One of my favourite Disney movies is “The Incredibles.” It’s about a family – a mom and dad and their two school aged kids, living a typical suburban life.
Each has superpowers but they live ordinary lives nonetheless. Ultimately, a crisis arises and each must use their unique powers to save one another – and of course – the world.
We love movies like this because they echo the deeper truth in heroic mythology. Myths are not factually true, but they reawaken psychological truth.
This is the truth: each of us has a unique potential in life. It arises by the rich interplay of our genes, experiences, relationships and personalities. We feel most fulfilled and we are most engaged in life when we are expressing our unique potentials in the living of our daily lives.
The rules of society that ensure order, safety, respect and care for all of its members are essential, but most of us accept limiting norms that prevent us from expressing our unique positive potentials.
In an ordinary life, we do what we are expected to do and we settle into a job that pays the bills and allows us to work until retirement. To find fulfillment in life, we must live the extraordinary life. We begin a quest of discovery – for meaning in our lives and for our own unique potentials. Finally, we will answer the call to use our unique talents and passions to meet the needs of the world. This is the hero’s journey, and it belongs to you and me.
Your happiness exercise: You don’t want to be a hero because you need a little more excitement in your life, but you must recognize your unique role in your world. How can you best engage your deepest passions and greatest strengths to meet the needs you see around you?
What are you passionate about? What are your strengths? What does the world need? What does it ask of you today?
To live an extraordinary life, answer the call.