The Problem with Heroes
I love a good hero story. I especially love it when the hero disguises himself or herself as a "normal" person. I love seeing how people react when they find out that the person they didn't think much of is actually a crime-stopping, evil-crushing super being.
A hero is someone who has given his or her life to something bigger than oneself.
The narrative of a "normal" person having superpowers and helping people in need resonates deeply with me. This world today is in need of more heroes.
But too often, we sit around waiting on our heroes. We go on and on about our woes and problems and shout for someone to come rescue us out of our pit of misery. Does anyone care? Where is my hero?
a person who is admired or idealized for courage, outstanding achievements, or noble qualities
Do you see that? A hero is not someone who has superpowers. A hero is someone who has courage. A hero is someone who achieves by giving to something beyond who they are. A hero is NOT perfect but aspires to something higher than himself or herself.
Looking for a hero outside of ourselves pushes us into a "victim" mode. We begin to see the world as threatening and doubt our own ability to conquer the challenges that we face. We simply sit alongside the road of life and wait on our hero to show up.
And we wait. And we wait. And we wait.
And they NEVER show up. The people that we want to make our hero eventually disappoints us or hurts us.
Eventually, we give up on believing that heroes even exist. We convince ourselves that life is hopeless and our situation is hopeless.
Today, I want to encourage you to believe in heroes again. And specifically, I want to encourage you to believe the YOU are a hero in disguise.
“You enter the forest at the darkest point, where there is no path. Where there is a way or path, it is someone else's path. You are not on your own path. If you follow someone else's way, you are not going to realize your potential.”
― Joseph Campbell, The Hero's Journey: Joseph Campbell on His Life & Work
Don't ever for one minute believe that there is not a hero that lies within you. Loving and Living Your Unique requires you to bravely enter the dark forest to discover your full potential. On this road to discovery of your own strengths, fears, beliefs, values, and shortcomings, something magical will happen.
I love the Lord of the Rings. It tells the story of a hobbit who becomes a hero and saves the world. Frodo is from a most unlikely group of people and is a most unlikely hero. He doesn't look like a hero. And he doesn't have any superpowers. What he does have is determination and a commitment to a cause higher than himself.
Along his journey, he discovers friends to support him. And he discovers the peril of taking on such a great challenge. His determination to do something noble pushed him into his destiny. This journey was not for him.
Your journey is not "just for you." It is for your family, your community, and our world. The world needs more real heroes. The world needs more people who are bold and courageous and willing to live out their full potential.
Today, I want to tell you that YOU are that HERO. But it will require you to enter the dark forest with a brave mission to save yourself and the world around you.
I am on this journey with you. I have more to tell you, so come back to my blog later to see more of my thoughts about the hero's journey.
Be brave today. You are a hero.