What makes a hero?

An engaging 9 minutes video from Phillip Zimbaro on Heroism. He starts by covering neuroscience perspective, but no real answers….

Source: The sceince of Meaningful Life, UCLA, Berkeley

One line that caught my attention the most, from Leadership Development perspective, was ‘ a hero organizes and forms networks’. Cozolino’s study on social neuroscience, mirror neurons and neurosynapsis explains the biological insights on such social behavior. My previous blog Neuroscience for Change Leaders correlates Cozolino’s research with leadership & management.

I think all human beings have the Hero genes. It’s a matter activation, which can only happen through external circumstances. Once it comes into play, regardless of the age, it only grows. Those individuals, who have for once performed a heroic act, often continue to think/feel/act out from the same mindset (forming stronger neural circuitry), be it a world leader, politician, business manager, entrepreneur, art performer, mother or an adolescent.

This brings me back to a famous unanswered question – Can great leaders be trained to perform acts of heroism or are they naturally born to be so? For now, I am more inclined to believe that great leaders are not born as leaders, they are trained to become so, through the experiences of their own life.

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