I first met Andrea in person too many years ago to recall exactly. She worked for SARK and I stopped by their office in San Francisco for some reason. I remembered thinking “She’s the cutest thing ever. Want to know her more.” We stayed in touch and I’ve loved watching her develop her own voice, her vision, her powerful message of ordinary superheros.
So when Andrea asked if I would write a post about my superhero power to celebrate the launch of her new site, I wanted to say yes yes yes but another part of me squirmed squirmed squirmed.
Superhero power? That’s for Jane Goodall, that’s for Susan B. Anthony, that’s for Michele Obama.
So that’s when I knew I had to write this. To share Andrea’s work with you, if you don’t already know and love her, but also to be a voice for claiming our gifts.
We have no time to waste on hiding! We all need to be claiming our superhero powers, our gifts, our bejeweled shine. To get comfortable saying,
“I am good at this. I do this well. This is my thing.”
Without blushing or looking down like a shy child.
We ain’t got no time to be shy.
Claiming our superhero powers is essential to savoring & serving. In Stephen Cope’s wonderful new book The Great Work of Your Life about finding and living your dharma, he writes about Indra, the greatest god in the ancient Vedic pantheon, who had “flung a vast net” around his mountain home at the center of the world, a “web stretching out infinitely in all directions. Each vortex, or node, of this net was held together by a glittering jewel… Each gem in the net represents a human soul…” writes Cope.
He continues – take this in my friend:
“It is, therefore, the sacred duty of every individual human soul to be utterly and completely itself- to be that jewel at that time and in that place, and to be that jewel utterly. It is in this way-merely by being itself-that one jewel holds together its own particular corner of the Space and Time. The action of each individual soul holds together the entire net. Small and large at the same time.”
To be the jewel, to hold together our corner of the net, and reflect all the other jewels, we have to know who we are. And knowing who we are starts – and continues – with claiming our gifts and our superhero powers. Without hiding or apology.
We serve ultimately by leaving ourselves – by becoming part of the larger self – but we cannot do that until we see and claim our gifts. When we do, we end up fragmented, resentful, pursing the wrong dharma, burned-out -not serving. Self-love + world-love= wholeness for all.
I’ll go first – but you are going to be joining me so get ready – my superhero power is:
Yep, of all the ones I wanted to claim or that I like more, this is the one I have to honestly say I can’t help but do. It’s the way I love to serve day in and day out.
- See your jewel and tell you what shine I see.
- See what you do so well, so damn well, and tell others. Shout it from the rooftops, I love to do that.
- See what you are not claiming because you don’t see it or you poo-poo it, and prod you (sometimes hard) to start claiming it. Now.
- See what you are hiding from the world, pull it you for you to see, and help you show it to the world.
I have other superhero powers – we all do – like nurturing, creating safe space for transformation, making nuanced distinctions, openness and authenticity – but cheerleading gets my vote today.
So here is my question for you: what is your superhero power? Go here to Andrea’s new home to comment and you get a chance to win a camera, a spot in TeachNow, Brene’s new book, and whole bunch more good superhero stuff.
Okay darlings, go commend and keep sparkling!