← Techstars Blog

This is part three of a three-part series. The second part can be found here.


The return from the journey appears not very appealing right before the event. But you, our dear hero, should be aware that this is actually what the Startup Weekend is about: spark something in your life, give you something valuable to take home, prepare you better for your onward journey. Campbell’s hero journey deals quite extensively with the Return. Let’s have a look how the Heroe’s Journey stages relate to your experience.

Refusal of the Return

Leaving the Startup Weekend can be hard. You have had a great experience, found new friends or allies, you would love to keep on doing that. But somehow you need to return to your “real life”.

The Magic Flight

So how can you take your reward with you? Nobody keeps you there, it is not like you are prevented from going home. Maybe a proper goodbye, a celebration of your teamwork is in place.

Rescue from Without

Your coaches and facilitators will be there for you until and even after the end of the experience. Especially, when you found something to pursue further, a real new startup with your fantastic idea. The most valuable prices your team could take with them after the Startup Weekend are the extended coaching and consulting opportunities. Learning more on conferences can also help you to transfer your new experiences to your old life.

The Crossing of the Return Threshold

You will come home full of new experiences. You will encounter new obstacles. Some people might not believe in your idea. Some might not believe in you being the right person. Every hero faces this obstacle.

Master of Two Worlds

The traditional description of the Heroe’s Journey attributes this step to the metaphysical or spiritual heroes like Jesus or Buddha. Yet we can make this experience too, that we are starting to be able to combine the two worlds, to bring learnings from the Startup Weekend to our daily learning or work life – and maybe the other way round, if you decide to join another challenge.

Freedom to Live

Campbell says about this stage: “The hero is the champion of things becoming, not of things become, because he is.” Now that you have experienced the power of starting something, of working with a diverse team of people who share the same dream, you understand that you can actually create, chose or attract so much more in your life than you dared before.

Your own journey might look different. What are your steps? What are the opponents that stand in your way? Start with your Heroe’s Journey and tell us your own story!

Andreas Schliep