Facebook is an amazing tool and sometimes your friends surprise you. I did not write this. One of my best friends did, his name is Kyle Showers. Although we have often times discussed these ideas openly while hanging out in bars, he has never written them all down. What follows is his ideal of what a “Man of Value” is comprised of. I think we should all read these thoughts and contemplate what this message really means. I strive to live my life as a man of value, and I hope that you all do as well. Thanks Kyle for letting me re-post this.
1. A man of value has a clear sense of his own personal code of what is right and what is wrong, and acknowledges that there is often a grey zone. Because he knows his personal code of what is right and wrong, he strives to be right within himself and outward in the world, not out of moral judgement of others, but because he strives for consistency in bettering himself, and the world he lives in.
2. A man of value has clear goals. He chooses his goals based on clear thought and an eternal desire to continually improve himself and the world he lives in. Once he makes his goals clear in his mind, he sets his will to achieve it and lays out a plan on how to accomplish them. He is always willing to modify his plan, but consistently stick to the plan until completion.
3. A man of value understands that everyone is connected, and as such, the joy he feels in his life should be radiated outwars to others. He understands that smiling and making others happy will be reciprocated when he himself needs it most. He also understands that he is not a clown. He has his own life to tend to before others, and knows he cannot bring joy if he is not joyful within himself first.
4. A man of value understands that his emotions are hardwired and animal. He knows they have a purpose, originating from the pre-historic era. Knowing this, he does not allow stone age thinking to make his decisions in his modern world. Doing so would lead to ruin. He exercises discipline and control over his ancient self, yet fully recognizes that they have made possible all there is for humankind. He honors his heritage by listening to his instincts and trusting his gut feelings, and consults his modern values before acting.
5. A man of value takes pride in his job because it gives him a chance to give something of value to the world. He knows the measure of his worth is his effort and discipline. He does nothing half-heartedly.
6. A man of value makes a habit of continually reaching for excellence by setting goals that test his character, discipline, and merit. He takes great pleasure and satisfaction in achieving his goals. Once he reaches a goal, he immediately sets a new goal.
7. A man of value knows that he is capable of anything he sets his will to, so he carries this confidence through all situations. Even going out of his comfort zone and in the face of fear, he knows and trusts his power to overcome obstacles and achieve his goals. Every time he spends time out of his comfort zone, he is rewarded by experience and self-knowledge.
8. A man of value recognizes that all people, regardless of gender, age, nationality, or any other outside appearance possess the value of potential greatness. He sees and feels that every living being values its life and as such he respects all beings, big and small.
9. A man of value knows that his time on earth is limited. He understands that time never stops moving. Feeling these truths, he resolves to make the most of his time everyday. He does not lay around all day dreading the tasks he must do. He is disciplined to just do them. However, he also knows the importance of rest and relaxation. He listens to his body and rests only as long as needed then returns to his tasks.
10. A man of value is continually seeking to improve himself and his condition in life. Not out of competition with others, but with himself. As such, he places great value on knowledge, learning, and soul searching. He reads work by history’s great men of value so that he may stand on their shoulders and reach for greater heights.
11. A man of value knows there is no honor in deceiving others. He is always truthful yet tactful.
12. A man of value understand that growth can only happen outside of his comfort zone. He knows that constantly living in routine and comfort lead to stagnation and unfavorable emotional states. As such, he prefers to try new things and takes great pleasure in testing his confidence in unfamiliar situations.
13. A man of value understands that he lives in a finite world. This knowledge logically leads to a valuing of time and effort. He does not spend money needlessly. He doesn’t wast time and energy on unfruitful situations, endeavors, or people. Simultaneously, he understands the inherent value of leisure, and keeps it in its proper position and proportion, always willing to continue his work once rested.
14. A man of value naturally expresses leadership. People naturally look to him for guidance based on past experience where his calm and collected confidence solved problems and helped achieve goals. He does not try to assert or force dominance over others. His kind demeanor and quiet assurance speaks convincingly in his favor. Conversely, he is happy to accept the leadership of another who is more qualified than he in the situation at hand.
15. A man of value knows the inherent value of women and children and protects them from violence, danger, and aggression. He does not pick fights or unleash his anger when others need protection.
16. A man of value knows that one measure of a man is being a provider to the tribe and his loved ones. He is not a mooch or a drain. He always strives to share his blessings, earning, and resources with others physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. He does not ask for anything or expect compensation. It is his generous spirit that rewards him.
17. A man of value understands that his sexuality is a potent force of creative energy. It has driven him to pursue beauty and reach for things beyond his grasp. He honors it but fully knows that it must be controlled. He knows that mastery of the sexual impulse is crucial for success in this world. He knows that this modern world can overstimulate and sway him to be a sexual glutton. Therefore, he continually moderates, controls, and directs his sexual energy outward as fuel for his creative and productive endeavors.
18. A man of value confronts and fully embraces his sexuality. He does not apologize for being a potent sexual force in the world. He understands that underneath the thin layer of gender relations and civility, lies the aeons thick influence of a beautifully savage mating reality. He understands that others are subconsciously aware of this fact as well. As such, he allows his sexuality to freely flow, yet does not act like a lecherous pervert.
19. A man of value knows hat he is a physical entity. This knowledge leads to a rational and natural desire to protect his body and mind through improving his health. He exercises daily and spends time in quiet reflection every day. He eats for nutrition and listens attentively to his body’s needs. He knows that he must be disciplined as it is very easy to be unhealthy in his modern world.
20. A man of value never tries to dominate through force. He is fully aware of and sensitive to hierarchy and competition. He knows that aggression is the most base of all competitive strategies. He knows intimidation is the primary tool of the weak.
21. A man of value understands the ins and outs of mating. He understands that before he speaks, his appearance has already spoken for him. He knows that an outwardly groomed appearance reflects an inwardly organized spirit. However, he does not obsess about his outward image. He does not choose to base his life and self-worth around superficial images and surface things. Instead he seeks out lasting, substantial truths and people that value the same.
22. A man of value has respect for himself and refuses to consort with people who have no respect for him or themselves.
23. A man of value knows that it is impossible to always be right. He accepts that he is imperfect and will make mistakes. He freely and readily admits his mistakes and apologizes sincerely for his indiscretions once then moves on. He does not cower and evade blame if he knows he is at fault. He owns his actions.
24. A man of value knows that he is an emotional creature. He knows that his emotions are vital and crucial to his mental health. He knows that all emotions have a purpose and work diligently to explore what lies behind his emotional states. However, he is not a slave to his emotions. He acknowledges, accepts and then moves forward. He knows that emotional mastery is one of the key traits of a true man.
25. A man of value knows that the male brain is prone to anger. He understands that anger is not the default emotion of men, though. He controls his anger, channeling it into more productive means. He knows that constructive anger has the power to fuel his motivations. He also knows that unchecked anger can destroy him and all he’s worked hard to achieve.
26. A man of value knows that his hard work can manifest itself in possessions. He knows that however much or little he has, it is his. Therefore he tends to and takes proper care of his possessions. This extends toward inmaterial relationships.
27. A man of value knows that he is a never-ending work in progress. He is candid and honest with himself and his short comings and faults. However, he does not accept things the way they are. He is driven by a continuous urge to improve himself no matter how difficult or harrowing his journey may be.
28. A man of value knows that fear has an important place in his life. Fear serves as a sign pointing to areas he needs to improve in order to grow. He takes great pleasure in overcoming his fears and limitations. However, he is not reckless. He carefully weighs risks and decides un-impulsively the correct course of action.
29. A man of value cherishes humor. He loves to laugh and make others do so too. Most importantly, he has a sense of humor about himself and is not easily offended.
30. A man of value acknowledges that all people must live by their own accord. Therefore he does not judge others by his way. He has faith that each person is in a continuous motion of awakening to their potential at their own pace.
31. A man of value knows that importance of a solid mental, educational, and cultural foundation. He feeds his head with great works of literature, philosophy, and practical skills. This is the equivalent of clean eating. He appreciates great art regardless of the medium. Conversely, he lets go of poor quality though works, and ideas.
32. A man of value is capable of cooking a great meal for company and himself. He is always ready to host and entertain because he genuinely enjoys sharing his bountiful home and life with others. He can always spark a relevant and truthful conversation, as well as listen attentively and caringly to what others are saying. He empathizes with others and treats them as equals. He respects their opinions, even if he does not agree with them. He strives to leave others in a better mood than he found them in. He is eloquent. He never talks down of up to anyone. He treats all topics and conversational partners with respect. He never bluffs or pretends to be more knowledgeable than he is. He is always willing to learn from others.
33. A man of value knows that balance is one of the keys to a rewarding life. As such, he fully embraces the virtue of silence. He knows that constant chattering is the sign of closed ears and a narcissistic mind. If he is not sure of what to say, he says nothing. If others are talking, he is quiet and attentive. If he can say more and truly in silence, he is quiet. His silence is not proud, hesitant, or vapid.
34. A man of value does not stick his nose in others’ affairs. He understands that everyone has their own struggles and problems in life. It is not his place to preach or solve their problems for them. As a result, he does not let his emotional state get caught up in another’s own emotional wake. He is solid and secure in his own self. Conversely, if he is asked for his opinion or advice, he gives it freely, truthfully, and without expectations. He speaks honestly, with care and respect for the others well-being and safety. He never speaks with an ulterior motive.
My buddy Marcus is a very busy man, and being very busy he finds it difficult to meet enough quality women that he would like to date. Not a huge issue but life is always more exciting when you have options. So we were on the internet and ran into a great discussion with Style and Timothy Ferriss. In this discussion Tim outlines an a bet he had with a friend that he could outsource everything, including his dating life. So I read some of his book The 4 Hour Work Week, talked with Marcus over some of the ideas and we decided to give it a shot. It’d be a good learning experience for me, because one of my short term goals is to learn how to manage people and it’ll also be beneficial to Marcus’s dating life. So let’s get down to brass tacks.
In Tim’s talk he spoke about using elance.com as a resource in finding some people to assist him with his little experimental bet. I am going to do the same. Using elance is a pretty simple so sign up, pay a small fee to be “legit” and then you can choose to post two types of jobs. One type of job is hourly and the other is milestone based. I’m gonna choose milestone based for this. In Tim’s talk he said it cost him around 300$ so I’m gonna try and keep it the same. So here’s the break down:
1. Set up the project and describe it to the elance community. I’m gonna aim for marketeers because I think that’s the closest type of skill we would need to pull this off correctly.
2. My hopes are to get at least a couple teams running on the various dating sites out there. As of now I’m aiming for plentyoffish.com, match.com, okcupid.com and eharmony.com.
3. Since we are working on a small budget obviously we are gonna use milestone based, we pay the project up front in elance and that signals to the workers that they have a legit job. That they can start work on.
4. The first milestone for payment would be setting up a profile for Marcus, accessing their email and setting up a date on the calendar. That would pay 20$. The next milestone would be a lump sum of 50$ if they put 5 dates on the calendar. After that the team with the most dates gets a bonus of 50$ this would be the incentive to work harder at finding dates.
5. To setup Marcus’s dating profile each team will be given a basic information sheet. We might make one team do this for the other teams by just calling Marcus and asking the appropriate questions.
6. Date locations would be chosen so that it would be easy for Marcus to take them out. In the instance that dates are on the same day then we would prefer the teams to find locations that are very close to each other to make the most efficient use of time.
7. Setup a project specific calendar using google apps. This way when the teams line up dates they can make sure they aren’t stepping on anybody else’s plans. Also Marcus can put in times when he doesn’t want to take a girls out, greatly reducing the amount of time needed to schedule.
8. Of course we would have to explain to the teams what type of girl Marcus is interested in and for that we would look at a couple of profiles before hand probably turn them into PDFs and figure out general traits that Marcus is interested in.
9. When they set a date on the calendar we would require them to also post a link to profile of the girl so that we can see what we are getting ourselves into. Marcus has final say in whether he wants the date so they have to be “ok’d” by him. Only when he has ok’d the right amount of dates will they be official and we will pay out the teams.
10. The time frame for this would be over the course of two months to be flexible.
So that’s my general plan. I guess the next step is to actually get some of this stuff setup and working. Once we have this running I’ll write a post about how it is actually operating. So stick around for part 2.
Recently read and article on lifehacker.com about hacking your mind and it really re-sparked interest in my thoughts about identity. Alot of people go through life trying to “define” themselves by the things they buy, do, read, watch, listen too. They do so according to what they believe are their tastes and their desires.
What is unfortunate is that most of what we consider “ourselves” is really just influence. Our identity is fluid and created by us, our parents, our environment. Most of our behaviors are learned behaviors, so that means we can unlearn and learn new ones whenever we want. I’ll leave you with a golden nugget, if everything we do and desire is learned then that means we ultimately have control over the things we do and choose to do. If you choose to believe it then you can learn to be a millionaire, or be a poor man living on the street. You can choose to “like” going to school, or you can learn to like working hard instead of partying all the time. If you start with the basic idea that everything that you have control over is a choice then you can really start to take control over your life.
What situations in your life do you continue to avoid simply because you use the excuse “this is just the way I am”? I’d be interested to find out, post them in the comments.