Session 12: Be The Man

Personal Masculinity, Being Dynamic, Having Variety

This is where all the lessons are pulled together to teach you how to love a woman. It starts with your ‘personal masculinity’, that is the masculinity you create for yourself. It is on this basis that others will see you as a man. Adding being dynamic in yourself, in your life and in your relationship, along with bringing variety into them, will create the edge that makes a difference. It will give you that final brick in the wall.

Be The Man – Summary

Personal Masculinity

A personal approach to masculinity and male behaviour rejects a single approach to being a man in favour of one that gels with your personality and energy. It is based on the triad of:

  • Awareness: Knowing who you are, what you are, your personality, your core beliefs.
  • Acceptance: Liking who you are, and being in line with your life and your passions.
  • Authenticity: Living the life you identify openly and honestly, shaping it to your ideas.

There is a sense of focus and direction in the way a man who knows himself operates. This sense comes from the strength of his presence and certainty. This is what women see in men and love. It is the knowledge of themselves that creates the power of a man, a quiet, knowing power. He doesn’t need to do anything he just is.

Every man has a particular, different style of masculinity. What they have in common is that they know who they are and what they want; they have awareness, acceptance and authenticity. Be bold in your life, make sure it is one you have chosen and stand by.

Being dynamic

A dynamic person is charismatic. Being dynamic means being characterized by continuous change, activity, or progress. A dynamic person makes a difference in the world; a person who creates change. Many dynamic people change the lives and destinies of millions of people, their work is known to all. There are also those whose work is not so well known, yet they are dynamic because they change the world in their own small way. The magnitude of the work is unimportant, the world is different because you have lived in it. Being dynamic,

  • you are prepared to engage with people. You move and influence them.
  • you communicate effectively. People know what you think.
  • you look out for new ways to connect and move forward in a positive spirit.

Stamina

Having stamina means you will have both physical and mental resistance. Rather than having peaks of energy, people with stamina are able to stay more focused and maintain a steady level of activity. They are able to do more without getting fatigued or losing concentration.

Stamina determines how active you are in your daily life. For many, stamina is elusive. Many feel tired after a hard day at work and feel less energetic at the end of the day.

Successful people seem to have unlimited reserves of stamina! Having stamina is one of the characteristics of a successful person. Having stamina helps them to focus and concentrate. Enthusiastic and energetic people have stamina and can overcome any kind of mental and physical exertions. Stamina improves mental alertness.

To keep a great relationship going, to inspire your partner with your masculinity and dynamism, stamina is essential. Stay excited, keep fit and you will always know how to love a woman, you’ll know how to love your woman.


My Philosophy

I believe that as men we are all born with an in-built masculine essence, we are all masculine men. This is the basic energy that drives us from deep inside. It is the energy that determines the way we feel, and makes us happy. I believe in men with male energy.

During our life we adapt in response to events and life challenges. We do this to survive as human beings. Regardless of the nature of these events and challenges, the intensity with which we experience them shapes us during our lifetime. This adaptation is a result of a basic fear that is rooted deep inside each and every one of us, namely that we are not good enough as we are, and therefore the people that matter most to us in life won’t love us.

This fear is such a strong motivator, that we force ourselves to adapt into whatever we feel will retain that love, in order to prove to our source of love that we are worthy. It works for us in the moment, so we stick to the strategy!

It is through this adaptation that we put our authentic selves to sleep. Part of this is the masculine energy inside us. We shift away from the connection to our inner core, and leave it behind as we perceive it as too dangerous and in many cases too painful to remember.

As we grow into adulthood, this adapted masculinity becomes more confused about the role it plays in our life. There are several reasons for this.

Our fathers, mothers, teachers, peers and the media are very happy to present us with role models of masculinity and, using symbols and archetypes, construct images based on socially accepted rules as anchors for us to grab onto. We unconsciously embrace these ideals and adapt to them.

Following the growth of the strength of women, men were invited to join in household life, and women took on jobs in the workforce. This led to a reversal of roles, and more equality in the relationship. This is often referred to as ‘new’ or ‘integrated’ masculinity perhaps ‘confused’ is more appropriate.

People believed this newfound equality in relationships was the solution to many problems, in their personal life as well as in their relationships. But looking around in today’s western society, it is clear to me that something else is needed. Most people are still not feeling fulfilled. The question is why not? What else do we need?

The answer is that we need to re-awaken those parts of ourselves that are dormant within us and find our own ‘Personal Masculinity’.

Having grown through our personal life experiences to a stage of sharing and equality, men are now ready to clear up the confusion by adding their true core to the mix. This means moving away from society’s and parent’s role models and discovering who we really are at our core. One of the major elements in this is the re-awakening of our own male characteristics.

In re-awakening the dormant parts of ourselves we will become whole, and as we become whole we won’t need people or material goods around us to fill the void inside us anymore. We will be complete and from that completeness we will act and behave differently, as we connect from a place of feeling at ease within ourselves.

From this place of completeness, we will create a new type of relationship with the people around us, as we no longer feel dependent. In an intimate relationship, where a clearly defined masculine essence is present, a strong polarity is created. A polarity that can be missing in a relationship based on equality.

I deliberately move away from the overused ‘masculine’ and seek to define what I see as ‘re-awakened masculine’ men. It is my belief that we need to look at individuals as a whole, and define personal masculinity with the help of certain traits. These traits are a mixture of masculine and feminine qualities, a mixture that we are all composed of to some extent.

To determine the specific combination of masculine and feminine qualities for individuals, I have looked at a range of characteristics of the masculine and the feminine nature. I have chosen six qualities I believe are the most basic to the core masculine and six I believe are most basic to the core feminine.

The six basic qualities of masculine energy are being: Present, Focused, Potent, Dynamic, Grounded and A Leader. Our own mix of qualities that make up our personal masculinity.

The six basic qualities of feminine energy are being: Free, Spontaneous, Intuitive, Sceptical, Accepting and Nurturing.

We often find ourselves in a state of Confused Masculinity. We reject the ‘old masculine paradigm’. We reject the old macho images created by society and our peers. But we become lost as to what to replace them with. Yes, we become open, authentic, honest, but we can stray into a confused state where any sense of masculinity is lost.

We need to look to our personal masculinity, find its strength and compassion and fully live it to regain any sense of ourselves, to fully become Masculine Men.


Be The Man – Worksheet

Set aside time to think through your answers to the questions. They are intended to get you thinking about being a man. Write your answers either in this worksheet or start a journal. Also write your emotional or other reactions.

  1. What do you want masculinity to be for you? Does this relate to you or to men in general? How does this relate to how you have always felt?
  2. To what extent do you match this picture of masculinity? To what extent do you believe you can be ‘Masculine’?
  3. How do you let your view of masculinity be influenced by others? Do you have a sense of who you can be as a man?
  4. How has your view of masculinity, men and yourself changed over the time spent on this course and how would you see it changing in the future?

Be The Man – Exercise (pdf)

This is an exercise similar to the one you did on Core Masculinity. What you now need to do is project yourself forward to the point where you have completed this course and achieved all your objectives. Think about the same masculine and feminine qualities and rate yourself on a scale of 1-5 according to where you expect to be then, where you will be. Now look back to the results from session 3 and note the difference, identify the gap. This gap will identify the qualities you need to work on and whether you want to strengthen or weaken them. As you move forward after this course you may find it helpful to redo this from time to time.

Masculinity and femininity exist as polar opposites in sexual polarity, it is necessary that they do, but that is between two people. Within a person the situation is far more complex. The concept of six essentially masculine qualities and six essential feminine qualities helps to clarify this. Everyone has access to these qualities and can develop them. People live with they’re own combination of the qualities so that an individual’s masculinity or femininity is a matrix of the extent to which they embody the qualities.

There are six essentially masculine qualities and six essential feminine qualities. Everyone has access to these qualities. You live with your own combination of them, your masculinity is a matrix of the extent to which you embody the qualities.

Do the exercise in relation to where you are now in your masculinity. You will rate yourself against all 12 qualities where you were before embarking on the course. The rating is 1 to 5.

  • 1 = “I feel like I don’t have this quality.”
  • 2 = “I feel I have elements of this quality, but it’s hidden.”
  • 3 = “I feel I have this quality to some extent, but I would like to change it.”
  • 4 = “I feel I have this quality and feel happy with it,”
  • 5 = “I feel I fully embody this quality.”

The masculine qualities are:

  • Grounded: It is be in touch with reality and able to resist pressure and events around you. So there is a solidity to you, you can’t be thrown off. You are what you are. You’re not immovable, but you are not buffeted by the winds of femininity blowing around you.
  • Leadership: A leader is able to provide all his own needs and able to provide the needs of others allowing them to feel safe. This goes beyond physical needs, but it’s about emotional and psychological needs. You know what your needs in life are and fill them. You know your responsibility to others whether they’re you partner, children, employees or colleagues. You’re able to provide for their needs and do what’s necessary to create an appropriate relationship with them.
  • Potent: This is being strong, powerful and fully in charge of your sexuality. The key part is being fully in charge of your sexuality, not letting it take charge of you, as many men do. One of the problems that many men face is the fact that they are not in charge. They let their sexuality take over, that’s where abusive and rape and dominance comes from. This physically harms women, but it also harms the reputation of men.
  • Dynamic: It’s the ability to keep going, to be able to enjoy life, to be full of energy, to have stamina. Alexander the Great crossed the known world in twelve years with forty thousand men. They walked ten thousand miles, they had the stamina to keep going and keep going.
  • Present: It’s being in the moment and completely attentive to the person you’re with or the event you’re at. Its a quality that is loved and sought by women in their men. The ability to be present, to be there, to be focused, to be totally with another person.
  • Focus: To get completely absorbed by the task in hand and not be distracted by what else is happening. It’s the ability to just close in and write, or make, or design, or create, or build, or whatever it is you do. Whatever it is you’re focused, you should be totally absorbed by it.

The feminine qualities are:

  • Free: That means being open and unrestricted, able to be involved in anything and seeking everything. That is so characteristic of woman. They think about everything, all at the same time. Multitasking comes easy to them. They seek to know and be involved in everything. It’s quite frightening for a man to watch.
  • Spontaneous: Spontaneous is the ability to react from the emotion of the situation and make quick assessments. This is where logic seems to disappear. It’s just a reaction, an emotion, an assessment, it just happens.
  • Intuitive: Being intuitive is when you act on an innate sense of what’s happening and are able to know beyond the senses. It’s when you just know what’s happening. Feminine intuition is famous and is so often right. It so often gets the situation perfectly. It’s when a woman seems able to know without knowledge.
  • Sceptical: Being sceptical is when you question others, particularly, those closest to you, looking for certainty. This is the source of feminine testing, where a woman tests you, all the time. A woman tests by questioning because she needs to trust. She needs to trust the person she’s with. She needs to know that it’s going to be safe, that everything’s going to be okay. She needs to know that she can relax and love.
  • Accepting: It’s the ability to accept circumstances once trust is established. A woman is more able to accept a situation, able to conciliate, able to accept different points of view. They don’t feel the requirement to force their point of view on others.
  • Nurturing: That’s caring for others as well as yourself, finding compassion in any situation. This is closely aligned to a woman being a mother, with the need to keep her children, her family, safe and well. There’s a deep need to care and nurture. Many women focus their lives in this area.

All of these characteristics are available to you. They act as a model to help you understand yourself. They don’t specify how to be masculine. They indicate, for you as a man, where masculinity lies.


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Previous: Session 11: Love Your Woman


Session 11: Love Your Woman

Intimacy, Love, Emotional Relationships

This is the other pillar, intimacy. It is the heart of any emotional relationship. It is what provides the balance to the physical aspect. Intimacy is particularly important for a woman, who often seeks intimacy before sex, where a man can seek sex before intimacy. Understanding how to create a balance between the two pillars is vital in learning how to love a woman. This is the core of what we are talking about.

Love Your Woman – Summary

Intimacy

Intimacy is being close to someone on an emotional level to the point where you feel that you start to merge together. Intimacy is a vulnerable sharing of inner thoughts, feelings, spirit and true self. It’s achieved through listening, empathy or reassurance.

Men find intimacy confusing because they connect intimacy with an emotional state that follows sex. Women mostly connect intimacy with an emotional state that can lead to sex. Sex without intimacy can be very unrewarding, while sex with intimacy can be deeply fulfilling.

According to psychologist John Gopner there are four stages to a relationship breakdown:

  • Conflict, complaints, arguments, differences of opinion, blaming each other.
  • Feelings of contempt for each other that grow as the arguments deepen or disappear.
  • Increasing defensive behavior, preserving identity, feeling threatened by accusations.
  • Breakdown of basic trust between the partners and increasing disengagement.

Prevent breakdown by developing intimacy; learn the language. It enables you to be open with each other, to be honest with each other and develop closeness without boundaries.

Love

Seven simple steps to put into practice every day of your life. Write them down, pin them up and never forget them. Start today as if it was your first day of your relationship:

  • Tell her you love her. Say it so she understands it and has no doubts. Volunteer it.
  • Just love her for herself. You love her just because of her and nothing else.
  • Get to know her. Love can only grow and deepen through understanding.
  • Count your blessings. Things you have together, all you have achieved as a couple.
  • Give love always. The desire to give more than you receive fuels love’s creative force.
  • Pay attention to her. She needs it all the time, notice her attempts to get it.
  • Start afresh each day. Start your day as if it was your first day of your relationship.

Communicating your emotions to your partner will make her feel loved and understood.

Emotional Relationships

In an emotional relationship, two people have such deep feelings for each other that others cannot intervene and disrupt their relationship. With such a bond there is no place for misunderstandings or conflict. The main pillars are truth, honesty and faithfulness.

An emotional affair is when you turn to someone else for your core emotional support. If this is you, fix it by putting by re-investing your emotional energy in your relationship as soon as possible. Stop escaping and deal with issues now, before they lead to a terrible crisis.


Love Your Woman – Worksheet

Set aside time to think through your answers to the questions. They are intended to get you thinking about the level of intimacy you have with your partner. Write your answers either in this worksheet or start a journal. Also write your emotional or other reactions.

  1. Is there any conflict in your relationship? What causes the conflict, is it focused on one area or is it more general?
  2. What steps do you take every day to show your partner you love her? What steps could you take? How could you change the direction of your relationship for the better?
  3. Do you have a female friendship outside of your relationship, does it feel like it’s easier to talk to your friend than your partner? Does your friend seem to understand you in a deeper way than your partner? Do you see any danger signals?
  4. Have you stopped confiding your deepest feelings and concerns in your partner? How long has this been happening? What do you need to do to rectify this situation?

Love Your Woman – Exercise

Intimacy

The key to renewing intimacy is spending time with your partner enjoying each other’s company. This intimate time can be soothing and intense with a partner, because it is both visual and kinesthetic. Intimacy is a state of arousal. It is not a state of sexual arousal but the combination of arousal you can experience with your partner emotionally, mentally, spiritually and physically when you focus your energies in combination.

Try this Energetic Intimacy Meditation together with your partner. It is a great balance to the Dark Energy Meditation you did last week.

Lie down together and hold each other, remove as many clothes as you feel comfortable with and lie still and silent. Lie facing each other. Do this for a considerable time, longer than might feel comfortable. Feel the energy, the soul of your partner and monitor your emotions and feelings. Sense each other’s heartbeat, feel their breathing.

Try synchronizing your breathing so that when one is breathing out the other is breathing in. As you lie facing each other feel the energy in your breathe circulate between you. You, the man, breathes it in through your mouth and breathe it out through your genital area. Your partner breathes it in through her genital area and breathes it out through her mouth. Keep cycling this way for a time.

When you start to feel distracted, it’s time to go further.

Deciding which one of you goes first, you’ll place one hand on your partners chest and close your eyes. Your other hand is still connected to theirs while your hand on their heart leads into a new visualization. Picture water around you and let that grow, picturing a huge body of water that you two are floating within. What does your partner’s heart share with you that you need or want to know? Your answer lies within what you ‘see’ in the water you’re floating in. Is it dark and stormy or is it colorful and full of ocean spray? What do you feel and see?

Then swap and let the other try it.

When both of you have finished with this visualization, share what you see and share your experiences with each other. This will help to bring you both into an energetic alignment with each other and it will also help to offer a sanctuary of emotional surrender. With an openness to intimacy, you will be more willing to make the effort to take the time with each other, and explore each others desires openly. The key is to take your time. Appreciate each step, each moment of the process of embrace and keep an open mind to where things will go.

Fears, anxieties and frustrations with yourself and your partner can be released step by step by implementing these exercises, encourage openness and emotional embrace. The sky is the limit! So fly on! And see where this beautiful engagement with each other can lead you. You never know how exquisite your romance can become, even if you’ve been partners for years.


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Previous: Session 10: Have Sexual Polarity

Next: Session 12: Be The Man


Session 10: Have Sexual Polarity

Sex, Polarity, Physical Relationship

Sexual polarity sits as one of the twin pillars at the heart of any relationship. It is a powerful energy that draws two people together and creates excitement in their relationship. It, however, can come to dominate if it becomes the sole source of attraction. You will learn how to develop your physical relationship and how to keep it in context. It is easy for men to focus on this, but it is not the sole focus.

Have Sexual Polarity – Summary

Sex

Sex is an important bonding component in relationships. If you feel somewhat alienated, sex can restore your bond. Intense sexual attraction is an important bonding element in a relationship. As it develops, the level of sexuality changes. Infrequency can be caused by:

  • Low desire. For men usually low frequency; for women, quality, or rather lack of it.
  • Interfering factors, including anger, time, avoidance and anxiety.
  • Lack of time. Keeping a time chart, instead of agreeing a mix of a variety of sex.
  • Sex must be spontaneous. With our busy lives, what we don’t schedule doesn’t happen.
  • Anxiety, usually around performance. What is ‘normal’ is dictated by the media.

Ten ways to spice up your sex life are:

  • Talk to your spouse more. It lowers your inhibitions. Talk about sex in general.
  • More time on foreplay. Try sexy chat at breakfast, a hot phone call during the day.
  • Get better at oral sex. Use your hands and let your partner express what she prefers.
  • Try new positions. Try a new sexual position and see if you and your partner enjoy it.
  • Climax at the same time. Ask her to signal you, and aim to reach orgasm together.
  • Dress for sex all the time. Wear sexy underwear to feel sexy and a little naughty.
  • Be spontaneous. The bathroom, couch or kitchen table, unexpected sex is exhilarating.
  • Use toys or lubricant to enhance the experience. Discuss what would appeal to both.
  • Indulge in quickies. Next to marathon sex, a great quickie expresses intimate closeness.
  • When in doubt, return to the basics. Stop trying too hard, sometimes basic is best.

Sexual polarity

Polarity is the state and control of masculine and feminine energy. In general, a high masculine energy will attract women, and a high feminine energy will attract men. It is the differences between masculine and feminine that create a strong sexual polarity.

Physical Relationships

Male and female brains operate very differently and our hormones dictate much of our behavior, both physically and emotionally. Michael Gurian’s “What Could He Be Thinking?”:

  • The female brain has 15% more blood flow, more neural pathways and parts light up.
  • Men are more capable of spatial skills, while women are more verbally skilled than men.
  • Men tend to react to a perceived threat with a physical response, while women talk.
  • During sex a woman can bond intensely, while for a man that only occurs during orgasm.
  • Many aggressive, sexual and action-oriented responses in are caused by testosterone.

Have Sexual Polarity – Worksheet

Set aside time to think through your answers to the questions. They are intended to get you thinking about sexuality. Write your answers either in this worksheet or start a journal. Also write your emotional or other reactions.

  1. Are you aware of your sexuality, its power and its inherent force.
  2. Is it part of you or do you feel it’s somehow outside of you?
  3. Do you feel a need to control it in any way or are you happy that it’s just a natural part of your life? Does this control feel natural?
  4. Do you feel relaxed about expressing your sexuality or do you feel inhibited in any way?

Have Sexual Polarity – Exercise

This exercise needs to be conducted with your partner. It is a dark energy meditation that is intended to discover what you feel about each other deep down. It is intended to help you discover what happens when you let go of your inhibitions. Read the description of my experience and then I will explain what to do.

My wife and I experienced something last year that revealed to us previously hidden depths to our relationship. We had started a close and passionate relationship that we both enjoyed. The one aspect, however, that secretly gave us both concern was that we had never experienced the dark side of each other’s nature. There is normally a point in any relationship where you come to experience the dark side of your partner’s nature. Usually when this happens it creates confusion or concern. You discover something that is not in line with how you saw your partner.

Most people never think about this and are shocked when it comes out. Both my wife and I had previous marriages that ended in divorce. We were both married to partners who had addictive natures and we both stayed in our marriages because we thought we could help them solve their addictions. Eventually we both left our marriages only after we realized we were enabling the addictions rather than curing them. Entering into a new relationship we both feared what might be lurking in the other. We didn’t talk about it but we both knew the other’s concerns.

Somehow we knew that we had to experience each other’s dark side, we knew we had to resolve this before we went too deeply into the relationship, we had to find out. But how? How could we be sure we knew if we did find out?

We were in India spending some time at an Ashram. Towards the end of our visit we both, independently, signed up for a three day meditation class. We attended the class and worked with various partners. On the last day the teacher announced that we would do a dark energy meditation, one that would, if we engaged with it, delve the depths of our dark side. We immediately opted to do this together, each sensing that the other felt a sense of excitement and dread about doing it.

The experience transformed our relationship into one of total trust and knowledge. The intention of the meditation was simply to provoke one another and see how far we could go.

We started sitting across from each other initially spending time becoming completely present with each other and tuning out the other people in the room. The meditation was to be energetic and physical. We started to pull faces and make gestures to try and provoke each other. Over a period of 10 to 15 minutes we moved to a form of play fighting. We were feeling each other out, sensing where the other person was and seeing how far we could go.

Eventually the play fighting stopped and we became serious. We were fighting, wrestling, to such an extent that the teacher came over to make sure we were ok. She was concerned about how far we were going. Once she was sure we knew what we were doing she let us carry on. Eventually we collapsed on the ground hugging and laughing. We had broken through a barrier and we both felt truly amazing.

What I need to explain is what happened energetically when we started really fighting. Physically I am larger and stronger than my wife. Physically I knew I could wipe the floor with her if I let go of any restraint. My wife knew this but she didn’t whether I would lose my restraint if she pushed me far enough. Equally she didn’t know if would just bow out in fear of hurting her. For her the latter would be almost as bad as the former.

So she pushed and provoked. She pushed harder and harder to test my reaction. I felt this and saw that she was serious about it. I responded by always topping what she did, but only just. I never let her beat me but I only did enough to ensure she knew I wasn’t going to back down. At one point I threw her on the floor and hurt her, but that didn’t stop her. She realized that I wasn’t going to back down but neither was I going to lose my temper, something she knew had been my habit in the past. In matching her aggression I was also protecting her. I was letting her do what she wanted but making sure she knew she would get it back.

Eventually she gave up, knowing there was no further she could go. I could hold her and stop her and give as good as I got. We were very happy because we discovered each other’s dark side. I knew she would go as far as she could, take what I gave back and not take it personally. She knew I would take whatever she gave me, give her back more but not lose my temper or restraint. I would always remain strong and protect her. I would not back down, I would remain, for her, a man.

None of this was planned or talked about as we did it. We followed our instincts and allowed ourselves to go deep into our dark energy. This was what we wanted. This cleared any doubt between us. It was important to us that this was a physical exercise. It had a deep sexual undertone even though sex did not appear in it. It’s important that you understand how sex can be involved in a physical relationship even when there is no sexual activity.

The meditation is not intended to become physical and you should not do anything to hurt each other in any way. Start by sitting cross-legged on the floor facing each other. Be close enough that you can touch each other. Sit in silence and look at each other for about 5 minutes. Do not move or talk but just focus on each other. Then start make faces at each other, expressions that might provoke or annoy the other. Then move into touch or prodding each other. Be gentle but try to push the other’s buttons, try to annoy them. Do this for about 10 minutes and see where it goes.

The intention is that you access that part of yourself that gets annoyed by others, especially your partner. In turn you want to annoy your partner. You don’t do this to upset her but to provoke her to provoke you, and so on. See where it goes and see how you end up reacting to each other.

Afterwards hug each other and let the energy fade away. Talk about the reactions you each felt and what you thought it meant. Look for the positive messages in the meditation, look for a way to get beyond the annoyance. Find out what each of you would like to see in the others actions and reactions.


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Previous: Session 9: Be Present

Next: Session 11: Love Your Woman


Session 9: Be Present

Presence, Need, Control

You will now look directly at your ability to be with a woman and to renew your relationship. The quality of presence is a crucial one that all women look for in a man. You need to be present with her and hold her in your presence. In doing this, you need to understand what is behind your love. You will look at the conflicting issues of need, desire and control and resolve how they affect you. They are behind much of what we call love, and you need to know where they are in your life.

Be Present – Summary

Presence

The first type of Presence is being in the moment, being you, being attentive to what your partner is saying and doing, and to her needs and desires. It starts with you, you have to be able to be aware of whether you are present. By being present with yourself, not dominating or passive, you can be honest, vulnerable, open, forthcoming and forthright.

The second type of presence is attracting people’s attention by who you are. The attraction comes from an inner sense of believing in yourself and in your message. With this presence, the physical, emotional, mental and spiritual aspects of your personality spring to the forefront of everything you say and do, through stance, tone, cadence, eye contact, gestures, your honest passion or emotion that is apparent in every word, your ability to make persuasive points, to sustain a clear argument, and the physical delivery of the message

Desire

Desire is to pursue a person or object that represents a feeling in you. What we really want is the sensation and not the object, person or situation itself. Desire and fear are two sides of the same coin, both equally involved in rejecting and escaping from reality. Wherever there is desire, there will be fear, where ever there is fear, there will be the desire to control and longing to possess.

Need

Abraham Maslow says that if our deficiency needs are not met, the individual feels tense and anxious. He organised the human needs in a pyramid, starting with:

  • Physiology. They are the literal requirements for human survival.
  • Safety & Security. They include security, health and well-being.
  • Love and belonging. Feelings of belonging, ability to maintain friendship, intimacy, family.
  • Esteem. All humans have a need to be respected and to have self-esteem and self-respect.
  • Self-actualization. Discovering a person’s full potential and realizing that potential.

A relationship is not meant to fill your need for love and belonging or your need for self-esteem and respect. A relationship works when you have filled those needs and you want to share love and belonging, self-esteem and respect with your partner.

Control

Men classically wield control in the home, thinking it’s their natural right or duty. He imagines that he’s preserving his individuality. He thinks part of the power struggle is not compromising who he is. He may let her think she has the power, but admitting outright that he’s the weaker of the two in his mind is the shameful compromise of a man’s integrity.

Love

If a relationship is based on desire, its life can be limited. If it’s based on need, it can be distorted. If it’s based on control, it will be a constant power battle. But if it’s based on love, it will grow and flourish, as will both partners.


Be Present – Worksheet

Set aside time to think through your answers to the questions. They are intended to get you thinking about need, love, desire and control. Write your answers either in this worksheet or start a journal. Also write your emotional or other reactions.

  1. In your relationships, either current or past, what was the nature of your love? What was the balance between love and desire? Can you see a separation between them?
  2. What needs do you have that are, or were, being fulfilled by your relationships? Do, or did, they get in the way or confuse matters?
  3. How do you control, or at least attempt to control, the world around you? Do you control your family, colleagues or friends?
  4. How do you see the relationship between Need, love, desire and control in your life? How do you think you need to change this?

Be Present – Exercise

This exercise was developed by Richard Moss, from whom I learned it. It is designed to enable you to bring yourself back to the present moment whenever you like.

Stand on your own in a room, make sure there is plenty of space around you.

Where you are standing is now, this is point where the rest of your life begins. Think about yourself in this moment and how you affect everything by how you are now. Stay silent for a moment and let this moment flood over you.

Step forward one step. You are now in the future. Think about the stories you create about the future. How much do you live in the future, how are you affected by it?

But that is in the future. Take a step back to the now. This is the first moment of the rest of your life. You are in the present moment, let the future fade away, let it go.

Step back one step. You are now in the past. Think about the stories you create about the past. How much do you live in the past, how are you affected by it?

But that is in the past. Take step forward to the now. This is the first moment of the rest of your life. You are in the present moment, let the future fade away, let it go.

Take a step to the left. You are now looking at your view of your life. Think about the stories you create about yourself. How much do you live in your stories, how are you affected by them?

But they are only stories. Take a step back to the now. This is the first moment of the rest of your life. You are in the present moment, let the future fade away, let it go.

Take a step to the right. You are now looking at others view of your life. Think about the stories you create about how others see you. How much do you live in the stories others tell about you, how are you affected by them?

But they are only stories. Take a step back to the now. This is the first moment of the rest of your life. You are in the present moment, let the future fade away, let it go.

Whenever you get caught up in the stories you tell yourself about the future, the past, what you think, what others think, just take a step back to the now, this is the first moment of the rest of your life.

Enjoy the moment and feel how much freer you are when when you just focus on the present moment.


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Previous: Session 8: Be A Leader

Next: Session 10: Have Sexual Polarity


Session 8: Be A Leader

Leadership, Influence, Freedom

Being a leader is more than having a title. It is about how you influence and are influenced by others. It is important that you know how others influence you and how you can change that. In your relationship, it is important that your love gives your partner freedom to be herself, freedom to fly and be a woman. When you become a leader, not just in your life, but in your relationship, you will find the answer to the question, “How do I love a woman?”

Be A Leader – Summary

Leadership

Leadership is a process whereby a person influences others to achieve a common goal. In your relationship, you influence your partner to achieve the common goal of a relationship. Leadership is learned and the skills and knowledge you have is influenced by your beliefs, values, ethics, and character. To be successful, you have to create trust and confidence.

You lead through communication, mostly nonverbal. In your partner’s eyes your leadership is everything you do affecting the relationship and her well-being. The basis of good leadership is honorable character and selfless service to your partner or family. You start by leading yourself first, by understanding your own needs, emotions, and your motivation. Then you learn the needs, emotions and motivation of your partner or your family.

The principles of leadership:

  • Know yourself, seek self-improvement. Understand your attributes.
  • Take responsibility for your actions. When things go wrong, do not blame your partner.
  • Be a good role model. Become the change you want to see, it starts with you.
  • Know your partner and look out for her well-being. Know the importance of caring.
  • Know how to communicate. Know yourself, know your partner, and communicate.

Influence

Two variables determine how much of your thoughts and actions are influenced by the people around you; your consciousness and resilience as an individual and the collective sum of the consciousness of the people you’re with. Your separate spheres of influence overlap and reveal whether you show the same personality at work and with friends.

The consciousness you live in affects the kind of thoughts you have and the actions you take. Spending time with successful, positive-minded people who take responsibility for their lives, assists you to become a proactive individual who shapes his future. If you want a great relationship surround yourself with people who have relationships that work.

Freedom

Surrender means to love without limits, it means to relax your guard so your partner can feel your core, authentic, unhidden and undefended. True surrender is about relaxing through emotional needs and magnifying your desire to give and receive unbounded love.

Women often believe that to have a deep relationship they have to give up their freedom. If they do, something dies inside. A man can change this by changing the meaning of surrender in a relationship to: letting go of resistance and realizing the deep power of who you are.

The ultimate result of surrender is freedom; freedom to be and do what you want. When a man surrenders himself in a relationship he gives his woman complete freedom to be whatever she is and wants to be. This unites the concepts of leadership and freedom; as a man you can expand your relationship to heights beyond your expectations.

Be A Leader – Worksheet

Set aside time to think through your answers to the questions. They are intended to get you thinking about your influences. Write your answers either in this worksheet or start a journal. Also write your emotional or other reactions.

  1. What are the different spheres of influence in your life? List the different areas of your life, the different activities where you are now.
  2. Do these areas overlap or are they kept separate? How do they overlap? How do they influence each other?
  3. How could you integrate these parts of your life? Do you feel you need to be a more integrated person to others?
  4. How do you create a safe environment for others? Do you provide a container for others to flourish and develop, especially your partner?

Be A Leader – Exercise

This is an exercise to identify your core circle of friends, your environment. Write down the answers to the following questions:

  • What kind of person do you want to be? What are the qualities you want to possess?
  • Who are the 5 people you spend the most time with in your life currently? What are they like? What are the top 3 qualities each of them stand for?
  • Do they match who you want to become in the future? Do their qualities match who you want to become? Do they help enable or disable your vision for yourself? Do they elevate you or bring you down?
  • Who are the top 5 people who embody the qualities you desire? They should be people you aspire to become and/or respect in some way or another.
  • How can you increase contact with them, or others like them?

Depending on who the people are, you can use the following methods to reach out to them:

  • Direct contact. This can be via face-to-face contact, telephone or via email/internet.
  • Products or their work. If direct communication does not work out, you can always bring the person to you in the form of his/her works.
  • Visualization. This can be the most powerful method of communication. It can be used in daily life, where you project their persona onto you in your situations and think/act the way you think they will.

What will happen as you increase your contact with these 5 people? If you connect with them every day your consciousness will shifts to a new level. You will find that you start thinking in the same wavelength and start talking about the same topics as them.

By choosing who you spend time with, you are shaping your future. Start by examining the people you spend the most time around. Consider if these people are enabling you towards your envisioned self. If they are not, identify and increase contact with the people who will enable you to become the best person you can be.


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Previous: Session 7: Understand Women

Next: Session 9: Be Present


Session 7: Understand Women

Understanding Men, Understanding Women, Emotions

The course is now moving beyond looking at you. You are starting the process of understanding women and therefore, understanding your partner. In understanding women, you need to have balance and understand men as well. In doing this, you will look at how men and women process emotions in different ways and understand how you process emotions. Men are reputed to not be emotional beings. Well, trust me, you are an emotional being and if you do not understand it, you need to start understanding and accepting the emotions inside you.

Understand Women – Summary

Men and women

  • Men and women think differently, accept this; open communication, honesty and the desire to meet your woman’s needs enhances independence and love.
  • Many motivations tend to be gender specific, a man and woman aim to complement each other; women are motivated by security, relationship and communication.
  • Men and women have different unique needs. Women need conversation, non-sexual touch, feeling cherished. Men need sex, respect and air. Focus on her needs, not yours.
  • Our perception of the world comes from our own emotions and needs, you create the world that is inside you, the world does not create you.
  • Men complain about problems because they’re asking for solutions, women complain about problems because they want their problems to be acknowledged but not solved.
  • Men and women score differently: men tend to give 30, 40 points for perceived big acts, women give each love-act one point at a time.
  • If one person feels they have given more than they have received resentment develops. Mutual communication helps to bring things back into balance.
  • Under stress, many men withdraw. They need their brains to focus on something else, allowing them to revisit the problem later with a fresh perspective.
  • Women’s natural reaction is to talk about things, even if it doesn’t solve it. This leads to a natural dynamic.

The Five Love Languages, by Dr. Gary Chapman, the key to make your partner feel loved:

  • Words of affirmation. Hearing “I love you” and receiving complements are important.
  • Quality time. Being present with the T.V. off and all chores on standby is critical.
  • Receiving gifts. The effort shows being cared for and prized above what was sacrificed.
  • Acts of Service. Easing the burden of responsibilities by “let me do that for you”.
  • Physical touch. Non-sexual touch (holding hands or hugs) shows concern, care and love.

Emotions

Constantly repressing emotions affects the quality of relationships with others. Every thought or feeling of anger, hurt, depression, anxiety, sadness and shame that you have experienced is held within the cells of your body unless you have consciously allowed yourself to feel, process and release them.


Understand Women – Worksheet

Set aside time to think through your answers to the questions. They are intended to get you thinking about your emotions and their relationship to pain.. Write your answers either in this worksheet or start a journal. Also write your emotional or other reactions.

  1. If you are in pain now, for whatever reason, sit silently and focus into the source of that pain. Allow it to communicate with you and tell you why it is there. What is it trying to get you to understand? If you have no pain, think back to when you had serious pain and go through the same process.
  2. Go deeper and feel what is there that you are not acknowledging. Keep going until you start to discover the emotions inside. What do you learn from seeing them?
  3. When you understand what it is there for, accept and acknowledge the communication, and let the pain go. What can you do to release these emotions? Will awareness be enough for you or do you need to do something more active?
  4. How can you setup a regular practice that will bring these emotions out in when you can deal with them without trauma? Is there a person or a group you can talk to regularly to start opening yourself up?

Understand Women – Exercise

You will need to continue with this exercise over an extended period of time, it can’t be completed in one sitting. It may be helpful to keep a special notebook to record the results. Choose a diary format so you can track the progress of how you connect with your emotions.

The exercise contains a number of ways you can get in touch with your emotions, either do all of them or pick the ones that particularly resonate with you, but do a minimum of three. Record your thoughts and emotions.

  • Listen To Your Thoughts and Daydreams.
    We become so accustomed to thinking in certain patterns that we are no longer aware or conscious about our thoughts and daydreams. 
  • Identify Your ‘Little and Unimportant Hurts’.
    More people walk around saying it’s not important or it doesn’t matter when it is very important and a big piece of hurting emotion is buried within them. 
  • Record What Makes You Feel Strongly.
    Keep an ongoing record of any strong emotions.
  • Memories That Won’t Go Away.
    If you keep remembering situations, hurts that happened some time ago, you are guaranteed to have repressed emotions around this person or situation.
  • Keep a Journal of the Emotions in Your Dreams.
    Keep a notebook by your bedside, jot down your dreams as soon as you begin to waken.
  • Be Specific About The Emotions You Are Experiencing.
    Confusion occurs when people are trying to get to know their emotions because they speak in general terms rather than specific emotions.
  • Are You Using Sex To Release Your Emotions?
    Sex is a normal and healthy part of life. Many people engage in sexual acts, with others, alone, or using pornography, to release emotions buried within them that they have been unable to feel and release. Look at the relationship you have between them.
  • Eating, Drinking, Exercising, or Any Type of Compulsive or Excessive Behavior.
    We often go for weeks, even years acting in a manner that is normal for us – and what is normal for you may not be normal for another person.  Then we will find ourselves overeating, working excessively, drinking daily, engaging in compulsive sex, working long hours, and many other types of compulsive behavior.  Where do you do this?
  • Positive Emotions.
    It is crucial that you identify your positive emotions during these exercises. You are probably very loving, caring, compassionate, trusting, forgiving, generous, many times in each day.  Be certain to include the wonderful and good things about yourself as you identify your emotional self. 

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Previous: Session 6: Live Your Passion

Next: Session 8: Be A Leader


Session 4: Live In Your Power

Power, Strength, Compassion

In ‘Live In Your Power And Strength, Don’t Abuse It’ I show that it is important for a man to live in his power and strength. This is where many men go wrong, but it is where men need to live. It is the strength to own and be yourself and the power to stand up for who and what you are. To be able to fully live there, you need compassion. Compassion is what tempers your power and strength. Compassion eliminates any tendency to become dominant. Balance between strength and compassion is crucial.

Live In Your Power – Summary (pdf)

Power

Power is a core trait with men and masculinity. Power is about the mental ability to achieve anything you want or desire. Real power is achieved through persuasion and communication. Power is about influencing people, it’s about conviction and character. It comes down to the personal power over things you can control, your decisions, your ideals, your emotions and actions.

There are eight types of approaches to power available to you:

  • Legitimate Power, through position or duties, as a community member, as a father
  • Referent Power, your personal standards and values, your behaviour and role model
  • Expert Power, derived from your skills or expertise, through career and reputation
  • Information Power, knowledge and communication of the information people crave
  • Reward Power, giving others benefits or attention that have significance for them
  • Coercive Power, personal power based on fear, threats or force, could be violent
  • Connection Power, your power comes from being connected to a powerful person
  • Veto Power, the ability to stop something happening or disrupt it in some way

All can be used as well as abused. Four tend to be most effective in influencing people without creating negative effects: Referent, Expert, Information and Legitimate.

Strength

Strength is the state, property, or quality of being strong; the ability to resist attack; the ability to resist strain or stress; the ability to maintain a moral or intellectual position firmly; the capacity for effective action.

Strength is the pursuit of the qualities that show your firmness, your ability or effectiveness of character. It’s built gradually through accomplishing goals.

Strength is about knowing what to do and power is about putting it into action

Compassion

According to Wikipedia compassion is a virtue. One in which the emotional capacities of empathy and sympathy for the suffering of others are regarded as part of love.

Samurai’s bushido code of behavior builds on compassion, kindness, and other qualities not traditionally thought of as masculine, yet they are. The Bushido Code comprises:

  1. Justice. Personal and professional integrity, a sense of working for the greater good
  2. Courage. Courage only exists in integrity. The essential ability to admit mistakes
  3. Kindness. The power to command only while showing compassion and mercy
  4. Politeness. For a man courtesy and good manners are rooted in compassion
  5. Honesty. Honesty involves abstinence and simplicity.
  6. Honour. A sense of honour, personal dignity, and worth characterize the Samurai.
  7. Loyalty. The requirement to remain loyal to those to whom they are indebted.

Live In Your Power – Worksheet (pdf)

Set aside time to think through your answers to the questions. They are intended to get you thinking about power, strength and compassion. Write your answers either in this worksheet or start a journal. Also write your emotional or other reactions.

  1. How Do You Use Your Power And Strength?
  2. Do you think you are a powerful person, or do you succumb to other people’s power? Do you use your strength to get attention?
  3. Do people respect and understand you or do they listen to you because you force them physically, emotionally or psychologically?
  4. Do you feel compassion for others, truly, or do you tolerate them? Do you have ways you can temper your power and strength with compassion, does this happen automatically or do you have to actively control yourself?

Live In Your Power – Exercise (pdf)

Finding Compassion for Others

There are a number of powerful ways of seeing how you are connected to people you resist. In fact, it has been argued that to see something in another that you resist or that bothers you, that same trait must be present in yourself. Seeing this commonality should move you into compassion.

Choose a situation in which you are judging, labeling, or feeling irritated by another person, if that is the case with your partner, she would be ideal.

Write down a description of what this person does that is difficult for you. Be as specific as possible about both the other person’s behavior and your reaction.

Now temporarily suspend your judgments and irritations. Write as if you were the other person. Place yourself in her awareness, describing the behavior that you find irritating. Write in the first person, using “I” statements, speaking as her. Let yourself feel what it is to be her.

Consider how the other person is like you. What aspirations or concerns does she have that are similar to your own? What attachments and aversions might drive her behaviors? What do you have in common? Let yourself sense the commonalities. Find a place of compassion within yourself for the other person.

Practice commonalities. When you meet friends and strangers do the following simple exercise. Do it discreetly and try to do all the steps with the same person. With your attention geared to the other person, tell yourself,

“Just like me, this person is seeking happiness in his/her life.”
“Just like me, this person is trying to avoid suffering in his/her life.”
“Just like me, this person has known sadness, loneliness and despair.”
“Just like me, this person is seeking to fill his/her needs.”
“Just like me, this person is learning about life.”


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Previous: Session 3: Be Grounded

Next: Session 5: A Life of Purpose


Session 6: Live Your Passion

Change, Vision, Passion

‘Change And Live Your Passion’ is the halfway point of the course and at this point, you need to address the question of change to embrace it fully. At some level, you need to change if you are going to receive the benefits the course is offering. The question though, is change to what? This is where you find your vision and your passion. Finding and embracing what you are passionate about in life enables you to build your vision of the future. Your vision should be what drives you, what inspires you.

Live Your Passion – Summary

Change

Change is something that’s constant in life. There is natural change and conscious change.

A vision gives you a target to move towards; it encapsulates the process of change you’ve built into your life. Your vision allows for creating the change most beneficial to you.

When we feel passionate about our life, our career, our relationship, we are able to change in order to drive our life forwards. Passion is ultimately what drives change by creating a towards movement to fulfilling the objectives identified in our vision.

Change is just the starting price if you want to inspire others. It starts with yourself. If you want to see the world develop and grow, and see action on the problems in this world then change is absolutely essential. Change in and of yourself empowers others.

See yourself, as an inspiration to others, for them to respect, admire and wanting to follow.

Vision

Vision is what draws out the power and passion in you, what makes your life interesting, exciting. It is what moves you on, draws out your creativity, powers your personal growth and development. Vision is about looking forward and deciding how you are going to live.

The greatest gift that you can give yourself is to take a blank canvas and start designing, start creating your vision. You can range far and wide in your pursuit of the ideal; you can go into the macro with over-arching concepts or go into the micro with amazing detail.

A relationship vision is very important, whether you are in a relationship or not.

  • If not: Your relationship vision can contain anything you want, color of hair, size, wealth, spirituality, etc. No matter how detailed, it must be genuine and authentic, representing someone you want to spend the rest of your life with, in love and happiness.
  • If you are: Your relationship vision is about creating an ideal picture of how it will work, how you will relate to each other, how you will spend your time together, your common interests.
  • In both cases: craft it from the positive, present, perspective that you are together and this is how you are living, eg. “At the heart of the relationship will be a deep close friendship.

Passion

Passion is what gives you your fire, passion is what makes life worth living. When you know what drives you, you can truly touch your passion.

It has been shown that the human brain has infinite potential. A more popular myth says that we use no more than 10% of our brain capacity. The truth is that we don’t yet know the limits. Imagine what living to your full potential might mean: not holding back, fully projecting out into the world your emotions, your inspiration, and your passion. Showing the world who or what you are. Embracing change, live your passion and pursue your vision.


Live Your Passion – Worksheet

Set aside time to think through your answers to the questions. They are intended to get you thinking about change. Write your answers either in this worksheet or start a journal. Also write your emotional or other reactions.

  1. Do you find you are looking to change yourself, what you feel, how you react, how you think about yourself? Do you want to do something about the aspects of yourself you don’t like?
  2. What type of person do you want to be? What traits would you like to be remembered for? How do you want to make your mark? Do you have a vision for where you want to go in life?
  3. Get your journal and write the vision for your life. It can be simple bullet points or detailed writing, just commit it to paper. What can you do to spice up your vision?
  4. Do you know what your full potential is? Do you have any sense of what you are capable of in all areas of life? Do you live to that potential or are there areas that you hold back on?

Live Your Passion – Exercise

Modelling involves developing ways of thinking and behaving that mirror the successful approach of another.

No matter what it is you desire to be, do or have, there is someone else out there who has achieved what you want. And if you can model their approach, you will duplicate their success for yourself.

Think of someone you can use as a mentor, whether it’s someone you know or not doesn’t matter.

  • Who is it?
  • What is it about them that attracts you?
  • What did they do that is important?
  • What do they represent for you?

There should be plenty of accessible information about how they achieved success. Work out their mindset and how they faced challenges and opportunities. What critical decisions did they make along their path? What was their positive self talk that helped them through the hard times?

Then act as if you were that person. This will help you manifest your desires. Embody the characteristics of the person you are modelling. Behave this way in your life now, adopt the mindset of that person you want to become.

This works because the body follows where the mind leads. If you struggle at first with this technique, just keep trying. You will know when it is working because positive self talk will become more natural and spontaneous.


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Previous: Session 5: A Life of Purpose

Next: Session 7: Understand Women


Session 3: Be Grounded

Self-Confidence, Being Grounded, Loving Yourself

In ‘Be Grounded and Loving’ you will learn that another essential quality in a man is the ability to be grounded. From the solidity of this grounding comes the ability to love and be loved. Where these collide is in self-love. Your ability to love yourself is a basic requirement for moving forward on this journey. You will work on your self-confidence, allowing you to be able to love yourself and therefore, love others. It is crucial that you get this right and that you understand this process.

Be Grounded – Summary

Self-Confidence

Your expectations, your choices, values, and beliefs are created by your unconscious mind. If you change your unconscious pattern of thought, you can change the basis of your life. Men seemed to be totally unaware of how they present themselves and how they’re seen by others. There’s a number of very specific issues that show what’s going on. Deal with those and you will change how people perceive you. They include: Clothes, Hair, Stance, Expression, Walk, Tone, Speech, Communication, Body Language, Attitude, Presence, Gratitude.

Being Grounded

It means is that you’re in touch with reality. You are able to resist pressure from those around you. You’re able to be certain in yourself and enable others to feel certain around you. Once you rid yourself of any doubt, you find you can accept all that you are. Look at others only to model them and absorb what is great in them.

Loving Yourself

To love yourself means to accept yourself as you are, and come to terms with those aspects of yourself you cannot change. It means to have self-respect, a positive self-image, and unconditional self-acceptance. It means having a healthy regard for yourself, knowing that you are a worthy human being. It is important to remind yourself that no one is perfect. You have strengths and weaknesses and you possess the resources to work on improving yourself.

You are unique in the specific talents and abilities you have to offer. In order to appreciate yourself is up to you to discover what makes you unique and to go further in developing those talents. You have a responsibility to yourself to do so. You cannot sit around and wait for approval from others. You need to work on accepting yourself. You are the only you you have and it’s in your best interest to be the best you can be.

How do you love yourself?

  • You do so by investing in and working on your personal growth and development.
  • You take care of your body by eating well. Exercise and get plenty of rest.
  • Don’t neglect your spirit or you will lack balance and feel that something is missing.
  • If you don’t love yourself things can happen to restrict your ability to live well.

To be able to truly love someone without attachment or possessiveness, you have to fully accept yourself with all the flaws, mistakes and inadequacies you may have.

But if you just rely on those around you to teach you about love, you fall into a passive way of coming to love yourself. I prefer to use my ability to love myself to show others how to love me. That creates an interaction that grows and builds. Learn to love others so you can learn to love yourself.


Be Grounded – Worksheet

Set aside time to think through your answers to the questions. They are intended to get you thinking about loving yourself. Write your answers either in this worksheet or start a journal. Also write your emotional or other reactions.

  1. Honestly ask the question, do you love yourself? If you are unsure then ask yourself: can you love yourself?
  2. If you answered yes then write down all the ways you love yourself, write down all the things you love about yourself. You can be honest no-one else is going to read this.
  3. If you answered no or aren’t sure then write down all the parts of yourself that get in the way. What is it you aren’t sure of? What don’t you like?
  4. Can you let go of the things that get in the way? What would it take to love yourself? What are the things you could love about yourself?

Be Grounded – Exercise

Write down four things you feel about yourself in each of the following areas:

  • Relationships with Others
  • Day to Day Functioning
  • Personality
  • Appearance

Go back over your answers and look at the extent to which they show strength or weakness.

Re-write your answers bearing in mind the following:

  • Celebrate the strengths you identify in the exercise.
  • Look at weakness from the opposite perspective.
  • Recognise hidden or overlooked talents.
  • Note where weakness specifically occurs and where it doesn’t.
  • Let go of judgements.
  • Eliminate hurtful words that just don’t belong.

Re-write them.

  • Relationships with Others
  • Day to Day Functioning
  • Personality
  • Appearance

Now look at how different the view you see is. Get to know the person you now show yourself to be.

As you go through the course, return to this exercise from time to time and re-do it.


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Previous: Session 2: Understand Your Influences

Next: Session 4: Live In Your Power


Session 2: Understand Your Influences

Your Parents, Your Personalities, Your Attitudes

In ‘Understand Your Influences’ you will discover and learn to understand the influences that have affected your core masculinity. Core masculinity is only what you start with, it changes through your life. Your parents will have exerted the most immediate and basic influence on you. You will come to understand that and learn how it has helped create many different personalities in you. It is important for you to meet those personalities and get to resolve the issues between them. You will look at your attitudes to life, and how they have affected you and your relationships with others.

Your Influences – Summary

Parents

As a man, your father is important to you. You possibly aspired to be him and determined never to be like him. A boy child tends to copy male figures because he perceives them as similar to him and as powerful. This copying is reinforced by the behavior of his parents towards him.

You love your mother but you also need your mother. Men can confuse comfort with love, they feel this deep need, an emptiness to be filled. They look for their mothers to fill it and as they grow up, subconsciously, they can’t admit this to themselves, so they look for women who are like their mothers, who will fill this need.

Personalities

Conflicting requirements, particularly from parents, create conflicting needs inside you. Conflicting directions, conflicting ideas of what you should be. These can build into conflicting and different personalities within you. There are many different people within you, there are many different personalities. It’s likely that you needed to be different people for your father and your mother. Your parents are individuals with their own demands and pressures. As children you would respond to these in different ways.

Attitudes

You are in charge of your mind and you control everything you do. You make choices for yourself and you should understand where you stand on three major attitudes to life.

  • The first is the concept of towards or away from.
  • The second is looking forwards or backwards.
  • The third is apportioning blame or taking responsibility.

Are you moving towards a vision or are you moving away from where you’ve been? Understanding the essential difference in motivation is key to creating the life you desire. Are you moving towards a vision or are you moving away from something unpleasant or something you don’t like? It’s about whether you focus on pleasure or pain. These are the two core emotions within the depths of your being that drive so much of what you do. Do you seek pleasure or do you seek to avoid pain?

Many people get stuck in the past; constantly reliving what happened to them. Others are constantly looking forwards planning what they are going to do. Neither really seem to focus on now, the present moment; this is the most important time. Changing this could have a powerful effect on your relationship.

The desire to blame is imbedded within our society. It seems that it’s always someone else’s fault. It starts on a wide front with blaming the government and the people we think control us, the military, the corporations, those who hold the money. This comes out in extreme form through the many conspiracy theories around. It finishes in your relationships when you fight your partner, when you blame each other for everything that’s wrong.


Your Influences – Worksheet

Set aside time to think through your answers to the questions. They are intended to get you thinking about your influences. Write your answers either in this worksheet or start a journal. Also write your emotional or other reactions.

  1. Who was your father for you? Was he a hero or a villain? How did he influence you? Who did you have to be for your father? What did you suppress to gain your father’s love?
  2. Who was your mother for you? Was she a comforter or a woman? Did she have a personality, as you saw it, outside of her role as a mother? Who did you have to be for your mother? What did she expect of you? Did you fulfill that or shy away from it?
  3. Think about what you focus on in life. Are you constantly looking at and talking about what has happened, or are you looking to what is going to happen? How much do you focus on the present, this moment. How aware are you of what is going on around you?
  4. What are you holding on to that you blame someone else for? What do you think is happening in your life that is someone else’s fault? How much do you blame other people for your difficulties? How much do you take responsibility for yourself and your life?

Your Influences – Exercise

Having learned to love yourself you will now look at accepting yourself. To do this you need to know who you are and integrate all the different parts of yourself.

You begin by understanding your different personalities. Write down what comes out of this exercise in your journal.

The key to your personalities will come from the worksheet where you look at how you reacted to the influence of your father and your mother. It is likely that you were a different person for each of them, depending on what they were looking for in you. From there look at your life and how you show up in different ways in different situations.

Look at the different roles you play in your life; son, father, brother, husband, employee, employer, leader, sportsman, academic, worker etc. Look at the personalities you employ in these different roles. Look at how you are a different man in each situation.

When you bring together the different personalities from when you grew up with the different personalities you are now, you will build up a profile of who you are, a matrix of what makes you a man. Look at the relative importance of these roles to you and others in your life, look at which roles you play most of the time.

I want you to list the personalities and give them names. Get to know them and get comfortable with them.

Start to understand that these personalities are different people inside you. Go somewhere on your own and talk to the personalities. Talk out loud, have a discussion about who they are, where they came from and why they are here.

Talk to each personality in turn and make sure you fully understand where they came from, what their role is and what their intentions for you are. Resolve any differences between them and you and clear up any conflict. If they don’t serve you any more, let them go with your gratitude.

It may be that they need to talk to each other and resolve differences. It is frequently the case that the roles have differing outcomes that cause conflict within you. These need to be worked out and you should work to align the roles so they all have your best interests at heart.

Get yourself to a point where you feel comfortable with all the parts of yourself. You should know them and understand them. Keep going through this process until you feel that they have all become an integrated whole.

This may need to be an exercise that you come back to in the future, it is rarely possible to resolve all these issues in one session. Start by getting comfortable with the process and learn to enjoy getting to know yourself.


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