Why We Identify so Strongly with Elsa (A Frozen Giveaway!)

DSC_2003I’ve been intrigued by the psychology of Disney’s Frozen since I saw it in the movie theater twice in one day. But beyond the psychology, there’s something else that will always tie our family’s heart to Frozen. Our nine-year-old daughter’s name is Elsa. After Frozen released, we downloaded the entire Frozen album from iTunes. Elsa and my husband proceeded to memorize every word of every song. And now? Well, let’s just say she’s overdosed on Frozen and is taking a sabbatical. Because with all the Frozen mania, I’m pretty sure that wherever she goes, people reference Frozen when they hear her name. “You’re Elsa, like Frozen?!”

Halloween 2014 was bound to be filled with millions of little Elsas and Annas. In fact, I asked our Elsa if she wanted to dress up as Elsa this year, and she said she’s going to wait until she’s 17 and get a “real” fancy Elsa dress for Halloween. But I was right about those millions of girls dressing up as Elsa and Anna. As I peered through a window in my daughter’s dance studio Halloween week, I saw six girls dressed as Elsa and two dressed as Anna. That represented just one dance class of 15 little girls.

On November 4, 2014, the Wall Street Journal featured an article titled “Elsa dominates Anna in Frozen Merchandise Sales.” It’s a really fascinating article if you’re interested in the psychology and popularity of Frozen, so definitely check it out. But this blog isn’t about numbers. It isn’t about sales. And it isn’t about data, marketing or anything of the like. So I have no intention of digging deeper into sales of Elsa merchandise vs. Anna merchandise.

But I would like to explore the WHY behind “Elsa dominates Anna in Frozen Merchandise Sales.” Because I like to analyze things like that. It’s simply fascinating and kind of fun.

So here we go. Let’s “Let it Go.”

Anna is everything everyone looks for in a sister or a friend. She’s vibrant, loving, energetic, spontaneous, and confident. Anna is authentic. She grieves the loss of her sister, loves chocolate, and is a romantic at heart. Anna is determined and loyal, and won’t let anyone stop her from accomplishing her mission. Not to mention, she’s cute, beautiful and rocks that green coronation dress.

But then there’s Elsa.

We identify so strongly with Elsa because of her gift.

Elsa possesses a special gift. She discovered that gift at a young age and used it for good. But eventually, the gift brought pain into her life. In fact, the gift she once used for good hurt a loved one, her own sister. The only solution was to limit Elsa’s contact with people, and to “keep her powers hidden from everyone.”

Elsa had a gift. Her life had purpose. Yet, she was asked to “conceal it, don’t feel it, don’t let it show.”

THIS is why we identify so strongly with Elsa. THIS is why “Elsa dominates Anna in Frozen Merchandise Sales.”

So Elsa hid away. She put gloves on. She became measured, reserved, and isolated. She was “a good girl.” Ultimately, Elsa spent too much of her life fearing her gift. She held back. She was scared that horrible things would happen if she released her power. She was scared that releasing her gift, wild and free, would have consequences.

Eventually, Elsa couldn’t keep it in anymore.

She had to break free. She had to break through. She sought freedom to use her gift with wild abandon.

When Elsa finally broke free, she made beauty with her gift. “That perfect girl is gone,” she sang from the tall ice castle she created in the wilderness.

Let’s face it, we’re disingenuous when we hide our gifts. There’s a falsity in putting on the good girl face. We aren’t perfect, but we are beautifully gifted.

Truth be told? We’re all like Elsa.

We’re all powerful, beyond our belief.

We’ve all been gifted with lovely, beautiful, amazing powers.

But sometimes, often, our gifts scare us.

Because we know there’s more to life than this.

We know, intuitively, that God put us here for a reason. We have a purpose to fulfill. We’re here for such a time as this.

Yes, we want to break free. Free from bondage. The good girl, the perfect girl, the measured, reserved, isolated girl wants to be free.

So we relate to Elsa. No longer could she sit on her gift. She let it go. She let. it go.

Yes, that’s what we want. To let go. To be free. To be released, to be me.

Gloriously, beautifully, powerfully, mysteriously, ridiculously free.


So I’ve presented my case, now it’s your turn! I’d love to know who you relate to more in Disney’s Frozen, Elsa or Anna, and why. Let’s chat in the comments!

And did you know I’m doing a GIVEAWAY today? I’m giving away ONE Disney FROZEN Collector’s Edition Blu-Ray DVD + DVD + Digital Copy! I know a lot of you already own Frozen, but a lot of you don’t. And NO household with girls should be without a copy of Frozen this Thanskgiving. So leave a comment on the blog, visit my Facebook page, follow me on Twitter, complete the Rafflecopter entries for each below, and you’ll be entered to win the DVD! Giveaway runs through Friday. I’ll notify the winner promptly so I can get you the DVD in time for Thanksgiving!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

  1. Noreen says:

    We just adore this movie

  2. Kim K says:

    Your blog post hit the nail on the head. I see too much of myself in Anna but Elsa’s story moved something inside me. I saw the movie in the theater seven times and cried during every performance of Let It Go. Thanks for the chance to win!

    • Amy says:

      Wow, Kim. Seven times in the theater! That’s amazing! Frozen must have really resonated with you deeply. I hear you on the crying during Let it Go. I was that way for “Do You Want To Build a Snowman,” too.

  3. Carol Femling says:

    Great post, Amy!! LOVE the movie, Frozen!! It’s one of the BEST Disney movies made and the lessons in it are great! I know it will be a classic! 🙂

  4. Valerie Hubel says:

    I also have not seen the movie yet…but two of my girls have (and enjoyed it of course). I have heard other people commenting how good it is as far as the life lessons that are in it. Fun post today!

  5. Vicki Thunstrom says:

    So, it’s possible that I am the only person on the earth that hasn’t seen this movie! My son has seen it and he really liked it! I know I’ll see it eventually! When I do I’ll come back here and let you know!

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