By Jennifer Warner
Rather than letting fear and anxiety restrict your life choices and leave you in a rut, experts say you can look at a midlife crisis as an opportunity for personal growth.
Linda Sapadin, author of Master Your Fears: How to Triumph over Your Worries and Get on with Your Life, recommends these steps for using a midlife crisis to your advantage:
Do one gutsy thing. Do something despite feeling uncomfortable or fearful about it. "That's one way to move outside of your comfort...
For as many songs that have been written about heroes, there have been heroes of sport who have proven themselves on the playing field only to later falter and fall from grace.
Will today's Olympic champion become tomorrow's Ben Johnson? When do sports figures earn the title of hero, and why do we still crave them even when they let us down?
Like the Olympic games, the tradition of regarding sports figures as heroes goes back to ancient Greece. The Greek term for hero literally meant someone who was semi-divine and born from one mortal and one divine parent, and eventually Greek society went on to view sporting champions as "born of the Gods."
But today experts say heroes not only sell newspapers and magazines, they also perform a vital psychological function in helping us cope and come together as a nation and a people.
What Defines a Hero?
"The word hero is used far too freely," says Angie Hobbs, PhD, professor of philosophy at the University of Warwick in England. "All sorts of athletes are called heroes, and then two weeks later they're not.
"Heroism is doing something of outstanding benefit to one's society that most would find impossible to perform, and some athletes do meet that criteria," says Hobbs, who is researching a book on heroism, courage, fame, and the role of sports in creating heroes.
Throughout history, Hobbs says heroes emerged from war and gained their title of hero by sacrificing themselves or risking their lives to save others. But sports allow heroes to emerge in times of peace.
However, in order to be truly heroic, she says athletes have to do more than just show physical prowess on the playing field.
"Only if you have those two components together -- that your society thinks you're doing something of outstanding benefit, plus what you're doing is something most people couldn't offer either through mental ability, physical skill, or quality of character-- then you've got the possibility for heroism," says Hobbs.