So, I’m off to an event Labour Day weekend involving a short out of town trip and hotel stay.
I don’t drink or smoke, or involve myself in any of my old shenanigans, so it’s an opportunity to plan both the final quarter of 2023 and lay down the basics of 2024.
One of the men convinced me to do this a couple of years ago and I’ve adopted it as my own. That’s the advantage of consulting a tribe of men.
Labour Day weekend used to mean the working man’s holiday and end of summer. I make it a solemn time to reassess my life.
I happen to have a birthday in early December so I use that to mark my final edit for next year’s goals. By settling things before the end of year, I can enjoy Christmas knowing future plans are in place.
This is the Quadrant Shield I use to tell the truth about my life.
Physiology is the first quadrant because everything starts with health.
As you know, I’m a devoted sleeper as ALL health is predicated on sleep (pretty sure Matthew Walker says as much in Why We Sleep).
Sleep first, diet and exercise follow
I eat mainly meat and whole plants. Little sugar and even less processed foods. I do some kind of exercise every day.
You may have an address on a street somewhere, but the universal address of your existence is that body of yours. Physiology first.
Prayer is quadrant two for very good reasons.
I’m not necessarily referring to conventional prayer but if that’s what works for you by all means pray to God. I see God as a metaphor for nature and some, meaning I leave room for mystery.
I like Jung’s Synchronicity and seek and marvel at the interconnectedness of all things.
More than this, someone pointed out that including some kind of higher power or expansion of the self while following your goals has a two-fold benefit.
It means you are not alone and because you have begun a dialogue with your spirit, the greater calling of your mission prevails.
Your masculine destiny becomes sacred.
To these ends, I use optimism training end of each day. I ask what good things happened that day, why they are important, and how to get more?
I do an AAR—an after-action review. What was supposed to happen today, what did happen, what did I learn?
I practice short (one to three minute) mindfulness exercises and body resets on a schedule throughout my day.
I have a whole ritual to follow each morning and start my day with gratitude by remembering that on average 180,000 souls died yesterday.
If I can open my eyes, I’m not one of them.
Above all I do my best to live up to my values. I have taken the time to discover why they are important to me.
People is my next quadrant.
First, I want to first ensure I have a good connection with myself.
That includes knowing the truth of Yes and No.
Reciprocity underpins our interdependence and men and women have always banded together to take advantage of each other’s strengths and to shore up each other’s weaknesses.
Success requires cooperation. Every successful person has help in the background making it happen.
Most of our happiness also comes from a sense of harmony with others. We are relational animals: Team Human.
Production is my final quadrant.
These are the fruits of my labour, the results of following my masculine destiny. It matters less how I do it and in an abundant world such as ours, the possibilities for success are endless.
Metaphorically, it is in a man’s nature to hunt (or its equivalent).
So, if you and I head into a forest and slay a beast for meat, it is unlikely that we will be able to consume it all.
If you dealt the fatal blow to the animal with your bow or spear, perhaps we decide that you should get the organ meats too… after first thanking the Gods for our good fortune.
We divide the rest which we cut and carry out.
Returning to the cave or village, we share our bounty with others of our tribe. The caregivers among us make sure everyone eats.
Nature has made it so that men produce more than they consume.
It is only by first asking myself what are the absolute truths of my life in each of these four quadrants that I can make plans to improve.
For without being true to myself I cannot trust myself.
As with all relationships, without trust, you have nothing.
true and free…
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