I’ve tried to be a man in so many different ways throughout my life. I’ve been the adventurer, the body-builder, the new age guy, the successful one, the healer, the artist, the guy next door and, of course, the bad boy. However, none of these really hit the mark for me. None of them fulfilled what I knew was truly possible to be as a man.
So what was missing?
The way I see it, vulnerability was lacking, and is the forgotten key to manhood. Men are expected to have a preference for logic over emotion, and to be stoic rather than sensitive. You’re told that you can be masculine or feminine, powerful or emotional, vulnerable or strong. Why can’t we be all those things?
Recognizing the dominance of the black-and-white thinking of ‘what it means to be a man’ is crucial to understanding why vulnerability has been misidentified as weakness for so long. It’s deeply ingrained in us. While the image of a man hunting with a stiff upper-lip and having zero-emotional-range is outdated, the subtle, trickle-down effects of those stereotypes can still be felt.
Truly, what if vulnerability is the new sexy? Having the confidence to bare your vulnerability and be all of you offers more to a prospective partner and to oneself than mere muscles and brawn.
If you choose to be vulnerable, you choose to be all of you.
It’s only when we choose to embrace vulnerability that we actually step out of fear. The connections we forge with others are deeper and last longer. Vulnerability is attractive, sexy, and an essential part of your masculinity. When we have the courage to let our barriers down, we do it because — at last — we have recognized that nothing is more powerful than we are. There’s a kind of invincibility about that. We choose to be seen — the whole of us: our flaws, doubts, and fears. We put them all on the table and we know that whatever the outcome, we will still be standing. That doesn’t mean you have to tell anyone about your ‘flaws’ or ‘fears,’ only that you no longer hide them from yourself or use them as a tool for judging yourself. This is where the freedom for ourselves as men begins.
I truly believe that choosing to be vulnerable is one of the most empowering, conscious, controlled and masculine and sexy choices you can make. Explore it. Try it for yourself. Expect life to get lighter and easier. Expect connections to deepen. Expect more intimate moments.
P.S. For the full article in GQ Australia, please visit here.
P.S.S. And for more tools and tips, please check out my book called Return of the Gentleman!
It’s a start of a different possibility that we as men – and as women – can choose if we are willing to give up the stereotypes of men, and go beyond the points of views of this reality. Go here to find out more! 🙂