Some say heroes are born, while others suggest that situational factors play a more important role. Do you think that you have what it takes to step up and be a hero?
According to some research, the answer to that question might depend in part on exactly what kind of heroism we are talking about. When it comes to one-time acts of bravery, like rushing into a burning building to save a child's life, researchers found that heroes really weren't that different from non-heroes. However, they discovered that life-long heroes, such as those who devote their lives to caring for the sick and dying, tended to be more nurturing and empathetic by nature.
While psychology of heroism can be a fascinating topic, it is not particularly well understood. Some psychologists have suggested that there are even ways to teach people how to become heroes, and a number of different "hero characteristics" have been identified. Do you think you have what it takes? Check out some of the common characteristics of heroism to see how well you fit the mold.
Image by Andrew Magill, Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic License