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How to live like Rubeus Hagrid

Hagrid was one of the wizarding world’s sweetest characters. Here are some life tips to be a bit more like him. Just don’t go making friends with giant spiders, eh?

Rubeus Hagrid Christmas tree GIF
© JKR/Pottermore Ltd.™ Warner Bros.

Don’t be afraid to have a cry

Hagrid taught us so many things but one of the most important was that everyone should be allowed to cry – especially considering Hagrid is half-giant, and giants aren’t usually the most emotional of folks. If things get too much, if you can’t express yourself any other way than just having a good old sob, that is absolutely fine.

Don’t be ashamed of where you come from

Being half-giant exposed Hagrid to a lot of prejudice but he always remained proud of his heritage, particularly when it came to his half-brother, Grawp. He even tried to teach Grawp English and more refined manners so that he would become less aggressive and more peaceful, helping him settle down. Where others would have shunned Grawp for his behaviour, Hagrid stayed loyal and looked after him.

An illustration of Grawp offering flowers to Hermione
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

‘He don’ speak a lot of English ... I’ve bin tryin’ ter teach him ... anyway, she don’ seem ter have liked him much more’n she liked me. See, with giantesses, what counts is producin’ good big kids, and he’s always been a bit on the runty side fer a giant – on’y sixteen foot –’
‘Oh, yes, tiny!’ said Hermione, with a kind of hysterical sarcasm. ‘Absolutely minuscule!’
‘He was bein’ kicked aroun’ by all o’ them – I jus’ couldn’ leave him –’
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

Of course, there was also Hagrid's extended family, such as Norbert and Buckbeak, who were outsiders, like Grawp, society didn’t quite understand. Eventually Hagrid lost Buckbeak but not before he introduced his Care of Magical Creatures class to the Hippogriff to show them what a fascinating animal Hippogriffs were.

Embrace your fashion choices

People can be so quick to judge on another’s appearance. Thankfully, Hagrid took it all in one giant stride, emphasis on 'giant'. It takes someone with a great inner confidence to team a pink, flowery umbrella with a big moleskin overcoat, but if Hagrid can pull it off, so can you.

Hagrid and Madame Maxime slow dance together.
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

Bending the rules isn’t so bad

Hagrid was the first person from the wizarding world who Harry met and the first person who set the example of bending the rules a little. Despite being banned from conducting magic himself, Hagrid had his pink umbrella, and, upon meeting Harry for the first time (well, for the first time Harry could remember), he used it to give Dudley an adorable little pig’s tail.

Additionally, in protecting Norbert and Grawp on Hogwarts grounds Hagrid would have certainly found himself in conflict with official Ministry rules. However, Hagrid never did anything unsafe – though Draco tried to convince people that this was the case on a couple of occasions – and he always gently bent the rules in a way that Harry and especially Dumbledore didn’t mind.

Pets are family, too

Buckbeak by Jim Kay
Illustration by Jim Kay © Bloomsbury Publishing Plc 2017, taken from Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban - Illustrated Edition

An extension of Hagrid’s kindly nature towards outsiders was his love for animals, whom he treated like his own children. Hideous, large, often hairy children. For example, he saw something in Aragog, a creature most people, quite reasonably, feared (especially if you're an arachnophobe), and made sure he was kept safe from harm, which was a kindness only people like Hagrid could provide.

Dear Harry, Ron and Hermione,
Aragog died last night. Harry and Ron, you met him, and you know how special he was. Hermione, I know you’d have liked him. It would mean a lot to me if you’d nip down for the burial later this evening. I’m planning on doing it round dusk, that was his favourite time of day. I know you’re not supposed to be out that late, but you can use the Cloak. Wouldn’t ask but I can’t face it alone.
Hagrid
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

Hagrid didn’t really go into much detail about his family and lived alone in his hut, so his pets were definitely a type of family for him. And when he lost Aragog, it hit him hard. Not everyone would have a funeral and a drunken singalong for a giant spider. Hagrid taught us that it’s perfectly acceptable to mourn animals like you would a person, and that’s a more than valid lesson to learn in life – even if the creature in question is, as we say, a huge hairy spider who liked to eat people.

Hagrid, Slughorn and Harry at Aragog's Funeral.
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

There ain’t no hug like a Hagrid hug

Hagrid was very much in touch with his emotions, and would always be on standby for a (literal) giant hug if you fancied one.

‘Harry!’ he boomed, sweeping Harry into a bone-crushing hug the moment Harry had stepped out of the car.
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

Hagrid showed the cathartic benefits of hugging it out, and was, quite simply, a guy who taught us how to be better people. We should all be thankful to the kindest soul in the wizarding world.