This post: 5 lessons we can learn from Britain’s royal lifestyle
The British royal family is in sharp focus in American news right now.
It seems our country has moved from mild indifference to downright obsession.
In 2016, Netflix launched a multi-season show, The Crown, featuring an up-close narrative, “both invented and true,” about the private lives of the Royals.
To date, The Crown remains one of the most–watched shows on Netflix.
Even members of the royal family watch it.
But The Crown isn’t what’s keeping the Royals in the headlines.
Earlier this year, Prince Harry and Megan Markle infamously incited a frenzy of criticism toward the Windsors when they appeared on the Oprah Winfrey Show… and spilled the proverbial “tea.”
Apparently, an estimated 49+ million people watched the Oprah interview worldwide.
The US seemed to regard the interview as an invitation to get vocal about the private affairs of the British royalty.
I can hardly look at my phone these days without having to scroll past numerous opinion pieces about how the Windsors need to fix their lives.
But maybe we’re over-reacting?
Learning always seems like a better option than lecturing.
Most recently, the death of Her Majesty’s husband, Prince Phillip, has reminded us that the mysterious and sometimes controversial royal lifestyle is, ultimately-
Simply about being human.
And we all deserve a little space for that.
Royal Lifestyle Lessons
While no one on the outside knows what life as a royal is actually like, I’m willing to guess that it isn’t always a walk in Hyde Park.
I’ve watched the British royal family from afar with keen interest since my teen years. I love the pomp and circumstance of the royal lifestyle as much as any red-blooded romanticist.
But my observations are more than tabloid-style curiosity. I think there’s a lot we can learn from these people.
I don’t pretend to know a lot about the Royals, but I do try to pay attention.
Here are five life lessons we can all learn from our royal friends from across the pond:
#1 Sometimes Silence is a Good Answer
Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, is known for living by a simple mantra:
Never complain, never explain.
In recent years, the British royal family has been criticized for always “keeping a stiff upper lip.” And I agree- this approach can appear emotionally cold sometimes.
But there’s a lot to be said about silence.
Even Jesus didn’t always respond to his critics. The writer of Proverbs admonishes,
He who guards his mouth preserves his life.Proverbs 13:3
Bottom line for Americans: In our culture of non-stop social media, talk radio, and news commentaries, silence could be golden.
#2 Dress to the Nines
If I’m honest, the royals’ fashion style intrigues me more than anything else. I mean, these people know how to dress!
And, yes I’m aware that they employ hair dressers and stylists. But I still think we can glean a lot from the royals’ fashion.
Here are my takeaways from my favorite royal, Kate Middleton, on how to keep it classy:
Wear lots of dresses.
Keep your makeup natural (and mostly neutral).
Opt for over–dressed + understated.
Pointy–toe shoes, every time.
Smile and laugh often.
Color blocks, florals and stripes are always in style.
Bouncy, healthy hair is a really big deal.
Bottom line for Americans: It’s high time to reach for something besides yoga pants and sweats. *wink*
#3 Duty Isn’t Necessarily a Bad Thing
No one knows exactly what goes on in the private world of the Windsors. But a simple observation of royal lifestyle over the years gives the impression that they place high value on duty.
Now this word “duty” is a bit lost on American culture, especially when you consider it’s meaning:
a moral or legal obligation; a responsibility; a task or action that someone is required to perform
Can you think of a culture that values duty less than our culture does? I can’t. And this disdain of moral obligation and responsibility is not something to be proud of.
It’s true: duty can seem out-dated and stodgy.
At worst, it can repress and exhaust.
But a healthy sense of duty brings order, safety, and respect to any people who are wise enough to embrace it.
Bottom line for Americans: We must revisit our duty as citizens, believers, and adults.
#4 Traditions Can Be Modernized
Tradition appears to be the life blood of royal lifestyle.
From the Queen’s beloved Christmas traditions to rules and regulations dating back to Queen Victoria’s rein, the royals adhere to many customs.
And I really do get it- my personality and background tends to lean heavily toward traditionalism in every form.
Like duty, tradition has its place– even in modern society.
But the British royals have shown us (if not in every circumstance) that traditions are best kept alive when they’re revamped for each generation.
Bottom line for Americans: Instead of tossing out traditions OR clinging to them, let’s try modernizing them.
#5 Loyalty Should Lie With Family First
In my lifetime, the royal family has struggled, celebrated, and sometimes fallen apart on the world’s stage.
Royal lifestyle cannot exempt anyone from family conflict, sickness, death, divorce or disappointment. We’ve all watched and read as the British royals have reeled and recovered from each of these human maladies.
Their recent experiences and choices have reminded us that family loyalty matters more than anything else.
While very few of us have to worry about how our choices will affect our popularity, we do need to think about how choices affect relationships.
And family comes first.
Bottom line for Americans: Value jobs, image + things less + family relationships more.
Love reading about the British royal family?
Below are reads I personally enjoy:
- Modern Monarchy: The British Royal Family Today
- Kate: the Future Queen
- Diana: Her Story In Her Own Words
- People magazine: Royals
- What Kate Wore– my favorite royal family blog
What have you learned or observed about the British royals? Drop a comment below.