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Real Men, Do Journal
If they are real men
My first thought was to define 'real men'.
I never thought it would be very difficult to define a 'real man', especially since I could borrow from all the tired cliches that I've heard for decades.
What is a 'real man'?
I posed the question on the Internet and the definitions were as many and as varied as there must be 'real men' in the world.
There were a number of similar traits presented in what some thought a 'real man' should possess, but not a one, that I read, ever mentioned journals.
Men journals conjure images similar to those of men crying in their beers or crying over spilled milk.
'Real men' do not cry in their beers or cry over spilt milk.
That is a little too sensitive for public consumption.
I certainly consider myself to be a 'real man' with all the characteristics and character flaws that one can imagine in a 'real man'.
Even when I do not feel 'real', I put on my mask so the world will not know I don't feel real.
I can safely say that 'real men' do journal.
I journal every day, whether at home or away.
It is now a part of my daily make up.
When I mentioned writing my 'morning pages', as I hung out with the guys, I use to get looks of surprise.
Some would ask, "What in the heck is that?"
I would explain, as best I could, and some would reply; "In other words, you are keeping a diary."
For some reason the word 'diary' seemed so unmanly.
It did not have the bold feel of journals.
I explained that I wasn't keeping a diary, per se, but it was like keeping a diary.
My circus of 'real men' would scoff and said that it sounded a little punkish to them.
They said they could find a better use of their time.
In subsequent meetings I was asked, "Are you still writing?"
My reply , "Every day."
That was usually followed with, "What do you write about?"
I explained that I never have a pre-determined audience or a pre-set agenda.
I write what I write as it happens and as it comes to mind.
There are no rules.
I put aside all my hang ups about grammar, spelling, punctuation, cohesion and coherency and all other things we may find embarrassing.
I just write without editing.
I do not judge and I do not expect to be judged for what I write.
The subject matter may end up all over the board, but isn't that how life is?
Can you tell me today how you will feel tomorrow, if there is a tomorrow?
I've found that as a 'real man' I can be reflective in my writings.
I can see the benefits of my errors or I can stay in the moment and purge my thoughts, if need be.
I can be spiritual without being religious or I can be religious without being spiritual.
I can express my love beyond all reasonable expectations of a 'real man'.
I take the time to journal and make it 'my time' and all 'real men' deserve some 'my time'.
Real men need time to lower their shields, take off their armor and stand exposed to the world without fear.
That's right, to some, being a 'real man' is being fearless.
If that is true, then I must rescind my claims to being a 'real man'.
I have fears from time to time.
Fears are slightly stronger than concerns.
I can usually see the differences when I journal.
That is one of the insights I've gained in the past five years of writing my 'morning pages'.
I use 'morning pages ex changeably with journal.
It sounds more manly for a 'real man'.