Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Captain America, The Flash, Spider-Man, whichever one is your favorite. What do they all have in common? Well, they all have superpowers. You can’t be a superhero without superpowers, right? Well, how do you get superpowers in the first place?
I’ve been called superwoman a time or two myself because of my ability to not just overcome a challenge but, instead, to make the challenge seem like it was a gift in the first place. A few years ago, I lost something I had no intention of giving up. Eventually, what started off feeling like a curse, became a blessing – a very well disguised blessing at the beginning, until gradually the mask fell and I could see the blessing for what it really was.
Life can be challenging. When you’re on your way to take a trip, maybe a vacation that you’ve been planning for a long time, maybe work-related travel, maybe en route to go visit someone you’ve been missing for eons and so excited to finally see each other. And then in the middle of a busy airport, someone blows themselves and others up. How do you recover? If you are blessed enough to survive, how do you not walk around scared everyday after that?
Life is hard. And it can sometimes feel like we need superhuman strength to get through. Well, these are the four superpowers that I think make superheroes out of anyone, cape and tights not required. 1. The power of recovery: Things happen. But when bad things happen, you have to keep going. You can’t linger in the mourning halls. When good things happen, you also have to keep going. You can’t linger so long in the celebration that you miss the next good opportunity that’s coming. The power to recover is essential. Recover your composure, your poise and keep going.
2. The power of association: They say it’s not what you know, it’s who you know. While there are some benefits that not even nepotism can get you, if you have the right people in your corner, they can teach you what you need to know to get ahead. Most of the situations we face are not unique to us. If you’re going through something, chances are that someone you know has faced something similar and can advise you on what to do, or what not to do.
3. The power of focus: Nothing is accomplished without a plan and a desire to work hard to achieve that goal. But it’s the little pitfalls that crop up between goal setting and goal getting that really get to us. You have to have the disciple to stick to your goal – even when the pitfall is disguised as something pretty. If a distraction doesn’t get you to your goal, it doesn’t deserve your time or your focus right now. Maybe later, after you’ve reached your goal, you can come back and play 😜
4. The power of giving: When you’ve learned something, teach it to someone else. If you’ve figured out an easier way to make picture collages on your phone, share the info. You can bet your last dollar there’s someone who’s still struggling to do the thing you figured out. You can save them a lot of time, and make a valuable connection in the meantime. In his book Rich Dad Poor Dad, Robert Kiyosaki says “Teach and you shall receive.” Thats’s because the more you teach what you have learned, the more you learn. I’ve proven this concept time and time again. I know we’ve always heard that we should give back, but sometimes the best gift is a good lesson. Teach someone something you know.
I can’t guarantee that these superpowers always make a bad situation feel good. But I know that sometimes when life is at its most challenging, we tend to feel helpless. Like there’s nothing we can do to make things better. Sometimes, it just helps to know there’s something you can try.
Next time you’re feeling the burn of a day that’s not going your way, a situation that feels like it’s deeper than you can swim through or taller than you can overcome, engage your superpowers.
When I was a kid, I didn’t watch a lot of cartoons but I remember this one called Thundercats where all the cats had one special power but when they were united, they had access to all the powers. Maybe we’re not meant to try to overcome everything by ourselves. Maybe what we need is to find our fellow Thundercats so that together, we can overcome anything. Remember: In looking for a superhero group to be part of, you first have to become a superhero to join the tribe.
(Currently accepting applications for Thundercats to be part of my lair)