Real quick… do a Google search for Men’s Empowerment and you’ll get some 15.9 million results. Seems pretty impressive until you do a similar search for women’s empowerment. This returns a whopping 112 million results.
Of course it makes sense. Over the past five decades, there has been a catapulting outcry of equality among women. They’ve had a continuous battle to accomplish the feats achieved and are still not yet equal in many ways.
But it seems somehow during the progress, men’s empowerment and the ideology of man has failed to evolve and progress.
I started researching the topic of men’s empowerment and sadly… there’s just not much out there about it.
A majority of the articles I found online pertaining to men’s empowerment are written by women. One article eluded to teaching boys to do dishes & laundry to empower them.
Now, I can absolutely understand the need to understand basic life skills like cooking, cleaning and laundry. When my grandma passed away in the early 90’s, my surviving grandpa was absolutely helpless at home without her. He didn’t know how to pay a bill, how to cook a meal or how to clean his work uniform. My mom had to go into St. Louis every weekend to help him with basic necessities.
It was around this time that I started becoming more independent. I was in Junior High when I started doing laundry and younger than that when I started doing dishes.
No one taught me, I just started doing it.
Men’s empowerment runs much deeper than taking on responsibilities were traditionally held by women.
The entire mentality of what a man should be must shift.
And the shift must occur in both men and women.
It widely accepted for a woman to show emotion or to express how she is feeling. It has commonly acknowledged that women are hard-wired to be more emotional.
The same is not true for a man.
To not be seen as a pussy, a man’s just got to push down those emotions of sadness or depression.
“Suck it up and be a man,” is the mentality shared by other men and women.
Men are expected to be strong and push down their emotions regardless of whether it’s sadness or even extreme happiness.
There are several major issues with this mentality. Not only does it create a double standard, but more importantly this restriction of emotional intelligence holds men back.
We’ve all heard that women’s intuition is never wrong, but we never hear about men’s intuition. Men act out of logic, thinking with the mind over the gut or heart.
In this way, men have a lot to learn by the way women have been living for generations. Men’s empowerment means a further shift into understanding, relying and effectively communicating feelings and emotions.
There are a lot of over used, and in my opinion, ridiculous phrases used when it comes to the subject of money.
Money can’t buy you happiness… Money is the root of all evil.
Bullshit. Just lies that poor people give to justify staying financially stuck in life.
There’s no denying that money makes life easier and more enjoyable.
Money is often a taboo subject, but to create more empowerment we need to talk about it. We need to educate ourselves on the importance of finances.
There is still a connotation that men should be the breadwinner in the relationship. Women may not need a man to support her, but relationships are rarely financially equal and more often than not the burden of the responsibility to provide for the family falls on the man.
This is a heavy load to carry.
Upwards of 78% of people live paycheck to paycheck. This is an astonishing number. And so many men want to provide the best life for their family. It’s expected. Living paycheck to paycheck makes it impossible.
I didn’t grow up rich. My family very clearly was one of the statistical families who lived paycheck to paycheck.
My dad did his best and my mom tended the house.
I carried these characteristics for more than three decades, but just didn’t know any better. I hated living that way and that if I wanted it to change I had to do something about it.
So, I educated myself and empowered myself to do something about it.
If you are done with the financial stress Click Here.
The term “narcissistic man” is tossed around. There are multiple Facebook groups and dozens and dozens of web pages created by and devoted to women who have experienced negative relationships.
Clearly, there are some guys who utilize their power to dominate and control women… we’re not talking about that. Those are scared boys, not empowered men.
Every man deserves to feel loved and valued in a relationship. He should feel like he is in a partnership.
I’ve been in a toxic relationship and I’ve met others on the dating scene who have made me feel like they only wanted to be with me for what I could provide or do for them. It’s not a good feeling.
It took some time focusing on myself to come to terms with what I wanted in a relationship and to not settle for anyone that made me feel like less than an equal.
It’s no secret Americans, as a whole, have the most unhealthy lifestyle on the planet. There is a fast-food drive thru on every corner, grocery stores are aisle after aisle with bagged food filled with ingredients no one can pronounce.
I get it. After a long day you don’t want to hit the gym.
On that note… the gym is not the only way to empower yourself physically.
We, as men, are busy. We’re busy with work, with family, with so many things in life that health often takes a back seat on the importance scale.
Combine that with the mentality that guys don’t care about how they look or that it’s okay for a man to be fat.
This way of thinking has actually been detrimental to men and has given them permission to sell themselves short.
A fundamental condition of men’s empowerment is the process of improving one’s mental and physical health.
Physical and mental ailments prohibit us from being the best men we can be. It’s empowering to address these issues and take charge of your life.
Addressing the issue of Men’s Empowerment is not about minimizing the progress that women have made or reverting back to the suppressive ways of the past.
Men’s Empowerment is about bonding as guys and lifting each other up to reach the maximum potential each of us has within us.
Together, we not only enrich our own lives but the lives of those around us and through the ripple, improve the world.
Joshua D. Abel
Men’s Empowerment Network