Be A Real (hu)Man

I used to cringe every time I heard someone say, "Be a real man," or launch into a verbal attack about what they saw in me that they felt was not manly enough for their standards. In my 40 plus years on this planet, I've had the phrase directed towards me more times than I care to count or remember. For a time it became something that I'd consciously say to myself, and unconsciously allow to direct my actions and appearance. Life, was pretty confusing, frustrating, and dark at times and I certainly was not happy.

One day while in my misery, I exclaimed both inside and out loud, "I am so tired of this shit; I'm done with my being happy!" And that was the moment that I started to just be. There was no need to figure it out. I knew exactly who I was and to get back to me it took shedding off everything that I'd taken on from outside influence.

It wasn't easy at first. I was used to wearing the mall of being tough, strong, and "manly." Theses things became a source of comfort and power for me. Yet the more I started to leave those masks behind the more I began to realize that hiding who I truly am to fit what the world said I should be, was killing me. So I chose life and living. And I learned that being a man was what I was. I didn't need to put on a facade. Being the kind, loving, empathetic, intuitive, quirky human being that I naturally am was All I needed to be.

Do yourself a solid, drop the masks, quit trying to be a man and just be the man that you really are. I can guarantee you that the man you want to be is the human that you already have been since you were born.

My Thoughts: The Little #MeToo Book For Men

Mark Greene (author of Remaking Manhood and Good Men Project Senior Editor) wrote a book for men on the #metoo movement. It is a powerfully empathetic non-judgmental call for men to break out of "the man box" and free ourselves from participating in our toxic culture of masculinity and the burden it has become. It's a compassionate call to be better human beings. I'm my opinion this is a must read for everyone.

Quest of Authenticity

Image: Wordswag App and Pixabay

Being true to myself is the hardest thing I have ever done. It takes a ton of energy and I'm lazy. I thought that I'd be able to just walk around and exclaim to the world that I have decided to just do and be me and that would be that. That everyone else would just go with it. But no, that's not what happened at all! I became a loser. People whom I thought would support me "finding myself," rejected me. Some told me that they no longer liked me, some started talking about me behind my back, and some just ghosted me completely. A few, indirectly, let me know that I was being "a bit much for them" in my quest to just be me. They didn't like it for some reason. With all that rejection and loss, I almost have up. I mean who could blame me for feeling the way I did? My life got really small and really dark really quickly. This hurt and totally sucked.

But I have a hard head, at least this was said to me a lot as a child. So being the determined individual I am I continued on my quest. I mean, what was the worst that could happen? I'd be alone? Well, at least I liked who I was becoming and that was worth the solitude to me. But honestly, I was becoming totally exhausted. 

Then, something amazing began to happen: other people who are their authentic selves started popping up in my life. At first it was weird. I was like, "are they just here to make fun of me?" Because if that was the case, I was more than ready to treat their appearance like a good old fashioned game of whack-a-mole! Fortunately for them my mallet was busy hammering out things that were not going to allow me to stay on my task of being true to me so they were spared and I started having real relationships with really true people. People who inspire and like me to be true to myself. People who get inspiration from me being true to myself. 

Now, I have an exchange of positive energy and the hard part is typically because part of being me is really liking sleep so most mornings I don't want to get out of dream land. I have also observed that a another good thing is what was lost on this quest of authenticity is not missed. Not at all. The more I do it, the easier it is. Go figure.