June 17, 2024

One of my favorite television shows growing up was “Home Improvement”. Although I really didn’t notice at the time, there were many lessons to be learned from the show. Many of the lessons were delivered in a comical way, which helped lead to the shows successful run. Here are five life lessons I’ve learned from Home Improvement.

Don’t Take Life Too Seriously

Life’s too short. If their was one thing Tim Taylor was good at, it was having fun. Whether he was demonstrating how things worked on Tool Time, or joking with Randy, you could be certain Tim was going to get laughs. I can apply this lesson in my own life by joking with friends and not taking comments by others, whether meant as an insult or not, too personally.

Be Yourself

On the show Tim regularly makes a fool out of himself. He’s never concerned with what others think and not afraid to make mistakes. Al, although more self conscious than Tim, never changes from the serious, flannel wearing persona. He’s comfortable with who he is, even if it’s different from most others.

Tolerance and Acceptance

Along with being yourself comes accepting others as they are. Wilson was always a bit strange, yet you never saw the others making fun of him. Although Tim would poke fun at Al, they remained best friends and had very different personalities. The children were perhaps the best example of acceptance. You had Brad the jock, who was always involved in some sport or another. Randy was more of a science kid who had Tim’s sense of humor. And finally there was Mark, who was always kind of the odd child. Near the end of the series he was more into goth. Although they didn’t always understand the boys, their parents were always supportive of their choices.

Respect For Others

Unlike many sitcoms prior to “Home Improvement”, the Taylors’ weren’t made out to be the perfect family. The Taylors’ had their fair share of problems. The boys were regularly fighting, especially when it came to picking on Mark. There were always consequences and apologies, but the real-life feeling was present. Another example is when Al thought he could host Tool Time better than Tim. Instead of letting Al completely bomb Tim stepped in to help him out, it showed how important their friendship was.

Listen to Your Elders

In reality Wilson gave life lessons in every episode. The way the show would get the point across through comedy is likely why it made an impression on me. For instance; in response to Tim’s obsession with cars, Wilson said, ” You know Tim, there’s an old folk saying. Obsessions are like fire and water. Good servants, but bad masters. See the point is: do you rule your obsession, or does your obsession rule you?” And of course in typical fashion making little sense, Tim replied, “I know I get crazy about cars, you know. My car, your car, anybody’s car. But it’s, it’s like Bad Masterson said. You can’t get obsessed the way old people drive through water, if their servants are on fire.”

The lesson to be learned was, don’t obsess over everything and make time for whats important in your life. I’ve had many conversations with elderly individuals and it’s amazing what you can learn from them if you’re just willing to listen.

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