I have always been a fan of DC and Marvel comic books. When I was young, I collected them and now I enjoy watching (most) of the movies. One exception is Green Lantern, arguably one of the worst movies of all time. Any movie that the lead actor publicly makes fun of can’t be that good ?! Although the movie was bad, there are valuable lessons to be learned from the powers of the characters.
Recently, I learned about the “Green Lantern Theory of Presidential Power”. Before going further, I want to be clear that this is not a rant about our current situation, good or bad. The term, coined by Dartmouth political scientist Brendan Nyhan, describes it as “the belief that the president can achieve any political or policy objective if only he tries hard enough or uses the right tactics.”
It seems logical that one of the most powerful people in the world should be able to use all the tools available to get something done. It’s a good thought. However, it is flawed since even the President is limited by the checks and balances our forefathers built into the system to prevent one single person from having absolute, unchecked authority. Our forefathers were smart ?.
Some background for those of you who do not follow comics: The Green Lantern Corps is a fictional, intergalactic peacekeeping entity in the DC comics universe. Each member of the Corps has a power ring capable of creating energy projections of almost unlimited power. The only constraint is the willpower and imagination of the ring’s wearer. In other words, the wearer is his own limitation.
Political limitations aside, if you apply the Green Lantern’s superpowers to our lives, think of how much we can accomplish. Like the ring, our minds can do almost anything if we don’t limit ourselves with our own beliefs and self-doubts or those placed on us by others, which is even worse. I wonder, why do we limit ourselves? Why do we say “I can’t do that” without even trying first? What are we afraid of? What would happen if we chose to dream big?
“The only limit is the one you set yourself.”– Felix Baumgartner
What if we set aside our self-imposed limitations and see what we can accomplish this weekend?
Have a great weekend.