I wish I was a hacker.


I literally used to (and still do) day-dream about being a famous ethical hacker.

I sort of was one a long time ago.

In high school, I was able to gain access to the Novell security systems used by the school computers.  I was also in a special Cisco class where they taught us to create, modify, and break-in to computer networks.

So I was able to hack into routers, gain teacher access to school computers, and do this totally anonymously.

But I never used these nerdy superpowers to hurt anyone or be malicious.  In fact, I used to HELP school administrators clean up the servers from kids putting weird videos and such on the servers….or help with issues they would have.

When I day-dream, I think of telling people at a dinner party, “Me? I’m a hacker.  But an ETHICAL hacker! I go to big organizations like NASA, GE, Facebook, Google and try to hack into their systems.  Then when I find a vulnerability, I tell them, and they pay me to help fix it!”

I imagine myself making millions of dollars by ethically hacking into these systems.
“Oh yeah, I found a loophole that would give me access to any Gmail account on Google, and showed Google how to fix it….they paid me $900,000 for a one-day consultation”

I dunno….it just sounds so damn COOL to me.

But alas that’s not my skill anymore.  I can’t program anymore, and realized in college I was WAY behind the curve in the world of computer programmers (in fact I got kicked out of the computer science program at UT in my first year there because I was SO sucky compared to others)!

So my ambitions of being a super-hero hacker fell through because:
1.) I suck at it….
2.) I’m not willing to put forth the effort to become one….
3.) I don’t really enjoy programing all that much, I just like the “idea” of it.

But….something happened later in life around college where I discovered another super-power:

Writing stuff, doing experiments, and reporting about them in a weird enough way to keep people interested.

It sort of came naturally and by accident.

Like….it was super easy to know what would be more interesting to others….which was the exact opposite of programming which was hard an un-intuitive to me.

This was a Facebook post I saw from Michael Fishman which demonstrated this perfectly:

Wow!  Well said Michael!  :::gives standing ovation:::

When I made the KopywritingKourse, it just performed well, people learned, and subsequently lots of people made lots of money from what they learned in that course.

It was easy.  It flowed.  it was FUN.  It was natural.

My superpower had been exposed!

Neville Medhora

P.S.  I ‘m physically sending out five NevBox’s for this post…..just leave a comment on the post letting me know if you have a “super power”….even if it’s kinda dumb, and I might be shipping you a NevBox in the mail!  Would love to hear your superpower.  I read every comment.  (btw, you can’t buy NevBox’s anymore, and if you could, they would cost $97 each…so leave a comment below to enter to win)!

P.P.S.  There’s a maid in my hotel room right now making the bed and cleaning stuff while I sit here and type….am I supposed to tip her??

Blog posted on: September 1, 2013

230 comments on “superpowers

  1. Carter

    No, you’re not supposed to tip her. She might even get in trouble for that.

    I’m a software dev, but I don’t think that’s the thing that comes easiest to me, unfortunately.

    Humor, storytelling, and listening/giving-advice are all really natural for me (even though I might not actually be all that funny…).

    Already have a NevBox, so pass on the good stuff!

      1. SK

        Exactly, you think you’re not funny but other people think you are. That’s the point of this article.

        (Thanks Robin!, I almost gave up.)

        1. Robin Williams

          No problem SK, you’re so close to completing them all, just wanted to support you all the way! :-)

          Carter, you stay true to your humour, rest assured the people who enjoy what you do, are the right people to be around!
          Sorry to hijack your reply section, by the way! :-)

  2. Jason

    If A Super Power Is What Comes Easy, Then My Power Is Condensing And Explaining Things.

    As For The Maid, Just The Tip…

  3. Siobhan

    My super power is writing stuff that people like and having them roll around in the awesomeness. Speak of awesomeness, I want an awesome NevBox! Neville…please!

  4. Sean

    I guess my super power is helping out a small local cafe, small pet store and friends trying to start their own thing with their marketing without spending really anything but a bit of time. I like hearing their ideas and working with them to create creative solutions that get them excited and some positive results. And honestly I have you and Appsumo to thank! Thanks!

  5. Joel

    This is a great point about not being able to see your own strengths. When something comes easily to you, it’s kind of weird to think of it as a superpower…

    The first thing that comes to mind for me is “problem solving when there is no obvious answer (and usually a tight budget).” This takes the form of things resulting in “quirky animated video to explain something new” to “if we hack together these pieces of new technology, we might be able to make it do this…”

  6. Fernando

    My superpower is the ability to freestyle over any instrumental as well as make hip hop instrumentals. My friend tells me all the time to become a rapper but I kind of nod my head to avoid the awkward “nah it’s not my thing”. It’s funny because my friend tells me he’s jealous of the fact it comes easy to me and its a shame I don’t do anything with that talent. He has vivid stories of how fun it would be if I just did for the hell of it.

    Ps. A Nevbox would be nice, just sayin’ !

    1. SK

      What if you do it under a pseudonym? I have 3 tracks that are sitting in my hard drive and I am too shy to do anything with it. Maybe I’ll use a pseudonym too.

  7. Mike Bugslayer

    My actual superpower is “teaching”. I’m really good in giving lessons. I started with teaching basic computer skills to my mum, than I was giving lessons from English and maths, through physics and programming.

  8. Jacqueline

    People are SUPER interested in what it takes to write a song and they really think it’s a superpower.

    Some of my friends have seen the process of how I write and then record and sing a song and it’s so cool to see their faces, cause every single time they smile in disbelief and my coolness factor goes up!

    It’s pretty awesome.

    I guess that’s the same way people look at you regarding your kopywriting!

    It’s a bit of a gift and creative prowess, but it also takes practice and can be learned.


      1. Jacqueline

        hey SK, thanks, nice to hear you liked it!

        When I started is kinda a hard question to answer… same with when I started singing :)

        First complete song that ended up getting recorded was in 2006 I think, but been making my melodies and writing lyrics since 1996 probably.

  9. Isabelle

    Awesome, Neville! I see a superpower a mix of being naturally good at something AND doing the work. You’ve written before about how you really immersed yourself in copywriting. Copywriting is easy for you NOW, but even if you were a natural, it wouldn’t be easy unless you’d done the work, too :)

    My on-duty superpower is to turn ideas into big picture-visions and then plans. My off-duty superpower is to whip up dinner in no time when confronted with an almost empty fridge and cupboard – very useful!

    [Is this where insert a call to action? SEND ME A NEVBOX ;)]

  10. Andrea

    I honestly didn’t expect to see you as a hacker!
    But we can all say that you are STILL an Hacker, why?

    You continually hack things!
    Party (How to crush a party)
    Money making

    This is your style and deep in your heart, Nev, you know that your superpower is
    Hacking things :D

    BTW what is MY superpower?
    Well… I would say 2 things.
    1. As a developer I can find bugs and solve them without even knowing the programming language sometimes, this is because “I can search google better than google” :D

    2. Since I am not able to remember things I usually put up systems to avoid memory overwork. And the systems do work.
    I am kinda like Memento (Great movie btw).

    PS: I don’t expect to win a nev box because I live in italy and you might die of shipment costs but still commented cause I love superpowers!

    1. SK

      Those 2 skills seem pretty interesting.

      How do you search google better than google?
      – DO you have an article on it anywhere?

  11. Andry

    My superpower is to deliver happiness. I stole the concept from Zappos, create a personal development company and helped thousands of people to achieve personal excellence in my country. Trust me, I’m lovin every minute of it. Especially when someone came, shook your hand and give thanks that I personally have made a difference and change his/her life. It’s a priceless kodak moment..

    Curious with what’s on the NevBox though.. probably I could use it up to a good use for me and other people.. ;)

    Anyway, thanks for the article for letting me feel awesome. You rock Nev!

    1. Sascha

      Oh wow Andry, your post almost made me cry.
      I wont stop believing to find someone like you (hopefully soon) that “helps” me put my vision into reality?!
      Take good care, and yes Neville rocks most definitely!! Kind regards, Sascha

  12. Josh

    My superpower is to spot grammar mistakes in people’s speech. I lose friends when I do this too often. By the way I love your new blog design.

  13. liz alton

    Love this, Neville. I think you also have a superpower for making all things kopy highly relatable.

    My superpower is getting people to talk about what they really want and then catalyzing plans to get it done. Its in no way related to how I pay the bills, but I always regularly have meetings about this issue with friends, colleagues, and random referrals.

    1. SK

      “then catalyzing plans to get it done” – this is where I fail. I usually get people to start talking about what they want, but trying to get them to start is a whole other superpower.

      Teach Me.

  14. Razwana

    My superpower? I believe I have two.

    First, I am great at creating and building relationships (for networking, work, friends). People ask me all the time on how they can meet new people, or introduce themselves to so n so.

    And second, I can write about (what I think are) mundane life experiences in an entertaining way that readers can relate to.

    And as for the tipping – tip her if you feel like it, and don’t if you don’t.

  15. Peter

    My super power is remaining calm in emergency, highly emotionally charged situations. When everyone around loses and get’s caught up in a panic, I some how have this laser focus on getting control of the situation.

  16. Clark

    My super power is consuming massive amounts of data and then being able to crystallize all of it into written sparkling cocktails of useful information.

    Apparently I’m also fantastic at picking the right place to learn Kopywriting. ;D

    1. SK

      Did you learn this skill or did it come naturally for you?

      If I wanted to be able to consume massive amounts of data and summarise it perfectly, what should I practice doing?

  17. Don The Idea Guy

    I possess creative powers beyond those of mere mortals! My super power has always been the ability to come up with more ideas than anyone else. A client once called their Idea Guy and the name stuck (and my alter ego was born.)

  18. Tass Skoudros

    Thanks Nev you are damn right your course has made me a much better writer.

    My superpower is programming. I can program in many programming languages (i.e Languages like Ruby, Python, PHP, Erlang, Javascript, C++ and finally my favourite C) plus I can learn new languages in hours and days. I can hack networks and build servers from source code.

    And like you I dream of the day when I can write influential Kopy.

  19. Eric

    My super power is to quickly deconstruct people’s argumentative points to identify the foundation of their case…aka I’m good at cutting through the bullshit.

    Also I make great jokes while golfing.

    I travel almost every week for work, and I always leave a tip for the maid if I don’t put up my ‘do not disturb’ sign so that he/she comes to clean. They get paid minimum wage, or less if it is under the table…contribute to a living wage for her or put up your DND sign if you don’t want to tip.

    PS- I already have a NevBox :)

  20. Vicky

    My superpower, as silly as it may sound, is finding anything on Google. And no, it’s not a common superpower. It takes me seconds, when others have given up.
    And a second on may be reorganizing projects, budgets, or whatever has many elements reaching towards a goal and something changes big time. Like: “I needed that for next month, but now I need it for tomorrow, how can we do this?” I’m pretty good at that too…

    As for the maid, I don’t think you need to tip her, but if you’re feeling weird about not doing it, it’s just a couple of bucks…

  21. David G.

    No you don’t have to tip her unless she came in wearing one of those little naughty maid outfits.

    Don’t feel bad that you forgot how to program all I ever learned is how to use the “print” function in Python.

    As far as my superpowers go I guess I’m a jack of all trades master of none type. I like to help people succeed, sometimes to the detriment of my own success.

    I recently started down the path of affiliate marketing, so a NevBox might be very useful. I started out as a journalism major in college but I soon found out my professors didn’t like the way I wrote, they said my writing style wasn’t interesting enough.

    I was rambling again wasn’t I, I’ll stop here. :-/

  22. Robin Williams

    When I was studying illustration, I remember vividly being in AWE of my tutor – who, if you gave him a blank piece of paper and a pen, could create amazing images seemingly out of no-where!

    But to him it was second nature… kind of like breathing.

    Now I am all grown up, I have kids of my own. When I am sat drawing next to my son (who is 6yrs old) I see the same look of AWE and WONDERMENT in his eyes – as I take a piece of blank paper and sketch something out in front of him!

    To me it has become second nature… kind of like breathing.

    He says “My daddy has Super-Drawing Powers!”
    I tell him that one day he too will have super powers of his own and that he can create anything he wants to as he grows up, which makes him really happy. :-)

    I guess when viewed from a different perspective, anything which seems out of reach to many people can be seen as a super-power to others.

    For example …

    In a world full of INDESTRUCTIBLE SUPERMEN – the one person who can feel pain, and bleeds when cut – is the one seen as possessing the super-power (those abilities outside of the norm).

    Thanks for the post, it’s got me remembering loads of great experiences in my life which took me from being a novice to becoming skilled in what I do for my dayjob!

    Best regards, Robin

    P.S. Maybe your real super-power is the ability to start conversations between people around the world (I’m in the UK).

      1. Robin Williams

        Thanks Rodger, though people will now think we’re related as we share such a great surname! :-) I can’t wait to see what my children’s ‘Super-Powers’ will be ( I just hope they use them for good).

      1. Robin Williams

        Thanks, SK, though many of my friends said it made me look older! :-)
        P.S. I think your commenting deserves a superpower! Good luck, hope you get to comment on the whole list, keep up the busy work.

  23. Jeff

    My super power is to make the days pass in a blink of an eye. Usually following a twisted path in YouTube or reddit.

    As for the maid, don’t tip. But I have seen some interesting websites that start this way.

  24. Allen

    I used to be an actual hacker…or at least the lame kind that did IT audit. After I retired from that I found a similar phenomenon. What seems extremely obvious or black and white to me, is rocket surgery to others. Eventually I kind of fell into advising people on how to build better websites, get traffic, etc. Having spent way to much time on the internets learning every random thing I could, certain things about the web or marketing in general became intuitive.
    Learning followed a similar path. I found that I could learn to do something at a level higher than a mediocre professional (usually a small town local) very fast. So I picked up photography, I’d design DVD covers, shoot video, outline content, etc. Anything that needs done I could learn from the best few guys on the web and beat anyone in my industry who were just average or have lower standards. I see some of my work as only ok because I’m more aware of how good the best really are. To everyone else I’m some sort of shaman..

    1. SK

      Is it because you work more or is it because you’re more curious than the other guys about your craft? (besides having higher standards)

  25. Fernando Altamirano

    I am a manager (owner) of an Internet Magazine devoted to Squash, I receive notes from my people (around the world), here is where I have this superpower, I take non structured scripts (sometimes just a few words) and change them into readable and interesting news.
    Fernando Altamirano

  26. Eve

    My super power is to be able to verbally influence people to join me, sign, enroll, buy WHATEVER I’m most passionate about at the moment. My copywriting SUCKS, but in a setting where I can talk until I’m blue in the face, and I’m talking about a product/movement/whatever, I can successfully influence people to join me 90% of the time. I guess it’s a nice way to say I’m a SUPER salesman (ONLY promote ethical offers and things that I truly believe will be really good for my prospects!) AND omg I would LOVE, LOVE, LOVE a Nev Box!!

    1. SK

      Maybe you should record your sales Pitches and transcribe them.

      That would be your perfect copy.

      I’ve heard that professional copywriters do it with their clients too i.e. Record their clients talking about their products (without them noticing) and transcribing their pitch (with some cleaning up), then charging them thousands of dollars.

  27. Craig

    Being an efficient WordPress developer would be one of my main superpowers, along with my ability to get sites ranked. That, and perhaps my golden pipes, as in…singing voice. :)

    Great post!

  28. denny

    My “super-power” is the abilities, to build good relationships with students, mentor teachers in classroom management techniques and re-interpret math so that it makes sense to each student. I do this all without attending a single college course related to education. I am a Stealth Teacher. A Teacher’s Ninja.

  29. JP

    My super power is talking to others about getting in shape and nutrition. It’s one of those things I have always been passionate about and enjoying helping others with. When the subject comes up about doing their first 5k or marathons, ironmans, or simply losing weight, I get all giddy and can’t wait to talk to them and see if there is anything I can offer my opinion on.

    You better tip her!!!

  30. Adam Sommer

    Great post Neville, it was very timely for me. I’ve been trying for the last year to change careers and own my own business, and have had a hard time figuring out what I should be doing. Currently I am a systems/network administrator and have some programming skills. 5 months ago I became a father and last night my wife was telling me how nurturing a dad I am, which is naturally a very nice thing to hear, and that I should find a way to help other fathers be more nurturing.

    I haven’t thought much about it, but maybe that’s my super power. Thanks again for the post.

    Party On!

  31. Alfred

    My superpower is giving advice on anything and everything. Its one of the weirdest things. People just come to me to unload their problems (even my former boss come to me from time to time…seriously).
    So, I sit, listen, make fun of them for feeling that way (sometimes…lol), and give my suggestions.

  32. Dividendium

    Too cool! I gave a speech at Toastmasters not too long ago called “Your Superpower”. The gist was that a Toastmaster’s superpower is the ability to put yourself in uncomfortable situations that cause you to grow.

    I’m also damn good at giving feedback. :)

  33. Dave (Toothbrush Guy)

    Well, Neville,

    I can sell toothbrushes like no-other. All because I took a new and different approach to it and I’m not actually selling toothbrushes to people, I’m selling convenience.

    I’m pretty good at wearing sandals and socks as well.


      1. Sascha

        Thanks Neville for the link to the video, I´ll watch it when I´m though with these great comments! Have a great day, kind regards, Sascha
        P.S.: I “love” Tim Ferriss and he brought me to you guys, years ago.
        Thank you for all your love

    1. Sascha

      Hey Dave, what a great business you are running!!!
      You´re shop is looking amazing.
      Absolutely admireable, I wish you lot´s of success with that and that you make good living out of it. Best regards, Sascha from Germany

  34. Chris

    My superpower is that I am patient. I’ve worked with children for over a decade now. I am currently teaching English kids in Taiwan. Still enjoying it! Patience with people is key especially when regards to learning.

  35. Nate

    My superpower, one I’ve never been able to earn money from, is to work with actors to create characters (define posture, voice, breath, gesture, breakdown scenes, etc). Then again, I haven’t tried hard enough.

    1. SK

      Quick question: When you create characters, are you able to create a permanent characters?

      Like…… when method actors learn their characters, how much does it change them?

      Have you seen your students being influenced by the characters they play?

  36. Ben

    My superpower is my self control and my attitude. Almost nothing bothers me, so my stress levels are near zero. It can be blessing and a curse though because I’m easily complacent and give off the vibe that I don’t care. I do well in high pressure situations though.

    Also, I’m baller at FIFA.

    1. SK

      I need to learn this man. I am the opposite, I get anxious and get sick (seriously) over the smallest things.

      Can’t play any form football (I mean soccer) either.

      Seems like you’re winning.

  37. Dave

    I like this idea of super powers. I’ve always thought that most people have some amazing power of their own.

    One of my sons is incredibly perceptive (He can actually call heads or tails correctly by watching how many times a coin flips). My other son is super tenacious and has turned this into a fantastic financial success in business. My wife can guess prices, even of whole shopping carts, with uncanny accuracy.

    This is just 3 examples, but I’ve seen a power in almost everyone I’ve thought of.

    My power seems to be the ability to conceptualize the big picture, to understand underlying principles. It may come from having the worst memory and the slowest brain in the world and thus needing to conceptualize basic principles as a memory aid.

    My father had a photographic memory and an extremely quick mind, and it wasn’t until I was 21 that a girlfriend got fed up with my inferiority complex and said to me, “You’re not your father and you never will be!”

    That’s when I realized that I had my very own powers; powers that not even my father had. I wasn’t a fast thinker but a deep thinker. I was a ponderer. This led me to a successful career as a mechanical engineer (retired now) because I was better than most at distilling the problem down to the basic questions. Once you ask the right questions, the solutions often became obvious.

    My slow thinking also meant I was a terrible reader. Reading took so long because I’d lose concentration and my mind would start wandering. But with my ability to conceptualize and discover the real problem, I found that the key was not pushing my speed, but thinking of larger ideas at a time. That is reading whole phrases instead of the individual words.

    I then designed an algorithm that could parse any text into actual meaningful phrases and tested it on myself. I found reading whole phrases like this, not only improved my reading speed but also my comprehension and focus.

    I made this program available for free as and was soon contacted by the author of Speed Reading for Dummies.

    This man was actually a friend and early collaborator with the famous Evelyn Wood, so I was quite proud when he told me on several occasions that he considered my theories on reading to be breakthroughs in the field. He’d say, “Do you know what it’s like to be looking all your life for the answer to a question, and then someone just tells you?”

    I’m telling this story about me because I think it could be helpful to others. Many people are probably like I was, feeling they were somehow inferior; but actually just not seeing their real super powers.

    Finding your own special power is the key to so much happiness in life. And recognizing others’ super powers is the key to finding the real beauty in a lot of people.

    1. SK

      Wow this is such an interesting story.

      I’m currently a scientific researcher and am trying to learn ways to find ways to increase my understanding of certain subjects.

      Just signed up to your course.

      Have you read Kahneman’s Thinking Fast and Slow?

      1. Dave

        Thanks. No, I haven’t read that book yet but I just sent a sample to my Kindle since you reminded me. BTW, I would be interested to know what you, as someone who is scientifically inclined, think of the ReadSpeeder method.

  38. Eric Zentner

    My superpower is that i can illustrate ideas well visually… so.. i can draw “good”. I’ve always enjoyed it and even have a degree in animation, although i’m currently working as a designer. So i use it on a regular basis for sketching out ideas, but i’ve always wondered if i could do more with it….

    …also, i don’t mean to brag but i’m PRETTY good at Scrambled Eggs.

    1. SK

      Maybe you could make an “Illustrated guide to making the Perfect Valentine’s Day scrambled eggs”, and release it sometime in February.

  39. AC

    I’m a great strategic thinker – big picture stuff – particularly on my field of the retail world.

    My kyriptonite? The details! Can’f focus on the details. I live in the clouds and when I’m taken below 30,000 ft. I tend to struggle, not for lack of trying but mostly lack of interest!

  40. Tyler

    I discovered my super power is helping other people with their job interview skills. After “hacking” my own interview for my dream job as a firefighter, I started helping other people with their interview skills and resumes. I’ve helped dozens of guys get hired with their dream job and its very rewarding to pay it back.

  41. Mark

    Funny. I have a similar story. I had a hosting company in high school (03-05) ..I was the webmaster and my friend (who was a pretty good hacker at the time and still is) did a lot of the programming, and we both brought in business together.

    During that time I could break into school computers, change grades, make lots of windows appear to piss people off and generally cause chaos (I wasn’t that ethical) ..I actually got kicked out of my programming class and put into weight training for hacking into my teachers computer. Soon after that I got a girlfriend and stopped galavanting with computers for the most part and I fell behind technology as things rapidly became more innovative. I was somewhat okay with that (even though I wish I could hash out lines of code when I have an idea) because I wasn’t passionate about programming like my friend.

    He does IB now, but on the side he hacks into computer systems, and yes, charges consulting fees to fix their vulnerabilities. Mostly universities, but he’s done some government consulting. Me, I am still more on the creative side, I make music and work in the corporate strategy department for a bank, lots of high-level thinking but my edge is that I don’t mind mucking around in the details, its easy for me to travel up and down in my mind.

    This ability lends a hand to my superpower, which is data analysis, I come up with random facts from large amounts of data to show people in an interesting way. At work and leisurely. I’m decent with numbers and I have a natural ability to flow through lines of data, taking it apart and piecing it together to show it off in a very simple manner. I think this is due to the fact that I can think at a reasonably high-level and a more detailed level without an issue, ego-wise and because I think its a better way to think. Not sure how this turned into a couple paragraphs of text but hey! Thanks for reading!

    Also, my entrepreneurial mind is still very much alive, your blog has helped me to stop being such a wantrepreneur and now I am moving toward getting more shit done.


    1. SK

      Could you work with your IB friend on the IT vulnerabilities project and use your data analytics + storytelling skills to make it into a better service?

      1+1 =10

  42. John

    If you’ve stayed more than a couple days and you’ve asked for full service (I.E. you didn’t hang your do not disturb/no service sign), then it’s good to tip the day of your departure. Otherwise skip it.
    My special power is finding and consuming massive amounts of “good” info so that my friends don’t have to. Hate your email in-box overload? I’d tell you try sanebox. Looking for interesting/PRACTICAL travel hacks from some one who’s ACTUALLY done it? Try Art of Non-Conformity ( he’s visited literally every country)Yes I use both and no they don’t pay me :-)

    1. SK

      Maybe you should write a 9-page guide called
      “John’s Kicking Ass guide” with the your FAQs.

      Actually that’s what I think most of us should do.

  43. Gregg

    Hmmm, never thought of it. I’m going with two super powers: My cool one is making people laugh, it just happens when I talk. They could be laughing at me and not what I’m saying, but I don’t care. If they’re laughing that’s cool.

    My useful one is solving business accounting and tax problems…bizarrely enough I enjoy it. Huh, that is odd, even I don’t quite understand that.

    1. SK

      I really wish someone did a course called

      “An Accountant’s guide to Cooking” (you know what I mean)

      I would buy that shit

  44. William Herrera

    In some ways I’ve had a similar experience. I’m an IT guy and pretty successful. For long time I was always “the smartest guy in the room”. (or had everyone convinced I was). It wasn’t until much later in my life when I really realized I wasn’t (went from small pond to a big pond). Heck even recently I just met a couple of Super Creatives working on a project for Art Basel and I gave them an idea (they are stuck on what they were going to do) and they ran with it. It was almost like a dream, here I am sitting in the car talking to this totally HAWT chick about emergent systems, language as function of neuro-Biology and whole host of cool nerdy subjects. I then quickly realized (again) that I was out of my depth- my knowledgebase was wide but not deep and I couldn’t keep up. I was in the company of people who were a lot smarter than me, *and younger and prettier and hipper). But even with all that It was my idea that that inspired them. What does this have to do with my Super power? Well it boils down to ideas and catalysts. My super power is being a force multiplier- a +1 one to all skills to put it in DnD Terms. Like that BASF commercial; I don’t make the awesome things, I help other people make things awesome. I use my ideas insights and personality help others do great. I have a hard time applying it to myself- (which is why I follow your blog) Yeah I’m wantrepenuer following on the sidelines, I can’t seem to make that wild success happen for me. But put me in group and I can help make others succeed. If was a comic book character I would be called – “The Enabler” LOL

  45. Andrew

    As someone else said , I am good at directing people to the right source of information (app, service,website). I wouldn’t call it a superpower but I am good at absorbing info from YouTube vids and articles I read.

  46. Kendra Kinnison

    My superpower is helping people tweak their habits to get unstuck and live better lives. In a conversation, I’m usually able to ask questions and help them see what limiting habit is holding them back or what positive habit would propel them forward.

    You should totally tip the maid. A two word thank you note would also make her day. It’s a tough and often thankless job.

  47. Yael Grauer

    You know, I always thought my superpower was making complex material accessible, and translating it for normal people… or “liberating information,” as I’ve been calling it.

    But the more I think about it, the more I think it’s something entirely different. I am sort of a natural whistleblower. I am really really good at holding people accountable for bullshit. Most recently, I was the person who went and complained about the creepy guy making everyone uncomfortable at improv while everyone else was just ignoring it. I also sat a friend down and politely told him the effects of some of his comments on others–he actually decided it was worth it but was glad to have that extra perspective/insight. And in some ways even my workshop (teaching startups how to do better PR) was about calling out an industry on ineffective/annoying behavior.

    Something I’ve been thinking about a bit lately…

  48. Dustin

    My superpower is that I can predict what people say and understand them even when they don’t complete their thoughts. For example, my brother does a horrible mumble thing and most people have to ask him to repeat himself (no exaggeration) 5 or 6 times. I’m like his mumble translator.

    And about the maid thing…I was in the same situation as yours the other day and didn’t know what to do. Any tips would be appreciated. ;)

  49. Alex

    I work as an electrician. Clients and people I work with are always amazed at the ease that I solve electrical problems. Apparently tracking down the component that has gone faulty is a difficult task, but it has always been second nature for me.

  50. Slav

    My superpower is… being awesome. Anything I do, I’m awesome at, breathing, walking, living. It all comes easy. And if it doesn’t, it’s just because my awesomeness haven’t kicked in yet. But soon, very soon, the awesomeness power reaches max level and it becomes super easy.

  51. John

    My superpower is understanding complex problems and situations. It really helped in my ex-career of building automation.

    Architects and engineers were always baffled that a kid in his twenties could not only understand and implement that kind of stuff, but do an entire install on building by himself.

  52. J.h.

    I have the power to turn any good idea into a bad idea.

    Some times i have the ability to turn them back into good ideas, but very rarely.

    If you send me a Nev box, it would be like lighting a bottle rocket and tossing it up into the sky.

  53. Greg

    I guess I believe that there is always a better way of organizing our built environment for “ease” of living.

    So my super power is organizing, decluttering and designing living spaces.

    In fact, it is next to impossible for me NOT to make suggestions to friends about how to organize their homes.

  54. Alfred

    Do you think everyone has a superpower? Maybe some of us just have a lot of smaller powers that aren’t really “super” but at least give some exposure to different sources of knowledge. I’m good at cooking, but not a chef. I also like learning in general. Am I good at learning? Some things, I guess. But I don’t know enough to be an expert. I just wonder if some of us are more suited to things not seen as “great” by society but ok in their own right.

    And tip her :)

    1. SK

      learning and cooking are superpowers.

      that was the point of the article.

      Your superpowers are the things that you think are not valuable to society.

      But in fact they are.

  55. Owen

    I have several “superpowers”, as you call them:

    1. I establish rapport with total strangers with exceeding ease, then somehow offer them emotional healing. It is not uncommon for me to walk into a restaurant alone, only to end dinner with one or more waitstaff sitting at the table with me, telling me about their personal lives. Similarly, I saw a psychologist for several sessions as a teenager, during which he began to confide more & more in me about his struggles with his similarly-aged son, and as an adult, I saw a counselor who has since referred other people to me to facilitate their healing and emotional recovery – just as a friend. And despite my own curious theology, I have managed to help many faithful people from several religions as well as several atheists to navigate crises of faith and existential terror. I’ve been told I have uncommon insight into how God must see things – again, despite my own theology not supporting the notion of a perceiving, opinionated God.
    2. I think holographically, constructing multidimensional models of paradigms, problems, circumstances and people, solely by immersing myself in the subject matter letting intuition put the pieces together. Then I spin the models in my head to get different perspectives and compare the model to other pre-existing models, applying analogical reasoning, and look for connections between models to illuminate the confusing parts. I’m not Sherlock Holmes, but I’m the fastest study of interdisciplinary theoretical models I’ve ever met, I predict outcomes to films and books almost unerringly, solve complex math problems without actually knowing how I do it, diagnose mental & physical illness unerringly (so far), and can tell people things about themselves they have never shared aloud within an hour or two of dedicated conversation.

    I really do think I have a supernormal gift, and I readily use it to serve others.

    1. SK

      Damn. This is pretty strange/cool/weird/spooky/cool.
      Would you be able to teach someone else how you think?

      For example, teach me how to think about my own research?

  56. Daniel

    My superpower in the eyes of the civilians would be (weirdly enough) mental math. I am not amazing with formulas but I can plug the numbers in and by the time the flow of it comes out of my mouth it is solved. That’s so easy for me to do and I’m 17, In math and kids praise me for this skill. It’s not amazing to me at all but for some reason they consider me a “super good at math” kind of guy.

    As for the maid don’t tip her until you leave for good and then just leave money on the table or wherever she can find it.

  57. Robert

    My super power is finding a ton of marketing ideas for other businesses. Last week I spoke to a chef. They do great birthday and wedding cakes. I found they can find a few wedding planners to deliver wedding cakes, fb fan page – build the page by giving away a birthday cake to someone who will like their page.
    And I found a quick way how photographers can easily get other people to sell their services and then upsell more.
    Another idea. You could find me in UK and I could send NevBoxes for you in UK and Europe… and not just for $97 but for £97 (that’s about $150). :)

  58. Jordan

    I’d have to say being able to talk to random people and sell them a big idea – especially anything in the online marketing/analytics/SEO space. I can strike up conversations and give a lot of advice from my experience of working with a lot of companies pretty “easily”.

  59. CoLLin

    My super power is quite handy. I read a lot of blogs and news articles. Without fail someone will ask me about something that I just happened to have just read about and I can almost always tell them everything they want to know about the subject.

    1. SK

      What if you recorded one of the sessions (doesn’t need to be a good recording) and send it to your friends.

      It might save them shit load of time and this could probably turn into a business

  60. Jamie

    The ability to generate customers online in any industry for my clients, they love it when I flex this superpower and go pew pew on their market place.

    Sound effects are naturally included with every client package sold ;)

    Haha and YES – Tip the maid one of your Nevboxes, she’ll love it. Don’t say anything, just walk up and give it to her, place your index finger on her mouth and go SHHHHHH


  61. Sheiler

    My super power is making outgoing messages on people answering machines…er I mean VOICEmail. That, and writing fake commercials for things people would never buy.

  62. Ted

    What superpower do I have that would allow me to beat superman?

    I combine
    – the healing ability of wolverine because no matter how big the mistake I make i always grow from it.
    – the problem solving ability of batman. Because in my life there is always a solution
    – the strength of Thor ( because I get the girls – hahahah jokes)

    They call me superted! Superman is no match for me

    Ps tip the girl if she is cutie!

  63. Donald Spanitz

    My superpower is finding other non-productive, yet fun, things to do while I am supposed to be performing the much more important productive activities that I get paid to do.

    Hi-oh Silver away!

    P.S. Leave a tip. It doesn’t have to be monetary though.

  64. Hubert Sawyers III

    Obviously, my superpower is not reading the 76 posts before mine. Yeah, not gonna happen. Yet I still have the audacity to ask, is anyone’s superpower their uncanny ability to draw people’s most personal stories out of them without even asking for them?

    I have always had this ability. People really trust me. I don’t think I have to do much to gain trust in strangers. Well, most of the time. There’s always the occasional cynic.

    Now if I can just use this ability to my personal advantage, I might be somebody.

  65. Michelle

    The tip is optional, but in these tough times, much appreciated. If she does a nice job, let her know you appreciate her…a few dollars for every day you stayed.

    My superpowers, if you want to call them that, are just the abilities to find the other side of situations and to find the least confrontational position a person can take so that the greater goal of a group is achieved.

    It’s easy to get lost in emotions and ‘stuck on stupid’, but I like to help others make breakthroughs so that we get the benefits of actions and not the agony of inaction or the ache of pettiness.

  66. Rick

    My Superpower is predicting the behavior of fluids. I can paint a house and now spill a drop.

    Once had a clothing company and would drive the other guys crazy by running a screen print shop all day and leave spotless.

  67. Michael

    I’ve heard that in some areas of America tipping cows is a popular and amusing past time. Personally I don’t think you should tip the maid, as she might sue you man!

    I write songs and I’m good at it but it makes no money so I do IT which I’m also good at but it’s a life-sucking profession.

    Aw what the hell, tip her then be sure to tell us what happened. We’re always up for a leaning experience at your expense :)

    1. SK

      Yeah, that’s the nature of the industry. You have 4 people making billions and the rest not making much. (regardless of skill).

      Hang in there

  68. Hoo Kang

    My super power is helping people and finding ways to make something more efficient/effective.

    Still working on how I can make those powers provide value so I can earn more money.

    +1 for tipping the maid – more for your own sake and abundance thinking.

  69. Roger Williams

    That was a great post, Neville.
    I find it admirable that you can let go of your dream of being a hacker, and tell people about it.
    That’s a superpower too – being totally open.
    My two superpowers, that I know of, are: fixing electronics and mechanical things, and writing songs.
    Early in my career, I chose fixing things because I thought it was more lucrative. It turns out either can be very lucrative depending on, like you said, how much time and energy you put into it.
    Thanks for making me think today.

      1. Robin Williams

        Yay SK, you followed through like I hoped you would! Ha ha…
        I know your nearly through the whole comment list, but please don’t forget you missed the first one at the top, by Carter!!!! Don’t let one slip, or the whole thing’s ruined! :-0

  70. Derek Wyatt

    My Super Power is being able to Spot A Shoplifter from 200ft away…

    Not just identifying someone who is about to steal, but I can spot a person as they enter the building and can tell if they’re going to shoplift today or not.

    9 out of 10 times I was right.

    That 1 time, they usually selected something, thought about stealing it and chickened out and would stash it in another aisle.

    I bet I would be really good at poker if I ever took the game seriously.

  71. Dave Victorine

    My super power is rallying people or a team behind a common goal or vision. I always seem to end up in situations with a group of people who don’t look like they’d all fit together but have to work together to accomplish a goal.
    I am usually the one to step up when there is not a leader.

    Tip the maid!

  72. Shawn McCarthy

    I have Google AdWords superpowers. Making large accounts run millions of times more efficiently comes pretty effortlessly to me :)

  73. Josh

    I would have to say my super power is graphic design, I do it all day everyday and never really thought of it as a super power, but I love it!

  74. Jeff

    My superpower would be my ability to help people look at their business and technical problems in different ways in order to find solutions – often new and unique solutions. I don’t require a detailed understanding of the subject matter in order to be able to do this. They usually know enough – they just need to get out of their ‘box’ and that’s where I help out.

  75. John Bloore

    Nice post, I think this is very common and happens to people all the time. It’s good that you recognize this though instead of casually wasting time here and here modestly pursuing it when it will never be anything more than a dream. I wish I was a hedge fund manager / trader haha. I just love the idea of it so I completely understand where you are coming from. My superpower is working out. Stupid and weird, I know but I’m just really good at it haha. Need a workout program? I’d love a NevBox!!

  76. David Di Francesco

    My superpower is training people to obtain contracts for the Spec Ops (Navy SEALs), Private Ops (Triple Canopy) Community, as well as the FBI, SERE, Pararescue, Fire Jumpers (and many others). You could boil it down to a superpower that unlocks other’s superpowers. And everyone who’s already posted here, keep up the good work staying the course and sharing your superpowers!!

  77. Harry

    Yes, tip her you cad!!

    p.s. i don’t need to be in the NevBox contest. I already bought one. It’s go secret sauce and magic powers inside. Thank you so much!

    1. Robin Williams

      Tadahhhh!!! Super job SK :-)
      I should have been asleep hours ago in the UK, but I can be quite tenacious sometimes, a bit like yourself it seems. ;-)

      Do you have a site or blog, what’s your background?
      A good achievement none the less, revel in the small, but not insignificant, glory in the pursuit of something others never would.

      Hang on! Did you just somehow prove that being a true Super-Hero takes courage, tenacity, and commitment to follow through to the end??

      Hey, Nev! …. give this person a NevBox for the effort here!

      G’night all…. Zzzzzzzz z z z

        1. Robin Williams

          Cheers, SK!
          Not sure if Nev can send things like this to the UK or not – the postage can be expensive to my little isle. Thanks for the recommendation though – I’m still proud your acheivement by the way. :-)

          There’s some great superpower comments amongst this lot. Just thinking about setting up a tippingmaids site like you mentioned earlier! That might be fun to try.

          Don’t be a stanger SK – all the best for now :-)

  78. Isaac

    My superpower? It’s creative writing.

    I’ve a list of novels I’ve still got to progress through. Fortunately, my ideas for novels are decreasing, so I’d like to imagine that I will be able to hammer out the novels, then move on to being a web developer or entrepreneur.

    Although, writing novels is a bit like being an entrepreneur in today’s world of self-publishing (thanks Amazon!).

    Novels are essentially products, so novelists are product designers and creators in a way.

    In any case, friends, family, and strangers have noted my writing abilities. So hopefully I can have fun at the same time building up a fan base and making a few bucks (or more) off sharing my imagination.

    I promise to use my superpowers for good! (yeah right…supervillains have way more fun, Nev!)

  79. Luke

    My superpower is the ability to “feel” a mood or atmosphere in a room. Like at parties if a fight is going to break out i can sense it lol. But sometimes i wish i was able to fly :)Wouldnt want my powers to cut out mid flight though lol

  80. robk

    My superpower is napping. This amazing power can take me from suffering through a boring meeting to drooling on my chin faster than a speeding bullet, more powerful than a locomotive, able to snooze while others play bullshit bingo! Look, at the end of the table, leaning back in his chair, it’s a bird, a sleepy bird, it’s napping guy!

  81. raven

    My superpower is having more ideas than I do money. I’m a pretty awesome “free” consultant of stellar ideas + methods for everyone else BUT myself. I’m over it.

    However, I did have 5 bucks, so I just picked up your book from Amazon. I can definitely handle 56 pages. AND I like that it’s offered only as paperback and not a Kindle-only or anything.

    My next superpower is going to be debt-free-dom.

    P.S.– I just stumbled upon your blog a couple hours ago, and since this is a message obviously too late for the maid that was servicing your “room” (haha) – tip the gal. If you have to ask yourself or wonder, just do it as a nice gesture if you’re feelin’ it. I’m a flight attendant and although I’m not technically supposed to accept tips, I most certainly do when they’re given. And it’s always greatly appreciated!

  82. Kate

    I have always wanted to be an ethical hacker! I’m just not that good, though. My actual super-power is herding four teenage daughters through each and every day. It doesn’t sound like a super-power, but trust me, it is :)

  83. Mike S.

    I’m not entirely sure what my superpower is yet. Maybe its troubleshooting or pointing out the obvious. Maybe its being awesome at gameshows while at home on my couch. Or maybe it has yet to be discovered. I seriously hope its that last option…

  84. Chris

    Ethical hacking… this is how Kim Schmitz aka Kim Dotcom made his first millions back in the 90s. The dude was smart; he first started as a malicious hacker, got caught and went to prison for 6 months, and then sold his knowledge to large corporations and airlines.

  85. Eric Pangburn

    Hey Nev,

    So did you tip here or not? My guess is that you didn’t, but what do I know. My superpower is blogging! And before you ask. Yes I can teach others about blogging, share how I make money from blogging, and continue to expand others businesses as well!

    Though, I am very interested to see NevBox, but I know the other advice that I have taken from Nev in checking out the Boron Letter’s had helped me make more money already.

    Thanks Nev!

  86. Sean

    My superpower is systems thinking. Example. A friend recently tried to hire a person on craigslist and got 300 resumes. I set up a system for him instead to only talk to highly screened quality applicants via gmail filters, canned responses and surveys.

  87. C.

    I can hit a golf ball 350+ yards off the tee, anytime I need too, and hit the fairway…I am often told by onlookers that they never seen a drive that long in person.

    Hope that counts!!!

  88. Chris

    I find my self not caring about the way time goes by when I’m helping people. I find it very gratifying when I’m able to help others discover their true potential.

    Particularly, I hate average life and I know that each human being has the power to do something remarkable. That’s the reason for which I started a blog. It will take some time until I make it big, but nevertheless, the journey to get there is amazing and it’s all that matters.

    Thanks Nev for being such a great inspiration.

  89. Chris

    Come to think of it, it’s not that expensive for what it can do. If I ever think of buying a 3d printer, I’ll trick myself into thinking it is for inspirational purposes only, such as testing different possible product designs.

  90. Chung

    Sales… I like/am good at selling face to face. But only with products I’ve used, believe in, and actually improves lives of others in one way or another.

    Analytical… I find it easy to analyze the sh*t out of behaviours, situations, like why is it what it is and what we can do. Just love it. Super interesting to me.

    Details… I LAAAAVE details. The more the better. Some people like to explain something with the 50k view first, then street view. I like to tell you the street-by-street play… then eventually give you the big picture. Opposite of my wife, lol.

    Is it uncool to “lol” these days?


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