Author: Advisor to Men

MALE FRIENDSHIPS


It is a myth that the females of our species are the more social gender. This appears to be largely based on the way women have “besties” and “gal-pals” and “her girlfriends,” people she can’t seem to exist without. If she doesn’t have these people in her life, she pays a price.

You do too , for as she suffers your life becomes complicated. Though women in general tend to have more empathy, men are more social.

According to social scientist Roy Baumeister, typically, women have at least one, sometimes up to five, women pals whom they guard jealously from each other and use for emotional regulation. It’s how most gals are made.

I remember telling my divorce lawyer about this. His wife was complaining that very morning about a new woman who moved in a few doors down and was now visiting his wife’s bestie across the street, causing her stress.

Sometimes, a woman can’t make it in the egalitarian sisterhood. I have coached many women of all ages who were stung by “mean girls” in high school or on the job.

Hell, my woman worked for a time in a nursing home among the sisters and talked about this every day.

But a woman adrift from the sisterhood is left with an emotional void in the form of unregulated emotion.

Mankind is a belonging species, and she is the source of belonging.

I’ve known pretty girls socially excluded from the sisterhood who suffered as a result. Some pretty girls will tend to find one tough girl whom they pair up with for protection.

One of my first girlfriends as a teen was a stunning blonde, a Jean Harlow look-a-like so despised by the other girls she found refuge in just one loyal friend who was probably 300 lbs.

Her other alternative is to find men as protectors and remain unregulated emotionally at some cost to her psychology.

Missus was headed to the beach with kids in tow and I made a comment about her pink bikini (though it’s long gone) She smiled and said, “I could go to the beach with my tits hanging out and a tiny bathing suit, and no one would talk to me.”

I got it. Sisterhood.

Missus tells me her strategy has always been to befriend girls who could look out for her. She’s the baby of her family, with two big sisters and an older brother, so she recreates the family dynamic in her friendships.

If a kid in grade one or two tries to join two other girls who have been playing together, chances are they will move away and go do something else. Besties is a closed system. Boys don’t tend to do this.

If you give word puzzles to primary-school-aged groups of eight boys and eight girls, the boys will fuck around… a lot. But come crunch time, with the clock running down, all the boys will contribute answers to solve the puzzles on time.

Girls will spend their time interviewing each other and then pair up so that the group ends up as four pairs of girls instead of one whole team. They contribute in pairs to the whole.

Both systems work. One is egalitarian, one is competitive.

Men tend to have many far more superficial or shallow relationships within many groups of men.

This is probably why men build cultures (women stress-test them).

Men compete to find the experts among them and then, defer to that expertise.

Operating in bigger groups is also why we suppress emotion more readily: expressing your feelings in a group is riskier and can be used against you.

If a man does not see his friends for a time, generally his suffering isn’t as obvious as it would be when a woman is deprived of hers

Geoffrey Greif’s book Buddy Systems put male friendships into four groups:

Must friend: if you have them, your best pals; you include them in most parts of your life.
Trust friend: comfortable with and trust & would be closer buddies if conditions allowed.
Rust friend: good buddies you don’t see regularly but will always be counted as friends.
Just friend: context friends from work, community, or club and fine to keep it that way.

Whereas she will share life’s challenges among her close circle of friends, he might not at all, choosing instead to “soldier on.”

Men suppress emotions for good reasons, to get things done. It’s repression that costs us. Denying we even feel something.

We are often called upon to do a culture’s “dirty work.”

Whether that be pumping sewage, working high steel, putting out fires or fighting enemies on the other side of the world, it is men who mop up when the going gets tough.

It is men who suffer 95% of workplace fatalities, for example.

We cannot entertain the same emotional frameworks women do lest it hamper our effectiveness.

In cultures across the world, men are found to experience much less fear compared women. We can also take more pain (another debunked myth).

Making men more feminine to suit new cultural norms is problematic social engineering. Weaken western men over a few generations and we risk being overrun by stronger masculine populations.

Think it can’t happen? It is happening now. That’s how nature works.

Western population growth is abysmal compared with the Third World. Don’t worry, the elites will use their resources to stick around while your line of descendants die out.

Humans are designed to exist in small, relatively homogenous groups.

All of nature is like this with few exceptions. You and I both definitely need a tribe, a group we call our own.

The answer to problems of masculinity is more masculinity.

Not less. It’s your birthright. You are what the heavens decreed.

It’s the universe of infinite wisdom which decided your gender, green-lighting your potentials and possibilities… as a man.

I encourage you all to be men.

That includes male friendships you keep in your orbit.

For example, when I moved here five or so years ago, I found out one of my best pals from my early teenage years lives up the street on a farm. Turns out he’s still hanging with one of our crew, my old friend from across the street from my parents. Hadn’t seen them in decades.

We get together every month or two or three over breakfast to talk politics. Because EVERYBODY needs straightening out on that one. Lol I even gave one of them a book by our former conservative Prime Minister.

Otherwise, if I see these men, I find an excuse to drop in. I’m out picking up feed nearby, or I want to know something, or whatever.

But to meet up we generally contrive a reason.

There are some big differences between men and women, and we should not use women’s friendships as a measure of a man’s connections to others. That’s just weird.

We are not the same, we are unabashedly, unapologetically, men.

One thing I think more and more men are doing is belonging to a group of men dedicated to personal or professional self-improvement.

Masterminds membership is a commitment you make to yourself and a group of men who get to know you.

The internet could save men, says my friend Kevin. Advisor to Men runs the Board of Directors every Friday and Saturday. For an hour or so, every man checks in and gives feedback to the other men. They say it’s the best deal on the internet.

It’s what the world needs is more powerful men. Men who can use power and love to find meaning and freedom.

Family and work life tends to isolate a man. Don’t let that happen.

Let me know what you think…

Powerful, true and free…
cw

 

ABUSE OF EMPATHY



That women are more about people and men more about things is one of the most durable sex differences. Oh sure, there are outliers. It is just exceptions do not disprove a general rule.
 

One of my gal friends sent me video just last week of a baboon troupe exposed to kid’s toys, trucks, or dolls. Sure enough, the male baboons were interested in the trucks while the female baboons picked up the dolls and dragged them around like babies.

My friend said she ignored the dolls as a child and preferred trucks. She is truly one of a kind and does not fit typical predilections. She grows an extraordinary garden engineered for production & efficiency out of four-gallon pots lined up and down her driveway that has my envy.

The same way we find men who can do things we normally associate with women. Cooking is an area some men have a real knack for. My old friend Loris was the second oldest of four sons born to Italian immigrants. I met him when I was about twenty and spoke at his funeral a few years ago.

The first time I went to his house at lunch time he made me breaded zucchini like I have never had again. He prepared most family meals, and his three sons can all cook. One is a chef by profession.

Running sales teams in various cities across Canada for many years, I taught managers of all genders how to read maps. Men picked it up quickly, women, not so much. Among my collection of books is Why Men Don’t Listen and Women Can’t Read Maps, by Barbara and Allan Pease.

Yet my sister-in-law Michelle has the best sense of direction of anyone I have ever known. At times I suspected she has particles in her brain that coordinate with earth’s magnetic field like birds because if I made one wrong turn, she would know immediately… and point it out.

As we confront our challenges, many are surprised to learn that we carry so much shame from our early years. Men are superb suppressors of emotion, an adaptation which allows cool under fire in emergencies. It can turn to repression where we do not have a clue how we feel.

Yet, it is in the work done to uncover, expose and rectify shame that we find significant growth. To that end, as I got to know shame better, both in myself and the men I have the privilege of working with, I developed an understandable shame awareness.

It is not quite like buying a red truck and suddenly noticing every red truck in town, but there is no doubt heightened sensibility comes along with the work. An example is rejecting both compliments and criticism from the people around you. When I see that in others, I suspect shame.

To that end, despite seeing mostly men in my daily existence, online or in person, I conclude that women carry even more shame than men. I see it in their defensiveness and hypervigilance, and the oft-irrationality of their personal suffering.

For example, social scientist Roy Baumeister points out most women tend to keep one or two, usually no more than five, best pals whom they guard jealously from each other and use for emotional regulation.

I grew up with four sisters and have found women suffer without trusted friends nearby.

 

Susan Pinker, writing in The Sexual Paradox, says the feminine competes by maneuvering covertly using mean remarks, social exclusion and by winning over each other’s friends and allies.

Some men do this too. 007 we imagine does it professionally. Machiavellianism could be said to be feminine energy I say.

In one Israeli study Pinker cites, girls ran against boys in track and scored best times. Boys ran against boys and scored their best times. But when the girls ran against girls their times dropped. No one wanted to be the first across the finish line and risk alienation say the study authors.

The sisterhood bands together for emotional regulation as a survival strategy. Without it, she is emotionally cast adrift from the group, her belonging uncertain, out on a limb from which she may not retreat should her male supports let her down.

That is no small thing. It would be like a child being left at the edge of the village alone, exposed to the elements and the animals. She loses her safety and succorance, her belonging.

Women are about people generally and they use their empathy to grow those around them. This is a wonderful gift. I often tell men that women do not get male weakness, it seems they do not have the bandwidth to understand how this can happen.

That she will grow up one day and be a creator of life is understood early. Her corresponding view of the males around her is that they will grow up and be powerful defenders of life.

 

She believes everyone and his dog knows this, that it is that self-evident. When she encounters weakness in an adult male, she can be intolerant. She has tolerance for babies and children, the sick, the infirm, the old and the frail, not so much for grown men. Women need powerful men.

 

When she is criticized, her shame rises as if her very existence is questioned. Her hypervigilance and defensiveness soon kick in to protect her soul. The spirit speaks for the soul, so her responses in the face of an attack on her being are… ‘spirited’ to say the least.

One of the things I suggested to my son as he made his way through life was to find himself a gal with a university education. She is still a woman, but that kind of gal will have been exposed to logic, discourse, and communication enough to at least give you a shot at reasonable argument.

It is no guarantee, but I took this gambit on his behalf. He told me later my advice counted.

The fairer sex carries more negative emotion. Men are neurotic too but women in general hit this one out of the park. It is an adaptation which allows her to spot danger and sickness in the people around her, especially children. “Ont as tous les défauts de nos qualités” say the French.

Women in general think more with both hemispheres than men and run information through the limbic (emotion) system of the brain. The corpus callosum connecting both sides of the brain is thicker in women.

If I go somewhere socially, she picks up all the undercurrents happening between people far better than I do. She remembers birthdays and such. Me, not so much.

She will tend to overthink, something a man can stand in and help her with on occasion. She also has better verbal ability earlier on. But you put a man and a woman in a room and let them argue, she is usually talking circles around him. One of the reasons for this is what I call abuse of empathy.

 

Men have rules of the game in an argument, probably so they don’t kill each other. The ad hominem attack is understood to be weak. It might surprise you that no one seems to have let women know about this little caveat.

Get into an argument with a woman, and with her hackles raised, nothing seems out of bounds. Your looks, your weight, your dress, your personality, and any number of personal things that have nothing to do with the subject at hand might be used against you as she defends herself.

And the degree to which she is defending herself is usually a construct of her own mind and history and bears little connection to the situation at hand.

If you feel something today, you have felt it before. You are not dealing with her in the present moment, but a history of feeling slighted.

 

In Warriors and Worriers, Joyce Benenson compares little girls and boys playing in the school yard sandbox. If two little boys are playing and a third one arrives, he is usually welcomed regardless of if they have played together before.

If two little girls are playing in the sandbox and a little girl arrives to join in who is not an approved “friend,” chances are the two will move off elsewhere.

Women have contended with rejection from very early in age and are wired to be egalitarian.

It is our hunter-gatherer brain. If you and I hunt and you kill a deer, we share the meat. You might keep the heart and liver and the very best cuts. But once we arrive at our respective caves, the women make sure everyone eats.

When I talk of abuse of empathy is a woman’s birth right, I am referring to her innate abilities being turned against you.

Just as a man’s strengths can be used for violence or for defense, so can her assets of verbal ability, negativity bias, egalitarianism, and wider scope be used to abuse.

 

Her strength in that moment becomes saboteur.

A male birthright is testosterone fueled aggression.
Applied industriously, it is a gift.
Applied violently, it is a detriment.

Either way it is still his birthright.

A female birthright is estrogen fueled empathy.
Applied to nurture is is a gift.
Applied defensively in conflict, it is wild and damaging.

Either way, it is still her birthright.

Both male aggression and female empathy are sex difference birthrights.

“Ont as tous les défauts de nos qualités” say the French. We all have the faults of our qualities.

 

By understanding this about women, you can appreciate her gifts and protect yourself accordingly.

It’s why I wrote The House Rules, so that you and she could negotiate fairness in advance of your discussions.

A good trick is to agree on a code word or phrase either can use to take a break. Missus and I use, “Let me get back to you about this.”

This enables you to create rules of engagement when things are going well, so that when things get heated, you are prepared.

And without turning to the “you are essentially fucked up and broken like all women” line of shaming talk and thinking espoused by certain online cowards.


Abuse of empathy, it’s a wonder of nature.

Be aware and beware, but be men.

Questions? Comments?

Powerful, true and free…
cw

©CHRISTOPHER K WALLACE, 2022, all rights reserved, advisortomen.com


Want to talk? Reach me here:

https://go.oncehub.com/ChristopherWallace

HUMAN NEEDS


HUMAN NEEDS


Abraham Maslow once said, “If you are planning on being anything less than you are capable of being, you will probably be unhappy all the days of your life.” Codifying human needs usually mentions his 1943 work, almost always illustrated by others later as a hierarchy with self-actualization at the top.

John Schindler, co-founder of the Monroe Clinic in Wisconsin, who in 1954 wrote, How to Live 365 Days a Year, said we have six needs: love, security, creative expression, recognition, new experiences, and self-esteem.

Tony Robbins adapted these into three pairs to simplify our understanding of basic human needs: Certainty & Uncertainty, Significance & Love-Connection, Growth & Contribution.

While the ranking of needs in importance is individual, survival requires meeting at a minimum the first four needs. Overall life satisfaction depends on meeting all your needs in adaptive ways. This not only decides our attraction to others, but influences being able to experience love as opposed to unhealthy dependence. Adulthood means learning to meet your needs in healthy ways, and if necessary, autonomously. They are your needs.

No matter what race, sex, religion, origin or upbringing, we humans have six basic needs. We will use the word need because for most, the word “desire” means something wanted but optional. Desire is a better predictor of human motivation according to Stephen Reiss, author of Who Am I? which includes a desire profile. However, it is enough to say needs are also desires, it is just that some you cannot do without (the first four).

Our inability to rely on ourselves to adaptively meet those needs can create unhealthy attachment. The whole of your emotional system is based on belonging according to a 1995 meta-analysis of attachment studies done by Baumeister and Leary. When you belong, your emotions rise; when you disconnect, emotions fall.

We are wired for connection, we wish for connection, and we wait for connection says Polyvagal clinician Deb Dana. Co-dependence between us is normal but exists on a continuum from healthy to dysfunctional. When the individual loses their sense of self, egocentricity may rule their relationships. Let me explain this further.

That a child is egocentric commonly refers to a preoccupation with the self. The Piagetian view is that egocentricity pertains to speech and thinking directed by individual needs or concerns. You are invited to consider that it also means no emotional separation between the child and parent. You can imagine how nature creates this egocentric emotional attunement between adult and child for survival reasons. Children therefore experience families physically.

It can be unhealthy in adults. Get to know a partner and finish each other’s sentences. Become so familiar with each other that you can predict their moods and desires, even get good at what makes them happy or sad. But do not lose yourself. When adult interdependence turns to overdependence, it prevents mature love.

We use the world love to describe connecting to others. But there are differing states that we often call love, which are not really love at all. It is important to know that not everything you identify as love, is love. I prefer belonging, for humans are mammalian herd animals.

We will consider how the six human needs fits within love as we go.

First let us look at the six human needs one at a time

Certainty – This is the primary survival need, to avoid pain and gain pleasure. It is the need for connection, safety, stability, comfort, and resources to sustain us. It supplies predictability in an often painfully dangerous world.

Variety/ Uncertainty – This is the need for change, challenge, excitement, and stimulus. Paradoxical to the need for certainty, we need a certain amount of uncertainty to be happy with our life, to bust out of comfort zones and grow.

Significance – Everyone wants to feel like a somebody. To stand out and be considered worthwhile and appreciated. Often, this refers to the need for esteem and might also include a spiritual need to manifest our talents fulfilling what we believe is our purpose. Honour, the esteem of those you care about, bridges significance and connection.

Love/Connection – This is the need for connection with others. It is the need for a sense of being a part of something. It is the need for belonging, oneness with others, community, and the universe. It is the need to love and, in some cases, to be loved (when young) or at least to belong. Our need for sexual intimacy is in this section.

Growth – This is the need to grow and develop, find fulfillment, and self-actualize. To take whatever talents were bestowed upon you by heavens of infinite wisdom and sharpen these as if taking stone to steel. It is to become more.

Contribution – This is the need to contribute beyond your being and affect your world. The need to give and supply something of value for other people, the world, and the universe at large. It is the need to make a difference.

We all have diverse ways of meeting these needs. We meet them in both conscious and subconscious ways. We may be confident about meeting some needs more than others. But it is important to understand that we meet these needs (we seek happiness) in both healthy and unhealthy ways.

MEETING NEEDS: brainstorming healthy versus unhealthy
1. Certainty

Healthy: creating consistent routines to maintain your body; to nourish soul and spirit; to develop solid work habits which reliably produce sustenance; to form and preserve predictable and stable relationships. It means an internal locus of control, a positive identity, and being organized and orderly while striving for optimism, fortitude, and safety.

Unhealthy: allowing sloth, becoming obsessive or compulsive (including addictions including eating disorders and cutting), externalizing responsibility, and controlling relationships. Being unemployed or on assistance beyond necessity. Keeping a negative identity, tolerating personal shame, preoccupation with gloom, self-pity, rape, murder, war.

  1. Variety/Uncertainty

Healthy: trying new people, places, and things It may mean traveling, finding new hobbies/passions, engaging in stimulating conversations, networking, and meeting people, taking jobs, moving areas, watching new plays and films, seeing art, or doing art, playing games or sports, reading books, accepting challenges. Life satisfaction, growth and relationships are related to how much uncertainty you can tolerate.

Unhealthy: engaging in risky activities without adequate precaution, putting others in danger, all addictions, self-sabotage, picking fights with significant others when bored or restless, cheating while in monogamous relationships, running away from problems, quitting things on a whim, blaming, violence and war.

  1. Significance

Healthy: developing a positive identity, expressing your uniqueness, meeting goals, developing a sense of style, sharing belief systems that fit your worldview, seeking meaning for life and for your existence, allowing yourself to be noticed, putting your hand up in class, accepting compliments, being a problem solver, taking responsibility, leading others.

Unhealthy: Tearing others down, rescuing people, acting out to get attention, holding a negative identity, hiding behind a label, using others to gain status, lying to impress people, denying responsibility, and blaming, rape, murder, war.

  1. Love/Connection

Healthy: sharing intimacy, openness, becoming a part of social organizations, teams, and groups, developing compassion, time in nature, seeing the interconnectivity of all things, healthy sex, physical affection, exchanging gifts, seeing the good in others and telling them, practicing self-care, giving just because you can, quality time with others, caring for pets, having a spiritual life.

Unhealthy: Self-sacrificing, joining gangs, high-risk sex, sickness to gain attention or control relationships, off-loading problems on those around you, acting helpless, creating stories to sustain dishonesty about yourself or others, exaggerating sickness or always having problems or becoming accident prone for attention, people pleasing, rescuing others, all addictions, causing others to feel as if they need us, rape, murder, war.

  1. Expansion/Growth

Healthy: learning, adopting new paradigms, expanding your model of the world, letting go of old ideals, embracing technology, following your bliss, lateral thinking, consulting expertise, accepting advice, honing talents into strengths, seeking wisdom and knowledge, seeing life as a series of lessons, finding meaning in every life event in a continuous expansion of understanding of self and the nature of your existence.

Unhealthy: Pushing yourself too hard, making everything hard, not finishing things, procrastination, unrealistic challenges abandoned instead of adjusted, being unable to listen to other people, letting things get to the breaking point before you improve them, war.

  1. Contribution

Healthy: Random acts of kindness, being part of things that you believe in, sharpening your talents into strengths and using them to make a difference, helping others just because you can, helping to improve your community, doing your part, giving for the simple joy of giving, focusing on the solution, raising a family, defending those around you.

Unhealthy: projecting narcissism into the community, virtue signaling, using capitalism to rape the planet, joining conspiracies, joining causes which perpetuate the problem, covert contracts, self-sacrificing, war.

Notice that some things we do will meet more than one need. For example, waging war or joining a war is an unhealthy way to potentially meet every one of these needs. It is no longer such a mystery why humans have not been able to stop waging war for thousands of years when we recognize it meets many essential human needs. Whether healthy or unhealthy, or good or bad, all human behaviour can be described as need driven.

Meeting needs adaptively creates satisfaction in the self-interested brain. By meeting needs in a healthy manner, a life of meaning is possible, and you may obtain a measure of freedom from the suffering of this existence.

Chosen for life by heavens of infinite wisdom, your purpose is to make a difference manifesting your talents nearby, expanding meaning and freedom while finding your place in the sun.

It is crucial to life satisfaction that we meet every one of these six needs. The idea is not needs suppression, but to summon your adaptability around them. It is unnatural for humans to deny what they need, leaving a void that might be filled by errant spirituality, conspiracies, cults, and cults of personality. Understand your needs and the needs of those around you to gain compassion for yourself and others, and to avoid confusion and powerlessness.

Needs and Relationships
What some call a loving interdependence is a really a lopsided love that is about needing someone. This is fine to a point: everyone loves to feel like someone’s chosen, and we are wired to connect with each other. It is just that often love is a subconscious recognition that another person or thing provides us with a need that we do not feel capable of meeting on our own.

You may be blinded by the intense biochemical reaction usually associated with falling in love and become enamored with someone until they disappoint under the burden of meeting your needy expectations. Your self-concept is how you see yourself contrasted with how you believe others see you. We cannot escape the group, and we can fool ourselves.

I say we are in a perpetual search for wholeness. The key to being and feeling complete is to meet these needs in healthy ways on your own. If happiness is a decision, then let it be so with love.

Having the capability to meet needs independently means you are free to keep falling in love with a partner forever. You may even decide to put lust first… and let love take care of itself.

When we are not meeting our needs, a tendency to feel incomplete compounds and is felt emotionally. Someone who meets those needs “completes us.” Think about that next time you hear it said. All relationships are co-dependent to an extent, to which degree may revolve around how impossible it is for an individual to meet their needs autonomously.

Happiness in a relationship may be dependent on a partner meeting one or more of your needs you do not feel capable of meeting on your own. This may be obscured by “opposites attract,” when people with quite different personalities often have opposing deficiencies and strengths when it comes to meeting their own needs. What you seek is to be complementary to each other, so that the two of you combine forces and become more.

A person, who feels incapable of creating variety for themselves may be attracted to an unpredictable mate because that person creates that sense of variety and excitement for them. An unpredictable person may prefer a conservative spouse because their nature creates a sense of certainty and stable comfort for them, which they feel incapable of creating for themselves. In which case, we could say it is opposite needs that attract.

This is fine if it does not become one-sided dependence. Men need respect more than love, and loyalty. Have a look at the shield up top for more information.

The pejoratively used misnomer “co-dependent relationship” commonly refers to a relationship between people who feel so incapable of meeting their own needs in healthy ways that they are completely dependent on the other person to meet those needs for them. And from the outside, it appears as if the relationship itself is more important to at least one of the persons involved than they are to themselves. This enmeshment works… until it does not.

It is unlikely for anyone to indefinitely prioritize someone more than themselves. Even if I save my children, defend my wife, or stand shoulder to shoulder with you to fight the enemy, I am serving my self-interested brain.

We often miss what someone derives making others their priority. For example: sometimes people who selflessly prioritize the people around them are just looking for love. They may be convinced that by self-sacrificing, they will be loved in return. This covert contract is an unhealthy way of meeting that need and tends to build resentment when they are taken for granted. It is negotiating reciprocity and cooperation which underpins our interdependence.

In Conclusion 

Our happiness is not the only thing that is dependent upon our ability to meet needs autonomously. Our ability to love powerfully is in fact contingent on your ability to adaptively meet needs all on your own.

Most people fear that if we meet all our own needs, there will be no purpose for relationships. Or that it means ending up alone and no longer experiencing love. That is not what happens, for the opposite is true. Instead, relationships within the bonding dynamic share even more as each can meet their own needs but also meet some of the other’s needs.

We only own three things in life: thoughts, feelings, and behaviour and these are always an individual’s responsibility. We are responsible to the people around us, not for them. All you have to offer the world is your time, talent and effort. Own these six at all times, or at least as much as you can, and you will live a satisfying life.

When you decide to be happy it is a decision you make independent of others and what they do or do not do. Only then will we experience adult love. Born to belong (our #1 need) nothing creates personal expansion more than relationships.

Going from relationship to relationship, trying things out, looking for completeness and answers, all those encounters inevitably point back to ourselves. The answer is still the same: you. You are what you are looking for in other people.

Carl Jung taught that we try our best to solve our problems but that the eyes see out. Because of this we tend to project our internal struggles onto those around us. Once you understand projection, you operate from a much deeper wisdom.

The tendency to search for other people to fill a need means risking they will eventually fall short. The relationship will reflect whatever you lack right back at you. Others function as tableaus upon which we paint a subconscious life.

Stop and if possible, adaptively provide for yourself. It is your job to meet your six needs. They are your needs.

From the most enlightened to the consciously impoverished person, every human in existence has these same needs. The former has perfected the art of adaptively meeting needs for himself or herself, while the latter struggles.

Consider how you are currently meeting your needs and/or the needs of your partner. Replace unhealthy ways of meeting the Six Human Needs with more adaptable methods and carefully examine the needs balance between you.

When you do this, you will gain power and eventually lose emotional wanting, which is always suffering. You will instead win with no deficit of the heart. Furthermore, your relationships will be a source of joy instead of pain. Here is how:

The only person in life upon whom you may reliably count on for unconditional love with any certainty is you. This means when you love others without expectation, you can truly feel love. The best way to feel love is on the way out, emanating powerfully from you. A man’s relationships should come from his power as a man and never be his power.

You feel the love you give. As it passes through your nervous system and heart to others, you benefit first.

Now consider this: a man matures emotionally when he stops looking for love; he has reversed the flow. By his honour, he holds ancestral reserves of power and love for those whom he defends in meaning and freedom.

Invariably, he will be loved for this, though he is unconcerned…

 

@2022 CHRIS WALLACE advisortomen.com all rights reserved

RACOON REVENGE


Racoon Revenge
Finally caught the critter who was eating my chickens.
It’d sneak in like a ghost at dusk and kill one, eat its guts and take off.
I figured it was a raccoon so set out a trap for a week and nothing.
Last night, I escorted missus on her rounds to shut her coop.
And there it was, eating her new Easter-egger rooster.
It saw us and took off up the tree.I dispatched the chicken, its heart still beating despite being disemboweled.

Then, I told the missus to hold the high powered flashlight on that tree and make her presence known.
I ran into my garage and got an 8 foot piece of 1 x 3 and reached for the duct tape.
It was gone! Fuck!

So I used that metallic tape instead.
Not as good but should work.
I strapped on a Cutco hunting knife…

I went back and had missus train the light on the upper branches while I stabbed blindly into my best guesses.
The animal roared and growled and fought back blindly as I circled the tree.
Missus kept laughing nervously the way she does when she’s overcome with fear,
“I cant believe this is happening.” Dames.
Finally, after I knew I got him a few times, it came down.
The wounded beast tried to escape over the fence but I used the 1 x 3 to hold it.

“Get me that pitchfork woman,” I commanded.|
Then, I pinned the fucker to the ground with the pitchfork.
“Hand me that brick,” I told her.

I smashed the handle and impaled the thief into the dirt.
Leaving it to die the same death it gave her rooster.
I went back into the house.

Missus just kept repeating, “I cant believe that just happened.”
Again, “I can’t believe that just happened,” over and over.
Women expect men to kill their spiders and protect them from wild creatures in the night.

We should never forget that.
I took her afterwards.
Perhaps like she’s never been taken…

This morning she said next time she uses something like my duct tape, she’ll be sure to put it back exactly where she found it.
For her good intentions a victory but I won’t hold her to it.
Later, I pinned the racoon’s tail on the chicken coop.

Not that it matters but for all the chickens to see
And a symbolic warning to his comrades.
Tread carefully, to fear my Racoon Revenge…

Powerful, true and free
cw

THE ENERGY BILL

THE ENERGY BILL
Let’s talk about personality integration. Firstly, let me point out that to use the term “integration” clearly implies that there exists disintegration in a man’s life. We must not fear this.

This is work most men never do and it costs them. What they find is they are often “hooked” or “triggered” by circumstances and so they learn to avoid them. Or they have motivations they don’t understand or acknowledge. This puts him in a weaker position and although this strategy works, it’s still a pattern of avoidance and he usually remains dissatisfied.

The problems start early. When a child is forced to align with benefactors over his own instincts at a level beyond his ability to understand, he will cling to acceptance and turn away from parts of himself.

Parents use guilt successfully but when that guilt exceeds the child’s ability to resolve, he will reluctantly move forward, subjugating himself to his caregiver’s will. He is thus forced to stifle and deny a part of himself to avoid the perceived rejection of his parents. This is how shame develops in degrees.

What other choice does the boy have? He relies upon his caregivers for his entire succorance: nurturing, shelter, safety, and the positive regard he craves. The carrot and stick, threat and reward approaches by his caregivers act as a takeaway close, and seed in him a craving for acceptance and unconditional love.

As he grows into adulthood, part of his energy is spent unconsciously holding those denied parts of himself in check, all the while conflicted under this push and pull. This causes confusion, doubt, and a lesser existence.

The psyche holds back some of his talent, for it is indiscriminate in its defense of the soul. The spirit speaks… but is muffled. The yearning is there but is wild and unreconciled and often, steeped in suffering.

It’s like having a house with an enormous electricity bill. To save power, you turn off lights and switch to fluorescent bulbs and even install energy saving appliances. To no avail, your bill is still too high.

Then one day, perhaps when another expensive bill arrives in the mail, you discover an underground cable running from just below the fuses in your power panel to the back wall and towards the direction of an old shed deep in the backyard.

It’s right on the fence line with the next property and as far as you know, no one ever goes there. You thought it was empty, none of your business, not yours to deal with, and so, you have avoided it.

After enquiring around and establishing that it is fact part of your land, you get the courage to break into the shed. Inside, you are temporarily blinded as you find 1000-watt bulbs, lots of them, running 24/7. It’s not a cannabis grow-op so what else could it be? Seeking the source of this power you spot the feed going into the ground towards the direction of the main house.

Just as you are saying to yourself, “Holy shit! How long has this been going on?” you spot what looks like an image of your younger self, floating in suspended animation under the intensity of the lights. You recognize him from pictures you have seen of yourself.

Bewildered, you suddenly realize he is held in by the energy you yourself have unknowingly been providing all these years…

He responds only to your voice. You can’t explain what you do and say for these are as mysterious as the situation itself, but you give yourself over to discovery, determined not to leave the boy behind.

You have a conversation and it’s the most important talk you ever have. You listen and reacquaint yourself with him and once you have regained his trust, promise to never leave him again. You gently invite him to come up and into the big house.

He tells you things, and it’s as if he’s been waiting a long time for the two of you to be reunited and to share his story. You reassure him. He tells you more. You fill in blanks with whatever wisdom you have accumulated, and you realize what you need to do is to reparent him. He’s afraid but you persevere and take him wherever you go. He learns to handle new experiences as you defend him.

Slowly but surely, you bring him into your heart and more… ❤️ He’s not alone anymore, you are there for him and the two of you are fully reunited, and inextricably linked to each other. You have conversations in various circumstances, and he gives his perspective. You acknowledge and lead him from where he is in his confusion and suffering to where you are now with clarity and hope.

You become more powerful. Assured. Capable. Humble. You use power 💪and love ❤️ in service of yourself and others. You create a life of meaning, and finally, you taste… freedom.

Time goes by…

One day you realize you don’t carry the boy with you any longer. The shed out back has long been emptied. The lights have been turned off and removed. The power cable was dug up. The splice into the main house disconnected. You appreciate the extra storage space and begin keeping your lawnmower and other tools there.

And you never forget him as you say goodbye.

In a sense, the boy has died so the man could live.

You are not sad. You are powerful.

The two of you have become one.

Assimilated, transcended, integrated…

 

The next energy bill comes in…

… you find it’s considerably less expensive.

Now that you control all your own power.
____________________

Questions? Comments?

Powerful, true, and free!
cw

Start the dialogue here with the Taming Shame course:
https://services.advisortomen.com/courses/taming-shame



BROKEN DOLLS


BROKEN DOLLS 

What does it mean to be a nice guy and consistently find fucked up women as partners? Seems every day I hear it from a man of how he always seems to find the gal who has HUGE issues.
I was online with someone recently and he told me he can pick them out of a crowd on social media without even speaking to them. Mentioned he saw a cute chick on Instagram last week and noticed she followed some of his friends, so he followed her. He rated her a possible… in the way we men quickly assess a woman for her looks and as a possible bedmate.
Sure enough, the next day she’s posting about BPD and Depression awareness! He laughed and remarked how uncanny it was that he could spot the broken doll just from her looks.

Now… that may or may not have been coincidence, but I have heard enough variations of this one to know that there is merit in it.

But why is it that we do this?

I was lucky in that I had a big pool of women around me most of my life and could afford to run at the first sign of crazy. One I stayed with for almost 25 years when I could have made better choices.

Yet I suspect there was something else to my loyalty.

Not-so-Nice trait #13.”Nice guys frequently have problems in intimate relationships and issues with sexuality. Nice guys tend to form relationships only with partners whom they believe to be “projects” or “Diamonds in the rough.” So, in a way, they think they are better than their partners and are entitled to repair or polish them.”

Maybe, maybe not. I don’t buy it to this the degree that is implied here. I think that there is some of that and I also know better.

Let me add that I choose to see you men as much more noble fuckers than you probably will give yourselves credit for.

Let me explain: it’s the eyes, you see. (Forgive that, I couldn’t help myself) It’s the eyes… the windows to the soul…
It was Carl Jung who alerted me to the way this works. It’s like in Commando Krav Maga when we say wherever the nose goes, the head goes too. You might get this now: Our eyes see out. Not only that, wherever the eyes go the brain follows. Our eyes see out.
Jung said we wanted to work on ourselves and our problems and make them better but our gaze is external and so we project our pain and our dysfunction “out there.” We go find it in our environment. We often use the people in our lives as a tableau in which to paint our internal pain…
When you find a broken doll to fix you are trying to mend yourself.
Sit with that for a minute.
Most of us arrive here with a TON of guilt. Before you continue to slap yourself around indefinitely, let me step in and see if I can help.
Hear me know: We ALWAYS make the best decisions for ourselves at the time. Sure, we could do better in hindsight but that’s cheating because the truth is if we did not decide and choose better at the time, it probably had to be.
My favourite psychology professor taught me that. God, I loved her for a lot of things but for that especially.
What if we have TOO MUCH guilt? Our self-blaming then becomes all-consuming masochism.
Healthy Guilt arises from an act that can be remedied or amended. The guilt is limited to the screw-up and usually teaches something about living.
Unhealthy Guilt is hard to pin on a specific instance, and because of this there is usually no way to make things right. It is wider in scope than any specific act and since there is no redress, it’s ripe for repetition. Most of you will fall into this category if you are not careful.
Personality disordered folks have problems with daily affairs and relating to others and will insist the reasons for their problems are outside of themselves (external locus of control). In contrast, neurotic individuals assign too much blame to themselves for anything that goes wrong. Which are you?
People with personality disorders are rigid and inflexible in the way they live, do not learn from their experience, and fail to change and adapt. Repeated experiences clearly showing they contribute to their own struggles teach them nothing.
Instead, when a pattern repeats, they see it as proof that others are to blame for their hassles. This is the very meaning of maladaptive.
So be careful of where you land on the feeling guilty continuum. You don’t want to be at the extremes.
If you have had a failed relationship, it is likely that you had good intentions the whole time, especially at first.
Shit just went south. You will figure that out in time.

And if you are still in a relationship and know that it is heading south, what will knowing what I am telling you do? Will it make a difference? Could it if you wanted it to?

Could you use her “issues” as a signal to forgive yourself and thereby, forgive her? Could you find that kind of love & power?

Who would you have to be to make that happen in your life if that is what you want?
The whole time you were trying to please her you were trying to nourish your own soul.
Now you can direct your gaze where it needs to be. Not so that you can take a year off, relaxing from all the dead ends you went down while pursuing a vague and intangible wholeness missing from your daily existence.

“Putting myself first” doesn’t necessarily mean having more of the external trappings of life and more fun and friends and adventure, though it might be some of that.

No. it’s more. It also means you work on you.

You can finally fix yourself my brother.
It is what you were trying to do all along…
Power & Love,
cw

NAME CALLING



People get frustrated and call each other names. Argue with a woman and unless you have very clear rules of engagement, expect the invectives to fly. Why? All you need to know is that abuse of empathy is a woman’s birthright.

She’s a survivor, smaller, thinks with both hemispheres and runs things through her limbic (emotional system) while taking in more information than she probably needs. That’s her advantage in some situations, and a disadvantage too. We all have the faults of our qualities.

 

Think I’m exaggerating? OK. How fast would you tell our SO she was fat during a disagreement? Never? How quickly would she use that against you if she saw an opening? There you go.

 

Even more reason to stay in shape. A man with a loyal woman at his side has the wind at his back and he better stay out in front of her to feel it. You better believe that’s true.

So if she calls you names, here’s what you do:

1. Immediately put up one hand 🙋‍♂️ like this ✋️ towards her, and say “I don’t let people talk to me that way, wrong guy,” and walk away.

 

2. If she requires more, it’s ✋️ “I get you’re frustrated with me but when you call me names you lose me.”

 

3. And ✋️ “I will hang in there with you to solve things, but I won’t stand around being disrespected.”

 

4. And ✋️ “wrong guy, I am not the type you can talk to that way, I am the type who will problem solve like an adult.”

 

5. And ✋️ “stop now, let’s take a break and come back to this when you can do it without the name-calling.” Etc. etc…

You would rightfully think right now “how the fuck am I going to pull this off?” and so, you are going to do what you have done to learn anything: practice.

 

When no one is looking, stand in front of a mirror and practice some of these lines over and over until you stay them with confidence and determination.

 

I used to practice in the rear view mirror while driving. It works.

 

Practice the progression all the way to the timeout suggestion. That way you are offering a temporary solution using Anticipation, which is setting a goal for all concerned.

 

That’s leading. She probably has a side of her that hates that she is the way she is but doubles down in justification and uses old options out of survival.

 

You must claim an identity here (wrong guy) or see yourself being a bitch for the world around you. You don’t want that.

 

Make clear who you are by using, “I’m not the type _______ and I am the type ______” statements to establish boundaries around your character.

 

To claim who you are say it out loud. I am not… I am…

 

Either build your identity or it will be built for you. Once you hit about age twenty-five or so, you are 100% responsible for your education. That means you must teach yourself, by using your awareness to choose your learning.

 

Have a good look at the House Rules for Effective Communication. Have your woman initial a copy with you and agree together to abide by them in the name of love.

 

Don’t pull that during an argument. Pick your moment and lead your relationship. You are going to show her another way. A way to bypass her family of origin programming perhaps, a way to skip simple protection and instead opt for connection.

 

Only men can insist that love prevail in a home.

 

Women might be able to do it but have a self-interested relational brain and a need to belong that gets in the way.

 

She has a deep secret fear: she serves her people while harbouring doubts about whether she is appreciated, afraid she is being taken advantage of, being gamed, and perhaps even laughed at behind her back.

 

Her tendency to overthink means she will therefore become a martyr and martyrdom to some women is slavery.

 

That’s her cross to bear under the caregiver spirit. That would piss anyone off.

 

So, it is her cross, don’t let it become yours.

 

Never forget that this secret fear is running in her background and accept that it is you who must establish love as the guiding principle in the home. You don’t fix her, you provide environment.

 

Reassure her, tell her she’s appreciated, and show her the light as per the above limits while establishing that love is the cultural norm in your castle.

 

She is safe there under your protection, surrounded by your power and love finding meaning and freedom.

 

You appreciate feedback and work towards a mutually cooperative relationship. And you don’t have to take abuse or name calling or anything else from anyone.

 

 

Wrong Guy.

 

Let that suffering die on a cross forevermore on this Good Friday…

 

 

Questions? Comments?


Power & Love,
True and Free!
©CHRIS WALLACE all rights reserved, 2022, advisortomen.com

MEN LEAD, WOMEN COMMAND

 

No photo description available.

MEN LEAD, WOMEN COMMAND

A critical way to look at this idea of how to carry your relationship is that you live your life and you make room for her in it. Not you live your life with her and make room in it for your life.

If you do that… stop it, stop it right now. Shift this imbalance immediately.

A man’s relationships should always come from his power as a man and not be his power. If not her, someone else.

Now, that doesn’t mean you’re ready to drop your love at the “drop of a hat.” It’s just that she needs a powerful man in her life.

With few exceptions, that holds true.

It’s not that you’re being a dipshit egotist, and it’s more that this is what she needs. In fact, it’s what you need too.

She hitches her wagon to your horse cowboy, and it rarely works well the other way around.

Why? Because wherever you go in the world, women are the caregivers. That takes a lot out of a self-interested brain.

So nature set things up so men would hold reserves of power and love for them both, and shore her up when she’s depleted.

He makes sure she doesn’t lose herself to the caregiving spirit present in almost every woman.

When you are weak, you know it, and you feel it… inside… all the way to your testicles.

Hear me here: To her, if you are needy, she has failed in her pact with the universe. She must face the reality that she has chosen wrong. This is a tragedy for her.

For most men will one day be fathers and it was left to her to find herself a powerful man to sire her brood and face life with .

Sorry man, you don’t get to lean on her much: men are the expendable sex.

She is more precious because she carries the egg and the babe for a year. She may nurse for another half dozen years hence. She may do that several times. Ma did it 10 times in 12 years. Then cooked 33 meals a day until all the kids were out of the house decades later.

So, who should lead in that instance?

Who should “man the fucking wheel” brother?

If you are needy there’s a good chance you are looking for your mom in your relationships. The boy must leave the mother to become a man.

That’s the facts as I know them…

Chasing tail one after another? Addicted Lover shadow archetype… looking for mom.

Want to abstain from sex entirely for a religious reason? Saving yourself… for mom.

Are you still living at home at age thirty? You may be your mom’s subconscious husband.

One of the reasons men build cultures (women stress-test them) is because we are more social. We can easily have relationships with many different individuals from a variety of groups. We can travel among gatherings of people far more easily than can women. We are more superficial you could say.

Why? Because there is less risk to the tribe.

Why? Because we are less valuable.

Is that fair? It’s just the way it is, so… get over it.

Women seem to require one or two, to maybe as many as five,  much deeper female relationships—girlfriends, besties, sisters, gal pals, BFFs, etc.—whom she uses for emotional regulation. She guards these relationships jealously.

Why? Because they help her survive.

Without them, she is cast adrift emotionally. Men don’t tend to have this need… at all.


And, that men stay faithful to one woman is more in part a function of his adaptable nature (we can get used to anything). More importantly, his faithfulness is sustained by her loyalty and his sense of honour (defined as the esteem of those we care about).

That’s by far not a page from the narcissist’s playbook. No, not at all.

Superficial in his case is functional, not selfish. This is nature, not ideology or psychiatry.

It is also understanding that men need to have their own mission and purpose in life to even begin to be attractive. Remember her model for love is dad, probably the only one who could say no to mom.

I also don’t think you can extrapolate down from entire cultures to individual families so easily (but we do it anyways). A family unit is almost always a man and woman banding together against life’s hardships to benefit from each other’s strengths and shore up each other’s weaknesses.

 

It is in this vein, while conceding and celebrating women can pretty much do anything a man can do and will step into leadership when it is absent, we notice they tend to have preferences. Enduring preferences… based on being feminine.

In the most egalitarian societies where equality of opportunity is most advanced, women have been found to choose professions like nursing, administration, teaching and care giving of some kind, etc., at an even higher rate than less equal countries… despite it all the “progress.” The Scandinavian Paradox they call it. Doesn’t surprise me.


Is this all just “conditioning?” Perhaps some, but don’t think patriarchy is responsible.

For one thing, women do the choosing and we evolved through sexual selection. This means that men do the things they do because women have rewarded them over the eons with their fertility. So much for the patriarchy argument…

Run girls against boys in grade school and the girls will post best times. Run boys against boys and the boys will run best times. Run girls against girls and their times drop. No one wants to stand out.Tall poppy syndrome you’d call it down under.  The risk of social exclusion from the other girls is too great.

A woman can and will lead a family but will feel as if she is playing two roles.

Both masculine and feminine energies exist in us all. But if one is at her core feminine, playing wearing the pants is emotionally and physically taxing.

It is this imbalance which often creates sexless marriages as the man fails to meet his own masculine destiny.

She might stay with him, but she might also see him as a weak, even failed at maturation, or worse, she may see him as a boy.

She may grow to accept this, depending on her upbringing, how many mouths he’s feeding, or perhaps even religious affiliations.

More so if he’s been diagnosed with an illness or psychological disorder… and has a good pension.


Every woman has some of the warrior archetype capacity like the one found in any man.
Archetypes are a kind of mankind’s memory.A person who unconsciously sacrifices for family may live in the masochist shadow (self-pitying). Whereas as one who does so consciously because it needs to be done is living his/her warrior in full. See the difference?

And, in fact, when a woman buckles down and plays both roles in the family because of circumstances she lives as the Queen in her full by creating order.

That doesn’t mean she’s happy. No, not by a long shot.

Absent these mitigating circumstances she might resent her predicament. She may rub salt in the wounds of his weakness to create some kind of motivating pain (and his reaction tells her he is vested in the relationship). She may (likely) develop contempt for her partner.

Sex is out at that point.

Women neither fuck boys nor their girlfriends.

Good women all try to get their men to be better. Once a man understands this, he can see her in a different light. He might see her pushing is part of her nature.

That’s one reason I often say a man with a loyal woman by his side has the wind at his back… but he’d better stay out in front of her to feel it move him.

Not say, “How high” whenever she says “jump” but rather, he’s ahead of her, leading and taking care of business.

If a man fails to see this and act accordingly, he can expect a sexless marriage.

Men lead; women command is from a song by Leonard Cohen. The monk-poet who gave us many songs, from Suzanne to Hallelujah. He was an introspective Canadian treasure.

Something I learned in the corporate world training with Gallup is that even in this era of supposedly unprecedented equality, most women prefer a male boss.

Go figure. Lead gentleman. It’s what we do best.


What part of leading don’t you get? If you don’t lead, she’ll command. Is that what you want?

There are few women leaders who can galvanize people the way men can. Indira Gandhi maybe—until she was whacked. Golda Meir maybe though I was young when she was around. Thatcher was a tough broad and I remember her having balls.

But you can see the tendency in the way women prefer a male boss. Why is that?

I suggest it’s because it meets the natural order of things, in that a woman’s archetype for power is the father, less so the mother.

In families, men tend to lead, women tend to bark. Until dad puts his foot down and takes control if he’s not being listened to.

One of the jobs for men in a relationship is to rescue an overthinking woman from her insanity.

If you fail to man the fuck up and do this, you wind up in a Will Smith conundrum…

If a man is barking he is living the tyrant or expressing the frustrated feminine. He’s perverting his anima.

Only men can establish that love shall prevail in a home. It falls to you.

Every generality breaks down in the face of exceptions and no one “rule” applies to all.

Yet, these preferences among men and women seem to hold up well.

An exception doesn’t disprove the rule.

Lead muthas… or be commanded.

Questions? Comments?

Power & Love.
True and Free!
cw

©CHRIS WALLACE, 2020, all rights reserved advisortomen.com

FEELINGS FOR MEN: attachment version



“We are never so vulnerable as when we love” said Sigmund Freud

If we don’t accept the deep emotion involved in loving, then love will always be something to fear, not to embrace.
I wonder if therefore love is so elusive for many of us.

I suspect men tend to shy away from love as too messy and use stand-in feelings instead.

In the last decades, there is a great push for men to express their emotions more.

Perhaps it’s the way men kill themselves at alarming rates.
And this has finally called attention to the expendable male’s over-reliance on repression…

… disguised as stoicism to carry him through his challenges.

To be sure there is plenty of utility in being able to defer feelings to get through a mess.
Yet, there are differences between suppression and repression.
We suppress emotion when we act in service of circumstances whose immediate demands make emotions a liability…

… while still acknowledging that those feelings are there, put on a shelf for the time being.

If there is an accident, danger at the scene tells the body to run to safety.

The 86 billion neurons of our integrated central nervous system scream for self-preservation

… and yet, a man can stuff it.

Often men are called upon to act in the best interests of all concerned,
… temporarily leaving their personal survival needs behind until later when the emergency passes.
He can feel then when there is time for it, he tells himself.

And feel it he should for suppression is a higher order ego defence.

Repression, on the other hand, is lower down the defense ladder, and is when he denies even feeling as he does.
“What me scared? Nah, I didn’t even think of it, didn’t cross my mind,” he says later.
The toll over time is anxiety, depression, addictions, obsessive-compulsiveness.

Somehow, we men have come to believe emotion is an inconvenience which needs to be tolerated.
Sometimes we think it is, “acting like a woman.”
There is some truth to that last one maybe.

It’s just that without emotion nothing has any meaning.

Life is already difficult enough; knowing that at some point we die… is no gift most days.
That within a four and a half billion-year-old planetary system to realize that we exist in but a single century can be discouraging.
A speck of time is all we have.

It is emotion which gives meaning to everything we do: our deeds, our relationships, the obstacles we overcome.
Emotion permits a man to use his power and love in service of himself and others to find meaning and freedom.
Freedom from what? From the very tyranny of our existence.

We have a self-interested brain and a need to belong, forces pulling us apart and towards each other at the same time.
What could go wrong?

The trick to realize is that we are designed for love.
Damn, there’s that word again.

It might be better said as we are not made to go it alone, but to deal with emotion in tandem with another person.

Our relationships—to wit for 99% of the world’s population—require finding one special person and to keep them nearby, and with whom we rebalance our negative emotions.

It’s called “contact comfort.” They are our safe refuge. The need never goes away.

When there is stress in a relationship, it is this mechanism that is activated, the amygdala views this as a loss and sounds alarms in the psyche.

When the one person you rely upon for adult emotional succorance is suddenly unavailable, it is like facing the precipice.

You are alone, and without an emotional lifeline to make your way back to restoration.

We weren’t made for alone.

And we ought to talk about these things with our partner.
The pact can’t be left to chance, to “I thought it was understood,” …
… or hidden under the oft-obscure poetry of marital vows said in front of those not privy or party to being the one singular person central to your sense of safety.
Typically, when we disagree, when we take each for granted, …
… when we act out our childhood deviances upon each other, we become indignant, we rail at injustice, we parse right and wrong moral mechanics and blame or shame.We will try to influence each other, using buried terms of anger and frustration
… so that our partner’s self-interested brain circles the wagons,
… unsure from which direction will come the next attack.

Men could use getting better at this.

Recognizing it, in ourselves and others.
Could we?
For all our masculine talent at suppressing emotion in service of a cause,
… it’s the French maxim that comes to mind, “Ont as tous les défauts de nos qualités.”
Allow me to translate for you: We all have the faults of our qualities.

This is what bites us in the ass.

For example, women and men can do most things the other does but have preferences.
She is usually has more verbal ability than him.

Put a gal and guy in a room at age twenty-five and let them argue and he usually comes out confused, having never realized he was so faulted.
Do it at forty-five, same thing, sixty-five…

Abuse of empathy is a women’s birthright, you have heard me say.

Men tend to focus on one thing to the detriment of all other distractions.

Not so women who typically take in a wider scope of information at once.

She thinks more readily with both hemispheres and if there is a true multitasker in the room, it is inclined to be her.

If she has a fault, it’s that she tends to overthink.

If men have a fault it is that we tend to under-emote.

That’s our cross to bear, though it serves in times of war
… and to operate in big groups to build cultures…
… for her and our children.

It often disconnects us from our one person of safe refuge. It also can be what kills us.

We could get better at this one aspect of talking about feelings,

… when speaking with our significant other to maintain that bond, becoming “effectively dependent’ on each other.

That’s allowed. It’s how nature made us…

When it comes to our special person, in times of stress we could surpass the nuts and bolts

… and get to the real nuts and bolts: to reassure and be reassured.
Just speak to that.
Say, “I could use your reassurance,” and see what happens.Get in the habit of asking for and receiving reassurance.”Ouch! That hurt. Did you really mean that?” said calmly, expectantly, hopefully.If you really need to… you might stand in front of her, firm of voice and countenance,
… powerful of posture and with certainty in your words, looking her directly, unwaveringly,

… into the eyes and say, “Well, I don’t want to lose you,” and wait and see what she says.

Because no matter what the niceties or challenges of living with someone are…

…or having someone very close to you in your life,
… that’s the part that really counts.
“Where are we at?” You need to know for both your sakes.… you ask to reset the balance, to restore, to set priorities.The rest usually takes care of itself.
Restored, maybe you can get back to lust and let love take care of itself…

With your one special person… That’s a fun way to live.

I think men could get better at this.

It means acknowledging to yourself, by implication or otherwise,

… that with disconnection what you feel is fear, and that fear is normal.

If we accepted this about ourselves, we’d bridge a big gap.
Stated or unstated, your partner feels the same way.

It falls to men to insist love prevails in a home.

Maybe she can do that, but I have never seen it…

It’s up to you…

Men lead, women command.

Questions? Comments?

Power & Love,
True and Free!
cw

 

©CHRIS WALLACE 2022 all rights reserved advisortomen.com

House Rules


HOUSE RULES: 12 ideas to communicate effectively

  1. No personal attacks. No good discussion happens if we call each other mean names. Instead, we’ll use a compliment when we feel like attacking. Think of how you can do that and what a difference it will make. If you can, imagine how you will do this and practice it now so you’re ready.
  1. No using absolutes. Ex: all, everybody, each time, always, no one, nobody, never, none, every, everyone, etc. As in, “you always do that, you take forever, you never apologize, etc.” We use absolutes to exaggerate and paint us as victims. It forces a search for exceptions, expanding scope & killing discussion.
  1. One person talks about one issue, while the other person listens. We resist the urge to rebuttal. Instead, we’ll take turns, play fair, and set an example. You won’t drone on and hog the floor and I won’t cut you off. The idea is to air our positions safely and equally.
  1. No raising voices. If things get heated, we’ll say, “Let me take a break and come back to this, OK?” and move away. That’s a boundary. We’ll do our best later. Raising voices engages people’s fight or flight system and kills discussion. We realize a raised voice is mostly about us, not about the other person.
  1. No using “I feel that…” By using “feel that”, I’m describing a thought, not a feeling, implying feelings must be accepted at face value. Instead, we’ll say, “I feel ______” and insert a feeling word. We don’t expect feelings to be validated; we’ll just state them and let them go. We take responsibility for our feelings.
  1. No being defensive. Defensiveness is rooted in childhood shame, the little boy or girl inside fighting to survive. It also puts a halt to learning and one of the 4 traits that kills a relationship (with stonewalling, criticism and contempt the others). By being thankful for criticism, we keep a growth mindset.
  1. No jumping on you. I will restate what you said so I understand, and mostly use your words so I don’t manipulate by reframing incorrectly. Reflecting feeling is a variation. I will let you know “I get it” and give you a chance to correct my impression because I know we tend to “think out loud” using trial and error.
  1. No forgetting the end-goal. Let’s find a way forward that is mutually workable by being curious and doing our best to learn from each other. We focus first on connection, and less on outcome, while not giving up personal boundaries in the process. Our goal: conversation & agreement.
  1. No rushing things. The world does not operate on my schedule. We may have to devote more energy to working things out. We’ll be patient, improving as we go, knowing sleep is nature’s idea incubator.
  1. Use more “I” and less “You” statements. I can’t control others; I control me. Too much you and it becomes blaming. It’s better to tell you what I see, think, feel, and want… so you can do the same with me.
  1. Lower our expectations. All our disappointments are driven by expectations. When I temper self-interest, I see other viewpoints more easily. This leaves more room for compassion and compromise.
  1. We are each responsible for our happiness and for making this work. All I really own in life are my thoughts, feelings, and behaviours, all under my control. No one can make me feel anything as I`m no one`s puppet. When I make a mistake, I apologize because you matter to me.

 

©CKWallace, 2017, all rights reserved advisortomen.com

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