Session 12 — Be The Man
This is where all the lessons are pulled together. It starts with the ‘personal masculinity’ you create for yourself. Being dynamic in yourself, in your life and in your relationship will create the edge that makes a difference.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
- 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?
- To what extent do you match this picture of masculinity? To what extent do you believe you can be 'Masculine'?
- 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?
- 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?
This is the same exercise as the one at the beginning of the course. 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 according to where you expect to be then, where you will be. Then look back to the results from the beginning and note the differences, 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.
You will find it at Masculine and Feminine Qualities.