Our Values Through Our Heroes

Last Update: May 19, 2020

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Kia Ora, from New Zealand Friends and Colleagues

Getting at Our Values

Often, an effective way of understanding our own value set, is to take stock of who our heroes are.

Many of us, may never have thought about who our heroes are, but they will be there in the


We tend to choose, as our heroes, those people who display the characteristics we admire and ourselves aspire to.

It follows then, that this a potential route to identifying and establishing our personal value set.

So if we ask ourselves “who are our heroes?" we can then identify the people who have had a significant impact on the way we think and act, those figures in our life who have deeply affected us for the good, in some way.

Then we can examine, identify and capture the essence of the characteristics of these people. We identify the things that people have stood for, in our own eyes, through their deeds and the quality of their actions?

My Heroes

I have many heroes, but there are two that I look to perennially for inspiration and guidance and they could not be more different. One is very real and personal and the other is fictional and shared with countless millions.

My Fictional Hero

I will go to my fictional hero first; Batman!

Why Batman?

Chiefly, because he is one of the few 'real' superheroes. He has no super powers he is just a very determined individual who maximises his own talents and assets to help others; his strength and athleticism, honed by punishing training, and his inherited riches, applied to technologies, to enhance his effectiveness in crime fighting and protecting the people of Gotham.

But also because he is flawed and frail and we see him being subject to all the things in life that we suffer and experience in our own lives. He is a larger than life, warts and all character who is both inspiring and instructive.

My Real Hero

My real hero is the man who gave me my value set and helped me develop it my whole life.

He was not perfect by any means, he had many of those same flaws that my fictional hero had, but at his core and essence he was a kind, thoughtful man, who adored his family, who was always there for us, provided for us and was always trying to improve himself and the lot of those around him.

He was a great coach and mentor he was a true altruist, always looking to help others, less able to help themselves, and he was a true leader, who led by example through his own behaviours.

We lost my mother, as the result of a brain aneurysm, at the young age of 45 (I was 26) in 1986. He never ever recovered from that loss, it tortured him his whole life, and yet still his true character shone through until his death in 2016 when he truly believed that he was off to be with my Mother.

He was an ordinary but at the same time truly inspirational man; he was my Father.

Do you know who your heroes are and why?

Good afternoon, from New Zealand, friends and colleagues

Kia Koa, Kia Kaha


Recent Comments


Thank you for your post. I agree that we all have our heroes whether fictional or real. I had several people, people of integrity and just plain old grit to make things better for me and this country, the USA. As I became an adult, I admired a man of God, who gave his whole life in service to the Lord in spreading the Gospel, Dr. Billy Graham.

Take care

He had quite a following in the UK as well while I was growing up Charlotte take care🧐

Our heros tend to come in all shapes and sizes don't they Jim and sometimes they appear from nowhere.

I'm not into superhero type magazines and was never interested in Batman or Dr Who and such stuff so I tend to keep an open mind.

Two gentlemen who have come to the fore in the last two years have become heros because of both past and current exploits and they are Mr Harry Billinge and Captain (now Colonel and soon to be Sir) Tom Moore.

94 year old Harry landed on Gold Beach as an 18 year old on June 6th 1944 and has been raising funds by selling poppies in his latter years...


100 year old Tom raised millions of pounds for NHS charities by walking in his garden during lockdown....


I rather like the idea of these stoic gents being heros, certainly my kind anyway!


No doubt that these gentlemen inspire Mark and considerably so🧐

They certainly do Jim!

In my Kline of work characters like that are part of the staple inspiration that we all draw on from our days at Sandhurst through to when we look for examples to inspire those in our command.🧐

At one of the job interviews I attended on leaving the Army I was asked to name three famous people I admired and why.
This was 1990; I answered Nelson Mandela, Margaret Thatcher and John Lennon.

I think it's a great question and have used it as an interviewer many times myself since then, what lies behind the answer is far more revealing than the name given.

Like you Hamish I had a fabulous father who was an inspirational role model and who is sadly missed by many people.

My fictional heroes are Dennis the Menace, Desperate Dan and Sherlock Holmes.

Not much hope for me then!!!


Sherlock is in my mix which by extension means Conan Doyle is 🧐

Perhaps, but not necessarily; I enjoyed a series of books in which the fictional character Harry Cliffton could be considered a decent role model and possibly a hero.

The books were written by Jeffrey Archer whom I admire as an author but wouldn't put him into my mix of heroes.

Just a thought 😃

Superman over Batman and it's not even close. As far as heros there are athletes and musicians I have admired for what they did on the field, court and stages but those people when you get down to it are just people. Some good, some bad and most in the middle like the rest of us.

Of course the military when you hear of extraordinary bravery under fire and the firefighters who rushed into the North Tower of the World Trade Center even after the South Tower had collapsed.

Those people are real life heros but I don't know them personally and as the news of their deeds fade into the past so does the memory of their individual acts of heroism.

For me, and I regret not having felt this way while he was alive was my dad. Sure, most kids idolize their fathers when they are kids but as we grow older we take them for granted.

My dad fought in WWII on a destroyer in the Pacific. He worked at the Exxon refinery for 41 years, often working overtime so he could provide us with a good house in a nice, safe neighborhood and see that my brother and I were educated through college

I didn't appreciate the sacrifices he made until he was gone.

Great answers and at least you now recognise your Dad and that counts for a lot.

Shame you are wrong about Superman over Batman, but we acn’t get everything right Neil LoL🧐

Superman saves the world every day. Batman only saves Gotham City.

But Superman could never exist whereas Batman could, I’m a practical kind of guy..............🧐

The only man who could actually pull off being Batman is Elon Musk and he is already Ironman aka Tony Stark

So I will give you that possibly...... Branson could have been Batman, all the tech and into space eventuates before Musk, less arrogant than Musk, who I agree is a perfect fit for the arrogant arse that Stark is portrayed as by Marvel LoL

I love the way you people say arse. I thought it was just the British.

Oh, that's right
You are British. I keep thinking Kiwi

Born British (Scottish) dual citizen NZ and GB and we Kiwis also say arse as do Aussies LoL🧐

Wonder Woman

Yes you are.........🧐


very beautiful. Great post. unfortunately I lost mine earlier when i still didn't know the meaning of life. Yet his legacy lives in me.

I am sorry for your loss but it is great that you see his legacy in you🧐

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