As a kid, do you remember idolizing someone? Being in awe of another’s…well, awesomeness? What was it about that individual that made you want to be just like her? And who was she—an athlete, an actor, a super hero? Or someone closer to home like a relative, a teacher, or a coach? Heroes invite us to: try harder, do better, reach higher. And they can play a role in our lives no matter how old we are.
Who do you admire now? Take a moment and think about that question relative to your world today. Think of one specific person. It can be someone famous or someone known only to your heart. This person can be in your life now, in your past, or even in a book you’ve read. Go ahead and give yourself a minute to really consider who makes you think, “Wow! She is totally amazing! I want to be more like that!” Have someone in mind? Then, read on.
Consider the reasons for your admiration. Why is this person so cool? Be specific and make a mental note of those points and your hero’s qualities. Does she love unconditionally? Does she readily forgive? Does she speak her mind and stand up for others? Has she made the world a better place? Has she changed someone’s life (maybe even your own) in a monumental way? Is she a steady presence in a changing world? What about her rocks your heart or head?
Heroes come in all shapes and sizes and can appear at any time in our life. No one is too old to have a role model, an incredible someone to look up to. What better way to lead your best life than to follow in the footsteps of an extraordinary being while making your own path? That almost sounds contradictory, right? But you can choose to model someone’s behavior or make the same types of choices (“follow in their footsteps”) but steer your life anywhere (“making your own path”). You can soar to any place, be who you want to be, and always change for the better!
Role models offer an example of success in some area of life, and you can spark positive change in your own life just by contemplating things from their point of view. (What would my role model say or do? How would she approach this?) For years, Christians have encouraged their followers to ask, “What would Jesus do?”. You can ask the same question to yourself relative to your own role model. Write their name on future calendar dates or on little papers left in drawers to remind you to: try harder, do better, reach higher. They are prompts to consider your life or upcoming choices from their perspective. Sometimes, all you need is a little reminder to take you to unbelievably new heights or to lead you down a happier road. And you never know who is watching—maybe someone is looking up to you right now and you are someone's hero!