You Are A Super Hero: What’s Your One-Sentence Super Power?


Everybody has a super hero power (or at least I haven’t found anybody yet who doesn’t.)  The funny thing is, not everybody knows what their super hero power is (or at least not off the top of their head.)  The people that know their super hero power and use it, find work more rewarding and they get more rewards.  Why?  Because they are giving their best where they have their best to give.  They stand out.  They go into a flow state more often.  They make more impact because they get leverage and they play to their strengths.

Your One-Liner Super Hero Power
I highly recommend expressing your super hero power as a one-liner.  I like helping people find their one-liner super hero power.  It’s fun to help people unleash their best.  In fact, one of my super powers is, I “make others great.”  Another one is, I “stand on the shoulder’s of giants” or “turn insight into action.”  One of my former manager’s is “take teams from good to great.”  One of my friend’s is “frame and name a problem.”  Another friend has the super power to “innovate at the speed of thought” and “turn ideas into working software.”  I encourage people to use it on their resume.  It makes them stand out.

It’s similar to having a one-liner vision.  For example, I think ITunes is “world’s best music store.”  I think Google’s might be “organize the world’s information.”  I think Starbucks’ might be “world’s best coffee.”  These one-liner tag lines make it really easy to stand out and stick in the hearts and minds of yourself and others.  They are empowering.  They are compelling.  They are simple reminders that give you lift off or get you back on track.

Go From Ordinary to Extraordinary
Which is a better day at work?  Slogging through the day, or mastering your craft while flexing your super hero power?  I look for ways to test my strengths.  I grow more from it.  The more I grow my super power, the more valuable I become.  It’s a self-fulfilling loop and the beauty is working on my super hero power gives me energy.  I can do it all day … and then some.

Finding Your Super Hero Power
You might figure it yourself, but I recommend asking a trusted set of friends, as well.  What do they rely on your for?  What do you do better than anybody else?  For example, one of my friends has a knack for “orchestrating a group.”  He’s like a band leader and he doesn’t even have to try.  It’s wired in him.

Your super hero power might be a blind spot.  Here’s why.  It comes so easy to you, you might not value it.  Or, you might not have thought about it in the context of your current job.  A friend can help you see what you might not see in yourself (remember the Johari Window?)  You might have several super hero powers.  Look for the one that maximizes your passion, profit, and value.

So find it.  Name it.  Have fun with it.  Make your one-liner evocative.  And, when the going gets tough, whip out your super power.  If we all unleash our strengths, it might be just the boost the economy needs.

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Photo by chanchan222.


  1. That would a great exercise for me – to find my one-liner Super Hero Power. I guess it’d help me to stay on track to super results.

  2. Would “live happily ever after now” qualify as a one liner super power? I’m not necessarily all that good at being positive in the present moment YET, but I’m working on it and I think it’s a great reminder for me to live in the moment — whatever that moment is — instead of wanting to be elsewhere.

  3. Very cool concept! You gave me something to think about because I have all kinds of cool super powers! 🙂 I just have to come up with a line that blends them all into very sharp one-liner. Thank you for the awesome idea! 🙂

  4. “I break things.”

    Of course, this is an easily misunderstood superpower. It must be carefully applied to situations where folks are reasonably ready and willing. For example, I’ve been having fun with business models lately.

    A better way of saying it would probably be “I break things and then build them better.” But that officially does not apply to automobiles, lawnmowers or washers and therefore is an overstatement. 🙂


    My powers are super hearing and xray vision, which I use to locate the point of maximum leverage where doing the least accomplishes the most!

  6. Oh this fun, but I will need the help of some other folks I think to identify my one liner…

    Too many words!
    Powerful connector!

    No just doesn’t have it yet…
    Thanks JD for your good ideas and fun spirit today.

    I will read everything you have written when I get home…I promise.
    But for right now I am going walking and walking…

    Thanks for helping with my blog for August 7th – another side of JD 🙂

  7. @ Alik

    Yours is “streamlining solutions” or another variation is “solving system puzzles and automating them.”

    @ Positively Present

    “Living happily ever after now” is great, but if it’s not a strength yet, it might be an aspiration.

    I think the strength you have right now is, you “write from the heart” or you “flow powerful prose.” There’s a lot of value in that and I think writing comes naturally for you.

    @ Nadia

    Maybe “transformation in action” or “unleashing beautiful souls”?

    @ Fred

    I really like that … “I break things and build them better.” That’s evocative and compelling.

    @ Dr. K

    Thank you. I think your super power is “interpersonal know-how” or “interpersonal engineer.” That’s a sweet gift in todays team-based world.

    @ Patricia

    Maybe “change artist in action”?

  8. Ok…this sounds like real fun! I have to admit I don’t have one. I need some time to think. When I read your post, the one that I could recall was from the animation movie Bolt. In the movie, there was a fat hamster by the name of Rhino. He said “I eat danger for breakfast”.

  9. @ Evelyn

    I like that. “Eating danger for breakfast” is a great example — it’s evocative and sticky.

    Something that strikes me about what you do is you “share deep models for a more holistic life.” I’m thinking it’s a mash up of your emotional therapy, soul work, NLP, vision boards. Or maybe it’s, “putting people in touch with their sight beyond sight.” The key to finding a good one is to start testing to see what sticks.

  10. Wow what a fun concept. I am with the others I need time here! I will be back with one !
    Great article-

  11. Hi J.D.
    This is a great idea. I don’t know if it is super power…but I do say, “Imperfect Action is better than No Action.”
    I am going to have to think about it some more.
    Giovanna Garcia

  12. @ BunnygotBlog

    Thank you. Maybe, “Blending business savvy with life?”

    @ Giovanna

    Imperfect Action is better than No Action is a great tag line.

    For your super power, it seems to be “finding a way forward.” I can’t imagine you ever getting stuck. You’ll always pave a new path.

  13. @ Jannie

    I think you have a gift for making people smile, but “write weird songs” is a great distinction, and, right, the world can never have enough.

  14. A little tongue in cheek- but reminds me of Mystery Men a little.

    I’ve been called an “emotional scab picker” by a few, but then to continue to the analogy, there are alot of people who walk around with emotional bullets in them and they don’t seem to think they can remove it.

    So perhaps that’s my super power. A negative turned positive. I’m like “The Spleen” from the movie. Played by Paul Rubens of Pee-Wee Herman fame, the spleen was able to shoot his farts in a particular direction to stun the enemy.

    I’m sure I’ve got a few other “more acceptable” super powers, but I might was well embrace what I got. 🙂


  15. @ Rob

    I guess if you’ve got it, flaunt it. I like to think it’s not the hand your dealt, but how you play it.

  16. […] I’m still thinking about it. J. D. wrote an entry on Source of Insight about the power of knowing your superhero abilities not long after our conversation. Now that’s a generative […]

  17. “Seeker of simple solutions to perplexing puzzling problems”

    I really do like solving puzzles and helping people with them, so I figured a little alliteration gives it an intellectual smirk which is my style in a sense.

  18. I don’t know wether i have super powers or not, but things are always strange around me. One of the wierdest things:

    On a basketball match, my frien, Sarah, had and accident, she got hurt badly at her right foot. After that, I warned 2 friends in the basket ball team, ” Gals, you better becareful or you will end up like Sarah, hahaha.” It was just a joke. But the next day, both of my friends came to school, both of them has an injured foot, the right one.

    The other story:

    I went to America with my mum for a week, so I got one week off from school.I am nearly graduating so it was very rare of me to go. My classmates wished me a safe flight, and I wish them to stay in great health, ” Cause if you guys get ill,i can’tcopy your homework.”Then, I left for America, when i came back, i got the news.Everyone in my class got infected by swineflu.

    Tell me, do i have superpowers or something? it’s creeping me out.

  19. @ Rola

    I find a few common scenarios:
    1. What people believe is true, can often come true (self-fulfilling prophecy.)
    2. Some people are very good at pattern matching and anticipation, which means they tune into likely scenarios.
    3. Sometimes it’s just “dumb luck.”

  20. […] I’m still thinking about it. J. D. wrote an entry on Source of Insight about the power of knowing your superhero abilities not long after our conversation. Now that’s a generative […]

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