Personal Potential: How to Tap Into Your Inner Super Hero


I've done a lot of soul searching this past year, which has caused me to ask: What is our intrinsic value? How do those we surround ourselves with impact the way we see ourselves? How can we consistently be a force for good in the lives of those around us, especially and most importantly, those closest to us? When do we need to cut ties? And how can we grieve losses in our lives, even if those losses lead to a happier, healthier life?

Woman standing in a super hero pose at sunset

As I have pondered these questions and with the release of this summer's blockbusters, Spider-man and The Dark Knight, I turned to my favorite super heroes for examples and answers.

6 Tips to Tap Into Your Inner Super Hero

Here's my consolidated list of the top 6 tips to tap into your inner super hero as I observed :

  1. Know your strengths. Everyone has strengths and weaknesses. You can spend a lifetime focusing on improving or obsessing over your weaknesses. Instead, focus on maximizing your strengths. Identify what is absolutely awesome about you and find ways to use that awesome-ness for good.
    Think about your favorite super hero. What are his or her strengths and weaknesses? What are your strengths and weaknesses?
  2. Don't let your limitations limit you. We don't all have the same super powers. And all of us have limitations, which may stop us from accomplishing tasks that other super heroes with different limitations can perform. So what. Focus on what you can do. Work within your sphere of influence and capabilities. And back to number 1, do all you can to maximize your strengths in that arena.

    What are your favorite super hero's limitations? What are some of yours? How are you both super heroes in spite of your limitations?
  3. Surround yourself with other super heroes. In so many circumstances, we have a choice about who we associate with. This doesn't mean to only have next-to-perfect family or friends and to discard the rest. It simply means to keep company with people who help you realize, not move you further from, your potential. My super heroes are all vastly different from each other, and more often than not, from me. But, they help me get my super on when I'm around them and tap into my inner super hero more often than not.
    Who are your favorite super hero's fave friends? Who do you surround yourself with? How do they uplift and help you tap into all that is super about you?
  4. See the super in everyone. Recognize that everyone is a dormant or potential super hero. Sometimes, all they need is someone who recognizes all that is super about them. Take every opportunity to build people up, to give them shout outs, to pay it forward, and to make them shine. Obviously, villains exist, but they are the minority with super heroes or potential super heroes being the vast majority.
    Think about people in your community, neighborhood, at church, other parents at your kids' schools, or at work. Identify someone you see regularly but may not be friends with. What is super about that person? How can you help that person see that they are super this week?
  5. Recognize that even super heroes aren't perfect. We may be super heroes, but we're still human. Remember that everyone, yourself included, has light and dark sides. In cases where the super isn't so obvious in someone, look deeper, have patience, or assume best intent.
    What are the light and dark sides of your fave super hero? What are yours? What about someone in your circle of super hero family and friends? How can you bring out the light side in yourself and those around you this week?
  6. Know that with great power comes great responsibility. Being super comes at a cost. People may question whether you really have super powers, if you are using them for good or with ill intent, whether the people you surround yourself with or those you see as super are super enough, if your limitations and imperfections prevent you from being a super hero, and whether all the super that is in you matters or is legitimate. What's worse is that you may question yourself. In those moments, repeat steps 1-5.
    What type of responsibility does your favorite super hero have because of his or her super powers? How does that impact things like relationships, confidence, and ability to reach super power potential? What about for you?

What can you do this week to tap into your inner super hero and help those around you reach their super hero potential?

I shared these points in a presentation I gave at the evo Conference this summer. Click here to view if you'd like to see my cape and to watch the video!

Photos courtesy of Hasbro.
Featured image courtesy of Flickr.
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An active part of the Mom It Forward team, Jyl primarily writes about parenting, social good, and all things travel related. In a past life, Jyl was an award-winning copywriter and designer of corporate training programs for Fortune 100 companies. Offline, Jyl is married to @TroyPattee; a mom to two teen boys and a beagle named #Hashtag; loves large amounts of cheese, dancing, and traveling; and lives in the beautiful Rocky Mountains. Topping her bucket list is the goal to visit 50 countries by the time she's 50.


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