It’s Jen, your scifi and superhero sis, here to talk becoming a real-life superhero. You know how in movies there’s always some kind of uniform montage, where the hero creates their costume or whatever?
I’m not sure what the obsession is with costumes. I get the symbols are important. I get that Batman needs to be scary, and Spiderman and Superman need America colors to give people confidence in them, and that’s all well and good. And obviously costumes MATTER to people, since they had a hissy fit when Wonder Woman changed her underwear.
But in real life, you gotta ask yourself: what purpose does what I wear serve to accomplish my mission?
You know, like American Soldiers don’t go out into battle with colorful red, white, and blue because that…wouldn’t really help the mission.
And female Soldiers don’t go out there in bikinis because…well, that wouldn’t help the mission.
Drawing attention to yourself, and focusing on yourself, hurts your mission. It’s got to be about helping the people you want to help, not about you, and your great and wonderful hero image.
Not saying symbols are useless. When I did street medicine in Puerto Rico, our white t-shirts with the Medicina Social bandaid symbol kept us from getting shot. There were drug dealers who avoided committing their murders around us–who waited until we were gone–because we were there to help and so they didn’t want to involve or hurt us.
But we didn’t put on capes and shyte, okay. There’s a self-importance you want to avoid. And a pandering, too–it wouldn’t really have been sensitive or wise to go out to help prostitutes while dressing ourselves in bikinis like we were trying to compete with their corner.
Costume montages in fiction serve as a representation of the internal change of the character. Who knows–you might need a cape someday for something, and they look cool as heck–but let’s focus on the REAL DEAL first: what’s inside.
What do you need inside to find your superhero purpose?
Jen Finelli, MD
Your SF Superhero Sis
PS: If you’ve already seen the video and worked through the related exercises, go ahead and draw a picture of your internal self–with that cool costume and everything. Not what you would wear to a real superhero mission, but how you decorate your soul. Post on Instagram and tag me @becominghero, with a sentence about one problem or type of person you want to learn to help! I’ll shout you out!