Written Samantha Carter

The 2023 Barbie movie, which is associated with 195 awards and 420 nominations, is a visually stunning and deeply reflective motion picture that dives far beyond the surface of the iconic doll’s image. While at first glance, it might seem like your typical family-friendly film, Barbie offers profound insights and calls to personal growth that go beyond the surface of appearances.

By delving into the world of Barbie, Ken, and their companions, viewers can uncover valuable lessons about mental health and wellness that resonate with audiences of all ages and backgrounds. Below are some key takeaways from the Barbie movie that can help foster mental well-being and empowerment.

1. The Importance of Self-Acceptance

Barbie’s journey is a powerful reminder of the importance of self-acceptance. Through various challenges that she faces, Barbie is forced to confront her own imperfections and vulnerabilities. This mirrors real-life struggles where individuals often feel pressured to conform to societal standards of perfection. Learning to accept ourselves, flaws and all, is crucial for mental well-being. Embracing our uniqueness allows us to build a healthier self-image and foster genuine self-esteem.

2. Embracing Change and Growth

Building on Barbie’s journey to self-acceptance, the film showcases Barbie’s evolution from a perfect, plastic doll to a character with depth and complexity. This transformation highlights the inevitability of change and the importance of striving for personal growth throughout that process. By embracing and adapting to change, Barbie shows viewers how personal growth often requires stepping outside of your comfort zone. This, in turn, builds mental resilience.

3. Breaking Free from Stereotypes

Barbie has long been associated with a specific set of stereotypes. However, in the movie, she breaks free from these constraints, symbolizing the liberation from societal expectations. This act of defiance teaches us the importance of not allowing stereotypes to define us. Breaking free from these mental constraints can lead to a more authentic and fulfilling life. It’s a reminder that we all have the power to define our identities and pursue our true passions.

4. The Power of Community and Support

Throughout her journey, Barbie is supported by her friends and allies. This emphasizes the significance of having a supportive community. In real life, having a network of understanding and supportive people can greatly enhance our mental health and well-being. Building and maintaining strong relationships provides a safety net during challenging times and contributes to a sense of belonging and purpose.

5. Addressing Inner Criticism

Barbie’s internal monologue often reveals her self-doubt and inner criticism. This is a common experience for many. However, the movie encourages viewers to confront and challenge these negative thoughts. Learning to silence the inner critic and replace it with positive affirmations and beliefs can lead to improved mental health and resilience.

6. Finding Purpose and Meaning

Barbie’s quest for purpose is a central theme throughout the movie. She moves beyond superficial pursuits to seek deeper meaning in her existence. This journey resonates with the human need for purpose and fulfillment. Finding activities and goals that provide a sense of purpose can greatly enhance our overall mental well-being and sense of happiness. Therefore, it’s important to align our actions with our values and passions, and that’s something Barbie reminds us of.

7. Resilience in the Face of Adversity

The challenges Barbie faces in the movie are symbolic of the adversities humans encounter in everyday life. Because she is resilient in her determination to overcome these obstacles, she serves as an inspiration to viewers. Developing resilience is key to mental health, as it allows us to bounce back from setbacks and continue moving forward despite difficulties. By adopting a growth mindset and viewing challenges as opportunities for growth, we can begin to deepen our practice of mental wellness. We may not be able to control our circumstances, but we can control how we show up to greet them.

8. The Importance of Self-Care

Barbie’s journey also highlights the importance of self-care. Amidst her adventures, she learns to prioritize her well-being. Self-care is essential for maintaining mental health. While self-care may look different for different people, it involves taking time for activities that nourish the mind, body, and soul, such as hobbies, exercise, and relaxation. It’s important to remember that regular self-care practices can help reduce stress and prevent burnout.

9. Authenticity and Being True to Oneself

The Barbie movie emphasizes the value of true authenticity. Barbie’s struggles with her identity highlight the importance of being true to oneself. By embracing who we are, rather than conforming to others’ expectations, we can live a life of greater satisfaction and mental well-being. Just like Barbie, we can learn to be lighter, freer, and happier simply by connecting to the core of our being.

10. Seeking Help and Support

Lastly, the Barbie movie subtly addresses the importance of seeking help when needed. Through Barbie’s interactions with her friends and allies, the film demonstrates that reaching out for support is a sign of strength, not weakness. Whether it’s talking to friends, family, or professionals, seeking help is crucial for mental health. It’s important to recognize when we need support and to take proactive steps to get it.

Finding Meaning from Mental-Health-Related Movies

The Barbie movie is more than just an entertaining film. It’s a reflection of the complex human experience and the importance of prioritizing mental health. These lessons remind us that we all have the capacity for growth, resilience, and self-compassion. Also, as we continue to destigmatize mental health, it becomes easier to foster open conversations and provide support to those in need.

If you or someone you know is struggling with mental health issues, don’t hesitate to reach out for help. There are numerous resources available, from mental health professionals to support groups and helplines. Let’s work together to create a world where mental health is openly discussed and supported, ensuring that no one has to face their struggles alone. You may not be Barbie, but you don’t have to be. You just need to be you.

Addressing Mental Health and Wellness With Plus by APN

Here at Plus by APN, we know that addressing mental health is more than just reflecting on an impactful movie. While the Barbie film offers plenty of insight and inspiration to improve our mental wellness, it’s important to reach out to a professional for support when needed.

Plus by APN offers many different mental health services to treat the whole person and address individual needs. Here, you can embark on traditional services like psychotherapy and psychiatry/medication management. At the same time, we also offer many alternative therapeutics as well, including hyperbaric oxygen therapy, neurofeedback, stellate ganglion block, deep TMS, ketamine treatment, and more.

To learn more about our mental health services, fill out our free consultation form today or call us at 424.644.6486. You don’t need to live vicariously through Barbie. You can achieve mental wellness, too.