Simplifing the Superhero


My Memphis friend Gene in turned me on to the Optimal Living Daily podcast a few weeks ago. The one he mentioned was one on writing, and I thought it was pretty cool, but I didn’t listen again until this morning. Vacation is optimal living anyway, right? Justin, the author of this podcast, takes the best that he finds on the web about improving your life and compiles it for us to hear.

I managed to extricate myself from the bed this morning (the Monday after vacation) to get to the gym, and I didn’t want to think about the news yet. I spun through my podcast feed, and decided to listen to the Optimal Living podcast. This morning’s  message was about untethering yourself from your smartphone, and I found that interesting, but I really liked the one from Friday about redefining the superhero.

“A hero is an ordinary individual who finds the strength to persevere and endure in spite of overwhelming obstdacles.”

~~ Christopher Reeve

I often beat myself up because I’m not out saving the world or adopting orphans. “What am I doing with my life?” I ask myself with a generous dose of shame. I feel guilty for working in corporate America instead of working at a nonprofit doing something that is meaningful for the planet or saving the animals that are rapidly becoming extinct. I donate money but shouldn’t I be doing something more substantial? I grapple with the reality that I need to take care of myself financially at this moment in time. What is more important?

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Justin got this redefining of superhero inspiration from Eric Weinbrenner. He says that dreaming about being a superhero is a distraction. The world needs something more basic and simple from us.

“The world doesn’t need guys with superhuman strength, it needs men who are willing to:

  • Take responsibility for their actions.
  • Step up and do what they can to make a difference in their communities.
  • Get off the phone or computer and spend time, face-to-face, with the people that really matter.
  • Refuse to be okay with the status quo. “

~~ Eric Weinbrenner

I’ve been praying about my own role in this drama we call life. As I turn this over in my head, I ask God to help me understand my role and whether I need to be doing more. Inevitably, someone will contact me to tell me how I’ve helped them with my writing.  In my heart, I know that sharing what I’ve learned with others on the same path is God’s greatest desire for me. I learned from the love and support and wisdom of those who struggled before me. Maybe writing doesn’t feel superhero-ish to me, but if my story helps one other person take the next step in improving their life, it could feel superhero-ish to them. And they can turn around and do it for another with their unique superhero talent. Sometimes being part of the chain is the best kind of superhero.

What is your superhero talent? Does it feel like a superhero talent? Are you sharing it in a way that feels satisfying to you and could be meaningful to others?


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