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MOTH TO FLAME: orgasmic love

One of the things I espouse is the idea men are often hampered by expectations around the subject of love. Particularly, I see unconditional love as a myth unintentionally perpetuated mostly by women in the normal course of providing care and attention to their children.

The child fully buys into the idea of mom’s unlimited love as a survival-based strategy. Bonding with mom could mean the difference between life and death. She answers the child’s every cry, nourishing from her breast while expectations for her attention become unconditional in the child.

The connection to the mother is so fundamentally etched into the youngster’s psyche that his growing world revolves around her attention. Understood, accepted and encouraged in children, anything more than remnants of this force is suspicious and pathetic in an adult male.

The sooner a man can disabuse himself from the expectation of unconditional love, the faster and more assured will be his ascent into manhood. This separation is painful and tends to be avoided but must happen. Define manhood, or even adulthood, however you like but it must include a goodly measure of autonomy from reliance on family of origin programming, the mother’s influence especially.

A man who does not do this will search for his mother’s love in his partners. You will still find something of your parents in those you choose in life, that’s the depth of their influence.  The people we love are simply a tableau upon which we project our inner needs and desires. Beware of expecting unconditional love.

What about love in general? It’s defined down through the ages by poets and scientists to great writers and ordinary individuals.  Oliver Wendell Holmes said that love is the master key that opens the gates of happiness. While others say love is an exquisite adaptation, a coping mechanism that ensures species survival.

I say it’s an almost useless concept in your relationship. Men should be aware of its power and give a nod to its existence, but not much more. It’s too vague, too immeasurable, too prone to illusory definitions rooted in personal history to be of much use as a guiding force in your marriage.

Concede love describes attachment and leave it at that. Take it off the shelf and give it a poetic turn now and again, but not for day to day utility. Instead, use lust as your measure. Each of us is possessed with anima/animus, the influences of each sex; love is the anima, the feminine, while lust is the animus, the masculine.

Stephen Porges speaks of a love code, saying it has two parts: “Phase one is social engagement, which uses cues of safety via engagement behaviors to negotiate proximity. Phase two deals with physical contact and intimacy.” (Porges, Stephen W. The Pocket Guide to the Polyvagal Theory: The Transformative Power of Feeling Safe p. 123. W. W. Norton & Company, New York).

So, phase one: presence, phase two: physical intimacy. I don’t know if you can extrapolate from this to the attachment questions suggested by Prof Sue Johnson: “Are you there? Are you with me?” Truth is, these two forces—connect and contact—are the essential elements of love.

In the Kinsey Institute New Report on Sex (Reinisch, St Martin’s Press, 1990. p. 76.) Dr. John Bancroft of the Centre for Reproductive Biology in Edinburgh, Scotland, speculates the non-reproductive functions of sex include strengthening of the pair-bonding, fostering of intimacy between partners, providing pleasure, bolstering self-esteem and reducing tensions and anxiety. No kidding John.

Masters and Johnson write about a person’s readiness for love whereas author Dr. Reinisch thinks this is worth expanding further to the idea of a readiness for sex. Now, we are getting somewhere.

Consider women’s sexual peak is later than men’s, and by a far margin. The report says, “Most men in adolescence and young adulthood report more frequent orgasms than do older men from all sources, including nocturnal emissions, masturbation and intercourse… On the other hand, women experience their highest number of orgasms from their mid-twenties to their mid-forties.” So, why would that be?

In my view, given these years are smack dab in the middle of her pair-bonding days, and she’s likely long with child if it’s destined to be so, we ought to realize female orgasm is less about reproduction and more about intimate attachment. Same with men.  Each ejaculate has from 40 to 1.2 billion sperm. At just once per day, the math for procreative possibilities in a year are mind-boggling. Fuhgeddaboudit.

Remarkably, a woman’s ovulation period is 12 to 24 hours once per month. Yet, she can blow her stones every day of the week all year long at any hour she chooses. Why would nature give her that ability for just 12 hours ovulation 12 times per year? Or, 12 days out of 365?  At 3%, something doesn’t add up.

I think the reproductive aspects of sex between adults is a minor function embedded in intimacy which primarily uses orgasms as its bonding agent.

It’s about the orgasms. OK, I’ll go further and suggest sperm is the glue which holds us together. And, that’s not even considering sperm as nutrition, with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties and which may also play a role in mitigating a woman’s anxiety and depression. Come on.

Also, just think of what that means, to have an orgasm in front of someone. Usually stripped naked, the body and its every crevice is exposed so that your partner has full access. You lack weapons or protection: no armour or shield, nor a dagger hiding under your cloak or fur. Caution is thrown to the wind.

There is no hiding during orgasms, it’s a surrender to each other. The abandon of orgasm sends your face into contortions of pleasure where you must risk your partner’s glances. Only she sees you this way, just as only you see her.

For me, if a woman doesn’t make good faces when she’s coming, there is no hope for us. Her smell and climaxing facial expressions are what determine if we shall meet again unclothed. If she shudders during the moment, even better. I have no idea where this comes from in me, seems shallow but it’s real.

Think of the moment of orgasm and its inherent temporary loss of control. Who “stands on guard for thee” while you engage in your moment of bliss? Of course, your companion does. We do it to and for each other.

What is she first… this woman you profess to love? Is she first a mother? a worker? a businesswoman? a friend to her gal pals? an advocate for your children’s education? a community member? a churchgoer? All these and more I’m sure.

But she is first a sexual human being. This is her essence and no amount of time or bearing of children changes this essential fact. She is sexual, treat her so.

What of it that her best fertility years are two decades between 15 and 35, though her best orgasm years go another decade or more far beyond? What does this say? When you consider living to 50 years was a full lifespan until a couple of hundred years ago, it means she gets hornier as she ages.

Orgasms equal trust. When we have regular orgasms with someone, we trust them. Orgasms between a couple are the ultimate physical manifestation of “are you there? are you with me?” the two essential ingredients to attachment. As I like to say, “without trust, you’ve got nothing.”

My mother had ten pregnancies in twelve years producing nine children. My sister moved into my parent’s basement suite when the old folks were nearing their eighth decade in age so she could keep an eye on them. Every Friday night my dad tiptoed into my mother’s room and they were intimate; she could hear them. They went like this until ma got cancer at 85. Dad died recently but he could still get his dick hard from what the staff at the old folks’ home told us.

The need for sexual touch never leaves us. We are always down to let our partners play with our balls and to fondle her pussy. It’s the grand and not-so-secret privilege and submission we each accord other… and it never goes away.

My woman will “service me” when she’s not up to a full copulation. I often “service her” in the mornings when I’m half asleep and she’s… well, just lying there. The point is that quickie orgasms between a couple are one of the easiest ways to ensure and protect your intimacy bond. “It is I who has access,” it says.

So, how do you swing this with your woman? You need to negotiate it. It’s either that you assume the sale at the beginning and secure her agreement, that this part of you never shall wane, or you need to kick start it now. Men lead; women command.

What if there are children? More reason to set this tone outright or reclaim it.

When the airline attendant does a pre-flight address, they announce something like, “In the event of a loss in cabin pressure, masks will fall from the ceiling in front of your seat. Please ensure you put on your mask first before attending to small children.” This is a good simile for the mindset you need regarding you, missus and the kids. Parents need to put themselves first. It’s the pair-bond that must hold priority, for without it the children are imperiled.

The best thing you can do for the children is stay together. The best thing you can do for yourselves is to live harmoniously putting your marriage and relationship first. Orgasms are like insurance against divorce. Rare is it we leave someone who is giving out regular orgasms. Orgasms also act as an attachment barometer.

I encourage you to have this discussion, to tell your woman some of what is contained within this essay. See if you can get her to agree to make your physical life together a priority. Over the years have found most women who embrace this are quite good with it, feeling as salty and as earthy as nature intended.

I flirt endlessly with my gal careful to never appear needy. The idea is to sell her on our differences. She can express herself verbally and perhaps get her nurturance needs through her girlfriends and the caring of children and in some cases, elderly parents. You admire the scope of her emotional life but share no such tendency of your own.

Instead, like many things about men, you are rather unidirectional. It’s one of your great masculine gifts, the ability to concentrate on one task to the detriment of all other distractions. You also are less hampered by needs for emotional regulation compared to women. We express ourselves physically, and our lust is its primary manifestation. Can she feel lucky she is the object of your desire?

Never let a man leave the house hungry or horny, says the maxim. Plenty of truth to this one for sure. Everyone likes to be someone’s chosen.

And what of the silly notion she’s always vying for a higher status male? She bet on you when you had nothing, putting the lie to this idea. Only if forced she’d choose in her best interests because she could. Should she not? Trust me, be her powerful man and her preference is to stay put. Why? Because people will do almost anything to appear consistent. You are the devil she knows. Give her orgasms, you devil.

Ideally, even when she’s not up for immediate action she may circle back and take care of you both at some point later. Usually that day or the next. You do a version of the same. You neither pout, nor sulk, nor ever, ever beg. It’s like sleep makes diet and exercise healthful… and orgasms make marriages work. She understands this because there is a part of her that needs it too.

So, it’s a question of mindset. Your woman can understand this precious gift between you needs to be maintained with regular orgasms. It’s how men express themselves and we don’t have a woman’s depth to do it otherwise. Don’t you dare let anyone shame you into believing this is somehow selfish or wrong. Nonsense. That’s an argument begging rebuttal, to be met with unapologetic masculine desire.

I’d urge you to pick your time and have this frank discussion and make sure these desires are not left unmet. Insert orgasms somewhere in your vows, either outright or as a secret word to signal your intent with each other. “In the name of God/The Universe, I, (groom/bride’s name), take you, (groom/bride’s name), to be my (husband/wife), to have and to hold from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish by providing endless orgasms, until we are parted by death. This is my solemn vow.”

What if you have a fight? “Don’t touch me!” might be yours or her reaction. You need an understanding this could happen. Make a deal right now that reconciliation is sealed with an orgasm. Better still, let it be known that each may turn to the other for reassurance at any time and request proof of commitment, sealed not with vague notions of love, but specifically with orgasms. Are you with me?

I have been with missus thirteen years and we have two children, boy six and girl eight. The boy has some medical challenges and she is often up two or three times in the night to attend to him in the next room. She has the same hormonal fluctuations and spotting between periods and horrible cramps as any gal. Outside of more serious sickness, we give each other orgasms.

Because I treat her first as a sexual human being, that honeymoon period people refer to at the beginning of a relationship has scarcely ended. I’m always after her ass. I flirt with her constantly, encouraged by her intermittent reinforcement in the way of attention and access to her body. My father said of his wife that he was like “a moth to flame” around her for their sixty-two years together. He always wanted her, right to the end.

Let me tell you again: everybody loves to feel like they are someone’s chosen. Everybody. You, me, everyone. No exceptions.

Your job is to her powerful man, and she your loyal woman. That’s the dynamic.

Do not apologize for being male (unless it gets you an orgasm) and never deny your masculinity. Just as you appreciate her feminine gifts and all the ways she enhances both of your lives, insist your masculine energy be equally respected so the two of you may celebrate while rejoicing in the safe haven you have found in each other.

As a man ages he gains wisdom and may discover the profound connectivity of everything around him. Your appreciation for art, literature, music, nature and things ethereal may know no bounds. Compassion expands along with it: find it early, find it late, we must all find love.  You may realize the universe does not make mistakes and we are as we should be, including our sexual expression. May your private moments with your partner help you see the awe in each other.

Put lust first and let love take care of itself.

Stay powerful, never give up
cw

©2109 CKWallace all rights reserved

Dedicated to Lt. Cmdr (ret) Howard C Wallace, 1929-2019, R.I.P

Christopher K Wallace
Advisor to Men, Mentor at Large

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SHAME FREE

One of the things which plagued me for many years is a sense of personal shame. I don’t mean ordinary shame, the kind you get from using poor table manners or coughing without covering your mouth. Those slight corrections by adults are necessary and acceptable.

Nope, I mean a different kind of shame, stronger in intent and effect. It’s a shame deeply internalized stemming from the messages from those around you, one that says you are broken, perhaps irretrievably. You haven’t simply made a mistake, it’s your operating system which is instead called into question. It makes you the odd one out, the black sheep, tossed aside as part of the cost of doing business in the family making model. In my later years, I framed this contention in the worst possible terms, often referring to it as my “piece of shit” shame. Pain does that.

You see, I felt broken most of my life starting early. My time as a child was not a happy one. When I protested whatever conditions were at the crux of my toddler discontent, ma would laugh. I would say, “it’s not funny ma,” which to her became cute, as if “it’s not funny, ma” was an endearing slogan representing my youthful self assertion. Melancholic disaffection is evident in the recent photo I posted of myself as a wee boy with dad and a few siblings. Misery abound has followed me since.

As it is with so much family of origin programming, into the world at large I went after first finding, confirming, and compounding my worthlessness at home. That day at 15, when father told me there wasn’t room for two roosters under one roof, where I was tossed into the cold October with a weekly stipend of $10 each Wednesday until my sixteenth birthday a month or so away, was simply an inevitable confirmation of my low worth.

I was born a 9 pound and 10 ounce baby and given the name of the Christ-bearer. It was to become my modus operandi: weighted by sin and accumulating more. I went from fat baby to Little Chrissie, a nickname given to me by my older sister and mother. It was only later I returned to Christopher, with stops as The Wolf, The Shooter, The Doctor, The Professor, Wallypops and more along the way. Little Chrissie still resides somewhere… in here.

All of us are born with a soul and a spirit. We can’t measure them, but we know they are there. We have an inkling, and both forces operate beneath the surfaces of our awareness while we are nagged at by each in turn. To deny them as unscientific nonsense is to turn your back on a fundamental part of the self.

When searching for answers, cutting off access to even these ethereal parts of existence is like going into battle with less ammunition instead of more. Everyday life can be as blissful as it is painful, and confusion is a necessary part of our maturation. Life gets better when we get better at life, and an appreciation for soul and spirit is another aspect of personal mastery.

I conceptualize the soul as ancestral epigenetic influences passed down through the methyl groups of my DNA mixed with mankind’s collective unconscious. We know both exist, quantified by recent advances in psychology in the first case and the seminal works of Carl Jung and Joseph Campbell and others in the latter. Grandmother’s hardships are felt for generations despite completely different conditions. Holocaust survivors pass along their pain soulfully to their children and beyond. Alcoholism runs in families.

The same symbols arise over and over in mythology and religions around the world, often despite no known contact between cultures continents apart. Even my father while writing his own obituary, felt a pull to include a paragraph about his founding immigrant to Canada and the generations since, as if he knew to pay homage to his soulful self alongside his lived life.

It might be better to understand these things by asking just how much awareness we have in the first place. We know the unconscious exists. Action potential in brain firing neurons has already shown we live emotionally and interpret events later. Sperry’s split-brain research a half century ago, continued by his student Gazzaniga and followed by advances in cognitive understanding by Nobel winner Kahneman and added to by Ariely and others cumulatively shows we are mostly deterministic.

Consciousness is slow which confirms an unconscious. When something comes into awareness it has already happened, then we scramble to explain it. Jung would tell us the psyche is buried by the self trying to learn to conform and then buried further because of the personae (masks) we wear in our various roles co-existing among each other during everyday life. It is anyone’s guess as to how large the unconscious is. It might be awareness is 20%, another 20-30% is your personal subconscious, and fully 50% might be collective unconscious. No one knows for sure.

Whatever it be, it’s more than we think. We are all born with a sense of justice. That’s collective unconscious. We are all afraid of the dark. That’s collective unconscious. We come into this world afraid of heights. That’s collective unconscious. Children who have never seen a snake will naturally fear them. That’s collective unconscious.

Suffice it to say there is a part of us which, while immeasurable and mysterious, is no less real. Should we have occasion to be far out in the desert, away from city lights, or perhaps up North in Canada’s arboreal forest, looking up at the night sky will reveal the Milky Way in all its glory. Whose spirit is not lifted in awe at this wondrous sight? What of a sunrise with its first blinding brilliance as it cracks the horizon to the East? Who cannot but feel their spirit stir at such a sight? Great art, music and natural wonders are just some of the ways the spirit appears in us.

Whereas the soul represents some essential part of our now and includes our past, the spirit begs us to add to our soul in the present, but also future expressions of all the potential and possibilities unmistakably bestowed upon us by a universe of infinite wisdom at the very moment of our conception. We see time and time again how the spirit rises in people, how they come back from adversity and confusion only to find their way forward, often beautifully.

I rarely shed tears, and funerals and the death of loved ones only stirs me to attend to the necessary at hand, perhaps as a way of mitigating my pain. But give me an overcoming, show me the undaunted human spirit and I am more surely moved. The underdog story, the impossible triumph occurring when people reach somewhere inside for the spirit’s calling and answer, fills me with an awe attributable only to a collective soul, the part of me that is also a part of you.

Potentials and possibilities, this is what the spirit whispers… Perhaps it’s just a feeling of something more, something unheard, a nagging sense your destiny includes not only a duty to others, but also a duty to yourself. We must listen to hear; it’s how it works. And for that we need to feel safe, secure enough to bend down and put our ear to the ground, listening for the distant rumblings of soul and spirit galloping forward with their message of hope and faith, of aspirations and dreams not yet fulfilled.

What did they call you as a child? Who were you before conformity demanded you squelch the noise in you, turning you down for the sake of convenience? Well-intentioned I’m sure, it’s this imposition of civility upon the savage child which often sacrifices the spirit. We can find innocence and the purity of our imagination lost to rules and uneven punishments for being nothing more than children. If that was you, take my example.

Move to protect that part of you which still exists and needs you now more than ever. In my case, I speak to Little Chrissie and tell him he is not alone. He has Wally, older, wiser, more capable, resourceful, and especially, more powerful to look after him now. The fully mature Christopher can reassure this part of me and re-parent him the way I’d want to protect and reassure my own six-year-old son.

I might say, “I’ve got you Chrissie, I’m here now. No one can hurt you; I won’t allow it. I sense your unease and let me tell you: I’m bigger and stronger and more powerful, and I know all about what you are feeling. You have me on your side. You are safe with me Chrissie, you can come out now, the danger has long passed. It’s time to live your dreams once more. It’s time to fly, to shine, to rise up and do whatever it is you were intended to do. We are a team, you and me, an unstoppable team. Join with me now.” Chrissie listens, he was always a good listener.

Criticism is painful for the shamed. Yet, criticism has a gift as a signal for what needs to be done. Before I let Chrissie know I had his back, criticism stung and devastated, confirming once more my uselessness and waste. Now, I can see criticism as a barometer of my shame, allowing me to measure its dissipation from the inner world of my being. Aroused from its slumber, shame is instead acknowledged. I say, “Oh look, there’s my shame again. That’s what has got Chrissie’s attention but he’s safe here: it can’t hurt us anymore. I’m just going to let that go now…”

Soon criticism is as fine as a compliment, just feedback. Criticism does not speak to my soul nor my spirit for these are part of my inner self, exclusive to me, in my realm alone. It’s just an environmental report representing the reporter as much as any true reality. It’s like when I had a bad hair day in high school and suffered the embarrassment of my imperfections. At some point I realized that no one really cares about my hair, it was their hair they cared about. In the same way it is their criticism, and I only make it mine by choice, the same way I accept kindness. Both are only real when I make them so.

I wonder if you might have a talk with your younger self and see about reassuring them now. Maybe you won’t do that now but soon you will. When you do it’s likely you will find this relationship allows a dialogue to continue and become stronger. As the conversation ensues over the days and weeks and months, suddenly you will find its your spirit with whom you speak.

By making room to acknowledge your soul and nourish your spirit, a deeper strength begins to manifest itself in your life. This is the power of the ages. It’s the gift of your being, the indomitable spirit rising and living its destiny. Answers come more easily; the path forward more assured. A man who uses his power in service of himself and other finds meaning and freedom.

Not because you can, nor because it is something you want for yourself, while, of course, you do. No, not just that at all, for it is more, it is something you owe. By honouring your spirit’s pact with the universe you are set free.

Free at last: thank God almighty, free at last.

Stay powerful, never give up
cw

Christopher K Wallace
Advisor to Men, Mentor at Large
©2019 CKWallace, all rights reserved

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THE BODY

Feelings live in the body. Huh? Did I get your attention? It’s kind of an important idea.

Need proof? Well, for one thing we know trauma locks the “freeze” part of fight, flight, freeze and feint into the body. Take that as your “proof.” We can carry trauma in the body for the whole of our lives, can’t we?

I still get a sore back sometimes when I feel powerless in a situation. Hurts like hell, so bad I can sometimes have a hard time standing up. But… no pain, no bliss. Makes me want to ensure powerlessness is not a big part of my life.

Ever tell someone, “you give me a headache” or a version thereof? How about when mom said, “wait until your father gets home” as a little boy or girl? What happens when we anticipate punishment? Do our guts flip? Do our bowels move? Do our hands go cold and clammy?

Let me ask you: what are you doing to take care of that body of yours?

Are you lifting? What? Weights are only for guys? Think again. Humans—both men and women—have lifted heavy objects throughout our history just as a matter of course. Don’t let the last hundred years fool you. We are still the people our collective evolution made. If you are not presently lifting, start there, and never stop. Never.

What about yoga? That’s just for girls? Give your head a shake. Men have been involved in yoga from the beginning, haven’t they?  Look at those swami guys in loincloths bending and twisting. I bet they sleep like babies at night. Fallen out of practice? Restart or continue, and never stop.

Late comedian George Burns did the 11-minute 5BX system every day and lived to 100.

Perhaps you have convinced yourself the body is somehow separate from your mind. That it’s just there to transport you around. Maybe you think it’s sort of the engine room and sewage infrastructure of your being and can somewhat be taken for granted.

After all, the body is beneath you, right? Not a great idea (did I just write that?)

Disconnecting from the body is why we get out of shape, put lousy foods into our mouths, neglect our sleep. We can develop contempt for the body. Where is that from? Maybe from good intentions as we push ourselves physically as children, demanding more and more from our frame and then losing touch with our anatomy as ego takes over and social standing prevails. We go from a narrower internal focus and widen to a more external one as we develop.

Get this: if feelings live in the body, it’s also where your unhappiness resides. Think about that.

Whoa. Unhappiness is something we try to avoid. Is that why we avoid our body? Does this mean if I neglect my body, I am refusing to face my unhappiness? Maybe. You decide.

Let’s talk about those feelings for a moment. How’s that all work anyway?

Feelings are predictive (not reactive) responses based on what is going on in the body (interoception). The vagus nerve complex connects the body and organs to the brain and reports on its condition faster than awareness. Sure, the brain signals the body but when it comes to the vagus—also known as the tenth cranial nerve—more than 80% of its neurons are afferent, meaning they signal towards the brain. That’s a lopsided signalling system for good reason

At any given moment, this basic reporting from below is what the brain uses to predictively meet circumstance and put you in a best-guess emotional state—beneath your awareness—all based on your databank of prior emotional states since birth (what else would it have to go on?). It then corrects after-the-fact according to the social reality before you

Ex. You come home and are snappy at a roommate. Later you eat and realize you were responding to hunger because you had not eaten all day. The body determined your state.

Think about this: A baby has very few feelings, restricted to things like crying when hungry, discomfort when it needs changing, or the need for its caretaker’s gaze and physical attention.  But as its experience grows so does its feelings repertoire. What this means for you and me is this: the only way to create new feelings is to live new experiences.

If you want to shift your state change how you think or what you do. Language and focus are both mental and physical so act as passkeys to unlock the doors of state from either side.

The body is faster. And, more lasting. If someone has an anxiety attack with their gullet flipping and breathing labored and progressively shallower, a painful knot can develop in the sternum area, that center part of the chest where the rib cages meet. Jogging brings relief in minutes.

Feeling a bit tense? Do ten burpees. Can’t do burpees? Why not? Don’t lie to me.

OK. Do ten deep knee bends, or some jumping jacks, or dance for fuck’s sake. Get moving. Even if it’s just to smile at yourself in a mirror. If desperate, bridle a pen across your mouth to force it and feel what happens.

Thoughts reflect what is happening in the body. What heresy is this, you say? How is this possible? The hungry example above explains it. It’s because consciousness is slow. If something comes into your awareness, it has already happened.

What? How can my precious mind not be in charge? Well, it is… and it isn’t.

It takes over once consciousness allows something into your awareness. Not before. That’s where free will starts. The rest of the time you are responding to your body’s needs, and those constitutional signals continue as you think. It’s why the Greek said an unexamined life is not worth living. He was probably a little pissed at realizing how things really worked.

We live emotionally and use our brains to “rationalize” things after. And whose side do you think the brain takes in most of those explanations? You betcha: yours. It’s your inherent bias.

And what is the brain relying on to come up with those handy explanations or rationalizations or excuses? Indeed, messages from the body. Messages whose main function is to keep you safe and which are all based on your prior experience. It’s motherfucking humbling…

I have more bad news. no one else has ever experienced life as you have, and so cannot feel what you feel. I know, I know, some people are em-paths, and maybe you’re not. I call bullshit.

Fact is empathy is always a projection of one person’s feelings onto another person. What we have as human beings is enough shared experiences between us to make it seem as if we really feel what someone else feels. But we don’t really. Some just try a little harder.

And all those times you just can’t seem to relate to someone else? Stop beating yourself up. It’s probably not that you’re an unfeeling psychopath (who are actually very good at what we regard as empathy and use their ability to read emotional states, especially body language and facial expressions, to manipulate people and circumstances for their own benefit).

It’s more like you just don’t have those kinds of experiences being shared and so can’t even fathom what they might be feeling. That is perfectly normal and so, cut yourself some slack.

Here`s something else that is pretty important about the body. Your microbiome. These include the bacteria, archaea, fungi, protists and viruses that come along for the ride. You’ve been colonized since coming down the birth canal and out your mother`s vagina, and then you’ve been adding to them throughout your lifetime.

Ten times as many non-human cells and human cells inhabit “you,” and these suckers need to eat as they perform necessary functions in one of the greatest symbiotic relationship known. They benefit humans and we can’t survive without them. We are only beginning to get them.

Knock out a bunch of them with antibiotics and your behaviour can change. A researcher from UBC had an assistant whose son was sick many times as a child. Antibiotics brought on autism-like symptoms. After a few years of frustration, she gave him a fecal-transplant, and repopulated his gut with her organisms. Symptoms went away. Now the kid has grown and works in the same lab as where his mom once did, under the same professor.

If you have a skinny sister and a fat sister, and the fat sister can’t seem to keep the weight off despite years of dieting, what would happen if the skinny sister gave the fat sister a fecal transplant? By repopulating her gut with missing microbiota, would she lose weight more easily?

What about mood. Think you crave certain foods in response to some mental process? Well, no, we’ve established that’s not how things work. The body will tell you when it needs glucose, we’ve established that too. But what if what if what you eat really does affect how you feel? What if how you feel is greatly influenced by the quality of your diet? What if how you take on the challenges of your life are largely determined by the foods you eat? We think it might.

Oh my, what if you really are what you eat? What will you do with this information?

You think you live someplace. You might even have an address on a street. Maybe you also have an apartment number, and maybe its got letters in it too. But that’s a construct. It’s artificial. It’s a place you go to when you need to park your stuff and pick up your mail or rest your head.

For where you really live is above a mere house or apartment or hut on the savannah or cabin in the woods. It’s much, much more for it is a place where the forces of all time have gathered.

It is where your ancestors used the methyl groups of your DNA to send you their gathered messages against a backdrop of mankind’s collective unconscious, thus giving you a soul. The soul exists because we sense it is there while the spirit is its calling. One is more past, one is more future; one is more static, the other moves.

The spirit is lifted at a sunrise, while gazing at the stars, at art and nature, often at each other. It’s also what calls to us, often as a stirring. The soul and the spirit form the inner self we subjugate as children developing ego while learning to conform. The masks we wear bury them further.

Yet, if we listen the spirit calls us from somewhere deep inside. Usually we point to our heart or guts or halfway between, somewhere inside the middle of our torso as its source.  It is the blessing of the cosmos in its infinite wisdom, the force behind the sun and the stars, the same one which gave us life and demands we manifest a powerful existence.

It is that part of you which contains all of your potentials and possibilities, all safely residing in the body: the universal address of your existence.

How will you get to know it, take care of it, listen to it and move it?

How about today?

Stay powerful, never give up
cw

Chris Wallace
©October, 2019, all rights reserved

Advisor to Men, Mentor at Large
advisortomen.com
ckwallace.com

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IT WAS JUST PHYSICS (poem)

IT WAS JUST PHYSICS
I don’t know if I could have made my old relationship
work, even with what I know now. If I think I could,
it might be just simple hubris. And, another reason
to beat myself up, giving into shame, 
paralysing me with fear and loathing.

The other thing is accumulated pain,
over many years of troubled marriage
can put trust out of each other’s reach
for good. And, without trust,
you got nothing. Nothing.

I was so powerless, I could see it disappearing
before me, like sand through an hourglass.
Despite this, and my frequent protestations,
I was unable to reverse things, to turn the glass
sideways and stop the flow. It takes two.

While it is not for me to demand someone grows
at a pace I approve, on trust there’s no compromise.
That’s the litmus test. My two cents. More likely,
we were like two asteroids hurtling through space
on similar but slightly different trajectories.

It meant for a time we traveled side by side,
our energies cutting a double swath of light
through the dark of space and time, like
starship headlights perfectly aligned,
streaking across a darkened sky.

But, eventually, those differences in mass,
velocity and trajectory began to increase
the distance between us, try as we might
to maintain our intended cosmic track.
And, just as two orbiting bodies in space

each have their own path and destiny,
separation was inevitable, becoming
greater as time went by. Until
an irrefutable truth was revealed:
we are drifting further and further apart.

Following a universal plan we don’t need
to understand. In the end, we accept
the universe doesn’t make mistakes.
We always make the best decisions
for ourselves at any given time.

It wasn’t me or her at all.
It was just physics.

©CKWallace, 2019
advisortomen.com

CLOTHES MAKE THE MAN

My totem animal is the rooster. The Celtic and Norse apparently considered the animal a creature of the underworld, serving as a messenger of the hereafter, screeching out warnings of danger and calling out to the fallen souls on the battlefield the following morning after a fight. Its attributes are many and among them are pride, honesty, courage, vigilance, arrogance, strength, watchfulness and flamboyance.

It’s that last one that piques my interest in this story. I chose the rooster as my totem when it came time to set the differences accorded me by the Chief Herald of Canada when my father was awarded his coat of arms. The shield center of his arms is gold, and each of his nine kids have a symbol in its place, as differences.

It was not until my fifties that I made this choice, but it came to me immediately. My father had kicked me out of the home when I was fifteen as he descended into madness, saying, “there is room for only one rooster under a roof and since this is my house, you’ll have to go.”

But I’d also learned over the years to be a pretty snappy dresser. My dad was too, and in later years called me “the dude,” when I visited wearing something cool. His closet was like my own, shirts lined up from end to end. I’ve counted a hundred shirts alone hanging up in mine, his was the same. I got rid of some lately, to make room for missus who cannot share a closet with me. I tell her it’s because I’ve been around longer. I hoard, she sheds.

Dad and I often talked about the simple pleasure of looking good. I gave him a fleece vest with a Wallace badge on it and it can be found folded over his chair in his room of the locked ward at the old age home he was forced into because of dementia. Even with his mind wandering, clothes are still important to him.

In the 1970s, I was doing time for one thing or another. Oh yeah, I’d shot a guy, in a strip joint of all places. Then, there was a prison strike and the army had to come in to man the correctional posts. Anyone with an application to get out on day parole saw it granted to help clear the place out.

A Sally Ann house on Slater Street in Ottawa took me in as long as I had work. My girlfriend had finagled her boss at a men’s clothing store on Rideau Street to give me a job. Mr Moustache was the name of the place and there, thanks to her, I learned how to dress. And, soon after, sold heroin out of the upstairs back room every day in between serving customers. Eventually, I gave up the heroin but never lost the touch when it came to dressing well.

Many years later, when I was about 40, I learned to service my own cars. Bought a mechanic’s tool set which I still have, the top one from Sears Craftsman. It was 2500 pieces or something, plus the cabinet. Or maybe it’s 670 pieces and cost 2500 hundred, I can’t remember.

Me and two other guys rented a shop in Surrey BC and fixed our cars and vans and boats, and I learned to weld. We were all growing pot at the time, and as a builder, I soon had five houses and a warehouse on the go. It meant I was a glorified maintenance man, carrying tools wherever I went from one job to another.

I noticed when I stopped for gas and engaged in my usual banter with the gal at the cash, I didn’t get much attention in return. When I went into the Home Depot or a restaurant, same thing. People stopped smiling as much, didn’t laugh at my jokes, and generally engaged with me as little as possible. The usual friendliness and easy-going nature of my interactions with people disappeared. It was all business, no contact.

My old shame feelings rose to the surface. I had this idea I was a piece of shit since my early days out  on the street and had carried it forward into my middle age. The shame I’d internalized as a little boy under my parents’ roof, with its abandonment threats and isolation and violence, was still there lurking, influencing my life beneath awareness.

Over the years, I couldn’t work for anyone else lest the criticism necessary to learn crush me. I remember that defensiveness clearly in my early years. And, the pain I felt inside stayed hot just beneath the surface of my emotions and could boil over if I was not careful. As a younger man, it did, and I earned a rep as a hothead. Later that reputation was focused further as a bad ass gangster type. Unbeknownst to me, I was using fear as a shield.

Later I went to college and university and worked on my issues, seeking to understand the psychology behind my past. I’d done a pile of work on myself since I’d decided to stand up and be a father to my little boy, but the rejection I felt when I dressed down and went about my day on the west coast in the 1990s signaled I had more to do.

I experimented and would see how people treated me when I dressed well versus when I dressed in work clothes. It was all too predictable. My sensitivity, driven by my internal shame, meant I could feel the ostracism and it hurt.

At one point, I read about how researchers had conducted a study by having a confederate stand on a busy street during the morning rush hour and stare across the street at the opposite building, as if spotting something of interest. The insider would croon his neck and shield his eyes from the morning light all the while staring at some unknown thing a few floors up and opposite his sidewalk.

Others would soon gather around and look to see what the confederate was seeing, curiously following and mimicking his lead. Some proclaimed they could see what the researcher could see, pointing out a spot at a window, a certain number of floors up and at just a point.

The game was to see if what the confederate wore attracted more lookers. Sure enough, the better dressed the more lookers stopped and stared along. The best dress of them all was a man in a three-piece suit and tie.

You can imagine what authority is bestowed on someone by their dress. Think of a judge’s robes, or the white lab coat worn by your doctor. Clothing make the man because it’s part of the package of social proofs we use to meet our expectations. Imagine how off it would be to go do Friday confession to a priest without his white collar. A man in a suit and tie is presumed to be of some authority, especially in context where authority can influence.

Whenever you meet someone, you are being judged. We live emotionally and rationalize things afterwards. Our feelings about something happen a split second, faster than we can think, and for good reason. That first emotional impression sets and seeds what follows. Once someone sees you, their impression is instantaneously formed, and you are then either overcoming a prejudice or confirming a bias. Which would you rather be doing? What’s to your advantage?

The clothes we wear, and our personal sense of style is something a man ought to spend a little time thinking about. It’s worthwhile knowing what the essentials of a gentleman’s wardrobe ought to be, given his station in life and activities, and the enjoyment he derives from how he presents in public.

In Canada, where we have four seasons, closets can become unruly. I once had counted 150 t-shirts I’d accumulated when I kept places in two or three cities.

Three suits will do the trick for most people. One black or dark charcoal, one navy blue, and one gray. One thinly patterned light summer sport jacket and one navy sport jacket you can wear with jeans is a good mix. You can’t beat a white shirt with a tie. Be careful of too much patterning in your shirts, those are better worn casually with jeans. Remember what is in style now might be long gone in a few years so unless you plan on replacing your clothing regularly (most guys don’t), opt for classics.  A pair each of brown and black brogues. Match your belts to your shoes.

Sandals for summer, and a lighter shoe optionally. A couple or three good sweaters, the kind you can wear under a suit instead of a vest, and one at least of heavier materials for colder weather. Some shorts and summer golf shirts are an important part of your wardrobe, as is a spring and fall jacket, one dressier and one more casual. You probably don’t need 30 pair of running shoes. Most people dispense with cuff links and tie clips these days.

If you dress well regularly, allow room for personal style. I used to have forty pairs of leather shoes but now use about five. One is a pair of caramel coloured Giorgio Armani shoes I got on sale in Vegas for about $450. I save those babies for special dates with missus or when I want to look my best. Also, nothing looks worse on a man than to try to dress like he’s M&M or Fiddy or some other mutha like Tupac in a god damned rap video. Smarten up (said with affection),lest you look like a boy.

Certain designers have become reliable standards for me, like the Armani shoes, but Hugo Boss is also one I like too. Robert Graham shirts were a favourite at one point. I used to reward myself with a shirt if I hit a certain goal. At a couple of hundred each, I have a few so I switched to something else. I shop from Harry Rosen’s Men’s stores to Mark’s Work Warehouse, looking for classic designs and superior workmanship. I got a couple of pair of winter socks for Christmas from missus last year that came from a mill in the US, and they are the best winter socks I’ve ever worn. Same with underwear, the good stuff lasts.

Quality counts a lot more than anything to me. For example, I still have my Italian leather roper cowboy boots bought in 1995 when I headed west. Any Texan will appreciate that, just as they do a good hat. Style is regional.

Lastly, I still dress down on occasion, heck I live on acreage in the country so rubber boots are at my back door waiting for me at any moment. But, I’m not put off by people’s reactions anymore. The internalized shame of my youth, and even those years not so long ago, hasn’t left me but I’ve reconciled with its forces on my life. I know my worth, more so now, and confidently for the first time in my life.

Can you imagine? I’m 61 years old and it took me until I was in my fifties to really get this (don’t do that).

Now, I dress in my style because I’m used to it, honouring the flamboyance of the rooster without hiding shame under it all. My clothing is functional but also an expression of my overall well-being, not a cover up for internal strife and feelings of inadequacy. Through that painful journey, I learned how to dress, probably better than most.

Rather than a shield against judgment, dressing well is now part of my power.

Think about that as you assemble a wardrobe which meets your sense of style.

Stay powerful, never give up
cw

Chris Wallace
Advisor to Men

©CKWallace 2019, all rights reserved

reach me at advisortomen@gmail.com

At my offices in an
RW & Co button dress shirt
Robert Graham jeans with braided belt
Hugo Boss leather shoes

RED PILL: Not Quite Manly

No doubt you’ve heard or read about the Red Pill movement. It’s a phenomenon on YouTube, Facebook, Reddit and elsewhere.  Red Pill gurus are rushing to get their message out in books, its de facto leader Rollo Tomassi, on his fourth.

Red Pill itself comes from a scene in the science fiction movie The Matrix, where rebel leader Morpheus played by Laurence Fishburne, offers Neo, played by Keanu Reeves, the choice of swallowing a blue pill which allows one to believe what they want to believe, or the red pill which offers truth. Neo takes red.

This truth is what the red pill leaders say is what is required to navigate the relationships between men and women. Tomassi uses the term “hypergamy” to describe a woman’s prerogative to choose a partner of higher status.

I like Tomassi and I like Donovan and the rest of the guys who appear on YouTube’s 21 Studio each week to discuss Red Pill practicalities. These guys have sliced and diced the subject to deep levels… with no end in sight.

And, that’s also why I listen or read Red Pill sparingly. This is just my personal view, but I think our Red Pill brothers leave the masculine and visit the feminine too frequently for my tastes. Solipsism, the view that the self is all that can be known to exist, and which I agree is very much a feminine energy trait, is often a overriding feature in Red Pill discussions.

It says, “I think it therefore it is.” It’s the incredible ability of the overthinking woman to believe her own bullshit. Men need watch for that in themselves occasionally, especially if they are gathered around having coffee discussing the opposite sex—which is typically something women do, not something men do at this level.

That’s not to say there isn’t some truth to Red Pill. And, to many guys it’s a Godsend of information. In the context, Blue Pill is real, and every man needs that wake-up call. It’s easy for a man to go into relationships with blinders on, with family of origin programming and unmet needs dictating his expectations.

When I left a marriage just shy of 25 years in the early 2000s, honestly, I was devastated. Nothing I’d tried worked and I was facing complete failure. My parents were married sixty-two years before my mother died some time ago. Like many men, marriage was forever for me, and I couldn’t broker it any other way.

In the end, I knew if I stayed it would kill me, and leaving made me feel like dying.

Some days I’d have flashes of crashing my van at top speed in a train overpass or just letting it fly off a bridge as my thoughts turned to self-harm in frustration and despair. Oft I’d have to take a knee and just recover for a moment from the pain I was carrying.

That’s when one of our managers mentioned he listened to Tom Leykis’ radio show every day. I began to do the same. It exposed a whole other side of women my blinders prevented me from seeing. I don’t need to thank Tom for his show, I’m sure he was paid well. Blow Me Up Tom made a difference in my life.

Once, a female caller announced on his show she had gotten drunk when out with the girls and fucked some black guy in a car in the parking lot of a club. She was Hispanic, and so was her husband. She was about to give birth and she suspected the baby was conceived that night. Tom implored her to tell him, and to spare the man the indignity of having his relatives see his shame in the hospital as a little black baby arrived instead of his own.

She refused, and Tom immediately asked his listeners to help. “She said he works at a casino in the Pacific North-West, if you know a guy in the gambling business expecting a baby, LET HIM KNOW IT MAY NOT BE HIS.”

As shocking as this was, I knew it was reality. I know women cheat, just as I know men cheat in the right circumstances. People do horrible and underhanded things to each other sometimes. I am not naïve. I lived as a gangster. I know what power imbalances, intimidation, cruelty and retribution are all about.

That period of my life launched me into a search for greater truths about men and women. My mind was opened by Tom and his alternate views. I got interested in sex differences, taking an about turn intellectually at the height of social constructionism influence, and eventually turned my back on feminism.

The “women are wonderful effect” was coined in 1994 by sociological researchers Alice Eagly and Antonio Mladinic, who found that both men and women tend to assign more positive traits to women, with women showing a far greater propensity to do it than do men. The sisterhood is real, we should be aware of this.

I don’t listen to Tom anymore, and never did again since those days. And, while I drop in on Rollo and his cohorts on YouTube every once in a while, I don’t listen or read them as a matter of course either. The truth is I have found my own balance of truths between the genders and it works for me. It also works for the men I am privileged to share my message with.

I have a new family with two wonderful kids and a gal I’ve been with for 13 years. She won’t marry me: says if we never get married, we’ll never get divorced. I can’t argue with her, and it’s a moot point because I know what makes her tick. I know what my role is and I take to it eyes open and full enthusiasm.

If I had to criticize the Red Pill movement or Tom Leykis’s approach, I’d say it is far too negative of women in general. Some of it is deserved and all based on inklings of truth (that’s the way things like this go, there’s always some truth to it), it’s just that listening to too much of it fails to impart balance, for women have some pretty darn good aspects to them too (as do men). I heard Rollo say he can’t advise for marriage now because of the disadvantages it represents. Fair enough, but a little sad too.

The disconnect for me is complaining about The American Psychological Association’s recent guidelines, or the subject of rape culture, or discussions around “toxic masculinity,” or the Gillette commercial, but yet, allowing for a full dive into Red Pill philosophy. Doesn’t anyone else see the problem with that?

Men sometimes do terrible things to women, and women sometimes do terrible things to men. Men tend to compete overtly, while women tend to maneuver covertly. Men smash you in the face, women get everyone around you turned against you so that eventually someone smashes you in the face.

Simplistic? Sure. Of course, it is. It’s always an oversimplification. The problem with generalities is they all fail on the backs of exceptions. Talk anyways, tease out the possibilities and potentials just the same.

The reasons I’m no longer a feminist, aligned with those well-intentioned but misguided idealists, is that I’ve lived out the course of its resurgence these past fifty years. I did that as a man who has depended on good women as allies, coming as I do from a family where I had a mother and four good sisters (as well as four brothers, and a troubled father). Feminism is a weak agenda, offering as it does a one-sided dissection of problems but little in the way of realistic solutions or an accounting of the existing healthy symbiosis of masculine and feminine energies.

It’s my view equality of opportunity is fine to an extent, but that equality in general between the sexes is a wrong-headed metric because we are generally too different to be equal. I also think a full accounting of strengths and weaknesses from each side of gender would go a long way to reconciling each with the other.

If men and women have always banded together to meet the challenges of time, the environment and each other’s natures as they go about creating a life, don’t you think it’s worth knowing the plus and minus factors of each?

To use a sports analogy, wouldn’t you want to know who can run with the ball? Who can catch the ball with two defenders on them? Who can kick a field goal? Who is better left on the line to block and tackle? Who possesses the skill to orchestrate play under duress? Or who can pinch-hit or run in what situations? Who is a starter and who can come off the bench and bat clean up? I ask that we have those discussions because that’s what men and women do when they are left to their own devices and find ways to live and work and raise kids and love each other.

It’s not enough to throw dirt at an entire gender and then complain your dates don’t go as planned. Or, that your life isn’t unfolding as you desire with your partner.  I think that’s weak-ass bullshit and I’ll tell you why. We need compassion for each other and the greater compassion we have for others the greater compassion we have for ourselves.

All of us have an inner self, that Divine Child within us we’ve perhaps stuffed over the years as we sought to conform with the adults around us, to their rules and expectations. How can we ever hear our own essential voice if we don’t listen for the voices of others? Our eyes see out, and the easiest way to train yourself to hear the good in you is to attune yourself to the good in others. Not blindly, not as a nice guy sacrificing your needs for others while holding secret anger, but compassionately, with a sense of being part of humanity’s meaningful whole.

Find it early, find it late, we must all find love.

Where’s the love in finding the extreme faults in an entire gender? Where is the love in calling women bitches and sluts and cunts as a matter of course? Where is the love in finding fault with half the world’s population, and enacting rules to safeguard yourself from their worst aspects without an appreciation for the incredible good in their capacity to love and share a life?

From what I can tell, Red Pill is a lot like feminism in that it focuses almost exclusively on delineating the excesses of women’s pragmatic side and encourages a defensive and almost paranoid stance in men who are still interested in women.

If you need a good term to reference the young gals, call them wenches. It means young lady in old English my father told me. It raising eyebrows but no one gets mad at you.

Fact is, most men will marry and most of them will have children. Isn’t it better to help men and women negotiate that dynamic with an appreciation for each other’s needs and desires without falling into weakness?

Should a man face that his woman is not his mother? Yes! And, that to expect unconditional love from his partner is a leftover trait from his family of origin? Yes, he should.

Should he realize his wish for unconditional love is projected upon his partner and is a burden she likely can never, ever meet? You’re damn straight he should do all these things… or remain a boy forever.

A man should also realize his gal’s archetype for love is her father, or the masculine energy around her, and that this means she requires a powerful man in her life.

It also means she knows the difference between a man and a boy.

Women are pragmatic souls, bent on survival. The female is far more precious in nature, you have only to look a window at bird feeder. Most of the colourful birds are males, while the females are camouflaged and discreet. If a Sparrow Hawk arrives on the scene, it’s the male Grosbeak or Cardinal who dies first.

It’s not so different in humans, where she carries the eggs which permit life. Her best fertility lasts two decades whereas yours is triple that or more.

She is attracted to a man for his power. Hypergamy is a negative term and saddles a man in self-pity and an idealized over-estimation of his worth.

You are attracted to looks, that certain hip to waist ratio, and you stay for loyalty. A man with a loyal woman by his side has the wind at his back, but you better God-damned well stay out in front of her to feel it.

That’s not blue pill for fuck’s sake, it’s how nature put us together to survive. Men lead, women command. Men build cultures, women stress-test them.

Rather than focusing on the divisions inherent in feminism on one side, and Red Pill, MGTOW and Incels on the men’s side, my advice is to focus on the essential truths: Power and Loyalty.

Women can’t stand weak men. Men can’t stand disloyal women. It’s that simple. Hence, women do well with a powerful man; men do well with a loyal woman.

How can you make yourself powerful to earn her loyalty? How can she show you more loyalty, so you’ll want to be her powerful man? This where all the fun is.

Red Pill has been around for a dozen years. Feminism for a hundred. Humans are smart at coming up with answers even when we don’t fully understand something. It’s our rational brain, living emotionally and then explaining things after the fact.

What we need to do is see the much bigger picture. Men and women were made to live and work together to create life. Don’t let all the talk detract from this essential truth about our existence together.

Stay powerful, never give up

Christopher K Wallace
©June, 2019, all rights reserved

Advisor to Men
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MYTH-MAKERS


MYTH MAKERS

How does one find their purpose? I think in many cases it’s an accidental calling, a serendipitous landing somewhere in what my old psych teacher used to call “finding your place in the sun.” Some folks seem to know early on what they were destined for, others stumble upon it. And, regrettably, some never find it at all.

But what if this was your duty? Would it make a difference?

Could you see it as part of your pact with the universe? What if you were to live according to Horace Mann’s entreaty: “Be ashamed to die until you have won some victory for mankind?” Would that help finding your purpose with reverence and resolve? No pressure.

Here are three approaches which helped me as I explored what to do with my life, and how to best use the time I have left. Though, while mindful of purpose, I think we always leave room for change, for a sudden veering from one direction to another as life summons our attention. What fun.

DREAM JOURNAL
The mythologist Joseph Campbell tells the story of Carl Jung having a crisis of meaning at a point early in his career, and deciding finding his personal myth was critically important.

Jung remembered as a child he like to build little play cities out of stones. So now, as an adult, he realized he could play with big stones. He purchased a property on the shores of a lake across from Zurich. There, he built a place at Ascona. A visiting Campbell said it was a house built out of the ground, an organic edifice, reflecting Jung’s local roots.

Jung recorded his dreams for inspiration, keeping a dream journal. This gave him ideas and even more meaning in the way he built his place and lived his life. Campbell’s advice is to ignore dreams about your daily life and look for big themes to emerge, paying special attention to doorways, entrances and pathways.

Remembering dreams takes practice, but not much. Just telling yourself before you sleep that you will recall and write down your dreams when you wake up works well enough. I cursed just how effective this is when I had PTSD dreams for a decade after leaving the street. I’ve since settled down and it’s a habit I’ve taken up again.

If you have a partner, sharing your dreams upon awakening is a delightful way to discharge disturbing images that linger, but also to share erotic shadow sides to each other. Show me a couple who talk openly about their dreams and I’ll show you two people who have a good sex life.

 

BOOK OF ME
In my opinion, if the question of finding your bliss has eluded you thus far, it’s worth assembling a book of self-evaluations. At least you’ll be doing something in the meantime.

None of these is likely to reveal your path, but what it does is answer long-held questions about how you operate in the world. It may also trigger helpful memories and long-dormant preferences. It’s an introspective set of exercises which trains you to listen to your inner self. Our eyes see out and life’s demands often leave little room for this kind of examination.

Start by doing the Gallup Strengthfinders test to rank your talents. Nothing reveals more about your capabilities than an objective scale like this one. Not only can it tell you what you might be good at, more importantly, it might explain why you don’t show much interest in other things. It’s both a confirm and encourage exercise, and an eliminator.

Take the Big 5 Personality test. It’s been soundly tested and is probably one of the most replicable psychometric tests.

While you’re at it, take one of the Locus of Control tests available online.

If you have the time, you could delve into your history by doing Peterson’s Self-Authoring Suite to record something of your past, present and future. The Peterson Suites have good science: students who complete them are more successful at school.

Do a Values Elicitation and rank your current top values 1 to 10. Most coaches do them as part of their practice. A shorter version is the Hartman Value Profile. Besides that, values conflicts are often at the root of much of our indecision, so having a clear picture of what matters to you helps.

Do Stephen Reiss’s Desire Profile: you can get a PDF version online which includes the full scale. This desire profile is a much more reliable measure than assessing needs. It’s about desire, thus passions.

You can skip the Briggs-Meyer’s test. Based on Jungian archetypes, just realize it doesn’t replicate well. Your letters may change as your life does so I don’t bother with this one despite its popularity.

Some people tell me the DISC profile helped them see themselves more clearly. Taking an aptitude test is sometimes worthwhile. Just don’t try to game the obvious questions. I skip IQ tests. Beyond just above average, discipline is a greater predictor of success anyway. We all know plenty of intelligent losers and this is about finding bliss, not who is smartest.

If you have access to family history, put up your genealogy on Ancestry to see who came before you. Examine your medical records and those of your forebears if possible. Where are you from? What kind of work did those who came before you do? Even if you only know one of your parents, sometimes this information helps to bolster identify. Ideas about life and living can come from the oddest places.

NEW EXPERIENCE
Camping trips, meditative retreats and spiritual practices can help find purpose for the way in which they allow us to slow down, listen and observe our inner selves. Long walks engage both hemispheres of the brain as you alternate right and left sides of the body. Twenty minutes per day in nature can do the spirit wonders, thereby freeing up the mind.

Travel can shake a person’s world up. How often does one hear of someone returning from somewhere with a grand plan of some sort hatched while far away? You can see the light on their faces and the fire in their eyes as they report their new-found direction.

Geographical changes have this effect because travel puts us into a heightened state of awareness and readiness while exposing us to new environments and people. Environments matter.

It is the epigenetically derived methyl groups of your ancestors influencing your present genetics, coupled with the databank of your emotional states since birth, contrasted against the collective unconscious (common instincts and archetypes present in any species) which comprises your soul in my take. It’s worth looking at it all to discover more about you.

Closer to home, what if you decided to say yes instead of no when you were invited along somewhere? Say no too often and soon, the invitations stop coming. If that’s you, what can you do to get out into the world and try something different? You may find your purpose with alone time or while your memories are triggered by others. Leave no stone unturned, I say.

If you are a drinker or a cannabis addict, you live in a partial state of fear as your homeostasis is continually off-kilter. This costs you because of the sensory input/confidence continuum. Instead, you may like to replace regular substance use with dance lessons, a martial art, or by joining your local Toastmasters to learn public speaking. Confidence is the stuff which takes thoughts and turns them into actions. How important is that then?

The point is by doing new things, the old creaky mind we’ve come to rely upon, with its predictable thoughts and feelings and behaviours, can always use a remodel. “Change or die,” someone once said. How’s that for motivation? Here’s a secret: feelings are based on experiences; therefore, the only way to create new feelings is to experience new things.

AWE AND MYSTERY
Campbell observed Maslow’s hierarchy gave five values: survival, security, personal relationships, prestige and self-development. These seemed strange to him until he realized these are the exact values the mythologically inspired person does not live for.

“Mythology begins where madness starts,” he says, “Maslow’s five values are the values for which people live when they have nothing to live for.”

So often what is required to find a pathway to your bliss is an awakening of awe. That’s when something becomes greater than you, reminding of your smallness. It’s what makes and keeps us humble. You are hoping to be seized and pulled along by something, the same way you may remember feeling obsessed with play as a child.

Often I like to talk about flow states. That’s when we engage our strengths, passions and supreme concentration in an endeavor of increasing complexity. It’s the only thing I know which seems to stop time while we do it. It’s also when we feel most powerful as human beings.

What we are talking about here is quest which has as its heart a mystery. There will be something which entrains your mind and being, inexplicably occupying your thoughts and feelings. What it does is it captures you, and it’s this awakening of awareness and transcendence of needs which points your way forward.

THREE PARTS OF YOU
For a moment, clear your mind of everything. Give yourself a blank slate.

If a husband and father, these are normal parts of a man’s life. Your adaptability is great enough to handle that role anywhere under any circumstances excepting perhaps war. They are a consideration but less a determining factor.

Now, think of your being in three parts.

First is your true self, represented by Jungians as The Divine Child within you. It reflects all your potentials and possibilities, the very gifts you were born with and which were still intact for a while as a child. This is the repressed part of you usually compromised for the sake of conformity.

Then, secondly, your ego, that part of you with the shoulds and musts you have accumulated from a lifetime of listening to others. It’s all those rules you live by, passed along to you from your teachers and parents, friends and culture. Morality is ego-based.

Lastly, your personae, the masks you wear as student, husband, worker, academic, friend, etc. Each of these will be different from the other, some markedly so, their contrasts a clue to their worth as truths.

Now, imagine 20 years, or even 30 years have gone by. Looking back, which of those three would you want to make sure has been served?

Which of those three is your priority? Which one needs honouring? Which one answers the calling when the universe decided, in its infinite wisdom, to choose you for life? Let me explain:

There was something like 40 to 200 million sperm in the ejaculate from which you came, yet, it was you who got to the egg. You could have been a girl or had all kinds of challenges beyond your own.

But no. The same force behind a trillion stars in the Andromeda Galaxy chose you. A trillion stars, it’s worth repeating. And, from that fantastic force underlying everything known and unknown, it was upon you that life was bestowed. How could this be? How could it be it was you who was chosen?

The universe doesn’t make mistakes. So, how could it not be you?

The question is: what will you do with your prize? What will you do with this life you were awarded by the infinite forces which created the stars?

What shall be your myth?

Stay powerful, never give up,

Chris Wallace
© May, 2019 all rights reserved
Advisor to Men

“A man who can harness his power in service of himself and those around him finds meaning. This is what sets him free.” CKWALLACE, advisor to men

DISTANCE = SEX

DISTANCE = SEX

Young fella in a group is getting married in the spring. Posts his intentions and asks for advice. I give him the quick version to which he and others respond gratefully. I’m struck by how important these things are to couples, to men, to children.

I told him this:

“She’s marrying you for your power and will then spend the next twenty years wondering if she chose correctly. Don’t disappoint her, stay powerful. Women can’t abide weak men, not easily.

Oh, and she’s not your mother. Don’t expect unconditional love. If you are powerful and kind, chances are she’ll be loyal—sexually and in spirit.

If not, if she senses you are weak, expect her to rub salt in the wounds of your weakness and/or, hold you in silent contempt.

She’ll stop fucking you then too. Women are pragmatic souls. Men are the poets and romantics.

Good luck. Let me know if you need help.”

But what else could I have told him? To be sure: plenty.

Because, if he’s like most men, he will knock that woman up and become a father. We often think women become our partners because of some endearing quality of ours which makes us irresistible. She dovetails with my life because she can’t live without me. Ahem. No. Not quite.

Perhaps it is more she is interested in a man as a partner, because two people fighting for existence against the chaos of life is better than one? True.

And, just as a man marries what he can tolerate, so does a woman but with key differences. He tolerates her and expects her to stay more or less the same, especially sexually. She, on the other hand, see his potential, her vision for the future more acute in same-aged couples.

At sixteen, most gals know already what kind of man they want as a husband, what kind of house they’d like to live in, and how many children they would like to have. That last one is key. Guys, not much vision at all at sixteen.

Women mostly marry to have children. That has not changed, though there are plenty of exceptions. I know couples who decided not to have children and live a rewarding life of fulfillment derived otherwise though activities, community, work and friends.

But most of us will become fathers. I could write a book about facets men should consider and one day I will. But for a young guy getting married now, the beginning of this post is the short version.

And sex. That’s the subject most guys can’t see clearly. They go from getting it regularly at the start of a marriage to much less over time.

We are told this is normal. I think that’s bullshit. I think it’s just that we don’t understand our women as well as we could.

Women are sexual human beings first. Not mothers. Not friends. Not workers. Not wives. And, forgive me if I mention: not firstly, “soulmates,” though in time they can become indispensable intimates. There’s danger in that too.

It was her body, her sexual power, her surrender to you which gained your devotion. Why should that change?

Truth is, sexual intimacy wanes with better communication. It is distance which creates want.

The more familiar you and your missus are with each other, the more comfortable, the less sex.

Comfort kills lust. That’s the facts.

It does so because there is no danger to it. There’s little unknown. When we first start sleeping with someone, we never really know what their reaction is to seeing us naked, to exploring each other’s bodies, to living out our sexual sides. There is this huge risk in trust disrobing in front of someone.

You take that away and you may only have obligation, not the stuff of exciting sexual distance. This is why I seize upon power in a relationship, not as a way to manipulate or dominate. No. Not at all.

It’s just that women need a man’s power to live out the part of her which needs to surrender to an entity greater than herself. It grounds her by permitting loss of control in her otherwise and usually conscientious existence.

The rest of her life she can have her shit together. But with her man, she must lose it. For, it’s only by providing an outlet for her darker side that she can flourish as the goodly wife.

Men would do well to remember this. We all have a shadow side we need to integrate. Sexual intimacy with a partner can be thought of an integration of each other’s shadow lives. At least, temporarily.

It’s an acceptance of shame and abandonment and control and agency and many more, all in the name of intimacy.

Distance is what creates polarity in a couple. Not a life of no secrets and shared emotions. As her man, you must remain dangerous lest she lose faith in your ability to protect her, but also to thrill her.

You put lust first, love will take care of itself.

Stay powerful, never give up.
Wally

© CKWallace, 2019, all rights reserved

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FOR MEN: ON MEN AND WOMEN

ON MEN AND WOMEN

Something to think about is this: women choose men for power (in whatever form that might be) and they come by it honestly. (I ignore red-pill hypergamy as whining).

It’s how nature made them, and for good reasons. She needs a powerful man who can eschew his tribe or peer group and come start a new one with her. Mostly, she does the choosing. Right or wrong, that’s how it is.

Men, on the other hand, are attracted to women for looks (+ a certain hip to waist ratio) and stay with them for loyalty. LOYALTY

POWER+LOOKS/LOYALTY

Her looks fade but this matters little to a man with a loyal woman. Because in time, she becomes his standard. When he thinks woman, it is she he sees in his mind’s eye. Naked to him means her.

A man with a loyal woman by his side has the wind at his back… even, the wind beneath his wings. To feel her as the wind at his back he best stay out in front of her.

But, a man cannot abide disloyalty, among his friends, family and those he works with. To tolerate disloyalty in his own home, in his castle, is an attempt to overthrow the King.

This happens usually because the King is weak. If allowed to continue, his hold on his realm is in doubt. He will be deposed eventually, for the kingdom requires a powerful leader who can bring order, fertility and blessings to the land and its people.

Men are adaptable. we can learn to love just about anyone. If happiness is a decision, for the most part then, so is love.

ADVANTAGE MALE

What a man loses in the mating game in his early years, he gains back ten-fold as he ages. TEN-FOLD.

She has maybe, MAYBE, 20 good years of fertility, also her best years for attracting a mate. Between the ages of 15 and 35 or so. That’s generally it.

Men often just begin to amass personal power and get started by the time they are 35. COME ON.

I know a man who is over 60, still does 75 push-ups, with a 7 year old daughter and a 5 year old boy. NO WOMAN CAN DO THAT.

It’s not the same. Women are far more precious. BY FAR.

And, they should be acknowledged for this. Help them.

This light shining briefly in a woman’s life makes the pressure on her ENORMOUS. For most women, she has an EXISTENTIAL PACT with the universe: to choose the right partner.

Get this: she thinks with both hemispheres; and runs information through her emotional centers first. She has greater empathy (and will abuse it if pushed).

— She often has greater verbal ability (why she can talk circles around you) and can read emotions on a man’s face more readily (pay a man to read emotions on people’s faces he can do as well but she is “always on”).

— Her enteric intuitions are finely honed, likely because she has a uterus and menstruates. She knows people and sees and feels things you cannot even fathom. It can be spooky (in a wonderful way).

She is pragmatic and resolved. She doesn’t have time to fuck around. Though, she will and usually invests in a promising mate, her gamble is way higher than yours.

You can start over, it’s rare she can.

COMPLIMENTARY

She can spot her man’s weakness a mile away. From way OVER THERE! When she does, she might tell you. I call that kind of gal a UNICORN.

Don’t expect to be so lucky.

More likely, she will RUB SALT in the wounds of your weakness… or hold you in silent contempt. Remember, abuse of empathy is her birthright. Either way, she stops fucking you. She has to… because you are failing her.

Often/sometimes, her powers lead her to overthink. The anima (feminine energy) holds her in its grip. That’s where you step in and bring her back from the brink of her very own insanity with your animus (masculine energy). That’s your job.

So, you must step up and lead your partner. It’s the yin and yang of men and women. She is wonderful chaos, you are powerful order. Women command: Men lead. This is nature’s magnetism. Lead or be bossed.

You must be her powerful man, so she may rely on you to temper her gifts just as you rely on her for her depth. If you are the sun, the stars, the fire and the light, she is the deep of space, the vastness of the oceans, the power of the wind.

Her primary male influence is her father, often the only person she knows who could stand up to her all-powerful mother. Your archetype of influence is your mom, who enticed you with promises of unconditional love.

That’s why more men are romantics. While you can become a powerful man to match and go beyond her father’s male energy, she can never love you unconditionally the way you might have wished your mother would.

That’s an unrealistic expectation all men must abandon. In this case, the boy must die so the man can live.

Like the fable Iron John, the boy’s quest is to leave his mother’s castle and find his own way in the world. The key to his freedom lies under her pillow. He must steal it and make his escape, in the middle of the night if needed.

If you have a woman, be her powerful man. Don’t let that woman down; don’t put her in that position; don’t make her question herself under the chaos of her overthinking. That would be cruel.

Most of all, make yourselves powerful gentleman. Women will come and find you. It’s nature’s way.

Stay powerful, never give up,

©Christopher K Wallace
Advisor to Men

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MORNING ROUTINE


I never gave much thought to mornings the first half of my life, the demands of life dictated my start to the day. If I had to get to work, I tended to leave just enough time to make it, or even be a few minutes late. If I had to be somewhere to do something for my business, then that’s what determined how and even why I got up. For many years, I got up because others depended on me, where others could not do their work until I showed up. That’s a pretty good motivator: 20 people waiting for you.

Over time, I’ve thought to impose some order on this part of how I live. This is more true now that I am no longer and afternoon and evening worker as I was for most of my adult life, and often have to get up in the mornings to go out to appointments.

My children often wake me in the morning. Or, missus will have an alarm go off an hour earlier than it was supposed to. This is almost always a leftover from last week sometime when she needed up, but then, forgot to reset her alarm.

We marry what we can tolerate. I remind myself of this at 5 am and go back to sleep.

Whichever way I wake up at other times, its usually not by alarm. In fact, I rarely use one. From decades of calculating my sleep needs, necessary tactics I used to combat insomnia in my early life, I manage sleep with a priority that works for me.

The first thing I do upon waking is grab my woman’s ass. I think touching her lets her know I’m happy to wake up beside her. Touch is the best way to show she’s appreciated. If she’s already out of bed, I stretch, grateful I got to be one of the lucky ones alive after the dark of night. This is the first thought in my head, and over the years I’ve trained myself to say this silently to myself: “I get to get up today.”

Then, I take the pillows and place them on top of our other ones. I straighten the comforter and sheet and voila! the bed is mostly made before I’m even out of it, needing only slight adjustments afterwards as I roll out and stand up.


I have a carpet under my bed which extend around its periphery. This is where I keep my slippers. But first, I flood light into my eyes suddenly when I whip open the curtain next to my side of the bed. While looking outside at whatever scene is there, I recite the same prayer I’ve said for over 30 years:

“This is the day the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it.”

It’s from Psalms, 118:24. My rabbi friend says to source something this way is to offer redemption to the world, something his Talmudic teachers taught him. Lately, when I say this silent prayer, I think of this wider frame and accord myself a little redemption, quietly stealing a little personal forgiveness before moving through my day.  Who doesn’t want redemption? Now it’s psalm 118:24 and I redeem myself.

I hang the curtain so it remains open, do the same to the matching window a few feet to the left, dress in morning clothes (housecoat if jumping in the shower, leisurely stuff if I’m working at home) and head downstairs. I stretch high when I do this because I usually wake up a little sore.

I currently head to the kitchen window and drink two big glasses of cold filtered well-water while looking out at my bird feeder. Banter with the missus and kids ensues, especially now that I have imposed order on their morning. No toys at the table, eggs, toast with peanut butter, fruit and goat milk before they get their gummy vitamins as reward.


As I gaze out the windows above the sink, I like to take a moment to notice nature, to let my eyes take in the expanse of scrub brush and trails out back of my house. And the various chickadees, juncos, jays, cardinals, woodpeckers and other feathered visitors who dive in from the cedars to feed on oiled sunflower seeds. I often think of my mother when I do this. Fleetingly, it sets my spirit a little.

Currently, six red squirrels live above in the cedars beside my utility shed out back. My first summer here I never saw them, though we heard them scold us loudly the odd time, first thinking it was tree frog. We have lots of those, and in spring and summer their chorus will fill the evening with such song you must remain silent, unable to compete. This also sets my spirit as I remember what it’s like here in summer.

The bird-feeders I put up last year drew the squirrels out of their trees. I read recently reds can occupy a tree and set stores in its every nook and cranny, then pass the storehouse of food on to the next generation, often for up to 30 years. They don’t hibernate in winter like the Northern Gray squirrels, a solitary black individual I’ve seen only once or twice scampering in from the edge of the woods. Just this week I saw the black version of the Norther Gray, said to happen in Canada’s cold, hurriedly checking below the feeders unmolested. Sure enough, out of nowhere, a red came dashing at him and the chase was on, the black squirrel making it for the safety of the woods a hundred feet away. Those reds don’t like sharing and keep interlopers at bay.


When I was a boy, my two older brothers were Irish Twins and did everything together. In fact, they are the same age right now for another few days, the 3 and 13th of March being their birthdays. Ma had ten pregnancies in twelve years but lost the one before me. This meant a longer gap separated me from the two of them. I felt it deeply when they went to high school and left me still in primary. I felt cast adrift, abandoned.

Ma gave me a set of binoculars as encouragement. This was a rare treat in our family, to be so honoured with such an adult piece of equipment, and a  guidebook to boot. It was all so… professional. I’ve been fascinated by birds ever since. I’m not dogmatic about it, I don’t have a list of birds I have to see. Not anymore. I tried that and it lessened my enjoyment. If I saw an Evening Grosbeak way back and then forgot about it, finding one again is like finding it for the first time. A list would be a way of reminding me how stupid I was to have forgotten. So, no list,  I just like them. The white throated sparrow song is probably my favourite evening song in summer. Often at dusk one will perch at the very top of a nearby tree and let loose its song. It sets my spirit.

My original binoculars are long gone, but ma gave me her pair a few years before she died at age 86. Now her Bausch and Lomb’s are in the cupboard over the fridge, for me to use anytime. I used them an evening a few days ago when a bright red cardinal and his buff coloured mate were seen picking up leftover seeds off the snow beneath the feeders, right where the chickadees and woodpeckers would have scattered them earlier today.

It’s rare to see a mated pair in the backyard this time of year, and usually only one of the pair makes it to the feeder at a time. I like the way the female and male cooperate for survival, something I think provides lessons for humans. The male is bright red and attracts all the attention. If a Sparrow Hawk attacks, chances are he’ll get it first. The female is buff coloured with red accents, beautiful in her own way, easily camouflaged against the forest. And when she is sitting on the nest, it is he who is out hunting and returning with food, spelling her later in the day so she can come to the feeder alone and take her fill. It’s a model for much of life between the sexes.

Both were there, both on the ground, and as it was dusk, I needed the glasses to see their colour because everything looks black and white at twilight. Early March and here before me a mated pair of colourful cardinals. These moments set my spirit.

I still have the book ma gave me, though I have no idea how I managed to keep a copy of Peterson’s How to Know the Birds after all these years. My father’s handwriting is still there where he printed my name in full block letters on the inside front cover in pen almost 50 years ago. In this context, watching the morning birds gives me perspective, a sense of time, of lifespan. The book’s edition was out in 1957, the year of my birth.

My missus loves a coffee in the morning. Never a dedicated coffee drinker most of my life, preferring Red Rose tea like ma, at times I would drink coffee for ten years then leave it alone for another ten. Now, my gal has converted me. Studies which show drinking a couple of cups per day is likely to prolong life by a few years encourages me too. I need every edge I can get. I used to have a wonderful filtered coffee and carafe setup, now we percolate.

I get the beans from Ottawa Roasters, a middle eastern store down on Kilborn Ave, not far off Bank Street. It’s right behind St. Thomas D’Aquin, the French Roman Catholic church I used to attend and where I also served as an altar boy. It’s a little weird to see places like that all these years later, after I’d lived elsewhere until just under three years ago. I moved back to be near my father after ma passed away.

Flashes of remembrances hit me each time I pick up coffee at Roasters: walking through that parking lot; helping with the bottle drive for charity and filling that little garage behind the church with our take; the fence between the church and adjacent school now gone, but remembering attending my first day of school there and being dropped off just over there, in that spot, to face the kids in the yard.

It’s funny how those memories are there though we never think of them. In 1986, I began attending college in Cornwall and enrolled my son in daycare. That first day, I dropped him off and watched as he tentatively approached the yard where the other kids were playing, and it brought back a flood of memories that grabbed me by the throat. Suddenly, I was six and walking into L’Ecole Primaire St Thomas D’Aquin, an English kid at a French school, alone.

You can get Brazilian or Columbian dark in whole beans for 9 bucks a pound at Roasters. And Marie, the server with decades behind her counter, smiles easily. They roast everything, nuts too. I dare you to find better just slightly salted roasted cashews anywhere. Visiting places like this in my old neighbourhood remind me I am from somewhere. That’s an important thing to me. It’s another thing which sets my spirit.

With my coffee in hand, a dash of goat milk to neutralize its bitterness, I head into my office. There, another ritual ensues. You see, I read or recite the poem Invictus every morning. In fact, I recently added the Goal Tracker app on my phone to see how long a streak I can go on. This morning routine is one of them and I check it off once I’m done.

I tried to recite Invictus while doing deep knee bends or walking like a bear on all fours across my carpet so that I may stretch and absorb its tenactiy into my very bones. Mostly I just read it and then do something physical. I want to be sure my will and my body are in sync. I often think of the context in which Henley wrote his famous work: contemplating having his leg cut off, when he’d already lost one earlier. Fucker was a steely-eyed embodiment of masculinity in the situation and his words were his affirmation, a determination to live. It is men’s stuff this poetry, and it sets my spirit.

Now, I take my phone and review my goals. I used to carry all of these in a DayTimer binder but the digital world is messing with my system. I’m in a state of flux, ready to adopt or abandon a tactic at a moment’s notice.

I’m not the kind of guy who can just leave my life to chance and hope things work out. Distractibility is the curse of my curousity. I must schedule my time and my activities. If I don’t, I can be led astray. I’m also not perfect at it.

What I look for each day are two things: Resistance and Zone.

If I can identify my resistance and assess its merit in a situation, usually I find I can overcome it on the spot. Sometimes, I experience reluctance for good reason, of course, stepping out into traffic is not the goal of suppressing resistance. But, feeling resistance signals me to examine and assess, learning to become aware of bodily cues and subsequent thoughts which may be preventing me from living my best.  By focusing on this one narrow aspect of my daily existence, I experience more regular wins. And each time I win here, my spirit strengthens and makes me just that much more powerful going forward.

Men tend to build systems.  Mine helps me get here, to this place: when I enjoy a confluence of my passions and strengths–what I like to do with what I tend to be good at–and add in an intense focus while engaging in something of increasing complexity, I get so absorbed I feel alive at a level I don’t get anywhere else. This is when I experience my zone, and the more I get into it, the more I want.

I have not been able to narrow my thinking to the extent I can live in a zone all day long. I’m much too distracted for that. However, I do hit it regularly. In those moments, I’m on point, and I feel strongest. Not power in the sense of power over anyone else. No. It’s a self-mastery power, like I’m really steering the ship. It’s the purest form of agency I know.

At these moments, time flies by imperceptibly, like I can stop time. At other times, an hour feels like minutes, or an afternoon feel like my entire life because I’m so engrossed in whatever is before me. Stopping time like this is what sets my spirit.

I’m not always successful but this is what I strive for.

I believe the ancestral epigenetic effects on my methyl groups influencing my DNA combined with my databank of emotional states recorded in my body since I came into existence are what constitute my soul.  It is this which I attempt to nourish each day. It is to these greater forces I submit my will and drive my actions.

It begins the moment I wake up thankful for another chance at life. I wonder if you could take a few minutes to think about your morning routine? What could you do which might enhance the start to your day?

My morning routine sets my attitude for the hours ahead. I highly recommend you find some kind of routine which will welcome you into your day with a consistent grounding of spirit.

Stay powerful: never give up

Christopher K Wallace
© 2019, all rights reserved

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