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"Superpower 1: How to Save a Life"

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Written by Pat Curran

Posted on 17 January 2018

Last Updated 17 January 2018

Motivational Message:


We are now starting Week 5 of 12. To review, in May we prepared for our 12-week journeys by creating our individual dream lists with action plans. Then on June 6th (D-Day Anniversary), you started to receive notes from me for how to stay focused, never quit, and begin building a pathway toward your “superpowers” in order to overcome adversity. Last week, as part of the Independence Day holiday, we took pause to recognize some of the risks taken by our Founding Fathers for establishing this great nation 235 years ago. Now today, we jump right back into the topic of how to tap into our superpowers by challenging ourselves to use one of our most basic gifts: Our instincts for how to save a life!


Let me explain…


“Step one you say we need to talk,

He walks you say sit down it’s just a talk.

He smiles politely back at you,

You stare politely right on through.


Some sort of window to your right,

As he goes left you stay right

Between the lines of fear and blame,

And you begin to wonder why you came…


Where did I go wrong, I lost a friend,

Somewhere along in the bitterness.

And I would have stayed up with you all night,

Had I known how to save a life…


“How to Save a Life” by Isaac Slade of the “The Fray

(For video, click here)



When watching this video, it brought me back to some of the most confusing times of my life: being a teenager. It’s that place where the magic of early childhood begins to collide with some of the harshest realities of growing up. And, if someone is not there to see us through this transition, then the odds of losing our innocence, our curiosity, and our compassion at a young age is pretty high.


Now, let’s take a step back and look at the many transition points in our own lives. Does anyone else see a pattern? It seems that without a mentor or set of guiding principles acting as our compass, there are several life milestones that can steal our joy and make it difficult to be happy.


Well, I am pleased to report that there is hope. For some reason, you are continuing to read this message and by doing so, that means that you have enough faith within you to access your first ”superpower.”


Please do 2 things:


1.  Identify 1 person in your life that is closest to you and who is in need of your help. This person should be so close that the thought of losing them makes you feel weak-kneed and queasy!  Don’t over-think this task. It can be your spouse, partner, kids, parents, brother/sister, close friend, or even someone you know as a coach or as a mentor.


2.  Next commit yourself to that individual or small group by dedicating yourself to listening to the nature of their problem(s) and helping them “self-discover” their best way out. Because you love them so much, take responsibility for guiding the relationship rather than letting life’s events get in the way of both of you.


Notice what I did not write. I did not write solve their problem. I also did not write have your precious time wasted. Instead, create an “Adult-Adult Partnership” rather than what I call the “Parent-Child Trap.” Agree to provide them enough security, support, and space to think through their problem without judgment. In return, ensure they agree to take your feedback as insights or something to consider. Keeping their age and safety in mind, maximize their ability to choose for themselves what to do next and clearly pin responsibility for the outcome of their choices directly on them. If safety becomes an issue, then get help! You are committing to a partnership, not to becoming the single source of insights.


This may all seem counter-culture, but this is what you’ll find. As you work through this partnership and achieve milestones over time (months/years), you will start to see something amazing happen. Both of you will develop in your ability to heal. One will learn how to heal themselves as they pass through life’s difficult transitions with confidence and strength. The other, expands their ability to help more people due to an increase in their own self-trust and trust of others. Each becomes increasingly self-reliant rather than increasingly dependent on someone else to provide solutions.


Now some of you reading may say, “Pat, I can’t do this… Their problems are too big. I don’t have time and besides, I need to fix myself first!” If you feel that way, that’s OK. I remember feeling the same way for a few years.  Heck, it's only this year that I actually have the guts (self-trust) to write something like this down for my daughters to reference someday. So, in short, I get it!! Realize that, if you are in this circumstance, then what you are doing by actually being brave enough to dream again and working through an action plan that you created is all that you need to do at this point. Go through this process I am laying out for you through these journals as many times as you need first, until you are ready. All of these notes can be found in the “Pat’s Journal” section at www.freedomslight.org. They are there for my kids, but they are also there for you too, if you need it.


Let me close with this thought… When I was young, I was taught that the Son of God lived among us and did many things to include healing the sick, feeding the hungry, making the blind see, and raising the dead. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve also learned that when you view Christ’s story as a metaphor for us to learn from, you’ll find that all of us, believers and non-believers, have these same gifts as well! Sure we cannot heal with a simple touch of the hand, but we sure can connect with someone close to us through an act of love and kindness. And through this connection, we can, in a way, “heal” people just as Christ did through one’s mind, heart, and spirit.


Don’t underestimate your power to heal someone close to you. Take action today! Have the confidence that you can make a difference. Believe that you know, deep down inside… How to save a life! You can do it, if you choose to make it a long-term priority.


Keep working on those action plans! It’s all starting to pay off already. Trust me on that.  Until next week…


God Bless,





Did this week’s message help you? If yes, here’s an opportunity to help other Great Americas, starting at just $25.

  • Fisher House: To donate, click here
  • Wounded Warrior Project: To donate, click here
  • Children of Fallen Patriots: To donate, click here,
  • Tuesday’s Children   To donate, click here
  • USO’s Operation Care Package  To donate, click here




This Week’s Training Schedule


Bad News / Good News.

On the 4th of July, after doing a 75 min bike and 60 min run in the morning, I decided to “jump” into an Adult Biggest Splash contest at the pool later that afternoon. Actually it was not really a contest as much as it was a fun time for adults jumping off diving boards splashing young kids sitting around the deep end of the pool. The more the kids cheered, the more we splashed them. Bad news was that after about a dozen+ Watermelons, Cannonballs, and Can-Openers, I strained my left knee on my last jump and could not workout for 2 days. The good news is that my girls really got a kick out of seeing their Dad in action, and that I was able to start working out again by Thursday.


Currently, I am back up to where I left off with my swimming and biking. I will try running again this week and see how it goes. Am I disappointed that my knee hurts again: Sure. But the alternative is far worse. I would have been far more disappointed in myself if I chose to live in a bubble out of fear and not shown my girls how the “big kids” play.

Anyway, here’s this week’s workout plan. I’m moving full speed ahead on all areas of my training except for running. With that stated, I will be listening to my knee very closely and am prepared to back things down, if necessary.


If I remember right from last year, this is the week where excelling during workouts becomes redefined as “surviving.” The next 7 weeks ahead are absolutely brutal for me in terms of building endurance. Instead of worrying about speed, I simplify things down even further: It’s me, the finish line, and the space in between. That’s it. Keep moving forward. Just don’t stop! J


Monday: Swim 15 x 100m / Elliptical Runner 30 min

Tuesday: Bike 75 min / Jog no longer than 60 min

Wednesday: Swim 10 x 200m (20 sec rest) / Bike 90 min

Thursday: Swim 16 x 40 m / “The 300 Workout” (modified)

Friday: Bike 3 hours / Jog no more than 20 min 

Saturday: Jog no longer than 90 min on flat terrain

Sunday: Introduction of Soccer to Girls / Swimming