April 04, 2014
The Power of Vulnerability
Opening yourself up to risk and the possibility of being hurt is an important step in reclaiming your masculine power. You cannot be strong if you’re living with a closed heart. It’s very weak to close up and not allow people into your life just because it puts you in a vulnerable situation. Too many guys get shot down once or twice and then they close up out of fear that it will happen again.
Remember, it requires power and masculinity to live with the risk of rejection and to live with a hurting heart. But masculine strength is all about getting back up after you’ve been hit and to keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done.
Let’s look at an example. Let’s say you’re much shorter than the average guy, and instead of dating girls that are taller than you, you close up and only befriend girls who are shorter than you. You also avoid situations where it’s possible that people could tease you for being short. This means you avoid clubs, particularly those that might have taller guys there and anywhere else you fear you might be compared to taller men.
You end up building your life around avoidance, which is very cowardly and unattractive.
Over time, these behaviours shape your character and personality. They make you into even more of a weak man.
And then let’s say that somehow — by some miracle — you get together with an emotionally strong woman, a woman with a lot of options, and she’s chosen to spend her time with you.
She is going to expect more of you, she’s going to have higher standards than you even have for yourself.
One of those things that she will expect from you is that you know how to deal with pain or discomfort, that you can deal with a difficult situation, even teasing, and be a man, grow through the pain, and come out stronger and better for it.
How does a masculine man deal with these embarrassing or painful situations?
Well, in the face of pain or embarrassment he does not run or hide. He does not complain about it like a little girl – that’s what weak people do.
Be empowered by your pain. That’s a mark of a masculine man.
Feel that pain and act decisively from that place. Do not react to a painful situation by hiding or shutting down. That’s what weak men do, that’s what children do.
Instead of running away you should open yourself up physically, first, because this sense of physical openness will help you open you emotionally – the body and brain are connected. If you can’t get your body into the right position it’s going to be really hard for you to get your mind into the right position, into the right state.
First, notice your bodily reactions. Notice that when someone hurts you, your instinctive reaction is to close up, to become guarded. I’ve seen Asian guys do it all the time.
When someone is bitching at some Asian guy who is not empowered and independent he will slouch, hunch over, cross his arms, and make himself seem smaller.
This is how he feels – small.
This is how we guard ourselves, physically and emotionally.
But it is weak.
Instead, open up. Open up your posture. Breathe deeply, straighten your posture, if you are sitting then sit straight up. If you are standing, then stand straight up, throw your shoulders back, open up your chest, and breath deeply, from the depths of your diaphragm.
Then, look whoever is hurting you, look at him or her directly in the eyes.
Don’t do this in a confrontational way. Instead, just gaze, observe.
Feel the pain. Don’t run from it. By feeling the pain, you will begin the process of training yourself to take the pain and grow from it.
Only then can you begin to take control over whatever is hurting you. You will never gain control over pain if you run from it, deny it, or withdraw from it.
As you look into the eyes of whomever is doing this to you, try to feel how they’re feeling. Try to take in as much as of the situation as you can, all of the subtleties of it, including your own feelings and sensations.
Unless you open yourself to emotion during situations of hurt, you will be unable to respond masterfully. You’ll be unable to respond with your full potential. Instead, open yourself up, feel the pain, stand strong, and respond from a place of rooted strength.
In the next article, I’ll go into the practical steps you need to take to emotionally strengthen your masculine core. Stay tuned!
For the start of the Manifesto, click here.
For Part 1, of this section on Independence, click here.
Connect with David Tian here:
Man Up Show Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/manupcommunity/