Stage 6 – Tests, Allies, Enemies and Rewards
When confronted with a problem, the last thing that anyone wants to hear is that we need to endure a series of tests in order to learn polar-opposite skills which we will need to resolve our problem! Really?
Take a moment to consider where we are usually tested. Learning environments are the answer: schools, universities, classes, workshops, job interviews, skills-based activities (e.g. driving, carpentry). Tests prove that we have the necessary skills before we can move to the next level. This is how every Hero’s Journey works. In resolving the problem created by the Call to Adventure, each step is a test, only in this case, we will be learning new polar-opposite skills. For example if you avoid conflict, you will need to learn how to face it. If you dominate others, you will need to learn how to collaborate.
Most importantly, the things you try to avoid hold the key to resolving your problem.
Facing them will be a test.
Along the way you will meet people who will support and help: Allies.
But you’ll also encounter those who seem to have it in for you: Enemies. Both are useful to a Hero’s Journey as Allies help when we are tired or encounter a setback. Enemies, as much as we might dislike them, force us to lift our game and better our skills.
Along the way we will also experience Reward. Sometimes this will be a accomplishment like a degree or certificate. Other times it will be a sense of accomplishment, an increase in confidence. A common Reward for many heroes is experienced after finally telling a dominating parent ‘I love you but no!’
- What if all the hassles you were experiencing now were really a test? To respond in a different manner? To learn a new polar-opposite skill?
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