The best a man can be? We’re seeing this call for masculinity to be labeled as ‘toxic’. The reality is, that their definition of toxic is actually something you should aspire to be. I dive into the APA’s recent definition of toxic masculinity, how they got it wrong, and why you should fight back.
How to Act with Honor
Courage is the most important virtue for without it, the rest fall apart. To build the foundation of who you are on courage is to build a solid foundation, one on rock and not the sand that the masses rest on.
- Hold an unpopular opinion that’s true, that deviates from what everyone else is thinking
- Stand by that opinion in public regardless of what it does to your reputation
- Stand by someone else you know to be good and honest, think Rosanne, who’s being dragged through the mud by soulless idiots
- Build a business that employs people, this is the best form of charity, and if you get rich you decide where the money goes.
- Put your money where your mouth is, never speak on things that you don’t have a vested interest in (think intellectual economists who don’t have their money in the market and don’t have a real world job where they practice their theories, who also ignore the history of what their theories have led to) – don’t be them. If you say something, do it.
You lack courage if…
Your private life conflicts with your intellectual opinion, it cancels your intellectual ideas, not your private life.
- Think Canadian environmentalist David Suzuki who hates the free market and growth in business, yet employs dozens or hundreds in his foundation that only exists because of the market.
- Who hates consumption and yet consumes regularly, but wants others not to
- Who hates energy, namely oil, but also claims to despise inequality, ignoring that fossil fuels are the cheapest form of energy, and that carbon taxes do the most harm to those who cannot afford to pay more in tax.
Always do more than you talk.
We live in an age of talkers who do very little. We proclaim and that proclamation leads us to feel as though we’ve accomplished something.
There’s research that goes back a century showing that we should not proclaim our goals, instead, we should set them and work on them in silence.
When we voice our desires and aspirations it sends a signal to our brain that we’ve accomplished what we want to achieve, making us feel the satisfaction of achievement without having achieved anything.
Don’t announce your goals. Set them in silence. And work your ass off.
Also, do not tell people what you’re going to do. Do it.
Do good works in silence.
Don’t do good works for show, it removes the virtue in the works. A good thing only remains good if it’s done in silence.
Follow this Bible verse:
“Be careful not to practice your righteousness in front of others to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven. 2 “So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. 3 But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, 4 so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.
Accept responsibility for your past, present, and future.
Don’t blame other people for anything. Accept responsibility and do the best you can with where you are and with what you have. That’s all anyone has ever done. No great man has ever waited and prayed for a miracle, the miracle is their potential and the amount of effort they can put in for how long.
The miracle has been given, now shut up and work.
Be a fighter.
Stand up for what you believe. Don’t give an inch. Honor isn’t honor unless it’s acted upon. You cannot merely think honorably, you have to back it up.
Note: MUCH of this podcast was inspired by Nassim Taleb’s book, Skin in the Game. It’s an AWESOME read, I highly recommend getting a copy.
The Man Show Episode 6: How to Get More Out of Yourself By Expecting More From Yourself
The book referenced at the end of the Man Show that you can get for $2.95 is the Lost Art of Discipline Audiobook.
“If unwilling to rise in the morning, say to thyself, ‘I awake to do the work of a man.’” –Marcus Aurelius
There’s a fine line between ambition and appreciation. To improve we have to let our reach exceed our grasp, and yet to live and to have energy and to love this experience, we need to identify things in our lives to appreciate. Both are beneficial.
In this episode of the Man Show I go over a few things that you have to be weary of, and that I’ve grown to understand over the past while.
1. You need models, but it’s as much about how they do it than it is about what they’ve done.
That is… Finding someone that has, in some way, accomplished something that you’d like to accomplish, or accomplished something on the scope that you’d like to accomplish something else, is powerful. We need models, they’re so very useful in that they show us both what to do and what not to do.
They’ve done it, why not learn from their errors so we can avoid making them in our own lives, the same with their successes.
What I’ve learned a lot as of late is that it’s not just about what they’ve accomplished, but how they did it, the morals, values, and virtues they’ve lived by. There are a lot of people who’ve done things I want to do, even if their specific success isn’t in the same niche or market, the scope that they’ve done it in, is. However, they haven’t achieved what they’ve achieved in the way I want to achieve it.
Simple. They’ve just accomplished things in a fake, sleazy way. And yes, I’m judging, and so should you.
You may see the thing they’ve accomplished, respect their achievement – which should be done – but then you model how they did it and after a couple years of work you realize that you’ve sold out, you’ve compromised who you are to get what you want, and it will never sit right. So when you’re setting out to accomplish something, be aware of who you model what you’re doing after.
You can learn from nearly everyone, but ideally find people who share the same values as you do. Be true to who you are and work your ass off.
In the podcast I mention a few names I respect (of course, there are many, many more that could have been added to this list):
- Ryan Michler (here’s his book)
- Brett McKay (here’s his web site)
- Sean Whalen (here’s his book)
- Bedros Keuilian (here’s his book)
- Mike Matthews (here’s one of his books)
Again, there are a lot of guys out there doing good work and doing it honorably. I could have added a heck of a lot more here, but that’s who came to mind immediately.
2. Define your ideal lady, and then define who she would ideally want to be with.
Maybe you’re already with your ideal lady. Either way, define who you’d ideally like to be with, if you’re single. If you’re not, use your woman. Now, take this either ideal or your lady, and determine the virtues, attributes, persona, values etc… of the guy she would IDEALLY want.
Is he tough, smart, funny, virtuous? How does he deal with issues? Why does she look up to him or why is she proud to be with him? Look at this ideal self from another perspective.
You can do the same with your kids, or future kids – who’s the guy they would ideally be raised by?
Get outside of yourself to define yourself.
3. Define your ideal day, and then define your perfect day with what you have now and with where you are now.
Define your ideal day, that is, the day that if you could live a single day for the rest of your life, this would be it. What do you do for work? Where are you living? What is your routine? Who are you with? Be specific.
Then, bring this ‘ideal’ to the present.
What’s your ideal day RIGHT NOW, with what you have right now, who you’re with, what you do, etc…
You can live your ideal day right now. And if you live this ideal day you’re going to have a damn good life. But it doesn’t have to be pushed to the future. It can exist in the present.
Man, we do not have to wait to become who we need to become. We can define it and decide to be him. Too often we push our potential to the future, we wait for permission from those around us, from our Maker, from society, from whatever you want to call it, and it never comes.
We make the decisions. We make the most out of our lives.
Get after it brother!
Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time. — Thomas Edison
The market determines whether or not what we’re producing is good or bad, but just because it doesn’t immediately jump at what we’re providing, does not and cannot be the end.
Momentum is one of the most powerful things that we rarely see or even are aware of.
It’s a force we control, and we control it monotonously and persistently by doing good work for an extended period of time.
It’s not something we ever truly realize until we win.
In my experience it takes 18 months of daily, purposeful work toward an ideal.
It’s measured in growth, be it in sales or the growth of a following, an email list, even praise from new followers, clients, whoever.
It’s never really that clear that it’s happening, either, which is why so few ever see the fruit of their labor. They quit before they allow it to be realized.
So how are you to know that what you’re doing will work?
How am I to know?
We have to have a brain, we have to be able to decipher failure, to learn from it, adjust, and continue forward.
It’s never a straight path, but it’s always a lot more simple than we allow it to be, success that is.
You find something that interests you, and that you’re at least somewhat good at, where you know you can get better at, and you put out the best product, work, creation that you can put out. And you keep doing it.
You do not look at what someone else is doing, something that looks easy, profitable, and quick. You stay the course.
In training, you do not just from program to program, you methodically do what a good program says to do until you see the momentum in the mirror or in the numbers.
You do not try to save everything all at once. You merely put a bit away every month, invest it in the right things, and watch it compound. Momentum will bring you wealth.
You do not try to change your lifestyle all at once. You make small, simple changes, and then add to them, and before you know it you’re living as the man you want to be, giving the world a better human rather than a leech.
If you give up or quit or shift to something else, your momentum is lost and you have to start this process all over again.
Again, I use myself as a cautionary tale.
I had one of my web sites getting 300,000 followers every month like clockwork, which brought in a ton of leads and customers and grew the business completely organically, which is rare.
I took my eye off the site and both sites actually. I started doing other things that I was told to do by other people who do not share my values or intentions with my business.
The site now doesn’t crack 100,000 visitors online a month.
My momentum has stalled.
I’ll get it back.
Don’t take your eye off your goal.
Don’t look for something newer, shinier. Do the work. Do it every day, and wait for momentum to present its results.
Get after it.
The antidote to fear is aggression
“To stand up straight with your shoulders back is to accept the terrible responsibility of life, with eyes wide open. It means deciding to voluntarily transform the chaos of potential into the realities of habitable order.” ~ Jordan Peterson
The object of our fear is typically something we should move toward, not turn and run from.
Fear, though ancestrally it was used for survival and to avoid danger, has become more of a compass, a guiding light and north star than a deterrent.
What we want most in life, the life we want to build and live, is often what we’re most afraid to act on.
We want to build our own empire but we’re too afraid that the years of work will be in vain, so we don’t act.
Fear needs an antidote, and its antidote is its opposite, aggression.
Aggression is something that instills fear in that which is being shown aggression. The aggressor cannot be both the aggressor and the victim, thus, by acting with aggression, the one in fear becomes the one without it, or at least the one moving to oppose it.
Jordan Peterson’s quote at the beginning is powerful.
We have to admit that life is scary. There is so much in life, in the world, to be afraid of. I can be terrifying, and the more we attempt to accomplish, the more opportunity for terror there will be simply because the scope of what we’re aiming at is more audacious.
This terror, this chaos, however, exists for everyone. You are not alone in your fear. It’s shared by every human in existence if they think about life, about its greater questions, even about the possibilities of what can happen on a daily basis.
But there’s a choice.
You do not have to live in the fear, you can stand up to it, face it, even beat the living shit out of it.
Let’s take both the immediate usefulness of this and the broader, maybe even greater usefulness of aggression, and then let’s be real about what society thinks about and intends to do about the capacity for a man’s aggression.
Actually, let’s start off with this, a well-trained, physically conditioned man is a deadly weapon. Some see this and are afraid of it, they think about historical myths like the patriarchy and see the oppressor, willingly remaining blind to the other half of the coin, the protector and defender, and as such, with a very narrow and distorted and wrong view of the world and of history, want to soften this potentially deadly weapon.
And so they teach men, young men, that being a man is a dangerous thing, something to be ashamed of. Something that’s done more harm in history than good – which is a perspective, but an ignorant one. Men and women, together, have been oppressed, together, throughout history.
Men and women were sent to the gas chambers pretty soon after their government confiscated their guns, their potential for being deadly.
Men and women were enslaved all over the world, and still are.
Men have fought and died in wars, since time immemorial, trying to protect what’s important to them.
We have a shared success and a shared oppression, men and women that is. We are not enemies, and haven’t been in our history. We necessarily work together, something that modern feminism and leftism is trying to destroy.
And so they attack the potential power of the man, while being so ignorant and blind to the fact that evil exists, danger exists, and bad people exist, and good men who are also deadly can keep this evil outside the gates, as they have done for our entire history as humans.
So yes, a good man who is deadly is as valuable thing as there is in our great and free society.
And then there’s you and I, the individual.
We’re facing this thing called life. It seems to grand to comprehend, and yet we must live it well every day.
We have dreams, all of us do, and we want to win them, accomplish them, make them real.
We have fears, we all do, and we want to conquer those as well.
And so, we have that innately male characteristic, the one that’s made a little more abundant by our most powerful hormone, testosterone, and made more effective by the same hormone, that thing, of course, is aggression.
Testosterone gives us a bit more of it, along with a greater aptitude to take risks, and it gives us the muscle, the power to be able to make our aggression – at least in the physical sense – successful.
You and I have fears in the micro, and fears in the macro.
The fears in the micro may be the thug that wants to break into our house.
Fears in the macro may be that we’re afraid that we might fail, that our work will be in vain, that we aren’t truly worthy of our dreams, that we’re going to fail and leave our families with nothing.
Both fears must be met with aggression, they must be attacked.
When you sense fear in the moment, stand tall with your shoulders back and be aggressive.
When you feel the weight of the world on your back, when you find yourself doubting who you are and what you’re capable of, stand talk with your shoulders back, your eyes wide open, and march forward aggressively, like a man, and conquer those fears.
Become a fucking legend.
Pick up my new book, the man diet, at the mandietbook.com and learn how to produce more of that wonderful hormone that makes us men.