I’m not sure that this article is going to be good enough for the Good Men Project website. But there is always hope. Oh, no it is flaring up again. My hope addiction.
My what? My hope addiction. You see, I enjoy the feeling of being hopeful. I don’t want to be pessimistic. Pessimism doesn’t feel good. I prefer hope. So…what is the problem with hope?
Hope isn’t all bad. A little hope is just fine. It is being full of hope that can rob me my of much of life’s vitality. It could be happening to you and you don’t even know it. What? It goes like this: when you believe that some future state could be better than what is going on right now, you degrade the quality of your present state.
As I write this, I am enjoying myself. When I think about the Good Men Project editors seeing merit in what I am writing, I feel good. When I think about seeing this posted on goodmenproject.com, I am continuing to feel just fine.
What if it gets posted and somebody reads it. Goody, goody.
The problem creeps in when I start thinking that none of what I am doing now can be considered any good, because I don’t know yet if it will lead to a Good Men Project reader being helped by reading it. If I think like that, the only thing that keeps me going is the hope that I am not wasting my time writing this. I won’t know if this is a waste of time or an investment in helping humanity, until some future time. Fear can creep in as well. There is much at stake. If I write poorly, I may come to think of my having hope that it would be well received as foolish. Instead of having a good memory of the time I spent writing this, it will become a bad memory of yet another time I fooled myself into thinking I was doing something good.
Many men are trained to believe that a fear of failure is what can motivate success. I could use my fear of being a fool to write multiple drafts of this article. I could consult books on writing and communicate with others who are better writers than I am. The editors at the Good Men Project are great at providing helpful writing suggestions. They would read a draft of this article before I finish it to give me feedback.
Doing these things, motivated by a fear of failure could, turn the pleasant feeling I am having now into unpleasant drudgery.
Many men are trained to believe that work is drudgery or at least most of their work is. To be a good man is to be good at suffering to reach a goal that will be rewarding at some future time by work, work, work. That’s just the way it is.
In thinking like this, you need hope. Hope that your paycheck will cover your bills with enough left over to put something aside for retirement. Hope you won’t get fired for screwing up, or pissing off the wrong person.
If you don’t have hope that your future is not going to suck, what have you got left but, worry, worry, worry? What man wants that?
You can hope you can make it to the weekend or your vacation and hope that your time off will be a whole lot better than what you got going on right now. You can have hope that you will save enough for retirement to finally have enough time for fun in your schedule.
If you have already retired and your financial future doesn’t look to bright, you can always hope that there is a life after life.
Can’t fear make a man do what a man has got to do for others, when he doesn’t want to? I am not saying that it can’t. What I am suggesting is that when you appreciate the experience you are having right now, you can get to your future better than any other way.
Many men are taught otherwise. They are taught that hope for a better future is what inspires a better now and will lead to remembering the past fondly. It is actually the opposite, much of the time.
When men are focused on appreciating the present, the future has a way of being taken care of quite nicely. What can take a good deal of courage is for a man to believe this.
Some men believe if they focus on enjoying the present they will slide into self-indulgent behavior. They will find themselves goofing off. Do you really believe that?
When men start thinking that they do what they do because they love helping others and love being themselves, do you honestly think this leads to poor future outcomes?
Men are constantly faced with attempts at being manipulated by hope. Hope sells all kinds of goods and services. Work hard, so you can buy this and go there, which will make you feel better than you do now—makes the economic world go around, but how has that been working out for you lately?
Men who are prone to becoming addicted to gambling don’t get high from winning as much as they get high from hoping they will win. State Governments manipulate men to making very poor bets on lottery tickets through hope propaganda. Many men often waste money on games with ridiculous odds, just to have the hope of the thought, just think of how all that money would change the drudgery of my life, even when they know it’s not going to happen…because the chances of winning are astronomical.
Many men do what helps get them laid, motivated by the hope that ejaculation will finally get them where they want to be. How could what is going on right now be as good as sex? What if you considered sexual foreplay to be as good as orgasm and everything you do with and for your partner in and out of bed, as being as good as, sexual foreplay. Are you having more fun now? Might this be more fun than you know how to take?
If you thought that reading this article might help you and it didn’t, you can always hope that the next one will. There are plenty of self-improvement courses you can take and seminars to go to. There is always the hope that more education and thinking about feeling good might help, too.
Or you can feel good right now. A key skill towards doing so is to stop judging so much about how good any given moment is.
Declaring that this moment is bad, and focusing on the need to get to a better one, is not the best way to get there.
It also helps to consider that the Universe is always changing. If you don’t like this moment, it will change no matter what you do. If you are liking it, that is going to change as well. When you can believe that it is all good, you can wake up to knowing that it truly is.
No, I don’t think that the Good Men Project will accept this writing. I am going to submit it anyway, because I have a little hope that it will be accepted. I like having a little hope, just not too much hope.
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