Validation, or Why HeroPress Exists

I set out to to build HeroPress into something that would help people.  My goal was to help the readers.  Over time it has felt like the contributors are getting more out of it than the readers, and it’s felt like I personally am getting more out of it than anyone.  I get to talk to all the contributors, and I learn not only their stories, but the back story that doesn’t make it into the essays as well.  It’s humbling and sometimes a little spooky to be trusted this much.

I get glimpses of how HeroPress is helping people.  Michelle Schulp and Becky Davis are both recent contributors, and both said that writing was a cathartic experience. This week however I got what feels like the greatest validation yet of what we’re doing here at HeroPress.

Next week’s contributor is Sheeba Abraham.  The person who suggested that she write said “She’s very shy, she probably won’t want to put herself out there like that”.  But I asked anyway. I simply told her that I thought her story could inspire other women, both in India and elsewhere.

The next message I got was that she was almost done with her essay!  I was excited.  I sent her the rules and a few days later she sent me her essay.  It’s great, I’m excited for you to read it. I won’t tell you what made her decide to write, that’s in the essay, but what she got out of her essay pretty much sums up why I do this:

It was just that if you wouldnt have sent the request – i wouldn’t have taken the effort from my end. More than anything – i am so happy that [I wrote an essay]. (Somehow writing all that made me realize that I did something worthwhile)

U made me my own hero :)

That nails it so perfectly.  I don’t want to be her hero.  I don’t want to be anyone’s hero (ok, maybe my wife and little girls).  What good is that?  I can’t really do much for her, and I certainly won’t be around.  I pointed the way for her become HER OWN hero. That’s priceless.  No-one can take that away from her.

And now she’s excited to do the same for other people.