It turns out that two of my heroes actually crossed paths. Teddy Roosevelt was presenting at an awards assembly where a young Dr. Seuss was supposed to receive an medal for selling war bonds. Unfortunately for the future author, he was last in line. For some reason there was one award missing. The very brusque former President asked “What’s this boy doing here?” A very embarrassed Ted Geisel (Dr. Seuss’ real name) scurried off the stage and developed a fear of making public appearances. It was neither man’s best moment.
The thing about heroes is that we often want to see them a perfect, indestructible or superhuman. They are none of the above and are just as human as the rest of us. Foibles, failures and fractures happen to all human beings regardless of the esteem that they accumulate throughout their lives. Although they feel their own imperfection, the rest of the world tends to heap a status of extraordinary upon them. The part of that word to focus on is the “ordinary”. That’s all that they are with a bit of extra focus, extra care, extra work, extra creativity or extra effort. Otherwise they are just like the rest of us.
It’s so much easier isn’t it? Seeing our heroes as superhuman! That perspective lets us off the hook. If we see that we overlap with them in so many simple ways, perhaps the spectacular is right at our fingertips. Could it be that all we are missing is that little bit extra? Possibly! Maybe the fear isn’t that we’re not as good but that we’re capable of the same and we don’t want the expectation that comes with extraordinary. Whether you want to believe it or not, you overlap with heroes. Can you become your own?
See where extra takes you today!