How 'The Wizard of Oz' symbolizes overcoming insecurities and mental illness

When I was a kid, I would watch and re-watch the movie "The Wizard of Oz" over and over again. And, every time, at the end, I would cry. Not because the ending was particularly sad — but because I didn't want it to be over. For as long as I can remember, it's been one of my favorite stories.

To me, so many parts of the movie (and book), symbolize overcoming insecurities and mental illness.

Dorothy strives to return home. Yet, as Glinda the Good Witch tells her, she's had the power all along. All she had to do was click the heels of her ruby slippers together three times.

The Scarecrow wants a brain, the Tin Man a heart, and the Lion courage. Yet the Scarecrow demonstrates that he has a lot of common sense and knowledge, the Lion frequently acts in the face of fear, and the Tin Man is the most kind-hearted character of them all.

Yet, none of the characters have this confidence in themselves and so they miss seeing that they already have what they yearn for.

So many times we compare ourselves to others. And, in doing so, we miss seeing the great qualities we already have.

Maybe you see models in magazines and wish you were beautiful like them, all the while not seeing how beautiful you already are. Maybe you feel so lonely and unwanted that you miss seeing how many people really do love you.

Or maybe when you're in the middle of a panic attack, a bout of depression, etc. you feel weak and wish that you were brave. And so you don't see that getting up every morning and surviving each day feeling the way you're feeling   that is true courage.

Remember, "You've always had the power." You are beautiful (or handsome). You are smart. You are loved. You are brave. You can do anything you set your mind to. All you have to do is believe in  yourself.

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