Hakuna Matata: What Does It Actually Mean And How You Can Live the Hakuna Matata Life

hakuna matata

Hakuna Matata Is Not Escapism

Consider these lines from The Lion King:

Nala: “Why didn’t you come back to Pride Rock?”
Simba: “Well, I just needed to…get out on my own. Live my own life. And I did. And it’s great.”
Nala: “We really needed you at home.”
Simba: “No. It doesn’t matter. Hakuna Matata.”
Nala: “What?”
Simba: “Hakuna Matata. It’s something I learned out here. Look, sometimes bad things happen…And there’s nothing you can do about it. So why worry?”
Nala: “Because it’s your responsibility!”

I believe this scene captures the true essence of what Hakuna Matata really means. The phrase is NOT life advice on how to escape responsibilities. The philosophy should be used sparingly to help you face certain challenges and focus on problem-solving instead of worrying.

Related: How To Take More Personal Responsibility and Stop Making Excuses

Hakuna Matata Is A Way To Pick Ourselves Up

In the Disney movie, Timon and Pumbaa use the Hakuna Matata philosophy to help Simba cope with heartbreak and find the strength to deal with his current situation after he lost his father, his home and almost everything he had. Hakuna Matata showed him a way to stand back up. But it should only be used in the right moments and in the right doses.

Simba used Hakuna Matata as a way to escape his pain until he met Nala as an adult. He hid himself from all his responsibilities as the future king and used Hakuna Matata as an escape. He refused to face his fears and take responsibility to help his loved ones. Granted, Simba was scared. But that’s no reason for you to look away from your responsibilities. However, after Rafiki knocks some sense into Simba, he decides to go back.

Simba: “Going back means I’ll have” to face my past. I’ve been running from it for so long.”

When Simba returns to Pride Rock, he faced terrifying truths from his past, literally faced his fears, and took responsibility as the one true king. I believe this is the best way to use the Hakuna Matata philosophy in your life.

We are all afraid of doing certain things that often mean the most to us. The value that specific thing holds in our hearts and lives, makes us scared…afraid that if we fail we might not be able to live with ourselves. Real-life may not be as dramatic as an animated movie about lions, hyenas, a meerkat, and a warthog. But you get the point.

Simba shows us exactly how believing in Hakuna Matata can help us to pick ourselves up when we are down without losing sight of our responsibilities. After all, we are all kings and queens in our own stories. Right?

How You Can Use Hakuna Matata…The RIGHT Way

Worry can keep us awake at night and slowly eat away our passion for life. Fear and anxiety about the uncertain can make us feel physically and emotionally exhausted. Worrying about uncertainty can often come to us automatically and quickly become a habit before we know it. However, just like most other bad habits, the habit of worrying can be changed.

Here are 5 ways you can adopt the Hakuna Matata philosophy in your life to stop worrying and living life happily and responsibly:

1. What you focus on will expand

Our mind is like a camera, we see and capture only what we focus on.

When your mind focuses on problems, you will find new and unique problems that don’t even exist. But when you start focusing on the positive aspects of your life, you will see new opportunities popping out from unexpected places. However, it does not mean you will ignore your problems. It only means that you shift your focus to finding a solution to your problems instead of just worrying about them.

This will not happen in a day. Shifting your mindset takes time but with determination and practice, you will soon start realizing what Hakuna Matata really means and how you can be more positive.

Related: Buddhism Reveals The Ultimate Mindset To Achieve Your Goals

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Theo Harrison

Hey there! I am just someone trying to find my way through life. I am a reader, writer, traveler, fighter, philosopher, artist and all around nice guy. I am outdoor person but heavily into technology, science, psychology, spiritualism, Buddhism, martial arts and horror films. I believe in positive action more than positive thinking.View Author posts