February 26, 2007



A HERO is a man of exceptional quality who is admired for what he does. A female hero is called a HEROINE. Some typical examples include parents, athletes and teachers, but can be anybody whose perceived status is held in high regard by at least one person. People tend to emulate their heroes because there is a part of us who wants to be like the person we admire. Sometimes this becomes a problem when we diminish our own value as a human being at the expense of imitating someone else. There's a difference between looking for that hero from within and without.

Take for example butt cleavage. You ask, what's the connection between the visible split down one's backside and heroes or heroines? The fashion trend started somewhere by somebody. Young people looked from without and found role-models for butt cleavage. This is not a joke about plumbers. Word on the street has it that the fashion statement of wearing one's pants half way down one's hips started as one way to emulate prisoners in jail. Prisoners are not allowed to wear a belt on their pants, and so the pants tend to slide down a little. The look is strictly for young people because the older we get, the higher the waistline becomes. Even though parts of our society detest criminal behavior, other parts seem to be emulating it by dressing in like-fashion.

When we look for the hero or heroine from within, we value who we are and can confidently define our self-concept. We have learned to be comfortable with how we are different and unique from others.

To look for the hero or heroine from without means we are still comparing ourselves to others because we may not have a clear definition of our self-concept.

There are three parts to the self-concept:
I see myself as ...
Others see me as ...
Ideally, I see myself as ...

Most people would say that it's okay to look-up to others whom we respect and admire. For example, it's natural to figureatively put our heroes and heroines on a pedestal.

If we value how our parents raised us, our dad may be our hero, and our mom is our heroine. A talented athlete who has served the community well may also get placed on that figureative pedestal in the eyes of many fans. I want to remember the teachers who do an exceptional job in helping to create a new generation of outstanding students and citizens. They are definitely heroes and heroines. As for the butt cleavage, when a young person decides he/she no longer wants to "stick it to the man" (welcome to mainstream society because most people out-grow the rebellious, anti-authority stage when they become parents), the pants will find the true waistline.

With all of that said, each of us starts somewhere when we decide to pick our heroes and heroines. The journey usually begins at home with ourself. If we see our heroes and heroines as hard-working, high-achieving, responsible people, we are really describing ourselves. It is human nature to project ourself onto others. When we can own the traits and characteristics we ascribe to our heroes and heroines, we learn that each of us is our own best hero or heroine.

Who is your hero or heroine? When you know who it is, in a sense, you are seeing yourself, butt cleavage or not!

Written by,
Mark S. Rogers, LPC.
Licensed Professional Counselor

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