The Speed of One: 4th of 6 Heroic Arts

Hero Stand Out 2

"We are who we choose to be... now, *choose*!"

In Spider-Man (2002), the Green Goblin (Willem Dafoe) not only provides a physical obstacle to Spider-Man's (Tobey Maguire's) acts of heroism, but the Green Goblin also challenges the hero psychologically. The Green Goblin encourages Spider-Man to give up his heroic purpose: "You and I are not so different ... I chose my path, you chose the way of the hero. ... In spite of everything you've done for them, eventually they will hate you."

"Why bother?"

For many of us, we have our own Green Goblins that cause us to pause, and to prevent us from becoming involved. To overcome this challenge, we need to summon the hero's Speed.

The last three weeks, we have examined the heroic arts of the Hero’s Question, the Heart of Courage, and the Rock of Strength. This week is the fourth of a six part series that will assist you in developing the necessary skills to be somebody who acts on her or his personal and organizational values. A hero. Zeno Franco and Philip Zimbardo identified the key arts necessary to nurture “Heroes-in-Waiting”. They are: Question, Courage, Strength, Speed, Sacrifice, and Team. Today, we focus on Speed.

When we overcome our own reluctance toward becoming involved, we become the first to stand up. We demonstrate the hero's Speed. By being the first to speak out, by being the first to stand up, and by being the one to lead the way, we are empowering others.

The Green Goblin gave Spider-Man several reasons to give up, from a lack of appreciation (they love ... to see a hero fail), to ambition (imagine what we could accomplish together), to coercion (a sadistic choice ... let die the woman you love ... or suffer the little children), and finally to self-preservation. The villain gave the hero so many reasons to give up, but Spider-Man needed only one to carry on.

"Because it's right."

In the Heart of Courage and the Rock of Strength , you gave some thought to possible negative consequences in different situations, and you identified how your core values, past experiences, and future goals will give you the strength to act on your values and to know what's right.

Now, your challenge is to find the One reason that will compel you to be the first to act, despite any doubts, embarrassment, or fear you may have. By being the first, you will give others the opportunity and power to stand with you.

This is the Speed of One.

CALL TO ACTION: Be a hero ... in 3D! With the arts of Question, Courage, and Strength in mind, think about your opportunities to be the first to intervene by using the 3D bystander intervention model. You may want to think about one of the situations from the Hero's Question that contradicts your personal or organizational values.

  • Direct – intervening in the situation directly. 
  • Delegate – finding someone who can help you intervene in the situation if you aren't comfortable doing it yourself or if you know they will be more effective.
  • Distract – intentionally distracting the potential perpetrator and/or victim away from the situation.