Real Men Feel: Ep. 25, That Guy Who Loves The Universe, Sean Patrick

Real Men Feel with Sean Patrick

That Guy Who Loves The Universe, with guest Sean Patrick, Episode 25, August 30, 2016
Hi, I’m a man and I feel.
On this episode of Real Men Feel, Andy Grant and Appio Hunter, are once again joined by Sean Patrick, That Guy Who Loves The Universe. While Appio suffers technical difficulties, Sean shares a bit of his path to loving the Universe and tips on how it is possible for anyone. Andy and Sean discuss  their experiences with depression, spirituality, and positive psychology – even if it is too “California” for some people. #RealMenFeel

You can connect with Sean at Facebook.com/ThatGuyWhoLovesTheUniverse
Check out Sean’s book, That Guy Who Loves The Universe: A Modern Tale of Setbacks, Second Chances and Spiritual Enlightenment

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Let us know what you thought here in the comments or shoot an email to realmenfeel@gmail.com

Feeling Inadequate? Suck It Up! (or, Three Steps to Avoid Inferiority)

I saw an advertisement for a product called LifeStraw®, and it made me feel worthless.

The product is a “personal water filter,” and all you have to do (according to the Internet) is “place one end…into unfiltered water (a water bottle, river, or even a puddle) and suck clean water through the top of the straw.”

For a few minutes, I felt pretty sorry for myself. The people who invented this thing are incredible, I thought. Compared to what they’ve accomplished, what have I done for the human race?

Yes, a high-tech straw made me question my contribution to the world. Have I done anything to make the world a better place that’s as inventive and useful as the LifeStraw®? I mean, that product could be the difference between life and death for someone living in a place where uncontaminated water is scarce.

Have I or will I do anything as important?

We all have bouts of self-doubt, and it’s alright to want to give back to the world. The problem here is one of comparison. Do you regularly find yourself questioning your own worth compared to what others are doing? Here’s a three-step process you can use to rewire that inferiority complex.

First, remember that you’re not being fair to you when you compare yourself to others. Sure, there’s value in getting motivated by seeing what others have accomplished, but not to the point that it makes you depressed. At that point, you’re paralyzed. You won’t be able to grow, change, and achieve new things.

Second, think about the things you’ve accomplished in life, and focus on your unique set of skills and talents. Don’t get bogged down in how “big” or “small” you think your achievements may be, because that’s just more comparison. Concentrate on what you do well, and use that confidence to break free of self-doubt.

Third, don’t try to avoid feeling inadequate. Just work on changing your reaction to that feeling. Instead of getting down on yourself, replace self-critical thoughts with a new routine of solution-centered thinking. Consider what actions you can take to improve your skills to achieve the abilities of the person to whom you were comparing yourself. Set an achievable series of smaller goals that could lead to your desired result, and get moving!

Many of us get into the bad habit of self-criticism, but it’s never too late to turn your thinking into something more productive. 

And yes, I eventually remembered to stop letting that straw feel like I sucked.

Do you spend too much time obsessing about the skills you think you don’t possess or worrying about your legacy? If you can relate to this post, please leave a comment and share how you overcome feelings of inadequacy.

Featured image via eartheasy.com

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anthony simeoneAbout the Author
Anthony Simeone is a writer, speaker, personal development activist, and social change warrior with over two decades of experience studying the practical application of literature, philosophy, psychology, and other disciplines. The culmination of his work is the Live the Hero concept, which he offers as a “life path” for use in overcoming daily obstacles. Live the Hero combines the wisdom found in the arts and humanities with the latest discoveries related to modern neuroscience. You can contact Anthony and learn more about his work at livethehero.com.

Strong Enough To Be Sad

A couple of weeks ago while I was on vacation visiting amusement parks on the US East Coast, which I dubbed the Great East Coast Coaster Tour of 2016, another roller coaster was happening at my employer. There was a sudden roller coaster of budget cuts, which cut me – while on vacation! My job officially ended the last day of my vacation, but fortunately some wise managers decided to find some funding to ensure two weeks notice for me. Also while away my stepmother went under hospice care and is pretty much waiting to die. My father, who suffers from dementia and multiple forms of cancer, is not taking this situation well to say the least. He’s stormed off furious a few times, and was even lost while only a few houses away. I don’t share this for pity or to present myself as some sort of victim of life, but merely to share what’s been going on.

While navigating these changes, my wife was told she wouldn’t be invited back to something she loves being a part of – via an email. Since there wasn’t much I could do about the prior situations I’ve mentioned, I sure wanted to go have an unpleasant conversation with the sender of that email. Anger was a welcome change, especially since I couldn’t yell at my stepmother, dad or anyone at work. Well, I guess I could, but I knew there was nothing to gain from doing so.

With my history of depression and suicidal thoughts, I was worried. I was worried when all these circumstances would gather their forces together to rise up and crush in a overwhelm tidal wave of emotion. Rather surprisingly, I rode out a couple of weeks quite normally. Last Monday, i woke up feeling down and sad. I wondered if this was the beginning of the overwhelming wave. No matter what I did that morning, the sadness sat upon me. I realized it was the first sadness I was aware of since January, which was rather amazing considering how miserable I had been feeling back then.

In the early afternoon, the lingering sadness had built up enough for the tears to start. I decided to dive in, and was completely willing to bawl all afternoon if that’s what was needed. Instead, I cried for less than two minutes. Then I felt fine. Two minutes. That was all it took to release that sadness, that energy. If I had resisted it, decided I wasn’t going to cry about any of this, the sadness would have lingered and grown.

Because I was willing to feel, I’ve felt great ever since. Felt great even while consoling my dad who is very upset that his wife is dying before he does. Today, we are headed to his doctor where he’ll be told that his cancer has returned (The doctor gave us a heads-up already). I don’t know how he’ll take it, but I know I can handle whatever comes next. Not because I’m tough or strong, but because I’m willing to feel.
sad

 

 

 

 

 

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About The Author
Andy GrantAndy Grant is a best-selling author, award-winning speaker, Transformational Energy Coach, Akashic Records Reader and suicide prevention activist. He holds certificates in Positive Psychology, the Enwaken Coaching System, Akashic Records, Infinite Possibilities and Reiki, as well as other leadership programs and energy work modalities.

Andy teaches workshops ranging from energy tools to ebook publishing, and is the founder of Real Men Feel, a movement encouraging men to come out of the emotional closet. He also facilitates monthly men’s groups. As a survivor of multiple suicide attempts, Andy knows how low we as human beings can feel, and he is committed to helping people realize how magnificent life is meant to be. Learn more about Andy at NavitasCoach.com

In 999 Words: The surprise Empath

All of the clues were there, but until I discovered the term “Empath” in my mid-30s, they didn’t mean a whole lot.

As a young child, I never played with toy guns like the other boys. I cried at the sight of a fish getting caught, and I couldn’t stand to see dinner plates bearing identifiable pieces of creatures.

From the age of 6 or 7, I avoided sad songs (especially “What A Wonderful World”) because I knew they would stir the urge to cry. I watched hockey but couldn’t understand why the players felt the need to drop their gloves and launch their bare fists into each other’s faces – or why anyone would want to view such barbarity.

As a pre-teen, I prayed to God (and I wasn’t a prayer) for a particular Hollywood film to be a hit, as I felt bad for the aging, seemingly out-of-touch star. At school I felt sorry for lonely and unattractive teachers, even if that didn’t stop me from seriously misbehaving in their classes.

As a young adult, I cried when coworkers I didn’t get along with were let go. One man was dismissed largely because he did not treat me with respect, and even my deep-seated anger toward him could not mask an underlying sympathy. It felt so bad to hate him.

Further into adulthood, I attended counselling after it appeared as though a close friend had been sexually violated. My anger toward the apparent perpetrator never felt genuine, because it was difficult for me to genuinely harbor such intense feelings of hate. At one point I told a counsellor, “I hate hating people!” to which she assured me that it’s perfectly okay to hate someone who has done something bad. She had no problem doing what was tearing me up inside. I knew I could never be like her.

I often thought there was something wrong with me. Perhaps I was depressed, weak, numb or just didn’t have what it takes to be in this life. I took things so seriously, felt emotions so intensely and for long periods of time.

But another part of me thought I was normal; that the things I felt were what everybody felt, and if they said otherwise they were just acting macho and denying their emotions. It never occurred to me that someone could actually be malevolent or use someone else with no remorse. Wasn’t I in for a shock.

The experience that finally set me on the path to discovery about my spiritual nature (and it’s still a little weird for me to write that) was a painful one. Without getting into the gory details, a woman I thought was a loving friend used my compassion and strong emotions against me to hurt, inadvertently on my part, an innocent person.

What should have been my strength, my compassion, was twisted into a disgusting weapon. No one around me could understand why my involuntary act of hurting an innocent person wrought such emotional havoc. They’d remind me that I was a good person who had been duped, but inside I was overwhelmed by what had happened. I was completely shut down.

I began a search for wellness that gradually led down a spiritual path – and to a spiritual healer. Soon enough, the term “Empath” entered my world.

At first I was unsure whether I was an Empath. I felt unworthy of such a beautiful description. I also wondered whether I was a spiritual hypochondriac, self-diagnosing and slapping a label on something I knew nothing about.

For months I went back and forth between “yes” and “no” on the Empath question. The evidence never seemed clear-cut, no matter how many online questionnaires I filled out or how many “ah ha” moments I had while reading books on the subject (there were also plenty of “nuh uh” moments).

I definitely wanted to be an Empath. To me, a guy long fascinated by the powers of the mind, to be an Empath was to have a super power, which I guess is another clue that the term did indeed apply to me. I mean, would a non-Empath really read a list that includes items such as “can feel other people’s emotions” and think, “You know what, I wish I could do that!”?

But I also had a past. I had misbehaved so badly as a teenager that I more than once brought my mom to tears. I stole and vandalized. I picked on kids who were socially beneath me. I drove recklessly. How the hell could an Empath do such awful things?

Of course Empaths aren’t perfect. And they don’t necessarily come into this world knowing their true identity right away. Learning this helped me appreciate how much more complex this subject is than the Empath checklists you find on spiritual websites.

When I really delved into the matter, there were simply too many additional “ah ha” moments to dismiss. Even the tingling I experienced in my head in 2013 took on a new meaning, as this can be a symptom of a spiritual awakening rather than the confusing bacon metaphor a doctor provided me at the time.

Recently, I had an experience where it seemed like I may have picked up another person’s annoyance as my own. A few days before that, the love I am cultivating inside spontaneously comforted me during what would have otherwise been a moment of self-hatred. So things out of the ordinary have been happening as I move into acceptance of my gifts.

Yet even as I write this, I only accept the statement “I am an Empath” at about 80 per cent. It still feels a little too good to be true that I am part of an army of Lightworkers, that my sensitivities will serve some healing purpose. I often ask myself, “Are you believing this because you want to believe it or because it’s actually true?” I’m increasingly leaning toward the latter, and it feels good.