The Hero’s Journey (Newsletter Vol 2 Issue 7)

Live A Better Life Newsletter
(Tools and Tips for Intentional Living)

Volume 2 Issue 7, August 31, 2010
The Hero’s Journey

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In This Issue:

The Hero’s Journey
Recommended Resources
Contact Me
About this Newsletter

The Hero’s Journey

Last newsletter I wrote about how to Tell Yourself A Story – to reframe how you look at your life, your own story, your journey toward your goals and dreams.  In that article I mentioned the Hero’s Journey – the classic format for all tales of adventure.  When I was a little girl I used to love to read Trixie Belden mystery stories, a Nancy Drew like heroine who also solved crime.  Only unlike Nancy, she was average, insecure, awkward, in other words, just like me.  And I loved to pretend I was Trixie, with her home, and her family and friends, and solving crimes.

Today I am going to give you a quick overview of the Hero’s Journey.  Then over the next few months I’ll break it down, stage by stage.  My hope is that you too will find yourself in this journey, and be encouraged by the map, and knowing where you go from here.

The journey begins with life as is.  The  moment before your journey begins, before change is initiated, you feel unfulfilled, unsatisfied, unhappy.  Then you get “The Call” – this is your dream, the call to something more, better, bigger than where you are.  The dream that satisfies and fulfills, the one that fills you with excitement.  You have a Vision for how things could be, for you, and maybe even for others.  Then – “Initiation” – you take off.  Or, in this diagram, you roll down the hill.  It’s fast and furious and exciting.  It feels easy, and unavoidable.  You have to go this way! You have to do this! 

Then – you come to a screeching halt, your first break, and also the place that’s filled with traps to get you stuck and keep you there.  This is “The Pit”.  Doubts and fears kick in here.  We have monsters to fight and dragons to slay.  And we often, at some point, feel completely alone.  And we question, why did we do this? What were we thinking?  Hope falters here. 

But the journey is not over.  If we hold fast, we find others who come along and help us.  We find allies and opportunities.  The journey isn’t over, but we are no longer alone.  Hope arrives.  And we press on.  In the map, we go up.  It feels like an uphill battle here, exhausting.  Yet we are close now. 

Then, if we keep at it, keep taking steps, we have our “Breakthrough,” our “ah ha!” moment of clarity and focus.  We are re-energized.  The end, the achievement, is not far now.  We continue until…

The goal is achieved, the dream is realized, we arrive at last at the place we have dreamed of.  Then we celebrate, we reminisce, we mine our experience for learnings, and we revel in our accomplishment.

 The Hero's Journey - A Map

The Hero’s Journey is also a simplified but applicable view of the process of any change you may experience.  And as humans, the one thing that is constant is that things are always changing.  You may currently have some dreams where you are in “The Pit” with the dragons.  At the same time, you may have others where you’re nearing “Breakthrough.”  Some dreams take days, others years, but this is the basic journey for each of them.

When I learned about the Hero’s Journey, I began to see that I am really the hero in my own life story. (And how cool is that, I ask you?)  And when I began to redesign my life, to pursue my long time goals and dreams, I really saw myself on the hero’s path.  In fact, in times of significant transition or change, I carry a picture of the journey with me, and I often pull it out like a map, to see where I am, and to encourage and guide me along my way.

In the months ahead, we’ll explore each stage of the journey more deeply.  The goal is for you to understand more fully the process, the journey of pursuing your goals and dreams.  And through that understanding, you’ll be able to hold fast and stay the course until you your dreams are realized and celebrated.

As you look at the Hero’s Journey, think about the transitions in your life today.  Consider your dreams.  Where are you on your own hero’s path?  And where are you going next? 

Warm regards,

Lori Howard

p.s. Post your thoughts below!

Recommended Resources

To learn more about the Hero’s Journey and the process of change or transition, especially when it comes to life dreams, you might want to pick up a copy of these favorites.  

The Way of Transition: Embracing Life’s Most Difficult Moments by William Bridges
The Dip: A Little Book That Teaches You When to Quit (and When to Stick) by Seth Godin  

Check out my new web site:  And follow me now on Twitter @lori_howard.  

Contact Me

I welcome your feedback, comments and questions. Also, if you’re interested in contributing to this Newsletter, email me your submissions.

Tell me what you think about this newsletter by posting a comment below.

twitter: @lori_howard

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Copyright 2010 Lori Howard. All rights reserved.

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Client Stories

What did you need at the time you hired Lori?

I wanted to work in my industry and didn't know how to progress any further than I was. I knew I had much experience that could be put in the industry of my choice but not how to parlay that experience. I needed guidance.

What did you and Lori do together?

Many, many things. Overall, to get clear in my mind what I offered and really what I wanted in a work environment. Every week was another epiphany after another. One of my favorites was the "knowing your core values". Having had some experience on this subject I was all ready to dive-in. Core Values is key. Knowing your core values. 

Lori makes it so easy to pinpoint. One time we were speaking about something else and we both realized...OMG...that is a core value for me. I hadn't written it down before, but discovered later that if ever a core value fit was the one I mentioned at that time.  Knowing that piece of information also answered a long standing question in my head.  One of the "why's" as to my constant upset with other places I had worked.

What were the results from working with Lori?

Many things. One is a great looking resume. I thought, wow, I look good and it was all from work I had already done elsewhere but didn't know how to say it or present it. Another is the clarity of knowing where I will feel good when I do work. What I really want and with the kind of people I really want to work with on a daily basis. This entire process is so valuable. The best money I ever spent and I am not kidding or exaggerating. I was only hoping it would be valuable and it really was valuable.< I know stuff and it has value and is marketable. Lori showed me those things and it gives me confidence.

Anything else you’d like to add?

Lori delivers above and beyond. The highest quality of exchange, 'more than you expected.' I told my friends this over and over: 'I wish I had her 10-20-even 30 years ago.' Every one, and I mean EVERYONE, needs a Lori. Her understanding,patience, how she problem solves, putting things in simple terms, was mind blowing. I wish I could that well. I present a problem and she could turn it around and yes...another epiphany.

Lori, is worth every penny. It isn't about a title. It is about enjoying everyday doing work you love with people you like and are like minded. You'll know what you are looking for when you interview.  I never say this, but I will say it here. Lori is a major key into the rest of my life doing what I always wanted to do. That is: Being happy doing what I do, everyday. Something I have been saying for years. Allowing be Sherlock.  Finding my people. They are out there and now I know what I am looking for in that respect.


Sherlock Ganz, Los Angeles, CA