Rule #4 – Be Proud Of Who You Are

The fourth rule of being a man is:

Be proud of who you are

If you’re doing the right thing and you’re being the kind of person you’d be proud of and you’re acting in a way that you’d be proud of if other people saw and knew what you’re thinking then don’t be afraid to be proud of yourself.

In fact, you should be proud of yourself.

So go ahead and be proud of who you are.

Being proud of who you are, what you believe in, what you stand up for, and how far you’ve come are good things.

Be proud of what you’ve overcome and what you’ve accomplished in your life.

Be proud of the positive things in your life.

There’s nothing wrong with being proud of the things that are good.

Being proud of the positive things in your life is good for your self-esteem. It’s also beneficial because it reinforces doing good things you can be proud of. When you do the things that aren’t easy but are worth doing and when you have the patience and persistence to reap the rewards of your sustained efforts, then one of your rewards is earning the right to be proud of your efforts, your character, and your results.

It’s also good to be proud of standing up for what you believe is right. Standing up for your beliefs is a powerful core element of being a man.

So take the time to reflect on who you are and how far you’ve come.

Make a list of all the positive things such as growth you’ve experienced, rewards you’ve earned, strengths, positive character traits, accomplishments, and things others look up to.

Then consider being proud of the ones that mean the most to you.

After all, there’s only one you. So be positive, stand up for what you believe in, act in a ways you’d be proud to have other people see, think in ways you’d be proud if other people knew.

And then be proud of yourself.

– Weston Henry

Questions:

Are you proud of who you are?

How could your life be better if you were consciously proud of who you are?

Rule #3 – Act Like People Are Watching

The third rule of being a man is:

Act like someone is watching

How would you act if you knew someone is watching?

When your boss, co-worker, mother-in-law, wife, children, or that jerk who cut you off in traffic make you mad, how do you react?

Would you react differently if you knew someone else was watching?

Think of the person you respect the most. Now imagine you are going to watch a video recording of your behavior with that person sitting beside you and you’re going to have to explain your behavior to them.

Or what if the whole world found out about your actions. What would people think of you? Would you be proud of your actions then?

If you can say yes, then you’re acting like a man. If not, well then chances are you aren’t acting like a man.

Actions are important. People can only see your actions and can’t see your thoughts.

But actions follow thoughts. So your thoughts are important too.

Treat your thoughts the same way as your actions.

What if the whole world knew your thoughts? Would you be proud if everyone in the world knew your thoughts?

Act the way you want the whole world to see you acting. Think the way you want the whole world to know you you’re thinking.

If you do those two things, you can be proud of yourself and who you are as a man.

– Weston Henry

Questions:

How would you act differently if you knew the whole world could see you?

How would you think differently if you knew the whole world knew what you were thinking?

Rule #2 – Be someone you’re proud of

The second rule of being a man is:

Be someone you’re proud of

If you always act in a way that you’d be proud of, then you can always look back on yourself without regret.

One way to do this is to think of people you respect and act in the way that would cause those people to respect you. For example, I have a lot of respect for my father. He’s someone I look up to. So, one way to be someone I’d be proud of is to ask myself, “What would my father do?” and then do that.

There’s a saying, “What would Jesus do?” that’s a great example of this kind of character modeling. Think about what your role model would do and then do it.

Another way of saying this is for you to identify role models and then emulate the things that appeal to you about those role models. If your role model is a family member, historical person, sports legend, leader in your community or church, manager at work, or whoever it is… ask yourself what it is that you respect about that person, what positive qualities make them who they are, and then emulate those things.

You have to be careful not to settle for superficial traits. Don’t pick a famous sports star as your role model because they’re rich or famous. Those aren’t character traits. Famous and rich aren’t ways of behaving.

On the other hand, if you pick a famous sports star as your role model because they were incredibly hard working, always strove to learn more, never stopped trying to get better, never gave up, and stayed humble even after they became rich and famous, now those are great character traits for you to emulate.

Here’s another way to accomplish this: Visual the kinds of values, attitudes, behaviors, thinking, and skills you want to have, those that you would be proud of and that would make the people you respect proud of you. Once you visualize them, then act them out. Start thinking and behaving like your visualizations right now today.

Visualization is a powerful way to teach yourself. Science has proven that visualization can help athletes perform better. Visualizing yourself having the kinds of values, attitudes, behaviors, and skills you want to have is a great way to begin developing yourself into the man you want to be. It’s a way to mentally practice acting like the man you want to be so you’re better prepared when tough situations arise.

These are just a few strategies you can use to get you there, but it’s the end result that matters most: Be someone you’d be proud of.

– Weston Henry

Questions:

Who are your role models and why? What are the character traits they have that you want to emulate? Are they helping you act in a way that you’re proud of?

What experience have you had visualizing yourself acting in a way you’re proud of?

 

Rule #1: Do The Right Thing

The most important rule of being a man is simple:

Always do the right thing.

On the surface that sounds so simple it’s almost a platitude.

I’ve made many mistakes in my life: mistakes in business, mistakes in my marriage, mistakes in parenting, and mistakes in friendships. When I analyze them, the ones I regret, the ones where I really screwed up were the ones where I didn’t do the right thing.

Everyone makes mistakes. It’s not possible to live a perfect life. For most mistakes, you take it as an opportunity to learn as much as you can from the mistake and then you move on. If you learn from your mistakes, you’re a better person for each one.

Mistakes are when you don’t know any better. If you try your best and later find out you didn’t get it right, that’s a mistake.

That’s not what I’m talking about here.

What I’m talking about here is doing the right thing. Doing the right thing means doing what you know is right. Let me say that again:

“Doing the right thing means doing what you know is right.”

No taking shortcuts or skirting the issue because that would be easier. It means facing things head on and doing what you know is right.

It means being authentically you and acting true to yourself.

If you get this behavior right, it makes all the other rules of being a man a lot easier. In fact, if you get this one right, it’s almost automatic that you’ll get the other rules right too.

That might make it sound easy. It’s not.

For one thing, doing the right thing in every case isn’t always easy.

Sometimes doing the right thing means admitting you were wrong. Sometimes doing the right thing means putting others before yourself. Sometimes it means facing fears. Sometimes it means having patience and sacrificing today for something better in the long run.

For one reason or another, it’s often not easy to do the right thing.

But the biggest challenge is that doing the right thing requires knowing what the right thing is and this is what gets really hard. How do you really know what the right thing is?

To know what the right thing is requires effort to really know yourself and you have to put that effort in ahead of time. It’s too late to try to figure this all out when you have a decision to make. You have to know ahead of time what your values are, what your priorities are, what your guiding principles are, what your goals are, and what your boundaries are. I’ll have much more to say about this in future posts.

But in many cases, knowing what the right thing is requires you to understand someone else. Does that employee need a push or do they need support right now? Does my child need accountability or empathy right now? What are the words my wife most needs to hear right now?

So to do the right thing means you must care about others and seek to understand them.

To know what the right thing is requires you to be really clear on what you think right and wrong are.

And then you have to do it. You have to do the right thing. You have to do it even if you don’t want to. You have to do it even if it means giving up something else you would rather do. You have to do it even if it’s uncomfortable and even if it scares you.

To be a real man means you have to do the right thing. You have to be true to yourself. You have to be authentic. You have to think clearly. And then you have to act! You have to DO THE RIGHT THING.

– Weston Henry

Questions:

What does it mean to you to do the right thing?

What has happened in your life as a result of doing or not doing something you knew was right?