Masculine Vulnerability: How to be Vulnerable as a Man
A lot of men are taught that vulnerability is weakness – and that masculinity is all about hiding vulnerable emotions.
For the longest time, young boys were brought up to believe that emotional vulnerability was only for women, babies and wimps.
Thankfully, society is beginning to change and see past this simplistic view.
After all, it is possible for men to put their emotions in the open without forfeiting strength or their sense of masculinity.
Here are some examples of how to show masculine vulnerability and the good it can cause.
We all know men should be vulnerable with their partners. This is a key step towards building comfort and a strong emotional connection with a female partner.
But what about around their male friends?
A lot of men would feel embarrassed to open up their heart to their best friend, but it can serve to deepen the bond between the two of you.
Let’s say you told your best friend: “I really appreciate having you in my life. I love you for everything you’ve done for me and my family.”
This is one way to show vulnerability in a powerful way. Sure, it might embarrass him in the moment, but you can bet he’ll appreciate it in the long run. After all, he’s human and we all love being told how much we mean to people.
Anger is an emotion that most men don’t have problems expressing, presumably because it often precedes aggression and therefore implies strength.
However, it requires more mental strength to address wrongdoings without aggression.
It’s tends to be far more powerful to look the aggressor dead in the eyes, explain why you’re upset and demand a solution to the problem.
This is another example of powerful vulnerability, because you’re sharing your true emotions with someone who may not agree with them.
What’s more, it’s more likely to lead to a happy resolution than threats, aggression and violence.
We’ve all been in situations where we wanted to do something, but were too scared of how other people would react.
Maybe you wanted to approach a woman, be loud and gregarious or dance to the music, but no-one else is doing it.
Often, in these situations, we wait for someone else to act first, so we can be sure that it’s OK. The problem is: most others are waiting for society’s permission too.
This fear represents vulnerability at its core. It has supposedly evolved from caveman times, where social rejection from your tribe would mean certain death.
However, if you can be the first person to act, this represents masculinity at its core. You’re a leader of others. Those around you will respect your bravery to make the first move.
It can be awkward when someone you care about breaks your personal boundaries. It’s even worse if it’s in your best interests to impress that person.
Let’s say you’re on a date or out to dinner with a work client and they drop some discriminatory remarks.
This is likely to create an uncomfortable tension in your stomach. You don’t want to upset this person, yet you feel an overwhelming urge to correct them.
Calling out discrimination is always the right thing to do. If you’re not a part of the solution, you’re part of the problem. Yet, this will always create conflict and therefore requires powerful vulnerability.
Still, by showing bravery in this situation, we can all help to make the world a better place.
By definition, showing vulnerability isn’t easy. All of the situations above require mental strength, which is a huge staple of powerful masculinity.
By being powerfully vulnerable in situations like these, we can improve our lives and those of people around us.
About Joe Elvin Joe Elvin is a lifestyle writer and confidence coach currently living as a digital nomad across Europe and Asia. You can download his FREE e-book 'How To Conquer Social Anxiety' at https://bit.ly/2MBxm4N