If you've made it this far get ready!
How Do You Define a Man?
Take a look around the internet at sites dedicated to helping men. I have found that most of them fall short. The focus is usually on one of two things: Becoming an “alpha male”- all spine, no love, conquering women, OR becoming a “compassionate, caring, loving, more spiritual, spineless, more of the same wimp”. At times the sites just feel like marketing bullshit.
So what’s the answer?
If the alpha male, ultra-fit, seduction guru, macho way was the answer, we wouldn’t have a need for any of these sites and I could stop typing. That was the message to every man alive since the founding of this country (rugged individualism, pull yourself up by your boot-straps, the man rules the home, etc.), until the 80’s when the war against feminism began. If the "alpha male" message is a solution, why doesn’t it work? Why didn’t it work back then? The simple answer is because the “alpha male” approach is a self-absorbed pursuit of superficial crap that ultimately leaves you feeling empty and searching for the next product, fitness fad, magic pill, or sexual conquest that will bring joy, love, peace, and purpose to your life.
A male that lives this life is seen as a fraud to his wife or partner. Your partner will not trust you, nor respect you, and wonder how a male like you could ever conceive children when every pursuit you engage in is a cover-up for your lack of ability to be a man. Your daughter will simply grow up convinced that her role is to satisfy her husbands childish pursuits as well as his constant desire for sex and false admiration. Your son will grow up to be some version of you, or do everything he can to avoid being you!
That leaves us with the spineless, cut off your manhood and leave it in your mother’s purse way of life. This seems to be the prevailing approach on most of the sites I see. This approach teaches you to embrace your feminine and let go of the masculine; or to get in touch with the masculine in such a way that you can then love openly by bringing your love essence into the world and to everyone you touch. As you do this you will begin to transform your relationships, your sex life, your work, and your dog into harmonious, spiritual oneness with blah, blah, blah.
If you haven’t figured it out yet, both of these are the same problem. The difference is the way males choose to compensate for the fact that they don’t feel like men. The answer isn't more crossfit sessions, a bigger truck, and an increase in penis size. It isn't a naked spiritual retreat growing closer to Mother Earth under the influence of a psychedelic.
The bottom line is this: Most of this isn't your fault (that's going to piss someone off). You grew up with a model of masculinity, of what a man is supposed to be. Your Father, whether he was around or not, coach, pastor, youth leader, or other well-intentioned, and sometimes not so well-intentioned male, demonstrated “Man” to you. The problem is most of those men grew up with the same influences I mentioned above and they likely didn’t figure it out either and therefore couldn’t model it effectively. Now we have an industry of therapists and “coaches” trying to correct this lack of modeling by using the same tools that created the problem in the first place, or worse, exacerbating the problem.
I believe in discovering for yourself what it means to be a man. This is not defined by anyone else. There are men we can look to for guidance but ultimately being a man of purpose, conviction, and love is defined by you. I believe in discovering and living in your purpose. I believe in pursuing mental, spiritual, physical, and emotional wellness as contributors to the pursuit of becoming and being a Man.
If you are ready to stop living a half-ass life defined by someone else, then let's get started.