What makes men, well, men?
In 2014, a global study set out to discover the modern man's definition of masculinity and strength. And the results were surprising.
The study revealed that only 7% of men around the world could relate to the way the media depicts masculinity.
Why is this? According to lead researcher, Dr Michael Kimmel: "The core of masculinity today is rooted in a man's strength of character. Traits like integrity, authenticity, and how he cares for himself and those around him are integral to how a man perceives his own masculinity today - versus physical strength, power and affluence, which prior generations may have prioritised."
The time has come to change what we think “being a man” really is. It's time to move beyond those narrow stereotypes of the past, and look to the future of manliness.
Us Kiwi men aren’t robots! We have feelings and emotions... all humans do. The most negative thing we can do for our mental fitness, is stop connecting with others and/or saying how we’re doing.
Us men-folk and mental fitness
When we take the time to think about how we're doing and talk to each other, our partner, and our whānau, we strengthen our mental fitness, just as we would our physical fitness.
And we often discover that other guys are feeling the same things too.
Caring, including about ourselves, is about exercising our emotional strength. It makes us a better mate, a better partner, a better dad, and a more rounded and happy person.
Why be less than we can be?
Chances are that those around you like your caring side much more than they like your stoic, or strong-silent side. So why not give that funny, thoughtful, kinder side a hoon?
If being a ‘real man’ is about being ‘strong’, that includes doing things to boost our mental strength. A good place to start, is stepping up not stepping out when it comes to showing we care and saying how we're doing.
Let's talk about it, figure it out with friends, and keep getting stronger together.
Caring. Manly as.