The Heroes in Our Lives

The Heroes in Our Lives

Mirror Dream

“You Deserve To Live An Extraordinary Life!”

Over the Labor Day Weekend, I was at the shore with my family enjoying the last few days of an exceptional summer. On Saturday afternoon, I was hanging out in our family room doing one of my favorite activities, cruising through the TV channels looking for something to watch. Three programs caught my attention: the US Tennis Open, The Natural, and Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. I was enchanted by all three and experienced no difficulty jumping from one to the other. My wife and daughter kindly and patiently indulged this activity, and even seemed to enjoy the collage of divergent stimulations.

The US Open was wonderful. I caught Serena Williams as she displayed awesome power in both her serves and general play. When she missed a point, there would be a flash of upset, frustration or annoyance. Then she quickly recovered and shifted back into intense and focused play. She was determined to win and would not be sidetracked from her goal. She had won the championship for the last three years and was well on her way to a fourth title.

The Natural is a movie about a naturally gifted athlete—possibly the best baseball player that ever existed—who falls away from his chosen path for almost sixteen years before finding the way back to his passion. A battle between the Dark and Light sides takes the viewer through a back and forth conflict until our hero confronts a potentially crushing blow to his dream. No easy battle: what begins as the story of a Navigator moving steadily along his life path slips into a tale of survival as he struggles to find his way back to his dream.

Ferris Bueller is a character who appeals to the Dreamer in all of us, someone who advocates taking advantage of your opportunities by getting off the well-worn path of conformity. He thumbs his nose at the status quo and takes glee in pulling the wool over the world of authority. Will he run faster and be smarter than his adult antagonist or will he lose his footing and permanently stumble? His level of confidence is over the edge, playful, a little arrogant, and quite appealing to most of us whose confidence levels are not quite as high.

I think a common theme between all three people/characters/story-lines is the struggle between living full-out with abandon or succumbing to the pressures-that-be and giving in. The world is often unkind to heroes, be they athletes, teenagers or adults. It takes a lot to stay on course and live according to your inner dream and vision. It is easy to become discouraged and despair, to give up the dream and just fit in so no one will bother you.

In all of the above, our hero resists the incessant pull to despair and finds a way to persevere. Winning does not come easily but there is something about the pursuit that is inspiring. I relate to all three and appreciate the push and pull of life. I often ask myself why I pursue my passions. They will not necessarily lead to material success or social status but I seem to have an inner drive that keeps me going regardless.

How about you? Can you relate to the determination and ferocious play of Serena Williams? Do you possess the unrelenting optimism and confidence of Ferris? Or are you like Roy Hobbes, the baseball player who shows great promise, stumbles and badly falls, only to rise one last time to fight against the odds?

Then again, maybe it is just Labor Day and I am resisting rejoining the world of reality. The last few days of summer are both very appealing yet also a bit sad, much like life in general, I guess. What do you think? Can you relate?

If you would like to learn more about Navigating For Success and Living an Extraordinary Life, you can order my book “Navigating For Success: Passion, Goals and Action.” Sign up below to receive future posts by email.