Ida from Spark!

The Hero’s Journey exists all around us

The Hero’s Journey

Story is one of the most powerful influencers of our world. We all have a unique journey that impacts our worldview and extends to those around us. At Spark!, we focus on bringing self-awareness to the depth of your personal story and the breadth of our shared human experience.

To do this we use the Hero’s Journey, a concept created by Joseph Campbell, to interpret stories as they unfold around us. You may remember the Hero’s Journey from elementary school, middle school, high school, or college. If you don’t remember it, that is okay, you’ve definitely seen it in action.

The Hero’s Journey is a framework for analyzing and understanding the structure of stories, myths, movies, and folklore. Harry Potter; Jane Eyre; Star Wars; Dr. Who; Ted Lasso; I Love Lucy: there’s a reason these classic (and new) stories have such mass appeal and are positioned to stand the test of time.

 The Hero’s Journey is a tool we use in our work with individuals, organizations, and communities to identify opportunities to improve well-being.
The Hero’s Journey is divided into two key parts - the known world and the unknown world.

In the known world, individuals typically know what is happening, there is sometimes an obvious cause and effect to actions.

In the unknown world, change happens. This is where individuals encounter adversity and turn it to advantage to grow, transform, and share lessons learned with others.

The Hero’s Journey is not one-off, but cyclical, a recurring pattern of events - that can actually go in either direction - and once a cycle is complete, a new one often begins.

Once you know about the Hero’s Journey (or you remember learning about it in school) you will start to notice aspects of the framework all around you and in your own life. Research even indicates, the Hero’s Journey is a tool we use in daily life, without even realizing it. For us at Spark!, we see the Hero’s Journey in our day-to-day projects. One day we might be called to adventure as we launch a new product or project. On other days, we can sometimes encounter the lions, tigers, and bears and work to navigate obstacles we didn’t anticipate.

Research indicates the Hero’s Journey might even be a tool, referred to as a “neural code,”1 that helps us make sense of the world.

All of this to say, the Hero’s Journey is a framework we champion and encourage using to help individuals, organizations, and communities navigate change and embrace opportunities.

Join Spark! as we continue to explore and share information about the Hero’s Journey.
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1 Major, J.C. (2021, October). Archetypes and code biology. International Academy of Analytical Psychology, Portugal, 208. 10.1016/j.biosystems.2021.104501.