10 Life Lessons I Learned From “The Hills”

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If you are a girl in your early 30s like me, then you likely were at just the right age to watch “Laguna Beach” on MTV, which morphed into following Lauren Conrad on her coming of age journey to Los Angeles on “The Hills.” I used to watch the show on cable religiously. One time my sister heard me yelling at one of the main characters Heidi on screen and later asked me who this Heidi person was I hated so much. It was that real to me! Also, it’s no secret that Lauren Conrad is still a major inspiration to me. I recently re-watched “The Hills” on Hulu and wrote down all the life lessons that stuck with me and even some I didn’t pick up on when I was younger. I hope you enjoy reminiscing on this sweet time in T.V. history with me or that you pick up a few helpful tips to be successful in life!

  1. The first lesson I learned from Lauren is the importance of the right wardrobe, especially in a professional setting. On Lauren’s first day at Teen Vogue, she was given a cover for her shoulders and a belt for her dress. It seemed a little embarrassing, but I know it stuck with her! Lauren to this day still gives the advice that shoulders are one thing never to be exposed at the office.
  2. Speaking of career advice, if you look at the careers of all the girls it’s clear that for anything worth it, you will have to start at the bottom. Lauren started as an intern with Teen Vogue, Heidi started as a receptionist at Bolthouse and Audrina did the same at Epic Records. Whatever your industry, don’t be afraid to work your way up! 
  3. Also, if your boss ever wants to send you to Paris… GO TO PARIS! For regular people like us, opportunities like that might never come again. No guy is worth giving up a major career opportunity. The right guy would tell you to seize the moment and be there waiting for you when you get home.
  4. Speaking of guys, it’s so important to pay attention to red flags in both relationships and friendships. In almost every failed partnership, there are usually signs that one person isn’t fully invested. Lauren was always so good at seeing that in other people’s relationships (like with Audrina and Justin Bobby) but she wasn’t so good at seeing them for herself (like with Jason or Heidi).
  5. Also, I was appalled during my re-watch as an adult at the seriously dangerous signs coming from Spencer. When a partner tries to isolate you from your friends and family, or tries to control your career and finances – these are signs of some underlying serious issues that need to be addressed immediately!
  6. A big part of the magic of “The Hills” was the music. They just had a way of finding the most perfect song for the emotion of the moment, which made it so relatable to the viewer. It forever instilled in me the power of music. I don’t know how much the soundtrack actually affected the cast, but for me I learned that music can be a great healer. 
  7. Another fashion lesson I learned from Lauren is how to accessorize with braids, scarves, and dainty jewelry. I think I got my scarf obsession from watching her. I still think it’s so fun to play with braids and scarves as hair accessories. Also, I’ve never seen a tacky statement necklace on Lauren. In so many ways, she shows us how to always keep it classy.
  8. Perhaps the most important lesson is to know your Hei’s and Lo’s. Meaning to know your Heidi’s from your Lo’s. Heidi was Lauren’s friend turned enemy and Lo was her ever loyal forever bestie. Now, don’t sweat it if you misjudge someone. We’ve all done it. Just learn from that experience.
  9. One thing Lauren did really well is that she found a friend to cheer her on in each important aspect of her life. I believe you need someone to lift you up professionally, emotionally, and socially. Lauren had Whitney to help her navigate professionally, Lo to comfort her emotionally, and Audrina to challenge her socially.
  10. Finally, I absolutely loved how Lauren handled herself in her last episode. After much consideration, she did end up attending Heidi’s wedding. When her high school frenemy Kristen showed up sure to spark some drama, Lauren quietly let the building. The lesson here is to know when to walk away. I see so many people stuck in roles that they have outgrown and it isn’t pretty. Discerning when to morph is hard, but our girl continues to be a great example of it!

Bonus: my favorite move of the series and my favorite quotes!

  1. The best move of the entire series was when Elodie got back at Heidi for basically stealing her promotion at work. Heidi broke girl code and went after a job that Elodie was really excited about and truthfully deserved. Shortly after getting the promotion, Heidi asked Elodie to cover an event for her. Elodie agreed knowing full well she was going to resign from the company later that day. She was a no-show at the event and Heidi had to be called in… it was the most epic display of karma ever!
  2. Some of my favorite quotes from the show don’t actually come from any of the main cast members but from their bosses!
    • From Brent Bolthouse to Heidi: “You are the company you keep.”
    • From Kelly Cutrone on a big day for Lauren: “Follow your intuition,  be smart, be brave, and don’t take any shit.” 

Did you watch “The Hills”? If you did, what was your favorite moment? Your favorite cast member? Did you learn a lesson that I missed? If you did not watch “The Hills” what did you even watch all throughout the 2000s? I want to know! Message me on Facebook or Instagram @TheMamaMarketer.

XO – Olivia

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