What is healthy masculinity?
The answer to this question does not have one definitive answer; I know from experience it is ultimately a lifestyle choice. The path of the healthy masculine requires a strong foundation, here are a few ideas.
Healthy masculinity implies of sound mind and points to a state of homeostasis. It means operating in the most balanced, vital, robust, wholesome, health filled and loving way.
The most important thing in building a foundation for healthy masculinity is the commitment to the journey of self-discovery. When you have a strong commitment and intention of personal growth, it serves as the rich fertile soil in your personal/ spiritual evolution.
Through your commitment to self-discovery you can cultivate the desire to look at your personal conditioning. You will begin to see how your parents, friends, teachers and society have told us a masculine man should be. You will develop more awareness of how wounds and traumas have been dictating your actions. You soon recognize that challenges can become your greatest ally.
You must be willing to challenge yourself to be introspective, to be aware of how you may be living with an idealized version of what a masculine man is (I refer to this as the old masculine).
It can be very difficult at times when you feel closed and filled with tension to challenge yourself, but I know through your on-going commitment great changes can be made.
Practice Doesn’t Make Perfect
Don’t expect perfection from yourself, but do continue practicing. Through practice you can transform shame into self-loving, self-deprecation into self-forgiveness, comparison to others into self- acceptance (not to be confused with acquiescence).
I am often asked what practice can I do?
The first practice is to strengthen your desire for growth.
Practice can include:
Writing down your personal growth goals
Sharing your goals with important people in your life
Ask for support on your journey be it a meditation class or a coach.
The other critical practice is to continue loving yourself through it all, easier said than done but remember it is a practice.
Read anything on personal growth; watch any great personal growth teacher and you will see this theme as crucial. Loving yourself includes self-nurturing and self-care: healthy food, a solo walk in nature, a day at the spa, a travel adventure, a yoga class or quiet contemplation alone at home with the theme of self-loving.
Stand in the mirror and say “ I frigin love you man” I love you, I love you. You are loved.
It may sound cliché or even ridiculous to you but do it anyway. It works!