On hearing the death of Stan Lee, I reminisced through my drawings of comic book characters and my first business earnings when I was 12 years old from my drawings. I recall, spending days and nights, hours together perfecting the pencil sketch of Silver Surfer, I had not only drawn, but coloured and made it into a poster, that I happened to sell at $10. As an entrepreneur now, it is exciting to be reassured that when you are passionate about your talent and purpose, the universe as a way of working in your favour, if you continue to work diligently and give your best.
In retrospect, comic books have played an important role in building my worldview. However, as a young boy collecting comics, I didn’t think much of the author, but later in life, as I understand the meaning of leadership and influence, vision and mission, purpose and significance, growth and success, character and attitude, ethics and values, I realize the magnitude of impact one person’s imagination as created on the world. Stan Lee as a person, and his work is a raw inspiration for me.
Living in the USA as a coloured teenager during the 90s wasn’t easy, guess that is why I could connect with the X-Men comics. The stories and the art work drew me more and more into the world of comics. The stories of how being different is misunderstood and feared by others, resonated well with me. Looking back, I feel, the X-men comic book had a great impact on how I see, feel and experience people now, with LOVE and GRACE.
As a life and leadership coach, the ability to Love and be gracious to people is the bedrock of my practice, because coaching is a safe and non-judgmental space where the person can be true to themselves for finding clarity.
One quote that makes a lot of sense to me in my mission to help people celebrate life is, ‘with great power comes great responsibility’. I believe each one of us have immense potential to contribute in shaping the world. However, we are regulated by the illusion that we are victims of our circumstances and become complacent with mediocrity, hence, it is about surviving and not about thriving.
Peter Parker, started his journey as Spiderman fighting in the fight club, so he can make quick money for his lifestyle. At that moment, that is all he was able to conceive to do with his ‘Great Powers’. And we know Spiderman went on to become an icon of responsibility and character because he embraced his true potential for greatness.
In my practice as a coach, I have noticed that people exponentially grow and contribute to themselves and the world, the moment they recognize how they are undervaluing and limiting themselves from greatness. And how they have been operating only on a survival model of paying for a lifestyle. At one point, I personally was a victim to it, I succumb to mediocrity and was okay with just surviving. Fortunately, I have good role models, mentors and coaches that helped me realize the greatness in me and continue to give impetus to my journey.
Drawing brings a sense of satisfaction and excitement in me, because it is raw expression of internal talent. It feels like I have carried something beautiful into the world. It makes me feel I am part of something beyond myself. I guess that is why I choose HR as a profession, and ‘developing people’ as a passion. So I can draw strategies, interventions and plans that will make the life people more engaging, positive and fulfilling.
With my leadership and life coaching practice I help people find their way and help people make the best decision at any crossed road in their life. In my coaching partnership, I feel like a co-artist designing my client’s life, and when they have exponential success or dramatic self-realization or massive impact on the world, I experience the same feeling of excitement that I get when I draw.
I offer my tribute to Stan Lee for being courageous to let his imagination run freely, and push boundaries in storytelling and creating comic characters with substance that not only entertain but empower people to thrive.