The 20 Rules of Manhood

Don’t seek it, look for it, or depend on it. Be open to the possibility of it.

14. Put your fucking phone down.

TV corrupted my generation, and now phones have taken that torch and, along with social media, are destroying the social experience. Life is about experience and relationships, this is where we’ll find meaning, learn valuable lessons, and love and laugh and live.

Life can’t exist within a text message or on a facebook wall. Pictures aren’t your life, they’re often a projection of what you want people to think is your life, but they’re not your life. Your life is what you do with the limited time you have. And more everyday, people are spending this time with their hands latched to their phone, eyes fixated, mesmerized, hanging on the possibility that their photo may get liked, their text may get responded to, or their message will be shared.

Man the fuck up! A man isn’t a slave to his technology, he uses it to do more, be more, and create more. Put your fucking phone down and experience this epic journey.

15. Be grateful.

Forget about being a real man, be grateful. Genuinely being grateful about life is one of the most important things you can practice on your road to becoming a man and a success. And yes I said practice.

Since implementing this into my routine, good things have formed in my life that either wouldn’t have otherwise, or I wouldn’t have recognized them as such had I not started doing this everyday.

That thing I’ve added to my routine is writing down 3 things that I’m grateful for. These 3 things are specific and genuine. They’re not the same 3 things everyday, and they can be very small things, moments, or gifts. Without this practice we tend to focus on what we don’t have in life rather than what we do. And what you’ll find after doing this exercise for a few weeks is that you have a lot more to be thankful for than you ever realized.

16. Never compare yourself to others.

Your success exists and occurs on its own paradigm and within its own timeline. It won’t occur in the exact same way as anyone else’s. It can only occur in relation to your actions, risks, and the breaks you get along the way.

As such, never compare your life, what you have, who you are, where you are, or what you’re building, to another person’s successes or failures. That’s not how life is supposed to work, and it’s an incredibly effective way to live an unhappy, unfulfilled life.

Set your goals in a personal manner, not in competition with other people, only in competition with yourself. Track those goals in the same way. While much of the meaning we can extract from life occurs due to the relationships we cultivate, we are who we make ourselves and who we perceive ourselves to be. The opinions of others don’t matter, nor do the accomplishments of others.

A man is his own man. His success in life isn’t dependent on what others think of him. Be the man that marches to his own beat.

17. Don’t blindly regurgitate knowledge.

The stupid man reads one book and feels he’s learned everything he needs to know. His opinions and worldview are now in tact. The wise man uses books and experiences to shape his own opinions. His thoughts may be founded on those who’ve come before him, but he agrees with them because he’s heard, read, and experienced each side of the problem.

Think critically. Don’t blindly follow. Learn and lead. A man is a leader. A leader is an original. He can’t be a copycat.

18. Stand by your values.john wayne

No matter what I say on this site, you won’t agree with 100% of it. And that’s a very good thing. Stick to your guns on those things you deem important and worth standing for. Know your values and stand by them. They may evolve, even change as you age, experience more, and grow into the man you’re already well on your way to becoming, that’s normal, but stand by those that you hold in the highest regard.

Does that mean you can’t work and coexist with people with different values than you have? Of course not. Here’s a credo I live by:

I’d rather have a man disagree with me, than agree with me and oppose his own values.

19. Love hardship.

Hardship is one of the greatest gifts we can receive. We never see it as such. We always see it as a curse. But think about it like this…

Most of our growth occurs when we’re forced to do more than we think we can do, dig ourselves out of the depths we’re in. Grit, one of the greatest attributes a man can possess is developed in pain, struggle, and circumstances that are less than ideal. Humility is created in failure and hardship, as is work ethic, and perspective.

Our honor is tested when things are going terribly, as is our character and the extent to which we’re willing to stand by our values and morals.

Sure, they’re also tested when things are going too good to be true, but it’s in hardship that we make ourselves, and find out what we can accomplish.

This part of the article is the most important and exciting for me to write. I’ve been in tough spots in my life, a life that is only still in its relative infancy. I’ve looked to others to blame. I’ve tried to find an easy way out. I’ve come to grips with what’s real and what are perceptions. And, I’ve learned to appreciate those hardships. I’ve learned to use those hardships to help me evolve, perfect my craft, and become a better man.

Now, on the other side of past hardships and of hardships that will surely come in the future, I don’t fear them. Sure, they suck, but they’re an important part of life that a man must appreciate and struggle through, not around, above, or underneath, but through.

20. Measure your success by your level of happiness.

When you take the acquiring of wealth out of how you measure and perceive success, you’re opening yourself up to a much happier, fulfilling life. You’ll also probably make more money because, as the evidence shows, happy people make more money than grumpy, worried, unhappy people do.

Surround yourself with people that make you happy. Put your family first – this is a must as a man, and something that will lead you to be a happier, more successful man in the long run. Spend the majority of your time doing shit that makes you happy. Doing those 3 things is a sure-fire route to happiness.

Parting Thoughts

For those that feel that there can be no guide to manhood, look at the state of men in our current society. While we’re filled with bright spots, with real men who understand everything that manhood entails, they’re the minority. The majority is a lazy mob who not only don’t understand the value of a dollar or of hard work, but don’t want to understand it. They’re content with mediocrity, ease, and failure.

So while you may claim that articles like this try and whittle what a man is down to a set of rules, laws, or numbers, this article – and articles like this – provide a service to men everywhere by reminding them of, or showing them for the first time, the characteristics and attributes that are prerequisites for manhood.