Chris Guillebeau posed an interesting question today: "What would you do if you knew you would not fail?"
I reply... "I want to save the world."
What we wanted to be when we grow up was printed alongside our pictures in my school's nursery class yearbook. I sometimes look it over and read my batchmates' answers. Of course there were the standard Doctor, Lawyer, Nurse hiccups. There were the few rarities like Veterinarian, Housewife, Gymnast... then there was me: "I want to be Supergirl."
It was 1986, the movie Supergirl had probably just gone out in betamax copy and I probably saw it alongside the rest of my family. And I guess it stuck. I wanted to be Supergirl then. Of course, reality sets in thru the years. I realized I wasn't Kryptonian; apparently that's how you get superpowers, and my "what do you want to be" eventually turned practical, like everyone else's.
But the mental bubble of being Supergirl was brought back by Chris' question of the day. If I took failure out of the picture, what would I want to do? I associate failure with losing money, so I turn the question to, "If money were no object, what would I want to do?" and my honest answer is to save the world.
It's amazing how much humankind has progressed in technology, science and art, but not in terms of eliminating poverty, or saving the Earth's resources and biodiversity. The way we've boomed for personal advancement has had detrimental results in so many other aspects of the Gaea and although there are a handful of people working towards awareness and turnaround now... a handful is not enough.
I know in my current state, I can't do much to help. I attended a NAUI Orientation last night and one takeaway I got from the lecture was, you can't help anybody if you can't help yourself first. Knowledge of self-rescue is the first step of the whole saving process, coming even before the knowledge of rescue of others. (Singing Man In The Mirror in my head now.)
I guess that means I have to be Supergirl to myself first, before I start trying to be Supergirl for the world. My first baby step to being Supergirl to me, I think, is my bucket list. My bucket list somehow outlines a few next steps I can personally take to make a bigger impact in how society treats the world we live in. Kind of strange, isn't it? How something initially self-empowering can turn into an outward movement for the broader good.
I guess that's the point of Chris' movement also, in posing the question of the day, and in being the backbone of the art of non-conformity. Inspiration comes in different forms.
With that, I throw the question out to the rest of the world. If you took failure and money out of the picture, what would you want to do with your life? I know everyone's answer will be just as ironically un-selfish as mine turned out to be.