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In this episode, Joel and Antonia talk about how we can keep our heroes real by acknowledging all sides of them – not just the good parts.

In this podcast you’ll find:

  • Some of the people that have had the greatest impact in the world have endured major issues.
  • We have a tendency to gloss over the moments of despair that our mentors experienced, or experience, on their journey of personal growth.
  • Lies My Teacher Told Me by James W. Loewen
  • We have the tendency to whitewash our heroes.
  • We don’t see them as complex people who made good and bad decisions.
  • It is important we don’t deify our mentors.
  • Struggle doesn’t mean we are not destined for greatness.
  • When we see our mentors as perfect, we don’t believe it’s possible for us to achieve greatness because we are very well aware of our imperfections.
  • We do ourselves a favor if we realize that our heroes and mentors are just as human as we are.
  • We hold our celebrities to a higher standard, and we punish them when they demonstrate their imperfections.
  • All of us are human. Nobody has arrived at the pinnacle of personal growth.
  • Even the gods and goddesses of Greece had flaws.
  • If we can cut other people some slack when they fail, then we may have the tendency to cut ourselves some slack.
  • It is more inspiring when someone is human and still presents as a mentor.
  • They are just regular people who figure out how to show up on a day to day basis as their best self.
  • Parable: “There are two wolves inside of me, good and bad. I don’t know which one is going to win. The one you feed will win.”
  • We battle to nourish the parts of us we want to win.
  • Depending on the context we are in we may get encouraged to feed the bad wolf.
  • What is truly inspiring is to see someone choosing to nourish the best parts of themselves, even when everything seems to be against it.
  • Thomas Jefferson – wrote “All men are created equal… “ He owned slaves. His lifestyle contradicted the very words he wrote.
  • If we see only the good or only the bad of people, we miss the complexity of who they were/are.
  • Acknowledging that we are entering a period of increased transparency means we won’t be able to whitewash our heroes like we have in the past.
  • Finding heroes is becoming more and more difficult as we enter a world of transparency.
  • We see everyone’s imperfections.
  • We have a desire for perfection and seek it for inspiration, but perfection doesn’t exist.
  • We will have to figure out how to forgive each other for our past.
  • Anybody can be your mentor. They don’t need to be a globally celebrated celebrity.
  • It is their complexity that makes them strong.
  • They are strong because they have moments of weakness.
  • They have to wrestle with themselves to regain their strength.  
  • Movie: Rudy
  • When we look at people, and they have different disadvantages, we should still honor them for doing extraordinary things.
  • Everybody determines their core values then they look for others who mirror those core values.
  • Biographies are a great way to see all the parts of people – good and bad.

 

 

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Showing 5 comments
  • Kathleen Erickson
    Reply

    Good to bring out the truth about Jefferson’s life, but the man never bought a slave in his life. They belonged to his wife, who inherited them. And his will said that they would all be freed upon his death (and they were). Yes, why couldn’t he do that while he was alive, but the fact is, he did do things to not perpetuate the institution of slavery.

    • Holly McIntosh
      Reply

      Hi Kathleen!
      Thank you for that insight and information!
      And thanks for tuning in! We Love hearing
      from our PH Community!

  • Simon
    Reply

    Excellent episode. Knowing the darker shades of a person you admire does not make them a monster, it simply makes them human.

    The corollary to this is that we should also have this type of understanding for people we do not admire at all. The emotional distance that we place between ourselves and those we consider wrong, bad, evil, etc. makes the idea that they are human – just as you are – very uncomfortable. The best example of this that I know was here in Germany, when there was a large initial outcry when the film “Der Untergang” / “Downfall” came out. Portraying Hitler as a human being rather than the common caricatured devil-spawn that we are familiar with was met with very strong resistance at first. The idea that Hitler is one of us (i.e. a human being) was simply too disconcerting. Over time, this subsided, leading to a better understanding of not only him in particular (at no point excusing anything that he actually did), but of people in general. A most unexpected exercise in collective maturity.

    • Holly McIntosh
      Reply

      Hi Simon!
      Exactly!
      “The emotional distance that we place between
      ourselves and those we consider wrong, bad, evil, etc.
      makes the idea that they are human – just as you are –
      very uncomfortable.”
      You hit the nail on the head!
      So glad you enjoyed the episode and thank you for
      reaching out!

  • Amy Francis
    Reply

    The part about Thomas Jefferson reminds me of something I recently learned about Gandhi and how his wife died

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