The Bachelor is more than just mindless television

Believe it or not, years of watching The Bachelor has taught me some valuable life lessons

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Amber Wall is a Life Columnist for The Cavalier Daily. 

Riley Walsh | Cavalier Daily

If you’ve never indulged yourself in any of “The Bachelor” franchise’s shows, you’re missing out on some extremely entertaining television. For those not familiar with this ABC original show, every season basically entails a single man who dates 30 girls before getting engaged after two months. Now that I’ve typed that out, I have to admit it does sound a little crazy and unconventional, but that’s what makes it interesting to watch. Would I ever go on the show myself? I mean, there’s a 99 percent chance that my family would disown me, but my friends and I have decided if we’re not married by 40, we honestly have nothing to lose — presuming they even let 40 year olds on the show.

Since I began watching “The Bachelor” with my mom back in seventh grade, it’s not only become one of my favorite shows — as evidenced by my decision to write this column — but observing real people go through the ups and downs of dating actually teaches some valuable life lessons. Since watching the first few seasons of the show, I realized that first impressions are extremely powerful and can make or break your chances of forming any type of relationship in life. 

For instance, if you’re the girl who shows up on night one in a wedding dress — yes, this has actually happened — consider your chances of making it further on the show gone. After cringing from watching a series of terrible entrances over the years — which often entail costumes, corny jokes and riding in on various animals — I have learned that it’s probably best to leave the silly clothing and props at home when you meet someone for the first time. Who knew I needed “The Bachelor” in my life to realize that?

On the other hand, an important takeaway from some of the better entrances is that the most successful contestants are calm, cool and collected — something legitimately helpful to keep in mind whenever you meet someone new. Especially in the professional world of job interviews and project proposals, maintaining a confident attitude is always part of the recipe for success. You want to make sure to demonstrate your self-worth without appearing arrogant or entitled. In other words, don’t be the person who refuses to try to get along with others and makes waves –– keeping things drama-free is key!  

Another lesson I’ve learned is that trusting your instincts is generally your best bet. When Season 22’s lead Arie proposed to one girl at the end of his season and then quickly dumped her for his second pick because he realized he had made a mistake, many Bachelor fans rioted against him on social media. Arie made the situation even worse when he told his ex-fiancée that every time he was with her, he couldn’t stop thinking about the other girl –– long story short, many tears were shed. In truth, no one was really a fan of him before his season aired, but he could’ve avoided all of this unnecessary drama if he had just followed his gut. For all the indecisive people out there, including myself, I think we can all learn from Arie that listening to your intuition can often make life easier, especially since overthinking situations can be draining and ineffective.  

Perhaps the most important lesson that I’ve taken away from watching “The Bachelor,” though, is that you can’t believe everything you see on television. I’ve heard that the editors are extremely skilled at cutting and pasting clips together — or whatever they actually do — to alter the narrative in some scenes. Since the contestants on the show are contractually held to keep quiet about any behind-the-scenes information, it’s hard to know what actually goes on during filming or if certain scenes are orchestrated by producers for dramatic purposes.

Even though “The Bachelor” might not have as much substance as a documentary on the History channel, you can definitely pick up some helpful tips about relationships — and just life in general — from watching the show. Yes, half of the contestants may be ridiculous and probably too immature to consider themselves actual adults, but I think that learning from their mistakes can prove useful in your own life — it definitely doesn’t kill as many brain cells as my grandma claims!

Amber Wall is a Life Columnist for The Cavalier Daily. She can be reached at life@cavalierdaily.com.

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