How To: Rediscover Your Inner Man

14 Nov

By David Castagno

Ok guys, lets face it, in recent decades we as a gender have slowly become castrated by the new social norms of what a man should be.  Society as a whole has slowly over the years been removing the man from manliness.  So gentlemen if you for some reason wake up one morning and find yourself applying more hair gel to your faux-hawk or picking up your favorite Skinny-Vanilla Latte and find yourself questioning the manliness of your actions, here are some tips for rediscovering your inner-man.

Step-1: Grow a Mustache

Nothing screams I’m a man more than a Wyatt Earp mustache or Ernest Hemingway beard.

Advantages of Facial Hair

  • You have something to fiddle with when pondering deep philosophical thoughts, like who is more bad a**, Bruce Lee or Chuck Norris.  If you really are pondering this watch Return of the Dragon, you will have an answer.
  • You create a sense of undeniable manhood.  You take the leap from boy to man with a simple mustache.
  • You exuberate strength like that of an old time strongman.
  • People respect the “Stache.”  It is a universal sign for authority.

Disadvantages of Facial Hair

  • Intimidation factor.  Some people might emit too much manliness and actually scare people.
  • That’s about it.

Step-2: Hit the Gym

There is no better way to release the inner beast than by going to the gym and lifting.  There is nothing as manly as feeling the cold steal between your hands and hoisting the wait above your head.  It is like an electrical charge is sent through your body.  For motivation try watching Pumping Iron, or picking up any Weider magazine publications.

Tips for first time lifters

  • Start with the basics: squats, deadlifts, bench press, pull-ups, and over-head shoulder press.
  • Compound exercises are your friend.  Until there is a muscle to isolate, isolation exercises are pointless.
  • Don’t try to lift to impress.  Who cares what other people think, let them judge, the last thing you want to do is hurt yourself because you were trying to lift heavy.  Ease into it, as long as you are consistent, the strength will come.
  • Don’t socialize.  By no means do I mean not have fun, enjoy the environment and the people, but don’t get distracted from your workout.

Step 3: Enlighten Yourself

How can we really release our inner-man without actually finding it first?  The answer is we can’t.  In order to truly let out the inner beast of man that dwells within us all we must find it.  Brett McKay and his wife Kate are the owners and operators of The Art of Manliness, a website devoted to helping today’s modern man revive the lost art that is manliness.  When asked about rediscovering your inner-man Brett had this to say:

“I would say that the best way to rediscover your inner man is meditation. We’re so distracted in our information age, and it’s easy to lose sight of who you are and what you value. Our minds are constantly buzzing with stimuli meditation allows you to quiet your mind, strip away those layers and rediscover your core values. It lets you rediscover who you really are as a man. I also recommend reading biographies of great men–something about doing that stirs your manliness inside.”

So guys grab some quiet time for yourselves.  Search deep within yourself and evaluate the strength that is you.  If you don’t know where to begin take some advice from Brett and grab a book and find parallels between you and the men you admire.

Manly Biographies

  • Wyatt Earp: The Life Behind the Legend
  • Cinderella Man: James Braddock, Max Baer, and the Greatest Upset in Boxing History
  • American Caesar: Douglas MacArthur 1880 – 1964
  • Steve McQueen: A Biography

 Step 4: Get Outside You Lazy Bum

Gentlemen, in order to find our inner-man we must reintroduce ourselves to our surroundings.  We must venture out of our techno-lair and fall in love with the beauty of the outdoors.  We as humans are species who are born unto the earth and we will be laid to rest in the earth, the least we can do is get to know it before we are six feet under and truly appreciate what we have been given.  Kate McKay had this to say about getting outside:

“I think the best way to rediscover your inner man (or woman!) is spending times outside–camping, hiking, canoeing, etc. Far away from the hustle and bustle of daily life, you get a sense of stillness inside. Your perspective about what is real and actually important returns. Nature gives you a chance for unstructured exploration, and chance to reconnect with your primal, wild side, the side of yourself that can get trampled down by all the rules and gadgets and annoyances of modern life.”

So guys after you pick up your copy of Jack London’s American classic, Call of the Wild, grab a pack, put on your best boots and take hike.  Breath in the fresh air and get some sun, God knows all you who have been cooped up in your video game lairs need some.  For those of you who live in the city and truly have an excuse, muggings aside, can always do some urban exploration.  Abandon structures allow you to get out and explore the unknown while not leaving the confines of your community.  But as always be careful and always have an eye on your surroundings, you don’t want to end up in the middle of a real life Midnight Meat Train.

Step 5:  Take Up a Combat Sport

The Greeks wrestled, the Romans fought as Gladiators and the Thai have consistently been bashing each other’s heads in with elbows, knees and fists for generations.  For centuries man has showed his athleticism and manly prowess through sport, some more violent than others.  From the ancient warriors of yesteryear to the modern day UFC Gladiator nothing can bring out your inner-man like some good old hand to hand combat.

Some Combat Sport Options

  • Boxing:  One of Americas oldest pugilistic games is a great way to let off some steam and get in shape.
    • Notable Boxers: Rocky Marciano, James J. Braddock, Muhammad Ali and Manny Pacquiao.
    • Mixed Martial Arts (MMA):  Today’s version of Gladiatorial games, it combines striking sports like boxing and kickboxing with ground sports like wrestling, Jiu Jitsu and Judo.
    • Jiu Jitsu: A combat sport that is almost entirely comprised of defensive movements.  Jiu Jitsu much like boxing is a chess match.  You cannot just freely go into it, you must think about your move and set up your next move before executing the current move.

Gentlemen I believe Steve McQueen said it best when he said, “When I believe in something, I fight like hell for it.”  So get off your rear ends, lose the faux-hawk and skinny-vanilla lattes, crank up that Johnny Cash and let out the beast inside.  Fight like no other to regain that inner-man that you have lost and remember you are not alone in the fight to rediscover your inner-man.  You may have strayed from the path of manliness but hopefully by following these five easy steps you will be on the right track in no time.

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