A few years ago I was getting on a bus in my hometown. I was about to enter when the bus driver told me to board through the rear door instead because someone in a wheelchair needed to get off through the front door and it would take a minute. Now, when you board the busses in my hometown it is either assumed that you have a prepaid bus pass on your person, or you go through the front door and pay when you get on. Having been shooed to the rear door, I had not yet paid. When I got on the bus I realized that it was densely packed and I would have had to push my way through 30 or so bus riders in order to get to the front to pay my fare. So at the next step, I got off the bus, ran to the front (we have long busses that don’t stop for very long), and reboarded in order to pay for my trip. Could I have taken the bus without paying? Absolutely. It would have been easy. But my underlying value system stated that every dollar I spend is a vote that I cast in the world… and I enjoy supporting products and services that I feel benefit the world.
- So where do you set boundaries in your life where you decide what is or isn’t acceptable?
- How do you behave when no one is around to judge your actions?
- What things do you do that make you proud of who you choose to show up as in the world?
Decide on your personal values, adhere to them regardless of external incentives, and you will be a much better and happier person for it.
2. Do What You Want To Do
“A musician must make music, an artist must paint, a poet must write if he is to be ultimately at peace with himself. What a man can be, he must be” – Abraham Maslow
Mmmmm… one of my favorite quotes of all time from my homie Maslow! The only way to ultimately be at peace with yourself is to do the things that you know you want to (as long as they don’t harm anyone).
If there is a burning desire to accomplish, create, or be something in this world that lives within you, you must adhere to this inner voice.
What does this have to do with being your version of an authentic man? Everything.
I believe that it is our frustrated desires and our under-utilized potential that eats away at us from the inside.
If you have a book or an album inside of you that gets ignored… or you have a career path or potential romantic partner that you want to go after but you never do… it will eat away at you like acid eroding the undercarriage of a car.
Life is short and it’s the “what ifs” that eat away at you the most.
What if I had just gone to that concert despite what my friends’ opinions of that artist was? What if I had approached that woman who I told myself was out of my league? What if I had broken off from the corporate world and started my own thing?