I love the website The Art of Manliness. As the daughter, wife, sister, and mother of men (and soon-to-be men) I’m really concerned about how to nurture them and help them have pride in who they are. Also because I’ve often felt like an interloper in an enemy camp ~ many women I know, myself included, have tried to have self-worth by shunning their femininity and trying to be a man. So I guess you could say I’ve thought a lot about it.
I love this post by Brett, the founder of The Art of Manliness, about how to be a man. One of his main points is this: if you want to be a man, act like one. Figure out what you think a man is and then pretend. A good man is a good father, and so be a good father. Don’t opt out or wait until you feel like it. A good man is someone who upholds his responsibilities, and so uphold your responsibilities. A good man is a good friend and stand up for others. And so on.
Above all, don’t wait for someone to give you permission to be what you already are. Just act. Just do it. Even if you don’t feel like you are, that you can own it. Just go ahead and be it.
This is great advice in any area of life. This is particularly applicable for being a writer. You don’t need permission to be a writer. You don’t need a teacher or an MFA to tell you you’re a writer. Writers write. If you write, you’re a writer. You don’t even necessarily need readers to be a writer. The one you most need to give you permission is yourself.
So go forth and virile agitur ~ “the manly thing is being done” or just do it. Do it every day. Whatever it is that you are ~ stop resisting and own it, do it.