I don’t hunt. I’ve only shot a gun a few times. I could care less about cars. I’m not all that handy around the house, but can figure most things out. I’m not afraid to show or express my emotions. I spend a ton of time with children. Is that manly? I think so. This week we’re going to focus on and discuss what being a man really means in today’s world.
Not too long ago one of my new neighbors, who has become a good friend of mine, called and asked if I knew anything about hanging blinds and if I could help. I told him, “Sorry, I really don’t. I’ll have Angie (my wife) come over and take a look.” It’s the truth, my wife is more handy around the house than I am. Our neighborhood friends get a laugh out of that and so does my wife.
If you pay the slightest bit of attention to the local or national news you’ll notice countless stories of men making bad decisions, thus putting themselves in a bad light or in trouble. One of the stories which got me thinking about this was the killing of Cecil the Lion. I’m not going to debate the issue here, but what I do want to ask is why would a man feel need to kill (that was not hunting) a lion in order to get a rush? I believe it comes from a deeply rooted problem in our society. And that problem is male insecurity and a false sense of bravado.
Men are seeking validation of their manliness without understanding what true manliness is.
I’ve got no problems with men who do hunt, shoot guns, go mudding, and are into cars. To each their own. Somehow, somewhere along the way though society has taught young boys they must act a certain way in order to be considered a man. Unfortunately, what’s being taught and accepted as true is the opposite of the way it should be.
Young boys are taught that real men are tough, and in order to be tough you must solve conflicts with violence. And today that means using guns. Young boys are taught real men don’t cry, and showing emotion is weak. Heaven forbid a young boy cry, because that’s “for sissy’s and girls.” Young boys are being taught by the older generations that it’s okay to have children and be an absent father. That it’s somehow okay for the father to NOT be present in the lives of their children. Young men are also overexposed to the degradation of women, and are not taught how to properly treat a woman. They are also taught that in order to be a man you have to compete and compare with others for who has the biggest, best, and most of everything.
With that being said, what does a “real” man look like?
Real men are not afraid or ashamed of their emotions. They are not afraid to express how they fell and to tell others they love them.
Real men are leaders at home. Their number one priority is to be a great father and husband.
Real men realize they are inherently role models for all young boys in society.
Being a man means you have character and integrity. It means you stand up for what’s right without automatically resorting to physical violence.
Real men realize that life is about relationships, and they seek to develop quality relationships at home, work, and within the community.
Being a man means accepting responsibility for what’s yours, and your actions without shifting blame to others.
Real men don’t feel the need to compete and compare their family, cars, homes, relationships, and other possessions with others. They are happy and grateful for what they have.
The world needs more men of character and integrity. We must teach our young boys that life is really all about relationships, and the true measure of their success is how good of a father and husband they are; not how big or how much they have. You don’t need need trophies and the ultra macho personality to be a man. One just needs to have character, integrity, and be a leader in the home.
What are your thoughts? What’s your definition of a real man in today’s world?
As always, thanks for reading, have a great week, and be an RGP today!
Coach Elmendorf is available to speak to your team, group, or organization.