Wholeness: The Back Story for Your Superpowers

by | Nov 20, 2011

Recently the Wealth Momentum group played with the notion of superpowers and storytelling. The jumping off point was Superpowers, Storytelling, and Soul Stuff, Fabeku Fatunmise’s presentation for the Self Employment Telesummit.
In his presentation, Fabeku invites you to pretend your business is a superhero. Not like Wonder Woman or Superman, but a superhero uniquely like you. Then, he says, ask what superpower your business has and unpack the wonderful adventure story that goes with it.
It’s a very cool way of getting at the essence of your business.

Your superpower lives inside a story

Your superpower is part of the story you tell yourself about who you are and what you do. Remembering your superpower brings your story to life. It shows you how you can be at your best.
When you forget your superpower, your story goes flat. You lose enthusiasm and confidence. You may start comparing yourself with other people who have different superpowers.
You may find yourself trying to be all things to all people.
At the same time, a superpower can take over your story, operating whether or not it is appropriate. (Remember giggling about Superman being able to see through your clothes?)
When a superpower takes over your story, you become so identified with it that it defines you. You and others expect yourself to be super-powerful all the time, in every situation.
It’s exhausting.

Superpowers can get out of control

As the women in Wealth Momentum explored their superpowers, they realized that sometimes a superpower bites you. For example, the superpower of helping others can devolve into a pattern of rescue and depletion.
Or the superpower of commitment can lock you into situations that no longer serve you or blind you to new opportunities.
Does this mean that your superpower has turned into a super liability? Do you need to turn it off?

There’s a bigger story

The story of your business-as-superhero exists inside a larger story, a story of wholeness.
In the story of wholeness, you are, by definition, sufficient and complete. Your value does not depend on your superpower. Any excesses or deficiencies in your power are merely temporary perturbations of the surface of a deep sea.

Wholeness is your default mode

It’s easy (and perfectly okay) to get caught up in surface stories. After all, that’s where the day-to-day action of life takes place.
And on the surface, it can seem like your default mode is defined by your strengths or weaknesses.
But what if wholeness is your actual default?
What if your strengths and weaknesses are the exception and wholeness the rule?

Make wholeness your back story

An actor creates a back story to fill in a character’s history before the action of a play begins. It’s the story before the story.
There’s always a back story.
I suggest that the back story you are born with is the story of wholeness. That every other story–including the story of your superpowers–is just a partial and temporary expression of your wholeness.

Where you might go with this

The back story of wholeness has the potential to change the future of your business.
Imagine that whatever is going on right now is just one chapter in the context of a greater story. Then play with these questions.
* How have the events of the past year been an expression of your wholeness?
* What needs to be true in order for you to really inhabit the back story of wholeness?
* What possibilities open up when you inhabit that back story?
* What are the natural next steps on the path to those possibilities?
Until next week, be well.
Photo by Tim Malabuyo via Flickr