Sunday, January 4, 2015

Am I As Strong As I Think I Am?

The journey is underway. This is tougher than I thought, but I am learning so much so quickly. I am becoming more and more confident with myself and those around me, my decisions and my outcomes. I am grateful to be making these life changes because they are helping me live my life as a better person to those around me. I have already seen changes in my life at work, with friends, and especially my family. Who would have thought that being caring and loving, genuinely, would yield such positive results? I didn't. I often battled with the idea of being "strong-minded". I really thought I was an overall strong person because I was the way that I was. I implore everyone to think about themselves in regards to their decisions, actions, and mindsets. Ask yourselves this: Am I Strong or Stubborn?

This line is sometimes clear, but often very blurry. Both of these characteristics  have to do with conviction, confidence, and self-understanding; along with other traits. I thought about this because I used to think I was such a strong person. I'm not saying that I'm just weak or anything, but I'm not as strong as I thought I was. With the way I used to treat people, I thought I was exhibiting strength that a man should. I used to pride myself on not regretting anything, never going back on my word, never even crying! I thought that a man, let alone a person, shouldn't exhibit these things. There were times where I would talk with such disgust to people, for a reason I convinced myself that they deserved it, but in actuality they didn't. When it comes to people, especially women, they should never be talked down to. I used to pride myself on doing this. I took the whole "a women's place" mentality too far. I thought I was such a man playing mind games, being condescending, diverting attention away from my own issues and involvement; there was something wrong with me.

One thing I am learning, however, is that it takes a strong person to humble themselves.
I'd learned all of my life that Jesus was this humble being and this, in turn, made him a model to follow. I understood it in the realm of Catholicism, but not real life. I found a way, internally, to separate the two. It wasn't until recently that I realized how prideful I was. I also discovered how humble women actually are. It was completely eye-opening! I mean, they have the confidence to carry themselves like a woman should, yet they can humble themselves to follow a man's lead, while still holding things together. They sometimes admit their faults, admit their shortcomings, and even forgive people who are often undeserving. I absolutely love women. I can't live without them. I was raised around women and saw this trait in them, but for some reason, I didn't grasp that women should be treated with the same respect that they gave out. A man should humble himself, when necessary, for his woman, sister, mother, etc... This was an area where I was lacking. My stubborn ways got in the way of my potential strength. The least I could do is humble myself to let things go, or not complain, or even show more affection. The true measure of a man is how he treats the women in his life. It all starts with a woman.

If I can offer advice to the men reading: HUMBLE yourselves. Men, it's easy to get caught up in the "image" of being a man, instead of being the man your women need. Be strong. I don't mean work-out every day. I mean Emotionally strong. Mentally strong. Spiritually strong. This strength is something that will positively impact everything around you. If I can offer something else: Be mindful of who you share your gifts with. It's up to you to be a good judge of character to see how you are received. Some people aren't ready for the strength that we have to offer; it's up to you to keep your eyes open.
I'm working on my strength right now with the women in my life. My mother, my sisters, my grandmother, and my female friends. I have to be strong in practice in order for it to become a part of me. So far, it is being received well.

The Backseat Driver

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