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How does the Hero’s Journey start?

The Hero’s Journey

Here at Spark!, we talk a lot about the Hero’s Journey and how it impacts our daily lives. Whether professionally or personally, we are all actively living out the Hero’s Journey in everything we do.

But what makes up the Hero’s Journey? And how do we know where we are on the path to adventure, success, or maybe even greater self-actualization? Over the next few weeks, we’re going to break down the different parts of the Hero’s Journey, show you how to spot the signs, and what to do with it!

Every journey starts in the “known world.” This is your safe place - your hometown, your childhood bedroom. In the known world, at the start of your Hero’s Journey, you are oblivious to the grand adventure waiting just around the corner. Imagine, Harry Potter’s cupboard under the stairs; Luke Skywalker’s home on Tatooine; Moana’s ancestral island home: in the known world, life is predictable.

But then, along comes the call to the BIG Dream.
Something unseen threatens the predictability of the known world. Life as we know it is disrupted. The call to the BIG Dream can be as mundane as a literal phone “call” or as grandiose as a thousand letters inviting you to attend Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.

The call to the BIG Dream naturally causes unease. The known world is comforting. It’s predictable. The call to the BIG Dream might activate insecurities, questions of self-worth, and uncertainty about the future.

At Spark!, we refer to this as FADS: feelings of fear, anger, disgust, and sadness. These are the things that scare you and make you more likely to refuse the call. The truth of the matter is that we cannot ignore the call even if we try, because the call keeps showing up.

But here’s the thing. This discomfort is good for us. Though the upcoming journey is long and arduous, what waits for us at the end of our story is newfound knowledge, growth, and a better life for ourselves, our families, and our communities. When you feel the discomfort of something new, when everything around you feels “FADS,” recognize that perhaps this is the start of your very own Hero’s Journey. Where one door has now closed, another has opened, and what lies ahead is most certainly worth stepping into the unknown.

The best part is that you don’t have to do everything alone. The next part of the Hero’s Journey is where you meet the guide. Just like Obi-Wan Kenobi teaches Luke the ways of the “Force”, Hagrid introduces Harry to the magical wizarding world, or Timon and Pumbaa teach Simba how to live in the jungle, Spark! can lead you through the perils of your own Hero’s Journey.

Above all else, we’re guides.

At Spark!, we lead leaders to fulfill their potential. We work to simplify complex systems into actionable plans.

Are you ready to embark on your own Hero’s Journey? We may not make you a wizard or turn you into a Jedi–if only that were possible–but we know the transformation you endure will be just as magical and awe-inspiring.

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1 Rowling, J. K. (1997). Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone. London: Bloomsbury Pub.
2 Lucas, G., Hamill, M., Ford, H., Fisher, C., Cushing, P., Guinness, A., Jones, J. E., ... Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corporation. (2006). Star wars: Episode IV. Beverly Hills, Calif: 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment.
3 Clements, R., Musker, J., Williams, C., & Hall, D. (2016). Moana. Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures.

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