I often write about the positives of my life.
I write about how well my son and daughter are doing, how great my wife and I are doing, and that my life, as a whole, is awesome.
Today, I want to talk about the deep valleys I’ve walked to reach these peaks. I want to do this not so I can feel that fresh stab of past pains in my heart, but rather, because I want men to see, there is a light at the end of the tunnel and you just need to keep walking through hell to get there.
I’ve been there. I get it.
I’ve been in the car, unable to hear the sound of music or wind because I’m so lost in my head. Heart pounding, pulse in my teeth, with the loudest voice in my head saying, “What would happen if you just pulled the steering wheel into that tree, pole, or median…?”
I’ve been in the shower, the only place I could truly be alone and just sat on the floor, staring at the drain, letting the hot water scald me while I regressed into the abyss of my mind wondering, “Where did it go so wrong…?”
I’ve punched through the walls.
I’ve had the drunken nights.
I’ve screamed into the pillows.
I’ve cried my eyes out until there wasn’t a drop left to shed.
I’ve told myself, “It wasn’t supposed to be like this, I did everything right, there’s no point to this fucking life…”
I’ve reached the point where I didn’t care if I was alive or dead.
The point where my only relief was sleeping because that was my only escape from reality. All I wanted to do was retreat to the realm of unconscious and even there I was at risk of attack from the self-hate and loathing which I felt in my day to day existence.
Retreat only prolongs the pain; it kicks the solution to the suffering down the road.
I decided to stand up and choose risking death on my feet than to continue ‘living’ another day on my knees.
I did this alone.
I should have had my brethren there to help me.
Society has recognized this and in an attempt to deconstruct and eradicate the masculine man, they’ve made it so men cannot find one another.
This is why I’m writing.
This is a rope being thrown to you, hoping you find it and climb out of the hole before you choose to end it all, or worse, quit and remain ‘living’ in your grave.
Living in a constant state of anxiety, fear, and self-repression isn’t living at all, it’s barely existing and it is this state which I’m hoping this piece helps pull men from.
You don’t have to be Perfect, you have to be you.
The anxiety, suicidal thoughts, depression, and self-hate stem from the thoughts of how things ‘should be‘.
You look at who you are and you compare it to how the perfect self would be. You think of your life as it is and how you feel your life should be.
You’ve said the nice things and walked the righteous path,yet the ‘asshole’ is winning and here you are, chopped liver.
Listen to me now brothers, your life is exactly how it should be and you are who you’ve decided to be.
At any point you could make the decision to flip the switch and start living a genuine life. It isn’t easy and it isn’t quick, but it beats living another minute hating the fact that you’re still awake.
We can destroy that voice inside telling you how terrible you are, how inadequate you are, how stupid you are…
We can silence it through action.
We can take swift action and overpower that internal demon with overwhelming violence.
I say we because your fellow men are here to help, but it is you who will be executing the action and delivering the pain to that internal demon.
That violence will be lifting weights when you don’t want to.
Following your own imperative and not the one society has instructed you to follow and support.
Answering life questions honestly.
Discovering who you are by being who you are as opposed to the guy you think others will like.
These acts destroy that voice, they take the power from it.
Life isn’t about perfection.
It isn’t about being the person you thought you would be when you were younger.
It’s about being who you are, regardless of the reception you receive from others. Life is full of conformist personalities looking to gain favor by replicating one another.
When you do that, almost immediately you’ll feel light shine through the dark clouds in your heart and mind. When you tell someone, “No.” for the first time, you’ll feel so empowered because for the first time, you’ve drawn a boundary.
Only then will you begin to experience the joy that exists in the world in which we live.
Only then will you find love for yourself and a flame in your heart, passion for life, and desire to continue on.
Stop thinking ‘you used to be somebody‘ or that life would be great ‘if only X didn’t happen‘ because everyone used to be somebody; only the strong choose to continue being somebody in the here and now and guess what? X happened to you, but it isn’t you.
What happened to you must not become who you are.
It happened, be strong enough to leave it behind and refuse to identify with it; that’s victim mindset and you aren’t a victim.
You’re a man who is desperately needed in our society.
Drop the Perfect, Embrace the Harsh Reality; Find Comfort in the Discomfort.
Life is tough.
You are tougher.
Don’t believe it?
You’re still here aren’t you?
Everyone goes through dark nights. At some point, every man is going to have to stare into the abyss that exists in his self.
That’s part of being a man, it’s a part of our burden of performance. We love fiercely, the inverse is also true. We feel the highest highs and the lowest lows because we are the more romantic of the sexes.
For those who are currently choosing to reside in those deep valleys, this is me putting my hand out there. You’re being given a chance to take hold and start climbing that mountain with me and your fellow men.
Upon finishing this essay, take a moment to assess where you’re at and recognize you aren’t alone in this battle.
If you need to, reach out to me or any other man whom you relate to for help. All will listen, men help men.
Do not discuss your problem without any intention of finding a solution; that’s redundancy without progress.
Work towards solving the problem.
That may mean divorce, breaking up with a toxic woman, removing negative friends and family from your life, etc.
Whatever is required to help you remove the incessant voice in your head telling you that you aren’t good enough and that you need to be ‘perfect’; do that thing.
Life is too short to waste the beauty of it wishing things weren’t the way they are.
You are who you are and your life is what it is.
Today, choose to stand.
Choose to get off your knees and take a stand against those who look to beat you down into submission.
Existing is not living.
Choose to embrace your authentic masculine nature and if others find issue with that, so be it; Your life’s purpose is not to make those around you comfortable.
Acta Non Verba,
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