What Do You Do When Your Father Lets You Down?

You love him anyway. Or at least honor him from an arm’s length anyway. Maybe you eventually start to teach him what it means to be a man, a husband, a father, a patriarch.

You forgive him, do your best to let those painful betrayals and disappointments float away, and show him how it’s done right.

7 Tips to Shut Down That Negative Inner Voice

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A negative inner voice can prevent you from reaching your potential. It can talk you out of starting a business or talking to an attractive woman or otherwise just make you miserable. Here are 7 things you can do to tame that negative self-talk:

  1. Learn to meditate. Meditation is a great way to pause and remind yourself that the nasty voice in your head is not helpful and not telling the truth.
  2. Build a spiritual practice. This is crucial for EVERY HUMAN. So many men are resistant to religion preferring to be ruled by “reason and logic.” This is total nonsense, of course. A spiritual practice grounded in gratitude IS the foundation to a healthy life.
  3. Forgive yourself. We all screw up. Some of us quite badly. But no one is beyond redemption. All of us, even Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, is doing the best we can with the information we have.
  4. Tell that voice, “Go f*ck yourself. Not helpful.” Bill Burr has a great rant about depression. In short, he argues that depression is something you have to keep at bay with anger.
  5. Try to identify it or the source of it. Give it a name. Sometimes it’s a parent. Or a mean authority figure. Try to figure out whose behavior it is modeling. This may help you realize how mean and nasty you are to yourself at times.
  6. Think about the advice you might offer a friend in your shoes. Write it down and read it back to yourself. Would you berate and abuse that friend and tell him what a worthless person he is? No!
  7. Distract yourself with music or a podcast or another mood changer. Sometimes you need to shake things up and change your mood. Music, a podcast, or an audiobook can all help to focus your attention away from that hateful voice.

The Dangers of Indiscipline

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We live at by far the greatest time in human history. Those of us in the advanced world can listen to ANY SONG we want to at anytime. The same with most books and many movies. A city-dweller can order food, alcohol, cannabis, sex, candy, just about anything you can think of at pretty much any time of day. This is a tremendous danger to people who lack discipline.

Thankfully my own indiscipline largely extends to eating junk food, not exercising, and wasting time on Twitter. For many, the indiscipline starts with how you look at the world and what you expect to come from it. It’s better to expect nothing and seek to create that which you desire. 

In this era of instant gratification, a lack of discipline can ruin your life. Whether it is poor habits of self-care or not adequately maintaining order around you. Indiscipline makes every problem worse.

Last Night (4/20/19) I Became a Catholic

After 40 years of searching for meaning everywhere and anywhere else, I finally found it. It was right there alongside me the whole time in the form of my many family and friends who have modeled Catholicism so beautifully. Thank you and God bless you all. Happy Easter!

To Be a Man…

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Is to be naturally conservative. It’s to believe that you are in control of your destiny. It is to believe that, despite whatever has happened to you in the past, you have the capacity to change your future for the better. Or worse. It’s up to you.

The concept is embodied in the notion of ‘rugged individualism’ that remains an influential force in American culture. It’s why folks are against gun control on principle, even if maybe it would save a few thousand lives annually, give or take. And it’s not unreasonable.

When you see the left’s propensity for rules, rules, rules and more rules, along with enforcing punishment of thoughtcrimes, it becomes clear that this pleasant exercise as a democratic republic could go away fairly easily. There was a time when men could be on the left, I suppose, but in the 21st century a man can no longer afford to be a Democrat.

The Grass Is Not Always Greener

The weather in Los Angeles may be a lot nicer than in Cleveland, but LeBron James is cleaning out his locker right now. Which reminds me of one of the most important lessons in life- the grass is not always greener. That dream job, that beautiful woman, that new side project you are contemplating changing everything for, may not work out. And that’s okay.

I’m not saying don’t try and I’m not saying take the easy path. Indeed, in America it is truly okay to fail and start over. But be smart about it. Prepare yourself as much as possible (without killing the dream) and learn everything you can while you’re in a stable situation. This will make it easier. Faith and confidence are crucial, but they will not succeed without preparation.

5 Reasons You Should Get a Dog

My recently-adopted dog, Harper.

Dogs require a lot of work. You have to take them for walks daily, usually 3 times at a minimum (this post is primarily for urban dogs). They’ve got to be fed 1-2 times daily, groomed occasionally, trained if they act out. They can be a huge pain. Make sure you are up for it, but in most cases adding a dog to your life is a win-win for everyone. Below are 5 reasons you should get yourself a dog :

  1. You’ll never experience such unconditional love from anyone else. Your spouse might visit you if you went to prison but you can be sure your dog would.
  2. Humans, especially men, need a safe, comfortable outlet for showing affection for others. It’s not always easy to show affection when you’re a man. We all know this. It doesn’t turn us into incels or serial killers, it’s just more complicated than sobbing at a moment’s notice.
  3. Having a dog adds structure and discipline to your life. Discipline is the key to success in the future. 
  4. It’s the BEST protection for a home. I live in the city in a good, but formerly somewhat crappy neighborhood and I leave my doors unlocked all the time. Even at night.
  5. Connects you with neighbors. It builds community, gives you something to talk about with your neighbors and fellow dog owners, and helps you truly get to know your neighborhood. I remember living in downtown DC in my early 30s and not knowing ANY of my neighbors, until I got a dog. Suddenly everyone became so much friendlier.

There are all kinds of benefits. Go for it!