Bring It In

Photo Credit: LittleLeague.com

When I was a kid, I played a ton of sports including soccer, baseball, and football. And I’ve coached my fair share of sports with my two daughters. One of the things that you experience in these environments is the thrill of competition, the camaraderie of the team with its different strengths and weaknesses, as well as the personalities that permeate the team to try to make it a cohesive, successful unit.

Before and after each practice as well as before and after each game, I would remember the coaches yelling to all the kids “BRING IT IN” when they had something to discuss with the team. And as I grew into coaching my youngsters, I did the same thing. When you bring the team in, you have them huddle around you for some advice, some strategy, some wisdom, and some planning. Everyone on the team comes in close, watches the coach and listens. This is the main time that a coach truly bonds with his team as well as the time the team gets the coach to have a good discussion about why they’re all there, and what they all must do to succeed. Unless you’re coaching toddlers, then they are eating bugs, crying, or picking their noses. It’s really like herding cats.

The whole point of the gathering on the field, sidelines, or in the dugout, is to get the team focused, either assess or re-assess the situations and identify problems or issues during practice to work on, as well as getting all the team to understand concepts that they’re either to work on or did well.

It’s a tiny lecture hall outside that everyone can get on the same page, pull back from the action of practice to have an honest discussion about what worked, what didn’t, and how to move forward. It gives the team and coaches a chance to reflect on practice and games and what they did well, as well as what didn’t work. Each player takes time to assess their own strengths and weaknesses all while analyzing what takeaways there were from each play. What were the key plays? What hurt us? What helped us?

Today’s blog entry is about “Bringing It In”. What does it mean in context to you trying to get control of your life? Read on to understand.

Credit: soccertoday.com

Simplify, Don’t Overreach

So what does this have to do with life in general? Well, in my life, I had to assess my current situation. I was a mess. All over the place. Many things are unfinished not only in my home and my work but also in things that were undone in my side hustle. Podcasts, interviews, writing my book, I needed to focus. My finances were a mess as well. Everything wasn’t completed, laying about and I was flailing. So I decided to take control.

First were my finances. What are you paying for that you don’t necessarily need right now? Subscriptions that you have for stuff you don’t watch. Paying for games on your phone you don’t play. Services you don’t use.

Get rid of that stuff. Then, when you get your finances back, you can then truly identify good services versus bad. What are you using? What can you live without? There are short term cuts I made as well as long term cuts that will save me more money. My debit card got stolen so as I was looking at my figures, I truly realized it was death by 1000 cuts in terms of expenses. Strangely enough, thinking all of this clearing would be difficult, it only took a 20-minute assessment and a few phone calls and clicks of my mouse to be cleared of some much needed monthly revenue that I could use to pay my debt. Clear the clutter.

Then my job. So many unfollowed leads, so many unanswered emails, so many voicemails. Get to them all and get them out of the way. Then, when your phone rings, answer it. When you get an email, reply promptly. Get rid of all of your junk mail. Drop your to-do pile in the dust and fix the other piles on your desk. Clear the clutter.

Next was my home. So many projects undone, clothes piling up, dishes, errands that had to be run. I had drywall to repair, toilets to fix, lights to install, and other items. When I first moved in 4 years ago, I let the stuff sit while I hoped my life would get better. All of a sudden, one day, I decided to get up and get it done and my life, surprisingly enough, got better. Less to do when I got home meant more to do on things I loved. Clear the clutter.

My side hustle has been a mess. Keeping up on podcast episodes I didn’t feel were meeting the standards meant shutting it down to re-tool. I stopped writing for Youtube, Twitter and other aspects, when what I really needed to do what write and write a lot. I needed to clear my head and focus on what was really important to me, the written word. I have a book I’m working on, so I needed to drop back and punt on all the other crap I was trying to take care of. Clear the clutter.

Jordan Peterson’s first rule is “clean your room”, and it really hits home how much it really does help you clear not only the spaces in your life but also in your mind. It’s amazing how many things can get built up, not managed and can just flat out overwhelm you. Powerlessness is never a good feeling and if there is one thing I mention over and over again in my blogs and on my Twitter (@TW_Beckett) is that to truly start to improve your life, you need to have your finger on every button in it, watching it carefully and making sure you are making moves with nothing hindering you.

So I’m bringing it in. I’m hitting pause, stepping back, assessing my goals, strengths, and weaknesses and then moving forward in a direction that I know will be the most beneficial for me.

Always Be Recalibrating

Life can get out of control. You can spread yourself too thin. Your expenses get out of control. You have too much on your plate. Too many irons in the fire dulls the heat.

One thing that I was guilty of was always diving in headfirst before figuring out if this particular path would be a good idea and how would it be beneficial to me. As a recovering nice guy, I would plow forward to help people without regarding my own feelings. This was a recipe for disaster. I sometimes slip back into that thinking, but with my new conditioning, I tend to catch myself very quickly before falling back into old ways. But it still does happen. You have to always be recalibrating your life to make sure you are getting the most out of it and doing the most to try and improve it. The problem? Most men don’t do this and when something bad happens, they look around for organized mobility and get nothing but a crap sandwich. Don’t get caught with a mess on your hands.

As many of you know, my current life path reflects this blog and my thoughts are written down as quickly as I can get pen to paper. This was on my mind last night and this morning I have taken steps to unclutter my life and prepare for a better future.

Many men feel the task of cleaning up is so daunting that they leave the mess and you see it from the way they carry themselves to the way they work to the way they live. They are suffering from this heavy burden of not doing the work to get things cleaned up and it weighs them down. I know because I was one of those men. After things out of your control destroy your life, the only thing many men do is just look around, survey the damage and say “fuck it” and either move on or stay stuck. The men who prosper are those who refuse to let any setback define them. Clear the clutter.

Like a coach at the end of practice asks the players to “bring it in”, you must stop all the business and activity to assess your own life. Take all of it in. Remove that which weighs you down. Is this adding value to my life? Or is it an unnecessary burden? Addition by subtraction.

So get to work clearing the clutter of your own life.

And always stay vigilant to how you can continue to improve your life all while clearing the clutter and making moves to establish yourself.

It’s your life, clean it up.

GetFitLiving.com

In honor of Veteran’s day, this week on my blog, I’ll be promoting veterans and their products.

Today is a man whom I recently had the pleasure of meeting in person. @GFL_Colton

He’s ex-army and has an amazing exercise apparel company: getfitliving.com.

GetFitLiving.com

Colton has done amazing things himself, losing a ton of weight and getting into shape. His company has all types of athletic shirt apparel, from hoodies to tank tops to t-shirts. You’ll hit your fitness goals and hit them while looking great in his stuff.

Please consider supporting this Army man in his mission. He provides top-quality athletic apparal.

The Family Alpha and The Fraternity of Excellence

In honor of Veteran’s day, this week on my blog, I’ll be promoting veterans and their products.

Today is a man I consider a huge mentor in my life, Hunter Drew.

He’s an amazing presence on this side of the internet and has and continues to do so much for so many men.

His website, thefamilyalpha.com, is a fantastic resource for men looking to turn their lives around and learn about what it takes to be masculine.

And his organization, The Fraternity of Excellence, is a proud group of great men working together to help other men, hold each other accountable, and support men in their journies.

Please consider supporting this Navy man in his mission. He provides so much for men to make themselves better.

As a member of FoE, I have nothing but amazing stories of men who’ve reached out to me, and men that I’ve reached out to.

Standards

As I was growing up and getting into the dating pool, two sentences resonated with me that I was constantly told by family, friends, and other acquaintances.

“Don’t be picky. You’ll die alone if you are.”

I was equipped with these sentences for the entirety of my early dating career in my 20’s. I lowered my standards and really tried to get out and date people because I was told this was the case. Despite their flaws, I tried to see through them. I usurped my personal preferences for believing I would be sexually attracted to people regardless of their physical appearance. Needless to say, I was disappointed early and often.

So, I went out and tried to date different women (and failed), culminating in a marriage to a flawed, but beautiful human being who I truly loved. She was awesome and I thought she was the one for me. I was wrong. And I found out the hard way that my lack of good vetting and dating turned this into a dead end marriage, which ended after a decade.

So what happened? Well, as I’ve said countless times on this blog, I didn’t do what I needed to do to truly find the person for me. I would marry the first woman who could stand to be in a room with me for a few minutes straight and that would be it. Sex would be great, until it wasn’t, but that’s okay because she said yes. I was desperate and desperation never leads to anything good.

But the attitude that led up to my divorce was what truly changed in me. It was time for me to accept the fact that it was my way or the highway.

What’s Important

The one thing that really started my turn around was realizing the fact that this was my life and I was going to live it my way. Regardless of what other people said, I had to break free of what others were projecting on me about what THEY thought was best for me. I needed to have standards for who was going to be in my life. So, as I was mired in my divorce, I started to check people off of my list from those who supported me to those who didn’t. I was so afraid to lose people that I would keep people I knew weren’t good for me in my life. So, I had to let those folks go.

I wasn’t going to live by their standards. I had my own standards to develop and grow. And as I developed these standards for friends, family and potential love interests, I knew what to look for.

I was told countless times that my standards were too high and that I was never going to get a girlfriend if I kept such high standards. “No woman can reach those standards. You can’t have the perfect woman. Women have imperfections just like everyone else.”

I agree. But I also believe in my own self worth and my value on the sexual market place has skyrocketed since I became a better version of myself.

And I don’t care if I die alone. Loved ones want to put the fear of God in you by telling you that you’ll die alone and it’s a huge fear for many men who are my age. So they jump on the first thing that makes them feel like they won’t die alone, and make a huge mistake in the process, costing them countless years and dollars to get out of yet another marriage they didn’t think through.

What’s scarier? Dying alone or living in poverty paying multiple women alimony and child support because you didn’t do your homework on what you wanted?

First step first. You need to have standards. First? Standards for yourself. Self confidence and self love are imperative to you growing and developing standards for your life.

So if you’re going to date, you better damn well love yourself and have your stuff locked in before you go imposing standards on who you’re dating.

This is a step that cannot be skipped and has to be done in order to move forward in your dating life. And no matter how long it takes, DON’T compromise your standards for any woman, regardless of how attractive she is. Many men will drop their list in 5 seconds when a hot girl starts to show interest. These are iron clad standards, convictions and missions that you must stick by, regardless of any woman and her attempts to subvert them.

That’s the main difference between the me now and the me then.

I now have a choice to let women go when I see fit if they don’t play by my rules (or my frame). And that means that they have to work to get my attention.

As Rollo Tomassi says, “you are the prize”. This is primary in your thinking on your standards.

Many men don’t think this way in this day and age but it’s time they did again.

The Dating Scene and Your Worth

One thing you will start to see as you assert your new found worth is that the dating scene will be a fun game for you. You will be able to firmly stand by your standards and vet women with more accuracy.

When you aren’t under any pressure internally from “dying alone” or settling for something you want, you have all the power in the world.

You can make decisions without the clouded judgement of others watching you or your own thirst for women making a decision you will most certainly regret.

When you control yourself, you control your world. And that’s an amazing thing.

So you’re out there and like me, you aren’t getting hits or you aren’t getting any dates. You increase your pool you pull from.

You meet and date as many women as you can and apply your standards to the best and brightest.

You are your own episode of the Bachelor, dumping and promoting women as you see fit. But you have to get out and get them, and you have to maintain your high quality or you can’t move on.

But, like me, you’ll have times when it’s dry. So you either make things happen, or you push and develop your own interests into something tangible and real that enhances your persona.

Take up dance, boxing, hell, even knitting. SOMETHING to make you more interesting and something to make your life worth living. Something you enjoy. Don’t do it just for the girls, do it because you want to.

Here’s the deal. Before, I was just a dude with a job. Now?

I’m a writer. I own my own business. I enjoy off course racing and obstacle courses. I enjoy being a good father. I work out. I hike. I love the outdoors. I’m a dog lover. I’m a podcaster. I have my own recording studio. I’m learning how to box.

See what I mean? See how interesting your life is without having to make it about a woman? It’s really that easy.

But you have to own it. Everything you say, you do. Don’t try to pretend and make your life something it isn’t. It’s yours and yours alone, but it has to be real. You can’t fake it. You have to live it.

So there you are. It’s okay to have standards. It’s okay to live your life your way.

It’s okay if you have standards. You have to. If you don’t, you get into big trouble.

Hold yourself high, make yourself a better person, and make people rise to you.

The Waiting

Photo Credit: “Hard Promises” – Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers 1981

One of my all time favorite Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers albums is “Hard Promises”, an album that really took TP and his band new and amazing directions. Stevie Nicks makes a guest appearance on the album, and this album was the same time the smash hit “Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around” was recorded on Nick’s album “Bella Donna”.

When the album came out, I was 5 years old. One of my first vivid memories was driving to visit my grandparents and listening to “The Waiting”, one of my all time favorite songs by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. I remember driving down to Franklin, IN on a warm, crisp autumn Sunday, listening to the radio. I remember hearing my mom and dad talking, being in the car with my brothers and older sister, all making our way down to visit. We would always hit the Jerry’s restaurant on our way back up from the visit. It was a knock off of a Frisch’s Big Boy, but it was locally owned and was a great place for families to gather after church or visits to family on Sundays. I just really remember the song, the feeling it gave me on that day, and what it meant to me, then and now, which I’ll be sharing today in this blog post.

“The waiting is the hardest part
Every day you see one more card
You take it on faith, you take it to the heart
The waiting is the hardest part.”

That song, for some unknown reason, really stuck in my mind. This was about two people who were in love but had to wait to realize this love. For me, it seems every time I heard this song, I was in a holding pattern always hoping to be somewhere new, but never, ever going out to get to that new place. Hope and faith are only as good as the person who makes them happen.

What Do You Do When It’s Not Happening?

I’ve been contacted in recent days by no less than half a dozen men, telling me their stories about how they are working to turn their lives around. Several have inquired about my 31 Days To Masculinity journey, day 26 as of this writing, and how I’ve managed to swear off of porn, alcohol, and other vices in my quest to become a better me.

Yes, I’ve had many successes, however, my goals are still not there yet. I want to reach 15% body fat. I want to do Spartan races next year, I want to continue to grow my side hustle and start a new YouTube series (Journey’s Edge with Tim Beckett, stay tuned for details). I want to continue to help men in their individual journeys while showing them mine and what they can accomplish when they put their heads down and work to make their life theirs again. I want to be debt free except the house and be financially independent. I want to date around and continue to hone my approach game as well as get into an LTR with a woman who supports me and my mission.

While some major things have been checked off my list, look at all the things I still have to do! And even when I write this, I’m overwhelmed at all that I want to accomplish. I can tell you that over these past three years, I have developed several key talents that have made it better for me. I have developed perseverance. I don’t give up as easily as I used to. I have developed being humble and taking the losses to learn what I can do better.

But one aspect that I haven’t been able to get control of is my impatience. And this is the heart of this blog post. I’m terribly impatient and I want to achieve my goals immediately because if I do, I can move on to the next goal. I fall back into an old mindset that if I get to my goals I can either relax or be happy. “If I get there, I’ll be happy.” It’s words I’ve uttered more than once in my life and it most certainly has been uttered by millions of men when they try to change their lives.

But here’s the deal. I was always concerned with “The Waiting”. It wasn’t happening fast enough.

When you are sitting home alone because you’re broke and can’t go out to meet women, what are you doing in the meantime? When you are sitting around watching TV, what could you be doing instead? My impatience has been preempted a bit by my work on other goals. This is the mindset I’ve been trying to have and while effective, it can escape me sometime and I can fall back into the “when will this happen?” routine.

Many men have come to me in the midst of their fasting, no porn, no sugar, etc, points in their life and are wondering if it all is really worth it. They are struggling with this dramatic change in their lives and many men fall off within 2 weeks of making the change. They sit and just wait for things to get better, as opposed to going out and making other aspects of their lives good. Or like I did, they won’t do anything and HOPE their lives will turn around, and the waiting absolutely destroys their minds. It isn’t easy. I never said it was.

But recently, I’ve really been noticing these spells of impatience that I have, especially with 31 Days to Masculinity running in my background. I haven’t approached as much as I wanted to, simply because I was involved in other things. I’ve been focusing on myself, my physical shape, my daughter’s health, and my finances to try and get my life to where I want it. So when I’m not seeing as many girls as I’d like or approaching as much as I’d like, I get down on myself and then I get impatient.

So I have to say to myself, “Tim, shit’s not going to happen overnight. Things take time to develop. Work on other aspects and address those as you wait for this part to take shape.”

It’s difficult dating being a father of two, business owner, and entrepreneur, but that’s not an excuse. I own my life and when I do things I’m not happy with (or in this case not doing things) I get down on myself. The pity party starts. The good news? I know when this feeling comes I have to chin up and get to work on other aspects of my life, even when this aspect isn’t where I want it to be.

Keep in mind also, with dating, my standards have risen. With many women waiting in the wings who I could sleep with and I’ve chosen not to (ham planets, psychopaths, or girls with no direction or intelligence), I can say that my lapse on the dating path has been self induced. Is it a lapse though? Or is it a move to vet better knowing that I’m a better product? I think it’s the latter and it makes me feel better about my direction.

Get Through It

One of the main things I tell men is that the best way to get through any addiction is to just tough it out. It’s what I did and I feel better for it.

There are no tricks, there are no shortcuts.

If you want to stop porn, you have to stop it and get rid of all the catalysts for your masturbation habit. Trash the skin bin, trash all of your bookmarks, get rid of the stuff that tempts you.

I didn’t like myself when I masturbated. I was slave to something that I thought I couldn’t control. But guess what? I could and do control it now.

I go to a bar and order a WATER. Wanna talk about self control? I get weird looks but I also get resounding thanks when I escort dumb shits out of the bar who have had too much. I saw how I was when I had too much to drink. I saw what I became. I didn’t want to be that person anymore. So here I am.

But guys….IT’S DIFFICULT.

It’s supposed to be. If it wasn’t worth it, it wouldn’t take this work to get there. My shoulders wouldn’t be on fire every time I get down to do my pushups. My stomach wouldn’t hurt in the midst of a 20 hour fast. My brain wouldn’t fire while I’m waiting for all of the good shit to happen.

But the good shit is already happening! I can take my shirt off without feeling embarrassed. How awesome is that?

The “waiting” in my case, is the best part of my life. It’s what you’re doing while the good shit is coming that truly defines your life.

Which is why Tom Petty says “Oh baby don’t it feel like heaven right now
Don’t it feel like something from a dream.”

It’s because the dream, the thrill of living, beats the thrill of getting something you want everyday and twice on Sunday. You have to get used to loving the journey and not what you get at the end of that journey.

It’s like at Christmas. I love the presents I get, but I really love to spend time with my family, because you never know when you’ll not be there to see them.

This is why it’s important to take the impatience you’re feeling, the waiting, and continue to enjoy the mission that you’re on. Continue your work and enjoy the time you are using to grow and mature yourself.

I always say to every man that comes to me, struggling to take control of his life:

“It gets better.”

It does. I can attest to that.

So the next time you have time to be impatient about things not happening as quickly as you want them to, try to push through and realize just what you are doing, or how far you’ve come, or where you are going.

Look around at all that you are doing RIGHT NOW and realize that good things are happening, even if you don’t see them.

Be patient. It’s a process that will reward those who follow it with an amazing journey, not a destination. Just remember:

The waiting is the hardest part
Every day you get one more yard
You take it on faith, you take it to the heart
The waiting is the hardest part

The Unending Journey

Scene from “Parenthood” – 1989

One of my favorite all time movies is a show from 1989 called “Parenthood”. This movie, which spawned a series in the past decade of the same name, deals with many issues that we still face in our lives today, and the comedic spin on the whole story of life is one I love to re-watch over and over.

In the movie, four sects of the “Buckman” family live the trials and tribulations of life with all of the classic struggles that families get to experience. From birth, to mental illness, to teen pregnancy, to relationship issues, it covers a wide swath of things that every family deals with, and more often than not, overcomes and grows from.

There’s a particular scene in the movie that I love. It’s a scene where Steve Martin is about to coach his son’s last little league game. His son has been struggling with mental illness and anxiety, and has been the goat each game as he can’t catch a fly ball. So Steve Martin has been practicing with his son, as well as absorbing some of his stress, and has been having problems coming to terms with his son’s issues. Along with those issues, he’s quit his job, has two other kids to deal with, and has just found out that his wife is pregnant with their fourth child.

So, in the midst of all of this crisis, he reaches out to his father, Jason Robards, for advice. And the advice he gives is incredible, and the subject of this blog post.

“It Never Ends.”

The scene in question is a conversation between father and son concerning life’s moments, including joys and crises. Steve Martin wants to know when all the craziness will stop, but Jason Robards tells him it doesn’t.

“It never ends. There is no end zone. You never cross the goal line, spike the ball and do your touchdown dance. Never.”

This one quote, this one snippet, tells you all you need to know about life as a man in general.

This is what unplugging is all about in terms of your life. There are millions of blue pilled men out there that have given up on being prepared for life and accept their mediocrity as a life sentence for not exploring and proliferating their own goals. They want to relax, be safe, be comfortable, and be “themselves” in a fat, oafish shell, just waiting for the next ball game or Netflix series to come out. What they don’t understand, or maybe don’t WANT to understand, is the journey is the goal.

It’s taken me years to figure this out. I was one of them. I was comfortable letting my ex run the show. I wanted to stay out of the fire. I hate getting burned, the pain was unbearable, and the best way out was to avoid the pain.

But then I went through the agony of divorce. The uncertainty of it all, my finances in disarray, the toll on myself and my kids. I’d avoided the fire my whole life only to voluntarily set myself and my life on fire. Why? Because it wasn’t my life. I was living someone else’s life. All the sacrifices were for the betterment of someone else. So, I decided to watch it burn and rebuild a life that I could be proud of.

The most important thing I learned was I could no longer sit this one out. It couldn’t be done. The price of turning my fake life into ashes was I had to build a new life with blood, sweat, and tears. A car can’t drive without someone at the wheel and I was at the wheel now. Any weave, swerve or jive was on me. 10 and 2, seat belt fastened, watching others and keeping myself safe, yet on a journey. But always aware.

So How’s It Gonna Be?

So, now you know the secret of life. The big key to everything and being a high value, high experience, high octane masculine figure in 2019. It’s being present for your life.

I now understand that there will be men who don’t take this mantra personally and up their game in their life. It took me a while to understand that not everyone can or wants to be saved. There are men who won’t wake up, won’t realize what they have to do, and will sleep walk through life. They have that luxury, but I don’t have to agree with it.

So what’s next. Now that you know you have to be present in your life, what do you need to do? Well, a man has to increase his strength and fortitude to be able to manage this Herculean task. A body and mind that are constantly challenged gain in strength. So you have to strengthen your mind, body and spirit. The first and most obvious thing that I always tell a man who wants control of his life is to get control of his body.

Your body, spirit and mind must be melded into a frame that can withstand life’s snakes and arrows (h/t RUSH). Your body reacts to stress on itself by getting stronger and being able to carry heavier loads. Your mind becomes sharper when you throw different perspectives and ideas at it. Your spirit becomes greater when you live outside of your box and appreciate the world around you.

These things MUST to occur in order for you to any say in your own life. You can’t half ass your life. You need to whole ass it. What kind of a person only takes their life seriously part of the time? Answer? One who doesn’t take any of it seriously.

So, remember the words of Frank Buckman well. It never stops, it never ends, you just get stronger.

When you heed these very important words, you understand that you will be a better person for it, and be able to live your life with no regrets.

And all because you didn’t stop. You were making your life happen.

A Letter to Myself

Photo Credit: VisitSpokane.com

Dear Tim,

How’s it hanging? This is you writing to you. I wanted to say how proud of you I am for all that you have accomplished so far in this life. I can say that the last 2 years of this (so far) 43 year journey have been some of the best in your life.

You know, you’ve been through a ton of stuff in the past 4 years. They always say you have to hit rock bottom before you can get to the top, and they weren’t kidding. Between battling depression, anxiety, obesity, and monetary problems, you’ve been there. You were suicidal, but I want to tell you, I’m so glad you chose to live you life. Killing yourself is the most selfish act in the world, but it’s even worse because you wouldn’t have seen the heights that you have risen to as well as the heights that you no doubt will get to in this life.

I want you to know something. I love you and I’m proud of you.

However, this isn’t a reflection on what you’ve done, this is a reflection on what you are and would do. This is a reflection on what you still have left to accomplish. This isn’t a swan song for a live well lived, this is a battle cry for continuing to hoist the shield wall of your life every day. This is setting the “what would I do?” from the “what will I do?”

This is your wake up call, even if you think you’re still awake. You aren’t woke enough yet, sir.

I want you to answer this question. What would you do if you died today? What things would you regret not doing?

What are your goals, wishes, dreams for this remaining life?

Answer truthfully. Because I already know what you are going to say.

What would you regret? Here goes:

You should’ve gone to Argentina when you had the chance. In college, you had a glorious opportunity to go and do a major in Spanish. You would’ve been immersed in a beautiful country for 6 months. Yes, it would’ve been some debt, but the life experiences you would have had can not be replaced. Yet you just wanted to get out of college and get a job, girlfriend, house, car, etc. You know what you missed. Don’t do that again.

You needed to work other places besides your father’s business. You needed to explore your interests, rather than putting yourself in a position that you didn’t have any flexibility. While this has worked out in the end with you owning your own business, fulfilling one of your top goals, it still would’ve helped you more in your life to have those experiences.

You needed to go and try new hobbies. You didn’t have a damn clue on what your interests were until you were over 40 and starting over. You have a life in your 20’s and 30’s meant for exploring life and living, not working and trying to check off someone else’s goals.

You’d regret not dating around more. You know the spice of life and the way to truly find your partner in this life is to date as many women as you can. And yet, you sit in an office much of the time running the same places, never looking for new avenues or new leads. They won’t come to you. Time to switch up and get out there more and more.

I know what you are going to say. There’s a ton more. These are just the ones I can think of on my mind at the moment. Think of your wishes. What do you want to do with the rest of your life? Allow me to tell you.

You want to travel. You want to explore. You want to meet new people. You want to strengthen bonds of people you already know. You want to continue to be successful in business, learning new skills like sales and ownership.

You want to be independently wealthy. You want to get your finances in order. You have 20k left of debt. You can get past this damn wall. You will. You will be financially independent. You want to earn a good salary from your side hustle and writing a book is a huge goal. Get to work.

You want to continue to help men who reach out for help. You want to make sure that they don’t make the same mistakes you do. You want to share your life and make your mistakes an example of what not to do.

You want to continue your fitness journey. You’ve lost a ton of weight, but you still have that six pack that’s waiting for you on the other side of hard work. You want to do Spartan. Get new T-shirts and medals, get more trifectas, compete in the Elites. You’ll get there, don’t stop.

You want to learn new things, read, absorb. You want to learn to box, fight, and protect your loved ones. You want to continue to learn more firearms training, as well as other outdoor activities.

You want to date around. You would love to have a harem. Don’t lie, you know you want two to three women sharing you. And if you keep doing what you’re doing and get out more, you’ll be there. GO TO NEW FREAKIN’ PLACES, BECKETT.

You want to be more involved with your kids. You already do a great job, but you need to do more. You need to exude a masculine leadership and be a role model for your kids. They’re counting on you.

But you know deep down, at some point, you want an LTR with a woman who supports you and your mission.

But most of all, you want to continue to grow. You have come so far, done so much. But this is only the beginning. You have to do more, better, faster, and harder.

You will make excuses, you have in the past. This morning, for instance, you made an excuse that you wanted to sleep in instead of going to the gym. You didn’t. You went. You worked. I’m glad you did. Your body and mind are glad.

No more excuses. Go up to that girl. Ask her out. Take your kids places to experience life. To be the best they can be. To live without regrets.

Bottom line: You’re an amazing person. You’ve decided after a tough divorce to live your life. You are taking opportunities instead of making excuses. But you can’t let up on the gas. The time when you think of giving up is the time you need to push the envelope. It’s time for you to do more, be more, try more and accomplish more.

For 40 years I wasn’t able to say this, but I love you, Tim Beckett. I love every part of you. You are an incredible man, amazing father, and lifelong friend. You have a ton going for you, don’t squander it. I know you won’t.

Love,

TW Beckett (You)

The Sale

Photo Credit: “The New Yorker”

So, you’ve decided to go to a new church. You’ve heard great things about it. Your friends are raving about the spiritual content, the great speakers, the fantastic music, and the real down home community feel.

It’s a startup church, just working on building it’s flock. How are they going to persuade you to come to their church? They don’t have the main church built yet, so they’re having to use a school auditorium for Sunday service, but the people are great, and they really focus on positive aspects of the religion they believe in. But they have other great aspects that they showcase. A great priest and message, good music, a welcoming environment, and other bonuses make this church one of the best up and coming places to worship.

So why go? You’re curious. You want to see more. You want to explore and know why and how they praise their God. You want to see if you have things in common with the congregation. You want to feel comfortable with as much as you can before you commit. You won’t give money to an organization you don’t trust. So you try to do as much homework as you can to make sure you make the right choice.

So with this in mind, think about sales in general. How is this church going to continue to exist? With money. With donations. With a flock. They have to get butts in the pews or they’ll fold. So they have to give you options and attractive things to want to donate to. This isn’t manipulation, it’s the church knowing human nature and how to sell. If they do well, they’ll survive and thrive. If they don’t, it’s closing the doors.

When a life coach sells you on a positive mind set training book, or a psychic sells you on being able to talk to spirits, or Taco Bell sells you on a taco shell made out of a Dorito, you are being presented with a choice to partake in said activity for money, or not. You can easily walk out and go somewhere else. But at that moment, you have a choice. Now, many of these sales people will try to sweeten the deal by studying how humans generally react to certain sales tactics, or they’ll practice other tricks of the trade to try to close the sale. And many will fail, but some do better than others. Why?

Simple. They’ve studied human nature. Advertisers spent decades not only perfecting their product, but also making you want it. Not because they’re manipulating you, but because they just play the game better than others do. They know the rules and they push every avenue to win over their client base from the competition.

This isn’t using cheat codes, this is just someone who’s practiced, understands reactions, and knows how to sell his product. You just have to be smart enough to see through the bullshit.

Lately, there has been a misnomer to game and PUA (pick up artistry) that it’s manipulation, pure and simple. However, it isn’t. It never has been.

“Coffee’s For Closers”

Photo Credit: “Glengarry Glen Ross”

Pickup / Game started when a bunch of dorks, geeks, nerds, and sexually irrelevant men decided that hypergamy and female sexual empowerment wasn’t going to leave them out in the cold. They wanted sex with hot girls (as most men want) and they weren’t going to let their limitations hold them back. So they studied. And they practiced. And they used canned lines to elicit emotional reactions from females. They were shot down, but more and more, as they got better at their craft. They learned about human nature, learned about advertising their strengths and masking their weaknesses. They got so good they would go to great lengths to sell themselves. Mystery, quite possibly the greatest PUA of all time, used to dress in high platform heels, black everything, black top hat, black fingernail polish. No woman in a million years would go to bed with him, right?

Wrong. He made the case that PUA is sales, pure and simple. Many women bought and bought often. Many did not. But one thing’s for sure, women who slept with him didn’t have buyer’s remorse. They WANTED to sleep with him, they wanted what he was selling, and they lined up for it. They were unapologetic about it, even going so far as to share him with other women. Why? He was selling a good product.

In my excellent article “The Sexual Arms Race“, I talk about what men had to do to respond to female sexual empowerment and hypergamy being let off the leash in the 60’s and 70′. They had to adapt. There were many men who were going to be left out in the cold when it came to having sex with beautiful women, so (and some PUA’s from back then should today be considered autistic) nerds, dweebs and geeks analytically attacked a problem and studied it. And the sale they came up with was better than guys who had been naturally better with women by a country mile. They tapped into human nature and studied, practiced getting shot down but building their confidence, and at the pinnacle of their success, would snatch girls away from men who were considered higher value or even celebrity.

Did these men plant key phrases in these women to get them to do things? Did they hypnotize them and make them go against their will? Did they trick them into sleeping with them?

Hardly. They merely practiced and learned to play the game better than their competition. And women were buying. Many women.

Making The Sale

“What differentiates sellers today is their ability to bring fresh ideas.” -Jill Konrath

Back in the early parts of this century, PUA was gaining a foothold because guys were trying sales tactics that no one had ever thought of trying. Sales, in all of it’s intricacies, is at it’s heart about persistence. You have to keep getting up and going out there, believing in you, your product, and your company. You’re not going to reach anyone if you don’t get in front of them.

This is the absolute heart and soul of game and PUA teaching. The whole idea of canned lines, routines, and other tactics was to get you in front of women, get you confident in yourself in those women, and get you confident in the product that was you. That’s it. It wasn’t some elaborate scheme to trick someone into sleeping with you, nor was it a pyramid scheme to steal anything from anyone.

It was just a bunch of guys wanted to get laid by pretty girls.

They made the sale in their own ways. Mystery and Style (Neil Strauss) used pea-cocking. Ross Jefferies used speed seduction. Tyler Durden and the gang used Real Social Dynamics. The bottom line of all of these? A way of selling a product. That product is you. And some women don’t buy, and some women do. The point? They buy because there’s a demand for the product, not because the product hypnotizes them into doing something they don’t want to do.

Sales becomes manipulation when the outcome isn’t what the buyer wanted or expected.

There’s an old saying in my industry that “you can’t buy a steak from McDonald’s”. If you know what you’re buying, you can’t be upset when the product isn’t as good as you thought. As with everything, you as the buyer need to research your purchases, not get mad when the product doesn’t live up to unreal expectations that you had.

When women call PUA or game, manipulation, they are essentially participating in buyer’s remorse. They were sold a product that didn’t live up to it’s billing, so they claim they were coerced into buying in. That way, they can’t be blamed for making a bad choice, and they can demonize a group of guys who simply wanted to have sex with hot girls by trying to sell themselves. The women will claim a “mystical, back door, shady” approach is what sold them, when they could’ve easily walked away and taken their “money” somewhere else.

We are seeing a society today that holds businesses to an unbelievable standard. They want service quick, food hot, and an amazing experience, or they’ll be on Yelp! quicker than you can say “bad customer review.”

Businesses are adapting but we quickly blame others for our own failures and shortcomings in actually researching what we buy. And when we get burned? We bad mouth the establishment and make it their problem. Same principle applies to dating, game and pick up.

Women realize they’ve been sold something they shouldn’t have bought, so they claim poor product, rather than taking the time to understand why they bought this. They state they were clearly “tricked”, “manipulated”, or other reasons because they wouldn’t be caught dead having sex with this “loser”. “I’m better than this,” she says to herself. She’s been manipulated by a dork. But what she doesn’t understand is that she made that choice to sleep with him.

So, remember this ladies. No one is manipulating you. No one is tricking you into sleeping with them. You have free will to walk away and not buy, and many of your colleagues do this every day to guys coming up to them. So why are you different? You aren’t.

If a product, slogan, or advertisement controls your free will and choice, perhaps you need to not be as pliable to those techniques and be more mindful of your personal choices and wants.

Stop having buyer’s remorse and blaming the PUA and game community for “manipulating” you when they are only selling a product. Take responsibility for your own actions and you will be certain the next product you “buy” will be one you actually like.

Making Amends

As I chronicle my journey through this life, I’ve had a great chance to look back in retrospect and analyze my mistakes, especially bigger ones that I haven’t made peace with yet. Many people, including myself, wrestle with huge issues that they can’t or won’t let go of, adding to the internal burden that plagues many of us.

We all carry these burdens, but when I started 31 Days to Masculinity, and started reading it’s pages, I realized that all of this introspection and self analysis would have to come to a head. And I was really excited about it.

Day 2 of this amazing program has been something I’ve been preparing for for about a month, as well as been thinking about for the past 4 years.

We as individuals all have irrefutable flaws that consume us. Many of us don’t let this ugly side of us out for fear of ridicule, embarrassment, consequences, and negative reactions. We are so intertwined with the belief that we MUST be accepted that we won’t ever let these truths see the light of day, doubling down and pushing them deep into our vaults, never to be opened.

But that only helps to weigh us down. It only holds us back to what we truly want to be. Authenticity requires harsh confessions about who we are as people. We cannot truly be ourselves until we come to grips with everything about us, no matter how ugly and uncomfortable the truth may be.

So, as I leafed through the pages of the book, I saw this second day as an opportunity to reach into myself and pull out a weight that has burdened me. Some secrets can’t be kept forever. It’s time to let go of this burden.

Friends Regardless of Life

So, the story begins in college. I met my college buddy as he moved into our dorm. We hit it off and he was what we would call a “natural” with the ladies. He was very good, always had a girlfriend, smart as a whip, and I knew he was destined for good things. He grew up three hours from where I lived. We hit it off and became fast friends.

As we grew older, we hung out quite a bit, I would spend time down at his place. I met his girlfriend and future wife and we all got along. While sometimes contentious, (we had been a bit combative, especially during a bachelor weekend where she was invited to the party by my friend), I managed to become friends with his wife. I was in their wedding.

Then, when I met my ex-wife and we got married, he was in my wedding. We were close friends and our wives got along well. So, we would plan trips to Mexico with each other and have a blast before we started to plan for kids, and even afterward.

As we both went through life, we tried to keep in touch, going to concerts and sporting events when we could, but as with everyone, our lives became more and more distant, but when we did get together, we would pick right back up, just like we were back in our college dorm.

Lonely and Stupid

So, as we grew older, we tried to keep in touch. And while we didn’t talk much, we still were able to enjoy our friendship.

Then, in 2014 and 2015, things changed. Life started to get in the way and we didn’t keep in touch very much at all. But there was one person that was keeping in touch with me, and it was my friend’s wife. I’d always see and chat with her on social media and we kept in touch more and more. She would always like my statuses, and I would talk to her about her life with my friend. One night, she called me out of the blue. I answered and we started talking. This started to occur more and more, and minutes on the phone would become a half hour, then an hour, then two. She had issues with my friend and I was the only one she could confide in.

She would complain constantly about his faults, his tendencies, his personality, his narcissism, his domineering. I would listen, knowing full well there wasn’t a damn thing I could do. She had cheated on him earlier in their marriage and this was a sore point in their marriage. She would always mention the movie “Sleeping With the Enemy” and how her life was just like it. So I’d listen, but as I started to get more listless in my marriage, I would talk back, complaining about my wife’s lack of sex drive and her problems. The sessions became therapeutic and we continued to talk, even as both of our marriages seem to have been falling apart.

Then, in the fall of 2014, as I was in the death throes of my flailing, failing marriage, I reached out and things started to get a bit more serious with her on the phone. We would talk for hours, connecting emotionally as two people that were struggling with loneliness in their lives. She’d complain how she had to sneak around with an alias because he knew everything about her, I would comment on my then wife’s attitude and lack of sex. We’d stay up late on the phone, her drinking wine, me drinking beer, and our spouses sleeping in the other rooms, and talk endlessly.

While not cheating in the official, we were cheating emotionally. We were both miserable and I was determined to leave my marriage, while hers was a bit more complicated and she was going to try to get him to go to counseling for his narcissism. Regardless, it started to get more heated between us every day we spoke. We stole time every day to get on the phone with each other. I knew it was wrong, but being in a state of depression and contemplating divorce, I was in need on an ear, and I admitted to her later that I had a crush on her and had had one for the past few years we’d spoken. It was wrong, I knew it, but I kept on. Stupid doesn’t begin to describe it.

It all came to a head one evening when I was in bed. I got a call very late from my friend, accusing me of having an affair with his wife. I told him we hadn’t (we lived 3 hours apart for one) and that she had reached out to me because she was unhappy with him, and I had then reached out to her because I was miserable in my marriage (this was the winter of 2015, just after I had separated from my then wife), and I had leaned on her. I tried to blame alcohol and how much I’d been drinking. It wasn’t going to fly.

He didn’t want to believe she reached out to me and he accused me of lying. I told the truth and continued to insist that even though she reached out first, I was the one who was the victim. I was bullshitting myself. Who the hell was I kidding?

So, after the brief phone altercation, I hung up. I knew what I did was wrong. But I didn’t want to face facts that I was trying to cheat and abetting someone else in their cheating.

So everything stopped. I blocked them both on social media. I needed to get away. It helped that I was going through my separation and divorce, so I distanced myself. I had fucked up with another man’s wife, my friend’s wife, and even if she had reached out first, I didn’t stop her and correct myself.

Time To Heal

4 years later, I found myself at a crossroads. I still had not spoken with either of them, but my friend has reached out to me a couple of times to try to bridge the gap. I think he understood that his wife had flaws and she was trying to reach out to me (they unfriended me on social media then both have friended me again), but I was still upset at myself for doing what I did. I wasn’t being honest with myself on what had happened, claiming victim hood status like I was completely innocent. But I wasn’t. Not even close.

So, this morning, I reached out to my friend. An olive branch I’ve been ignoring for two years is now mine to take. I realize that nothing will be the same, but perhaps, with this realization that my issues caused this rift, maybe, just maybe, I can close it. The door was opened, I just needed to walk through and put all of this behind me.

It’s time to heal and move forward. I’m ready.