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“Real men”

Confusing anger with passion
The fact is, you can help someone today
If my work has helped make a positive difference in your life, please consider saying thanks by making a donation. Every dollar makes a difference. If you cannot afford a dollar, consider leaving some positive feedback. Every form of encouragement is always appreciated. If you like it, encourage it. Thank you. ~ Zero Dean

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I see it frequently on social media…

Real men wear…”
Real men drink [brand]…”
Real men know how to…”
Real men drive [brand]…”
Real men like…”

No.

Real men. Real women. Real people like whatever they want to like and do whatever they want to do. Their preferences are not dictated by fads, popularity, or the social norm. They don’t like things in order to appear more appealing to others.

Real people act with authenticity. And authentic people listen to their inner voice and make their own decisions based on their personal preferences and experience.

So to say “Real men like…” is practically meaningless.

A “real” person is going to maintain their integrity regardless of the influence of outside forces — regardless of your desire that they like whatever it is you think they should like in order to be a “real” person.

To suggest otherwise is to suggest that you judge people based on whether they like or don’t like exactly the same things you do. And if they don’t, they’re not a “real” person.

To be real is to be authentic. To be real is to have a strong sense of self. To be real is to have a positive moral character. And above all, to be real is to have integrity.

Because…

A real person is going to like beer or mixed drinks or not drink at all.
A real person is going to eat meat or not.
A real person is going to like cats or dogs or none of the above.
A real person is going to be religious or not.
A real person is going to like watching sports or root for the same team as you or not.
A real person is going to drive an American made car or a foreign car or none at all.

The thing about “real” people is that you can’t tell them what to be — or who or what to like — and expect them to cater to you simply because you want them to. Real people are going to be real and make their own decisions and do what they want whether you approve of it or not.

Real people don’t exist to confine themselves to other people’s expectations. They’re not content with being labeled. They have no desire to fit within a box. They don’t cave in to peer pressure. And they don’t act with the intention of pleasing everyone.

And this is far more rare than it should be — and should be of far more value and far more desirable than a person who simply likes the exact same things you like, shares your exact point of view, or is easily influenced by the social majority or the flavor of the week.

Consider this the next time someone suggests “Real people…” do or like anything.

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Confusing anger with passion
The fact is, you can help someone today