• Use Your Super Power for Good

    whatsyoursuperpower

    I’ve been thinking about comic book heroes and villains a lot. I love any story where someone has a super power.

    My favorites are heroes like Batman and Daredevil. I love these characters because they’re just ordinary people who have access to something that makes them special. For Batman it’s Bruce Wayne’s fortune. For Daredevil it’s his enhanced senses after being blinded in a childhood accident.

    I love these stories because they ring so true. Ordinary people can have super powers.

    I have a super power. Want to hear what it is?

    *leans in*

    *whispers* I can write.

    Shh! Don’t tell anyone! You’ll blow my cover and I’ll have to give back my cape.

    How about you? What’s your super power?

    Don’t think you have one?

    I promise you do.

    See, a super power is just something you’re good at. It might be something you take for granted. Like Daredevil and his enhanced senses. He’s so used to having them he can’t imagine what it would be like to not have them. His super power is just part of who he is.

    Everyone has a super power. Every single person walking around on the skin of this world has something special to offer.

    Like me, some people write. Some people draw. Some people have the super power of caring for others so they become doctors or nurses. Some people have the power to teach others so they become teachers and professors. Some people’s powers are technical or political in nature and they maximize those powers at their jobs.

    Power implies responsibility. No. More than responsibility. Duty.

    Every day I sit down to write I face a choice. I can use my super power for good or I can use it for evil.

    Heroes in comic books wrestle with this all the time. They understand the immense burden that comes with having a super power. And like those heroes, it is my duty to use my super power for good.

    Comic book villains, on the other hand, disregard this responsibility and use their super powers for evil.

    Take, for example, Poison Ivy from the Batman comics. She’s a student of botany and biochemistry. She’s smart as shit, but instead of making the world a better place she uses her intelligence to create henchmen and commit crimes.

    Some days, most days, the choice to use my super power for good is easy. I write about things that make me laugh or smile or at least speak truth.

    Some days… Oh man. Some days choosing good isn’t easy.

    Some days internet trolls drop stinky turds in my inbox and I want nothing more than to fling words back at them. It takes every ounce of the comic book hero within me to delete their comment instead of starting a word-brawl on social media.

    You might ask, why not? Why not respond to critics by wielding all the terrifying might of my pen?

    I’ll tell you why. Because it makes me feel dirty.

    I know this because, like Batman, I’ve given into the rage. I’ve been drawn into battles and wielded my super power when I should have walked away. And I was ashamed of myself every time.

    I learned from that shame. I learned that just because I can doesn’t mean I should.

    See, I could very easily use my super power for evil.

    Instead of making you laugh or smile or tear up or even just think about how lucky we all are to be alive, I could rip apart every single person who’s ever made me mad. From the comfort of my own home and over a cup of coffee I could type words that have the power to embarrass others, to make them feel terrible or sad or angry.

    I don’t do that because I know my super power can hurt people. All super powers have that in common.

    Don’t believe me?

    Did you hear about the doctor who intentionally misdiagnosed people with cancer and then put them through chemotherapy treatments as part of a money laundering scheme?

    That’s a super power used for evil.

    Ever seen a blog where the author talks about their co-workers using first and last names, threatening their jobs and livelihoods, but hides their own name behind the word ‘Anonymous’?

    That’s a super power used for evil.

    Ever heard a working mom who is proud of her accomplishments bash stay-at-home moms for being lazy because they don’t live the way she does?

    That’s a super power used for evil.

    Ever met a stay-at-home-mom who loves taking care of her family and running a household but shames working moms for choosing another path outside of the home?

    Super. Power. Used. For. Evil.

    I will say it again… Super powers can hurt people.

    Recognize the responsibility, the duty, that comes with your super power. If you don’t, your power changes from something that can be great and powerful and good into something filthy and to be ashamed of.

    Not sure when to use your power?

    Here’s a quick Good vs. Evil litmus test: Before you use your super power, stop and think, “Is this helping someone? Or will it hurt them?”

    If the usage of your power will hurt, either change the way you’re using your super power or don’t use your power at all.

    See, by tearing others down you don’t only hurt them. You hurt yourself. But if you empower others you strengthen your own super power.

    And, holy shit, YAY FOR STRONGER SUPER POWERS!

    If you have some talent stringing words together, help someone who’s never written a resume. If you’re a good cook, teach someone who can’t. If you can sew, make clothes for someone in need.

    I don’t know if I can change the world or even one person with my super power. But, bottom line, I try to use it to spread good in the world. Not evil.

    ‘Cause once you go down the rabbit hole of evil you’re gonna find it real hard to dig your way back out.

    xoxo,

    Meghan

    What’s your super power? I love non-turdy comments!

5 Responsesso far.

  1. Liz says:

    This reminds me of a quote (that the internets attribute to Einstein): Those who have the privilege to know have the duty to act.

    Which I think is SO true – if you *can* do something, the use some of your precious time to celebrate your super powers! Being mortal, you’re not going to have these abilities forever, so, while you can: embrace the moments of joy, radiate gratitude, and try your hand at passing your wondrous super powers on to someone else!

  2. Tammy Fowler says:

    “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but word can never hurt me.” = MOST UNTRUE APHORISM EVER! Thank you for choosing (daily) to use your the power of your words for good and not evil.

  3. Pat S says:

    Well, Meghan, you probably already know me as ARIES MAN. And I do try to share the knowledge, while continuing to learn something new every day. But the role that I growing more fond of is SUPER PAW PAW. My “little” grand-daughter, Violet, turned 3 on July 4th, and she loves to play with Paw Paw……throwing the ball up high (and on the roof of their house and sometimes in the house), playing with blocks, having a tea party, inside of her tent in the house with tons of stuffed Disney characters. There is never a dull moment. And she is so sad when I say I have to leave to back home!! Thankfully, her mom and dad saw the light and moved from Pearland to just outside of the Woodlands last year, so that Paw Paw and GiGi can visit whenever. And I think Violet would love it if I wore a cape!!

  4. […] Isn’t Darby’s story inspiring? It reminded me of Meghan’s article about using your super power for good. […]

  5. Very cool post Meghan and thanks for sharing!

    I like the way you wield your super power and I’m already feeling the positive effects of it as I lightly tread throughout your blog.

    As for myself, my super power is music and photography…and I do indeed use both for good 🙂

    Thanks again for a fun post and take care.

    All the best.

    Lyle

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