.
5. Writing can change lives
The first time I can pinpoint my dream to become an author was around when I read To Kill A Mockingbird as a child. I remember the book had such a deep impact on me that I wanted to write one of my own. I started to write a novel not long after, and again as a teenager, and again as a young adult – and now as an adult am writing my first book SOAR: Discover your uniquenes. Ignite your spirit. Liberate your inner superhero. As I await to hear the results on Monday from the Hay House Australia publishing competition I entered, I thank Harper Lee for further igniting my passion to write this book regardless of whether it is picked up by Hay House or not.
Did Harper Lee’s work inspire or impact on you in some way too? If so, I’d love if you’d share these with me in the comments below.
And if you haven’t read it yet – please, please, please grab yourself a copy. Don’t let the fact that it was required reading as part of the school curriculum for many scare you off!
Let’s together celebrate an incredible human who’s uniqueness arguably changed many individuals’ worlds and the world in some way.
Let’s soar together,