The other day, I attended a workshop for Real Men.
That’s right, I was browsing the internet and came across an upcoming event for real men. The posting even taunted me – if you are a real man, sign up. I signed up, because I don’t like people doubting my manliness. It was like those Gitura sayings of Kama wewe ni mwanaume umetahiri nikate…And then you cut the person up and face the consequences because nothing is worse than having your manliness doubted. It also said that if I am a real man I must invite someone else. So, I invited Mwaura and told him if he’s a real man, he must attend, and it worked! So, next time you want a man to do something, start your sentence with “If you are a man… ” 🙂
This looked like the long awaited Men’s Conference.
Anyway, we arrived late because we are real men and real men keep everyone waiting. It’s in the 38 Laws of Power.
Only that the organizer was not a real man. It was actually a woman! On first glance, Cece Ojany of The Main Protagonist looks like those girls you don’t approach in a party, or just say hi to in a matatu. You know those girls boys in the ghetto warn you about? Huyo usimuongeleshe, ana utiaji sana. Short hair, jeans and walking about with a bounce in her step, you get the picture? She looked intimidating.
She was at the front talking to all these real men about things. There is a thing about articulate women that rattles men, even the real ones, and Cece was a very articulate woman. She even tested the balls of men by daring one to stand up and pitch his business. We found a guy sweating upfront, pitching his business.
We listened on because she oozed wisdom and challenged us. I mean, she spoke about Greek gods – that’s wisdom! She challenged our manliness and there was nothing we could do about it.
When someone tells you, a man, to share your challenges and fears with other men, it feels and is, one of those tough things we can’t do. We would rather go kill lions with our bare hands than talk about our problems and fears. We kufa kimwanaume.
She was asking tough questions and telling us things, like: are you 100% happy with your situation at the moment? Are you living your dream? Why not? Tell your group why. Eti fear? What are you really afraid of? Tell others! Do you fear taking steps forward because you care about people what people, the society will say? Are you afraid of confronting situations and people even when there is need? Or will you chicken out and avoid confrontation like a coward, and sit on your dreams?
Who do you need to forgive? Why are you carrying that damn baggage? Is it worth it?
Listening was easy, it as the talking that would get us rattled. Telling total strangers intimate things like your fears. I wondered what this has to do with being real men. Where I come from, we were told a real man doesn’t show cowardice, even if you are on the verge of peeing on yourself.
Real Men Challenges
But as things progressed, as we learned about ourselves, we realized it was okay to be a real human, testicles notwithstanding. Because, let’s face it, the society has placed a lot in our shoulders.
So much baggage we don’t even care about ourselves. It’s always about someone else. If I do this, what will my wife and children say? If I take this risk and things go South, what will the society say if I have to sell my car, move to a less classy part of town, and all that. And so, we limit ourselves, we bottle our struggles and beefs. Before you know it, hell breaks loose. Suicides happen, men kill other people and importantly but understated, we fail to achieve our dreams. Which is terrible.
So, real men travel light! We have to drop all that unnecessary weight to be able to move ahead. You know, unimportant things like Kenya’s Chinese debt, or the car that cut you in traffic on Monday, or something your wife said last month. Real men forgive – they forgive other people, and more importantly, themselves.
That led us to an Hawaiian exercise called ho’oponopono. We actually did a 4 minute meditation, eyes closed and all, thinking about people or situations we need to forgive and let go:
- I love you
- I’m sorry
- Please forgive me
- Thank you.
What this does, if you do it enough times, is it unburdens you from the less important things, like meaningless grudges, past experiences and background. You suddenly start focusing on the things that matter…. and realizing your true colours!
At the end of the day, life is about experiences. To enjoy it, you need to be you spiritually, mentally, physically and financially. Cease pretending! Mimi nimechange.
And Cece… she’s one hell of a life coach! She doesn’t promise you heaven like those motivational speakers – she helps you find yourself. Another thing, do the ho’oponono right now. It will help you.