Who am I? and What do I want? Are the two foundational questions ‘The Idea of a Man Project’ is asking you to ask yourself.
Once you have established this foundation, you can build the rest of your life from a place of genuine insight into the two most important questions of your adult life.
All other things should be approached from insight into the answers to these key questions. If I have learnt anything from my personal journey, this idea alone will save you years of heart ache, angst and failure.
As a concept it’s relatively straight forward and if truth be told, taking some time to ask and answer these questions for yourself is not an arduous task. But we are all very aware that numerous fellow travellers and potentially ourselves, have for whatever reason failed to answer these questions.
As a result, we are left reacting to life as opposed to responding with poise, certainty and the ability to decide moment by moment whether or not a particular decision aligns with our personal core, and fundamental objectives and purpose, because the truth be told these things have not as yet been established.
So, you may need to go back read my articles on Finding Yourself, establishing your answer to the question ‘Who am I?’ and discovering your values. Then embracing the process of self-actualising. Once the initial self-discovery has occurred the next step is to locate where your souls rightful place is in the world and the landscape of life. Where do you fit? being a square peg seeking to fit into a round hole is nobody’s idea of fun.
It puts you in the very real danger of having your ‘edge’ shaven off, and you’re going to need an edge as a man.
David Deida encourages us to lean just beyond your edge, it is the place of challenge, growth and potential. Fearing to near our edge leaves us impotent to change. Stuck in habituated unconscious patterns, and stagnant.
So we have asked the questions; Where do I fit in terms of my career? – Where do I fit in the context of my relationships? – and Where do I fit in the context of the social circles in which I interact. Putting it all together now, we are essentially asking; How do I build a life for me, that has meaning to me?
I believe the task of building a life always begins with a dream. Our imagination just like the other factors of your human make up, is there to serve a purpose. The question is; ‘to what extent are you utilising this incredible gift in designing the life you want to live?’
I’m not going to pretend there are not mitigating factors. You look at the life you have now and the people in it, the decisions you have made to date, the responsibilities and obligations that characterise your life, and spending time thinking of your life being any different can seem redundant.
I’m not encouraging you to be irresponsible here. In fact, quite the opposite, I’m asking you to take full responsibility for the one area you truly have sole responsibility for. And that is your own life.
Everything else you experience is an outflow of that life, but you are the epicentre of your own experience. Notice I didn’t say of the world, were not encouraging any narcissistic perspectives here. I am encouraging you to take your own life a lot more seriously.
This can be difficult specifically if nobody else has ever taken your life particularly seriously. And additionally if everyone around you is in the habit of not taking their own lives particularly seriously.
But considering that this is the only life you’ve got, and considering the potential and the possibilities to your very own self, to experience the wonders of all that your life has to offer you. – It is worthwhile to stop, get a hold of your existence, and begin to implement the changes that can set the direction of your life toward the fulfilment of the latent potential and unrealised aspirations, your personal ambition most inspired imagination, and intrinsic motivation can supply you.
Why the hell not, as Gandalf beckons; ‘does anyone want to go on an adventure?’
So you’re probably going to have to examine some of your decisions to date, you may have to move some of the pieces around on the chess board of your life. It’s going to be a process.
But now that you’ve established your north star, remember why it is your doing this. Your worth it, and if this is true to no one else as far as you can see, it first of all fundamentally needs to be true for you.
You owe it to yourself to live the life of your dreams, I’m encouraging you to base your dreams on the science of self-knowledge and personal insight mined from the process of self-discovery. Therefore, it is no longer a mere fantasy.
This is an opportunity to captain your own ship and charter your course towards a destiny of your choosing. A destiny where the life you live is the life you want to live and where you live a life which for you has meaning to you.