Ben Franklin

Wisdom from the past – Ben Franklin

“Lost time is never found again” – Ben Franklin

It’s time for another short post on wisdom and time. When you engage in activities that you otherwise wouldn’t if you had the choice you are losing time. Now the premise is “you don’t have a choice” and often that is the case. The goal here is, is to start working on the ability to HAVE the choice. This can be working on exiting from a toxic relationship.

This can be recognizing a bad habit and working on fixing it. This can be resigning from a job you hate, on and on. The important thing to strive for is maximizing the time you do have with things you want to do or enjoy. We all have things we would rather not be doing (like cleaning as an example) but working towards a life with less and less of those is paramount.

Time is the universal currency. It doesn’t care your about your gender, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, political affiliation, none of it. So to decrease your anxiety and increase your happiness figure out what you like to do and what you don’t like to do and stop losing time, you will never get it back, it will never be found again.

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How to be a better man – The real secret (are you a beta, alpha or????? )

What label have you accepted? I bet you’re loathe to say you are a beta aren’t you? Maybe you are walking around telling everyone you are an Alpha male, which obviously that’s what Alpha males do….. Maybe you are an Omega? A Gamma? A label allows you to be classified simply, marketed too, sorted out and identified. These labels/titles are social constructs created by others to better identify your behaviors so you can be categorized.

You can try and identify these labels and emulate them. Who knows, maybe in your mind you will achieve the ideal for one of these labels. Maybe you will truly become an ALPHA MALE!!!! Make sure you tell everyone. Maybe, just maybe you can be yourself. You know some days you might be completely alpha some days you might be beta and everywhere in between.

It’s kind of like politics, are you 100% one way? Do you maybe believe that a woman has a right to determine what happens with her body but on the other hand don’t think government should be involved in financing social programs? Life isn’t black and white and neither is being a man. So what does all this mean? You see there has been a schism in the social order that governed society for thousands of years. Traditional male and female roles have converged and diverged and as a result you have to find where your place is on your own terms.

That place is where you want it. See we are at a place in the social construct of complete freedom for men. It’s fantastic that women have become liberated, they can be politicians, anything. Let them go fight wars now. Take out the trash? They can do that. Change the oil in the car? Go for It. The freedom of women and their liberation is the best thing to happen to men in a long, long time. You never have to accept inequality again. You see it works both ways, well it should but there are many out there who want their cake and eat it too.

A thick skin makes you stronger then 99% of “Alpha Males”

Don’t allow that anymore. You decide who you are. You want a label great, don’t want one that’s cool too. Always demand equality and if you don’t get it you need to remove those people from your life ASAP. It’s okay to like whatever you like. Paint your nails, wear dresses, put on makeup…. Or grow a beard, swill beer, swear. Everything is wide open now. Pick whatever label you want and within it create the name YOU want it to be.

If members of the opposite sex don’t like it and want you to change, move on from them. Because here is the real secret and it’s the one that has scared the shit out of men and women alike. You don’t need a woman to be happy, a woman doesn’t need a man to be happy. The catch is most men from a young age are conditioned not to expect emotional support or to be needed. Girls are protected far more, there are 1-800 numbers for any issue a woman might have, seen one for men lately? Women in western culture are placed in a different light from a young age, and with that comes unfair expectations on them I concede that. For a man? Expectations have never been lower. Not the bread winner? That’s acceptable. Dad bod and not athletic? That’s acceptable. On and on…

This is your chance, you can now be whatever you want however you want to frame it. Western society has created an equality narrative, and with it comes good and bad outcomes. Most of the negative outcomes here are for females, they now have even higher expectations placed on them than ever before where their male counterparts have been reduced. The phrase “careful what you wish for” comes to mind but equality of opportunity doesn’t always translate to equality of outcomes.

Social expectations and thousands of years of an accepted social construct don’t evaporate overnight. Women will still be judged on their appearance (by other women often), their ability to run a house, be a mother and now their ability to earn an income and excel professionally. They have all the pressure. Men are not held in high regard at all. This is great for you if you are a man, you now have more freedom than ever before. Relieved of the burdens of expectations you can build the life and strength you want and genuinely attract those who like you for who you are, not who they expect you to be or some arbitrary title.

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New Year’s Resolution?

What changed exactly from 12.31.21 to 1.1.22? Not a whole hell of a lot really. Change happens when you commit to it, and change is one of those romantized notions that people cling to in the hopes of a better outcome. New leaders, new seasons, new year’s, new clothes, new jobs on and on.

How do you feel? I’m betting you feel pretty close to the same as you did in 2021. I’m not chastising you here I am trying to knock the steam out of a potential failure. So many people pin their hopes on a “new year” a “resolution” and it rarely works out. Why is that? Because the changes you seek are often desired to have immediacy. Simply put, you want big changes as fast as possible and change doesn’t work that way.

What’s going to make 2022 better for you? Have you identified that yet? Changing your life requires momentum and momentum is achieved often by small incremental steps not huge leaps. Sure some people can make massive strides fast and maybe you are one of those people I don’t know. What’s an example, okay let’s try this.

I once resolved to quit coffee…. AHAHAHAHAHAHAHA…. Ya no.

You want to lose 40 pounds, you make large changes in your diet exercise, you go all in. in a month you are exhausted, you are binging food and it’s just “one cheat day” before you know it its march and the 40-pound goal is gone. OR you could change one part of your diet. “I am no longer going to drink soda” now which do you think will be more successful?

You may stray once and while and chug a soda, but it’s a far easier goal to attain then the mountain you wanted to climb by losing 40. Here is the point. Small Incremental changes lead to long term positive outcomes. By creating large resolutions, we place ourselves in a position to not succeed. I didn’t say fail because effort is a success. Smaller more attainable goals build momentum and create the conditions by which you can parlay them into larger success. Here are 5 small resolutions to strive for instead of one huge one.

  1. Eat less sugar
  2. Save $20 a week
  3. Turn the screens off at 10:30 PM
  4. Take 3000 steps a day
  5. Volunteer once a month

Small changes provide a great chance for successful outcomes. This in turn provides a great chance to parlay those successes into smaller changes, medium changes or eventually into large life altering changes. A new year is a great time to resolve to do better. Put yourself in a position to succeed in 2022 by making a few small changes first.

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Dressing to feel good !

How to be a better man – Answering one of the biggest questions for single men.

I am married 20+ years so you need to consider that as you read on and I give you, a single man this advice. Also keep in mind when I write posts about improving as a man it is based on my perspective as a heterosexual male. It doesn’t mean that this advice isn’t applicable to non-heterosexuals or females but it’s important to get these caveats out of the way first so you have a clear understanding where I am coming from.

I am not a fan of hardcore MGTOW. I think to be completely MGTOW requires you to remove women from your life completely and that’s a mistake. MGTOW light? I think that’s the way to go, which means simply treat women with respect and complete honesty and DEMAND the same in return. That said I see a reoccurring theme out there in the online world. I see women talking about it and men. So what is this one “biggest questions for single men?”

“Should I date single mothers?”

There are all sorts of stereotypes that come with being a parent, and even more if you are a single parent. This blog post is meant to deal with the single man and how they should approach this extremely important question. The quick answer is yes you should. Being a single parent doesn’t mean you are a bad person so let’s get that out of the way. The question becomes for you, “why are you dating a single mother?”

Do you just want to hook up? Do you love the fact she is a mother? Do you like kids?

It’s a big question because no matter how you look at the issue your decision affects a child. Thus a good man considers his motivations prior to getting to deep with a single mom. If you hurt her it has a residual effect on a child. There are all sorts of people in this world, there are plenty of single moms who want to hook up and aren’t looking for relationships and that’s cool. There are many who are looking to land a man to help them provide for themselves and their child. That’s understandable and a natural instinct. You shouldn’t penalize a woman for wanting someone to help them care for their children, that’s a common sense play.

Kids need consistent role models

The way in which they may obtain that in some cases might be suspect but the instinct is natural. Most of that really doesn’t matter though, because you are the one in control here. The allure of sex is potent, many men have fallen for it and with it all the residual baggage. Every one of those mothers are women, they want to be special to someone too it’s not solely about “I have to get some guy on the hook to secure this child”.

That said you also have to be honest, that child is not yours. Be very clear here and do not kid yourself. You may love the mom and love the kid, but it isn’t your child that means you will always have an outside influence into your most intimate relationship. Maybe the Ex is still in the picture? Maybe the grand parents still have input? Maybe her siblings measure you against the ex?

It’s an additional dynamic to an already complex relationship. Making relationships work with the opposite sex is hard enough. Add in someone else’s child and you are making that complexity much more prevalent. If she is a good mom, that child will always come before you and you have to understand and accept that. So again, yes you should date single mothers but be very clear going in what you expect, what you want and that she has someone else in her life that will always be a higher priority then you. If that isn’t something you want to deal with that’s cool, you aren’t a bad guy for being honest about that. If though you go in for the score and then bail, and that wasn’t clear to her you are damaging her and by extension the child. Don’t be that guy, hook ups are fine if everyone is on the same page with their expectations. With single mom’s you have to go the extra distance to be very clear what you want and what you need and make sure you both are in alignment.

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How to be a better man – A Dad Lesson

In this series of posts I write about how to be a better man. Not every man will or is a dad and that’s fine. Many of you are or will be and there are a couple of hard realities that you have to accept when you become a dad. The first one is there is a new metric by which you are measured, the dad metric. Now everyone in your life has a father, and as a new father you are going to be measured against their father experience.

It’s an unrealistic unfair measure but its reality you are going to have to deal with it. The hardest thing to do? Is not let it flavor how you parent. You are a sum of your experiences. Parenting is a learned skill that millions (billion) before you have gotten through and there is no perfect path. Put down the parenting books, stop listening to “how hard” it is talks you get from other parents and let go of what other men are doing as a reflection on you.

Just show up and be present.

No matter how hard, how easy, how bad you do or how well you do just keep showing up. Being present means putting the phone away, keeping distractions at a minimum, keeping work at work. No matter what you do someone will be there to critique you and often it will be your spouse who takes shots at you that cut deep. While those can hurt, you have to move past that as well. Quick aside, many relationships become toxic once a child is born because expectations change. Have many conversations on your values first before ever bringing a child into the world.

How to move mountains
Sometimes a Mountain is a Mole Hill

10 years goes by fast, before you know it 20 have gone. What you are doing now when the child is 2, 6, 13 is critical because this is how they bond with you personally but also how they shape their view of fathers as they enter adult life. Even if you screwed everything up, you were always present you were trying. Believe me they will know this. The value of being there for children is immense. They are going to find their way in life, you did.

The key here is don’t get to absorbed into the expectations of others. The judgement of others or comparisons and yes that includes your spouse and immediate close family. Just keep showing up and being present and if you are still getting critiqued it generally means they have an issue with you not necessarily your parenting style. Now to be clear this is a license to be an A-Hole. Do the right thing, be a good person, be kind. No one should have to spell that out for you but one of the things dads don’t here often is “Thank you for always being there”.

Don’t miss recitals, don’t miss games, don’t miss family events, don’t work late constantly, don’t spend a lot of time away from home. Be present in that child’s life as much as you can, before you know it they will be old enough not to need you as much and you will have plenty of time to do your own thing.

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Surviving 2020 & covid

How to be a better man – 3 quick things you can do

Being a better man is subjective. It may be that you feel you are fine the way you are and that is great. If that is the case, thanks for coming by you don’t really need to read further. Looking for a few more pieces of wisdom to help on the journey? Read on. Below are 3 things you can do quickly that will indirectly help you be a better man.

  1. Drink less alcohol: Notice I am not saying quit booze, I’m saying drink less. The less you consume the higher chances you have of not having a negative outcome from alcohol consumption. Alcohol is fine for adults, a buzz from time to time is socially acceptable, helps reduce inhibitions and can really be fun as hell. On the flip side it can also lead to being drunk, black outs, DUI’s, obnoxious behavior and all sorts of other negative consequences.
  2. Watch less Porn: Notice I am not saying quit it all together. Let’s not B.S. one another here, millions, tens of millions, hundreds of millions of people (mostly men) have watched porn at some point in their lives. Masturbation and fantasy are fine, when tempered with the knowledge that Porn can alter the way you perceive women. It’s okay to desire women sexually, to want them to fulfill your sexual fantasies. That’s a normal healthy thing. Its unhealthy to transfer those desires to expectations. This distorts the relationship often leading to resentment on both sides. Be honest about your sexual desires and find a partner who you feel fills that need for you. They aren’t objects, or actress, they are women who love you and want you to be happy. Less porn = more realistic sexual relationships.
  3. Narrow the friend pool: We all have friends that are bone heads. They do dumb shit, are goof’s or are just bad influence all around. It’s okay to hang with the boys, blow off some steam and just be men but be honest about your crew. The older we get the more skin we have in the game of life and dumb mistakes get more painful. “Knuckle head Joe” maybe funny as hell since college but if you have a pregnant wife, a 5-year-old and a decent career it might be time to cut back on “joe time”. You know where I am going here, you know who the guy is in your circle. No need to be cruel about it, just start cutting back.
If you don’t ask the question, the default answer is no.

As a mini disclaimer I am a heterosexual male, my advice is always geared toward like-minded people. I don’t profess to have knowledge of homosexuals, bi sexual and everything in between. If these pieces of advice are applicable I will leave that to you. Remember the spirit in which these posts are made, to share wisdom and help improve men. They are not intended to all audiences, if you chose to consume the content and assume nefarious intent, you own that.

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Ancient Wisdom - Confucius

How to improve as a man – disconnect from other’s expectations

This is one of the hardest concepts to implement. It’s pretty close to “stop caring what other people think” which, unless you are a sociopath you’re not going to be able to achieve. However, other’s expectations is a broad enough category where we can whittle away at this which is the point of this post. Simply put, have good values and morals which you adhere too is paramount to self-improvement. Where you obtained those values is an aside really, the point here is trying to distance yourself from others expectations.

The perception of masculinity and men as a whole has changed dramatically over the last 50 years. It’s a mixed bag of good and bad to be blunt. For most men it’s now challenging to understand where they fit into societies expectations, as hundreds (or thousands) of years of accepted norms are no longer applicable. Disconnecting from the current status quo is paramount to your happiness as a man, and then by extension those who you have in your life.

This doesn’t mean you treat people like crap, be disrespectful, confrontational etc. It means you make the rules you live by and should people like or not like it that is there choice. The key proposition here is you are setting your own expectations and working to reach them. This in turn should attract to you people who are of a like mind. This is a net positive for you and everyone around you. This enables others in your life to clearly gauge you as an individual, and determine for themselves if you are someone they want to invest their time in.

Obtaining a thick skin is a life long journey

This also empowers you to live the life you want. One major caveat there though dear reader, when you do this you will face consequences. Society is in a place today where social dictates come from multiple sources. They are loud, aggressive and in many cases have extreme responses to anyone who does not adhere to their particular moral doctrine. That isn’t meant to scare you, just a warning. “cancel culture” is real, anyone can be targeted for mass harassment for a simple tweet like “I didn’t help them change their tire. 2 empowered females should be able to handle it no problem”

The world is full of anonymous experts in everything, particularly how you should think and feel. Be mindful of this as you venture through your own self-discovery and decide what works for you and how to implement it. Disconnecting from other’s expectations is extremely challenging, it means that some in our life will be unhappy. It may mean that on your journey you experience a lot of turmoil. Take heart, as this journey is your own and becoming a better man, at the end of the day, makes everyone around you better too.

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How to improve as a man – MGTOW Light

MGTOW (Men go their own way) is one of the new popular social movements born from several social dynamics. I am not here to say it’s good or bad, I think everyone has to make the best choice for them. I do understand why some men do this and they have legit reasonable rationales for doing so. Like most things in life the best solution is usually somewhere in the middle.

MGTOW has been ascribed a narrative of being anti-feminist, misogynistic and void of all female contact. Of course the definitions run the gambit but the main stream narrative has painted MGTOW in a negative light. I think writing off all females is ridiculous, but I think many modern men are doing MGTOW light. Essentially what that means is now making themselves the priority not the attainment of approval or attention of females.

Keep in mind this is written from a heterosexual point of view. I can’t comment on Bi or Homosexual tendencies, I am neither and while I do have people in my life who are both I can’t intelligently speak on either in a meaningful way. I can say though that MGTOW light is a positive outcome for everyone. Strong men are good things for society. Not physically strong but mentally and emotionally.

Now that isn’t to say you can’t achieve both with females in your life but its far better to achieve both PRIOR to have females a large part of your life. I believe in marriage, I am married. I believe in committing to one partner for the long term. Maybe you don’t and that’s okay. It’s also okay for you to focus on your health, your wealth and overall wellbeing as a man and making it your top priority.

Always treat people the way you want to be treated.

It’s okay to date several women, as long as you are upfront about it. There is no need to lie, you don’t have to lead anyone on. Women have more power and opportunity now than ever before and it’s a good thing. They can choose if they want to be involved with you or not. They get to decide what is important for them and if you fulfil it or not. The key to MGTOW light is be extremely clear and candid with women.

If your goals and priorities don’t line up, that’s okay. You don’t have to change for them, and they don’t have to change for you. You might choose to, or they may choose to and that’s okay. Gone are the days where we have to act, lie, woo and or court the opposite sex. We are equal now right? Let them do that, and if they don’t want too? That’s cool too.

Not having females in your life is a huge mistake. Its way beyond sexual, although for me that is important, they bring value and perspective to many situations we otherwise wouldn’t have. The problem with MGTOW is you are eliminating valuable people from your life. As the old saying goes “don’t throw out the baby with the bath water” There are plenty of great women who genuinely like men and want good relationships. They are out there if you look. There are also horrible women who treat men like crap in every way. You have to decide if it’s worth it or not.

In the end focus on improving as a man and often what you find is you attract like-minded people. You put “I hate women” vibes into the world you get “I hate men” vibes back. Put out good vibes, positive vibes, honest and upfront vibes and you might be surprised as to what you get back…

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You miss the shots you don’t take

Ever play basketball? Last time I played I hit a big 3 point shot in a pickup game that was a beauty. I was covered and I just pulled the trigger on it and wasn’t expecting much. I could hear a team mate groan as I hoisted that brick up, nothing but net, lol.

If I never took that shot, I couldn’t have succeeded.

In the game of life this is true too. Is there something you want to do but just haven’t taken the shot yet? I was the same way when I started this blog, I never thought anyone would give a poop on what I had to say. Here I am a few years later and I am getting visitors from all over the world.

Same with my small gaming channel, I am a gamer it’s my hobby so I started a gaming channel. Nothing special but it’s my little channel. If I never posted a video I never would have had a view or a subscriber…

IF there is something in your life you have been going back and forth on, stop and take the shot. IF you miss, you miss. If you do nothing, then you have a 100% chance of not getting anything at all. Let me put it this way, if you never ask the question you never have the opportunity to hear “YES”

Give yourself the opportunity to hear the “YES”. Take the shot, you might hit it and you will be so happy you did. You are doing awesome; you can do this.

Your Pagan Friend,

Karac.

Gandalf

THE WISDOM OF TOLKIEN…. AGAIN….

“There is nothing like looking, if you want to find something. You certainly usually find something, if you look, but it is not always quite the something you were after.”

― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit or There and Back Again

I’ve looked for things, I’ve looked for peace of mind and to no avail. I have found Anxiety, Stress and depression. Did I want to find these things? A part of me did, how else can I confront, overcome and reconcile these issues?

I’ve looked for other things, I’ve looked for happiness and have succeeded. I am married for 20 years with a great family who understands that I have anxiety, they are just not in tune with the depth but that’s okay.

I’ve always been averse to popular notions that -sound- foolish. “look within yourself” or “the answer lies within” I have been foolish not to apply these simple sayings to my historic behaviors. The answer to many of the I’ll of my life have in fact been my reactions to what I perceived others thought. Of course, I couldn’t really know, I have no way of knowing the operation of someone else’s mind.

I’ve looked for it, the answer. The answer to why I am predisposed to consider what others think. Perhaps it is a societal norm? Perhaps a social construct I am bound to in the subconscious? Or perhaps I need to continue looking at myself and find what has been there all along.

I am okay, I am normal, I am to critical of myself, I am an expert in me. It’s not really what I was after, but I will find it. The wisdom of Tolkien once again astounds me.

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