The Chasm

Photo Credit: Suicide in Judaism

Four years ago this week, one of my good friends from college ended his life.

He was having a huge custody dispute with his ex-wife after she cheated on him with one of his friends. He was fighting for visitation rights for his two kids after he and his ex got into a fight and he was arrested and slapped with a restraining order. He had struggled for over a year with the divorce proceedings, losing his cool time and time again and seeing less and less of his kids.

So, the great equalizer, so he thought, was breaking in to his ex-wife’s apartment on a cold December Sunday and blowing his brains out in her dining room.

I can’t be sure of why he acted with such horrendous judgement. I can’t be sure that he was tired of the process and had no where to turn. He was alone, fighting for his kids, and getting kicked and punched in a metaphorical sense by the courts and his ex, so it seems plausible. He was looking for a symbolic gesture, the ultimate “fuck you” to his ex. I can’t put myself in his situation, although I’ve seen similar things happen to men, but I can’t possible fathom what he was thinking that terrible Sunday.

The story that seems to stick from his family and friends is that he was going to “make an example to his ex”.

What ended up happening was nothing like he planned.

His ex, after the initial shock, quietly called the police, had them clean up the mess, fake mourned with the kids, and resumed her life. Everything this horribly symbolic gesture he thought was supposed to get out of her, regret, sadness, misery, being lost, pining for him to come back, didn’t transpire. She cashed the life insurance check, went to the funeral, and then went on with her life.

That’s cold shit. But it’s also fucking reality.

The bottom line in this sad situation is that the only people affected by his selfish act were his kids, who don’t have a dad anymore, and his family, who are without a brother, uncle, and son.

The harsh truth: His ex didn’t give a flying fuck about his death.

His family has suffered for years this time of year because he decided to make a life ending decision. Instead of a holiday filled with happy times with him, his family mourns every year over the loss of this man.

And there lies the crux of why men are doing these terrible things to themselves.

Suicide in the United States is quickly becoming an epidemic. 7 out of 10 suicides are men. These men are similar in mindset to my friend. They feel they have to struggle with life’s problems alone, lest they be ridiculed and made to feel inferior for not dealing with their problems “like a man”. These men don’t go to therapy, as they think it makes them look weak, won’t solve their problems, or is a taboo brought down by other men who “have their lives together.” Society in general wants men to grow up and deal with their problems, but they give them absolutely no road map on how to accomplish that.

I’m sure, never in his wildest fantasies about his suicide, would he have imagined his ex coming in, taking a mop and bucket to his mess, wiping the walls with a wash cloth, and moving on with her life. Raw, isn’t it? It’s a messed up situation that he was hoping would end in his ex crying on his remains. But his story, just like all the others, ends the same. He’s not here anymore by his own hand. A selfish act intended to make a huge point ends up only costing some drywall, carpet, and bleach.

The chasm, or the breach that he was looking into, was one of symbolism, pain, hardship, and hopelessness that many men face everyday. But the issue here that I’m getting at is what they think they are doing by sacrificing their lives for some unknown principle, belief, or slight against someone, doesn’t even affect that person most of the time.

Men who feel they have no where to turn will often take their own lives because they lack any sort of out for their overwhelming feelings of depression. Many don’t want to go to therapy, join a men’s group, or talk to a religious leader because they fear they will look weak, be ridiculed, or have their dirty laundry aired to the congregation during Sunday brunch.

So they double down on doing the things they were doing that weren’t working to get out of the hole they’re in. Their feelings of potential embarrassment about being “broken” or needing help override their very real need to seek out professional or group help.

Don’t Be Afraid to Get Help

As I write this, I think about my own denial about getting help for my issues, until I actually broke down and went to a therapist. While therapy is STILL to this day looked down upon as being weak for men to do by society, it was the greatest thing that I have ever done. Not only did it help me get out of a tailspin of a marriage, it also got me my life back. It got me through the depression and rock bottom parts of my divorce where I was contemplating doing the same damn thing my friend did 4 years ago.

I got help, and I’m here today to tell men once again that getting help from someone, any one, will save your lives. But you have to reach out. Trust me, the help is there. I’ve found a men’s fraternity that has given me new life and more help than I could ever imagine. These new fraternities or men’s groups have the potential to help men so much. Therapy and talking to a neutral party can help a man get out the shit that’s weighing him down and making him suffer. The times are changing, but men’s problems are still the same. There are many outlets for you to grow and get better, but it starts with you getting over the idea that you, yourself, can get out of this mess. If you could, you wouldn’t be in it any more.

The chasm that many men face is too daunting, too difficult, too dark to try and traverse. So they give up and fall in. What they don’t see, what they never see, is the bridge just off in the distance, or the chasm closing a few miles down, or the path down the chasm that takes them to the other side with a little bit of work. Their vantage point is one of hopelessness, only seeing where they are standing at that point in time, looking down at their feet and the endless below. They can’t see, or perhaps don’t want to see, the whole picture because it doesn’t fit in their narration of how their life tragically ends. They put an emphatic period on their story by falling into the chasm without even stopping to think who it will affect, how, and why.

She Doesn’t Care

This brings me to the other issue of this blog post, that of the why. Many, many men commit suicide over a woman in their life. They see that she’s cheated on them, so just like my friend, their great equalizer is supposed to be a tragic death throe as their ex dives at them in horror at what they’ve done.

Let me be blunt guys.

The only women that you’re hurting when you pull the trigger are the women in your family. They’ve lost a son because he couldn’t get over a girl who easily got over him. Your sacrifice doesn’t mean SHIT to any girl that you feel it will. Your ex-wife or girlfriend doesn’t care about you killing yourself because of her. She’s already rid of you and all you’ve done is pointlessly, selfishly, ended your life to see what she’ll do.

You won’t fucking see it because you’ll be DEAD.

Many men don’t think any of this through when jaded by a lover or ex.

They just pull the trigger.

The pain of your loss won’t be felt by anyone except those that love you. You are selfishly stealing years away from them because you can’t handle the fact that a woman cheated on you, or left you. This is where you precisely need to “man up”.

Go to therapy, unplug and take control of your life instead of letting a woman with no interest make you do terrible things to yourself.

Crossing the Chasm

I miss my friend. I miss him every day. I miss him even more now knowing that I didn’t reach out like I should have, but even if I had, I don’t think he would’ve taken my help. What can men do to help? What can men do who are struggling? How can they cross the chasm?

I will recommend to men exactly what I did.

First, recognize you have a problem and you can’t solve said problem without help. It’s okay to ask for help. It’s okay to reach out if you’re struggling. How will you overcome obstacles if you don’t have help?

I think of it like my Spartan career. When I trifecta’d in 2016, I needed a team of people to help me overcome obstacles. Sure, the ones I did alone made me feel like a bad ass, but still, I needed help with a wall, the rope climb, or a traverse wall, I had to have another man help me out. No shame in admitting that, nor is there shame in accepting the help. I still got my medal and my t-shirt, and I did it with teamwork. The same goes the other way. You can help others who need it by reaching out and asking them how they truly are, how their life is going, and where their hangups are.

Men have to realize that ANY chasm is not an impossible task. There are bridges, other people, and choke points that will get you across. You just have to believe. Just like lack of belief is strong in determining if a man will take his own life, the reverse can help save it. If a man knows there are ways out of his situation, he will be more willing to trudge on and fight. It’s when that belief doesn’t exist that he will spiral down into telling himself it’s hopeless.

It’s not hopeless, gentlemen.

It’s never hopeless.

I’m a shining example of what can be done if you truly reach out for help. I’ve only gained in my masculinity and my manhood by asking other men to help me achieve things in my own life.

Guys, if you are struggling with thoughts of suicide and depression in your life, the first thing you have to do is recognize the problem. The second thing you need to do is seek help from either a therapist, religious leader, or a men’s group of like minded men. The third? Action.

These things alone will help pull you from the chasm and get your life back on track. But be prepared to understand that it’s still on YOU and that you must take these steps to get your life back. The men can help you on the path, but you still have to take the steps to make it happen. Accountability and tough love are in for you, because you aren’t special, your problems are the problems of many other men, and a greater man can overcome these problems with relative ease compared to you.

You can’t just float and hope the wind blows. You still have to take positive, real ACTION for your life to get better. That’s the way it is and that’s the way it will always be. But the sooner you take action to pull yourself away from the chasm, the quicker your life will become a special work of art that has meaning to you again.

Guys, suicide and depression are real problems. I’m not going to pretend they don’t exist. But you have to reach out and get help. You have to accept you have a problem, you have to accept that you need help, and you have to accept the action needed to be taken by you to get past this.

Don’t be a statistic like my friend. I miss him every day. His family misses him. He took his life because of issues he couldn’t get over. He didn’t ask for help. He is no longer here. Please, please reach out for help.

My DM’s are always open on Twitter. My email is bubonicplague7@gmail.com. Reach out for help. I’m here for you.

The Single Mom Dating Dilemma

At 43 and single, I’m finding many of the dates I’m having with women in their 30’s and 40’s are with women who are single mothers. This was going to be inevitable as I am trying to date as many different women as I can all while getting to know who I am, what I like, gaining experience in dating all types of women.

So it goes without saying that dating single mothers is extremely complicated. Many women are not choosing to be single mothers on purpose, so you have to be aware that there are major reasons why they are single. From reasons like a boring marriage or lack of sex to more serious issues such as spousal abuse, drug addiction, or adultery, these women have been through some serious stuff and for many, it has scarred them for a very long time, if not for life.

Many of those women have major trust issues, lack of sexual appetite due to major abuse or trauma, and are embittered by their exes’ lack of commitment to them in their time of need. Plus, on top of this, you have a society that empowers single mothers to be victims all while shaming and berating men who had nothing to do with the situation. Add in the State as a third party to the marriage and you have the makings of a giant dumpster fire.

There’s a huge stigma in the manosphere about single mothers and with very good reason. Many of them are damaged, bitter, and just plain unpleasant. There are men like Rich Cooper and others that are leading the charge against single mothers as damaged, not worth your time, and swearing off on them altogether. And with all the terrible examples out there of women who have taken their situations out on everyone else but themselves, it stands to reason that some of those assumptions that Rich makes are correct. He’s right about many single mothers who become almost militant feminists in a crusade against men. He’s right about the sense of entitlement in single motherhood and I’ve seen it first hand in the dating world. There is a noticeable amount of women who act this way, and Rich is correct to warn men about them. They aren’t looking for a complete relationship with another man. They’re looking for a meal ticket, a support check, or are ready to manipulate an unsuspecting man who is looking for sex and letting thirst drive his needs.

While my endorsement of Rich will no doubt get me some blowback from the other side of the manosphere, I will tell you that while I agree with him on many things about single mothers, it’s a bit more complicated, especially as a man who’s currently in the dating pool full tilt and is seeing these things every day. What am I saying?

I’m saying it’s not all cut and dry, black and white, solid 100%. There are many types of single mothers out there and while many are absolutely monstrous, I can attest that there are just as many that are wonderful people. So what’s the difference? The difference is the amount of responsibility they take for their lives. Let me explain.

The Camps

I put these women into 4 camps. Camp 1 is the worst of the worst. Feminists, militants, anti-men who blame everything else on their lots in life. These are the moms who get triggered by doing anything remotely having to do with pleasing a man, instead blaming all men for their ex’s terrible behavior. Camp 2 is women who are less militant but still have a very clear bias towards men and especially their exes, blaming them for all the unfortunate things that have happened to them, but not all the way to man hatey status. Camp 3 are women who have softened and are accepting the fact that they can’t continue to blame men and their exes for issues. They have taken a certain amount of responsibility for the directions of their lives and are trying to get out of the tailspin that the lack of blame for themselves had put them in. And finally, Camp 4 is the reformed, feminine single mom. She’s not making excuses, pulled up her big girl pants, and has completed herself in a flourishing manner. She also won’t put any blame on anyone anymore, and also won’t deal with weak-minded men either.

The type of men that these women will search for is inversely proportional to which camp they belong to. In short, weaker men (betas) tend to gravitate towards the 1st and 2nd camps, where the 3rd and 4th get more mature, masculine men. Also, time is a huge factor in moving from 1st to 4th camps. Generally, the longer the time span from her being “wronged”, the more accepting she is of her circumstances and her faults in that choice.

Also, to no one’s surprise, women in the first two camps are usually more liberal than the last two. Camps 3 and 4 are learning more about personal responsibility and have let time hone them a bit, so they tend to be more feminine and conservative.

Camps 1 and 2 tend to look for weaker men to support them and their feminist crusade against the bad men that hurt them.

Camps 3 and 4 tend to look at themselves as independent and don’t blame. They look for men who are complete as they complete themselves.

Why do they go to these camps?

Many of these women married their alphas who rang their bell knowing that they were trying to change him. When they knew they couldn’t change him, they suffered through while enabling him for the sake of the kids or the marriage. They suffered through abuse, cheating, or worse.

Many women who are single mothers have endured emotional or physical trauma for this choice. But something kept them in the relationship. Maybe hypergamy, maybe sex, maybe duty, maybe something. But it’s kept them there too long and they struggle with why they couldn’t make him the way they wanted him because they were so hot for him.

Now, they are looking for a man for a meal ticket, a father to raise kids that aren’t his, or worse, both. I don’t recommend any man signing up for this if the woman EXPECTS him to help her raise the kids or provide money for her and this family.

They also feel like they have to blame other things besides themselves in order to overcome this hiccup. They overcompensate with being born again virgins, becoming radicalized feminists, focusing on their careers, or trying to wed a beta guy to try and show that their choice wasn’t the issue, it was the man and only the man. No amount of voodoo or choice is going to change the fact that she did indeed make that decision to sleep with, marry, have kids with, and enable the man she now blames for her lot in life.

The bottom line is owning a choice. Many single mothers refuse to believe that they had anything to do with the life they chose, that that life was thrust upon them as they were just in love and trying to make it work. It follows on the feminist line that women are infallible, incapable of bad things, and can’t be held responsible for their actions, which is horse shit.

It stems from a liberal, victimhood mentality that permeates the single mothers of our Western society. But I’m here to tell you, it doesn’t permeate them all. It doesn’t. There are good ones out there. I will explain.

NAMALT (Not All Moms Are Like That)

Where I split with some of the manosphere regulars is what I’ve found in the dating world. There are moms out there, good, hard-working moms, who are complete and wonderful. In my limited 3 years experience, I’ve found the rule more than the exception obviously, but I will say that I have gotten into relationships with good women who really were “wrong place, wrong time” types of women. They were dedicated, feminine, and supportive. They took responsibility for their lives. They didn’t let their single mom status divert them from trying to be successful. Many of them are conservative-minded and very family-oriented, yet also independent in accepting and overcoming their disadvantages. They have a man to raise their kids, their dad, or if they don’t, they aren’t relying on a man to raise them. They raise them on their own and don’t expect you to jump in and help, or worse, rely on you as a meal ticket.

While any “red pill cred” I had left with the manosphere may diminish by me saying that NAMALT, it’s something that I’ve actually witnessed in the trenches of dating. And as much as I agree with parts of the red pill argument, I still have to report what I see, honestly and upfront.

While we see some of the worse offenders through Rich Cooper, Rollo and others, we don’t see the success stories that I see, so that’s why I write this blog today.

So, gents, it’s up to you. If you don’t want to date single mothers, don’t. I’m not telling you to do it anyway. You have every right to live your life and date who you want. But I’m telling you that through my dating experiences, there are good ones out there, feminine, man-loving, good-hearted, supportive, beautiful mothers out there.

Hopefully, with this blog post, I can both assure men and also make them aware of the good, bad and ugly of the single mom world. Because there are ton of the last two with our society standing by as a willing accomplice.

But trust your gut and know that the good ones are out there. They are worth it.

A Letter to My Ex-Wife

Jill,

I know this letter is a long time in the making. I know that I haven’t explained fully what I decided to file for divorce against you. I know that there are many unanswered questions. I’m hoping to help answer some of those in this letter. This is a letter explaining it all.

It explains why I left.

It explains what I’ve learned.

It explains what I now believe.

It explains my new life and your place in it.

Let’s begin.

When I woke up almost 5 years ago, on a cold February night, and told you I wanted a divorce, it wasn’t because of you. True, you had your faults, I won’t go into them in this letter, but I will at least give you one token.

The man you married wasn’t the man I am now.

You were sold a bill of goods that wasn’t what you signed up for.

The man you thought you married was a man created by all the people in my life. It was a fictitious character, one invented by family, friends, and acquaintances, a robot designed to be a happiness machine.

It wasn’t me. I was a timid yes man. Someone who was trying to gain approval from everyone by doing everything they wanted and nothing for himself. I was playing a role that was designated by my family as something that I “had” to do. Something I was “supposed” to be.

That man you married who was all smiles the day I said “I do” was not real. He was all parts of all people who he had determined was the best of all worlds. He was trying to put himself into a mold that would never fit him, all because he was trying to act out on the stage of life, starring as the happily married, oafish husband who was a good man and did what everyone told him.

You see, men like me have lost their way. My generation, including my countless friends and acquaintances, were told by the generation before us that we had to play this role. We were told to be family men. We were told to get a job, buy a car, have kids, have a wife, and live the white picket fence dream that they did. However, they aren’t living that dream either. It’s a farce.

Many want the dream. Many don’t. I wanted something more. I wanted “me” back.

We can be all these things, but if it’s not on our terms, then it isn’t real. We let others decide our paths in life, we don’t stand up and say “STOP!” as soon as possible. We are just herded into the life that others want.

5 years ago, I decided to say “STOP!”

This wasn’t the life I wanted. It was the life they wanted. It was the life you, my ex-wife wanted.

I failed you. I didn’t keep my promises. And I know that deeply hurt you. And for that, I am eternally sorry.

But that man that you saw on your wedding day wasn’t the real Tim. The real Tim had to emerge through 3 years of therapy. The real Tim wanted his life back because this wasn’t what he signed up for. This is what he was TOLD he was supposed to do.

And, rather than possibly let down all the people in my life, I played the role.

I played it so well, I forgot who the hell I was. I needed a jolt to get me back to my senses. All of this life was a lie and unfortunately, you were a part of it.

I’m not taking the fall for the bad marriage. I’m taking the fall for the man I was when we got married because he wasn’t real. Just like you have told me that the person I married wasn’t the real you, the same thing applies to me.

I’m not taking the fall for the sexlessness in our marriage. I’m taking the fall for the man who didn’t know shit about what he was doing.

I’m not taking the fall for the listlessness of our kids and our unhappiness. I’m taking the fall for not discovering who I really was sooner and being a real, unapologetic version of Tim Beckett.

You’ll read this and debate in your head what truly could’ve been if we’d both been the real versions of ourselves, I know. But we can’t change the past, so we must change our presents and forge ahead to a good future, knowing now that we have finally accepted who we really are and the fantastic relationship that has emerged from accepting this reality.

Our kids are happier, we are happier, our families have finally accepted our decisions and they are happier for us, regardless of their personal feelings.

I couldn’t have asked for a better co-parent. Instead of taking feelings of bitterness, anger, and resentment out of me and our kids, you instead took the whole thing in stride, decided to be an adult, and worked with me on raising two beautiful daughters. You’re an amazing mother and I wouldn’t trade that for anything in the world.

Photo credit: Verywell Family

I decided on that fateful February day to change my life because that life wasn’t mine. Nor was it yours. It was like a painting that everyone enjoyed except those that were in it. We were the picture of happiness but when life was applied to it, it was anything but happy.

So I broke us out. I did us a favor. Instead of a journey of unhappiness, depression, and the problems that would arise from it, I decided to take back control. In the short term, it promised some issues, but in the long term, as you have witnessed first-hand, it’s blossoming into an amazing situation.

Selfish? Probably. Thoughtless? Hardly. Three years of taking stock, thinking about the direction of my life, and the consequences of my actions boiled up inside me and blasted out on the cold, winter night. I know you didn’t understand it then.

I know you understand it now.

Many in our family were and now are supportive. Many aren’t. To those that aren’t, there’s a reason you aren’t apart of our lives anymore. You refused to accept the real me. You wanted me to be apart of your ideals. I refuse to live by anyone’s terms except my own.

And that’s where I am now, Jill. I’m living on my own. I’m living the life I want to live in. I’m creating great opportunities and decisions that I will own. They are mine.

You know now that instead of trying to lead a hapless family by default because I didn’t care, you now have a MAN, a LEADER, a DECISION MAKER, and a FATHER who loves his kids and will do anything for them.

You know now that you can count on me at any time to support you, whereas before you weren’t sure and doubted me all the time.

You know now my STRENGTH is unwavering. And you also know that I am taking good care of myself so that I will be there as a ROCK for as long as I can stand, walk, run, lift, and fight. My dying breath will be there as the foundation of this new family unit, not as the doting, do nothing complainer who never took action during our nuptials.

You know now that this Tim is the REAL, UNAPOLOGETIC Tim, one that makes the rules of his life, has boundaries, and does things not because of hopeful acceptance, but because he demands it of himself and chooses these paths for the betterment of himself and by association, his family.

You can’t pour from an empty cup. My cup is no longer empty. It contains ENERGY for years to help our family grow, sustain, and thrive.

So, enjoy the fruits of my acceptance of the real me. The real Tim will continue to provide and lead this family into the future. The past is in the past, my mistakes are mine and I own them. You may never own yours, but it doesn’t matter now. What matters is that we are both on the road that WE choose. Our paths now walk beside our kids in seeing them grow to be amazing, well-adjusted adults, all while making decisions based on what WE want in OUR lives.

The man you’ve met and who is proposing to you on your cruise is a good man. He’s an amazing father and Mike will be a great step-father to our kids. He’s become a great friend as well to me. I welcome him and his kids to our family with open arms. It takes all kinds to make a world, and we are a very special, very diverse family that I am proud to be associated with.

You are very special to me and you will always be a part of my life as the mother of my children. Know that I will be there to make sure they are LED by a masculine, strong, proud man who is honored to be their father.

I will always love you,

Tim

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