The Everyday Hero

If you’re at war, or if you’re out to sea and your ship is literally sinking, or if you’re right in the middle of an earthquake where buildings are falling…you have a chance to step up and do something. You have a chance to risk your life to save other people. A chance to be a hero.

By definition, a hero is a man of distinguished courage or ability, admired for his brave deeds and noble qualities.

Sounds a lot like a samurai warrior.

I daydream about it myself sometimes…the opportunity to step up in times of real crisis. But I’m not in the military. I don’t travel on many boats. And I don’t live in an earthquake zone. The chances of me being involved in a major crisis like that are very slim.

If given the chance, I’m pretty sure I’d step up for people. And do what’s right. I’d be a hero. It’s an easy choice.

I know…there are many people who run from those opportunities, only protecting themselves and their own well-being. So I do not discount for a second the effort it takes in times of crisis to step up and think of others before you think of yourself. So I don’t discount those heroes. You can’t.   

But I’ve always wanted my shot at being one…and that made me think…why?

What is the motivation to be a hero? Fame. Fortune. To get the girl? Or the boy? Ask any hero and they will tell you that the fame is gone in the snap of a finger. 15 minutes would seem like a lifetime compared to how fast it goes. Fortune? Yeah…no. Absolutely not. Do you get a significant other out of it? Maybe…that sounds more like a movie…and if it does happen, talk to them six months later and I know they’d have the same problems every non-hero has with their relationships.

So why then…why do so many people including myself aspire to be heroes? It’s because it’s emotionally rewarding to save someone. It feels good. It feels better than good to do something incredible for someone else. To give someone another chance at life. Think about that? I talked about it in After Party Cancelled, the fact that there might not be an afterlife in , so you could be extending the only life of someone. That’s powerful.

But as I said, most people don’t get the opportunity, right? Wrong.   

You can be a hero every day. Be a hero to yourself – save yourself. Take care of yourself. Build yourself up strong. Be proud. Be a hero and a role model to young kids around you – show them what it’s like to be a man or woman with honor, with pride, to work hard and enjoy life at the same time. Show them what it’s like to feel unconditional love even when they are being terrible to you. Be a hero to your significant other – show him or her what it’s like to give yourself completely, to be faithful every day, to be supportive all the time. Be a hero to your friends – stand up for them when they need you, relish in doing things for and with them, and don’t hook up with their boyfriend when they try to make their move.

Assuming you’re not a fireman or a cop, there is a good chance that you will never have a huge physical crisis in your life. If it does happen, it is great to step up and do the right things by all people.

But I honestly believe that being a hero every day is harder. It takes consistency. It takes constant effort. One of the Urban Samurai members on Facebook mentioned that Hagakure was dictated by and written by guys that never saw battle. When Josh offered it, he mentioned that it might make some people mad.

Mad…? It made me respect them even more. These guys were living this way, this samurai way, which is not easy…and is very strict…and they were living it hardcore…in times of peace.  

You don’t need a crisis to be a hero. You don’t need to wear a cape or fly to be a hero. You don’t need to have any special powers at all…except compassion, and love, and a brain, and unbiased opinions, and selflessness, and effort, and good moral standing. That’s a hero.

Be one today for someone.