I often hear this, “I have to meet with you because my relationship isn’t working. If I don’t take some action now, I might lose everything.”
- My musings:
The more guys I connect with through this profession, the more my heart aches when I hear men’s disappointment and the sound of exhaustion while they are looking for transformation urgently. They really want to be the partner, the dad and the individual that illuminates their lady’s heart & soul. Truthfully, men are not the stronger gender in terms of emotions. Men feel everything women do. Men just show it very differently. In his book The Mask of Masculinity, Lewis Howes writes, “Most men wear the stoic mask so that they could look strong and tough. Yet in reality, compared with women, men are more likely to commit suicide. What’s more, in general, women live longer than men.”
Several years ago, when I was facilitating a dating and relationships workshop, I asked the female participants, “How many of you talk to your family and friends about your feelings and emotions every week?” Nearly every lady in the room raised her hand.
Then I asked the male participants, “How many of you talk to your friends and family about your emotions and feelings every week?” No guy raised his hand.
Therefore, I asked the female participants, “How would you feel if you stop catching up with your family and friends to talk about how you feel?” Most women said, “That may drive me mad.”
So, I asked the female participants again, “Could you imagine never sharing your feelings & emotions with anyone?” A woman literally said, “That can cause suicidal ideation.”
I said, “Do you know that most guys almost never share their emotions and feelings? They want to be strong and tough. That is their invincible mask.”
Indeed, the modern culture does not encourage guys to show fear and be vulnerable. Consequently, guys generally tend to hide their emotions and feelings. Unfortunately, that is how many ‘tough men’ lock people out by keeping their authentic, true self hidden. If a guy can drop his invincible mask, he can build deeper relationships with people and have a healthier, longer lifespan! As a result, I really appreciate guys who have consulted with me in order to improve their dating and relationships. I know it takes lots of courage to ask for advice and help; therefore, I highly commend these men for their humanity, honesty and authenticity.
- How to be truly authentic in dating and relationships:
Men who wear the stoic mask have totally missed the point – the true nature of Stoicism isn’t about hiding your feelings and emotions. In fact, Stoicism is all about ‘letting the car run out of gas’. Please let me explain.
Imagine driving a car which is only speeding up all the time, so you are concerned and you want to slow down the annoying car. But this car only has an accelerator. Therefore, the harder you try to slow down the car, the faster it becomes. Hence, the best way to control the situation is to let the car run out of gas….
Basically, Stoicism is about letting the irritating anxiety be there without interacting with it because the more you argue with it, the worse you will feel. In the external world, more work leads to more reward. Yet in the internal world, it goes backwards: the harder you try to get rid of the anxious thoughts, the more anxious you feel.
So, our safer dating advice for you is to allow anxiety be there without trying to push it away. Of course, if you are dating the right person, you wouldn’t feel anxious in the first place. Indeed, the right person makes everything so much easier in a romantic relationship.
When you are dating the right woman, you feel safe to be authentic in your relationship. You can schedule date nights regularly. You can have honest conversations. You can connect with each other in a genuine manner.
That is an authentic relationship. That is when magic happens.
“Stoicism is actually about letting time pass – when you are driving a car and there is some dirt on the window, now if you try to get rid of the dirt, it becomes a mess on the window. Thus, what you should do is to let the rain wash the dirt away and let the beautiful sunshine dry your window!”