Top Dog or Selfish Hog? How to be Selfless in a Man's World...and WIN!
Updated: Dec 17, 2020
Hey there, readers. With ideals about masculinity floating around today’s society, there is one thing that truly sets apart the boys from the Men. Yep, I’m talking about selflessness. In society, men are put on constant social stages that judge our performance, integrity, and personality. An article in Sage Journal reads, “Despite variations in the details of performance, we can see commonalities that arise from a pervasive cultural notion of the qualities and capacities men must signify to be fully creditable as men.” (Schwalbe, M. &Wolkomir, M. 2001) Put simply, your actions are watched very closely to see if you meet social standards. It is true that society tends to push certain aspects of what’s manly and what is not. So, where does selflessness come in? Selflessness is one standard that has been able to survive in society.
Selflessness is putting others above yourself. When was the last time you took your brother out for a meal to see how things in his life are going for example? Your best friend has been speaking about how terrible his job is. Did you by chance stop to think about a possible job they might enjoy? Life hits everyone hard, and there are plenty of obstacles that get in the way of your goals. Climbing up a social ladder for instance, is one of the many obstacles we face on a day to day basis. What sets people apart is the ability to reach out a helping hand. I’m not saying you need to dive into the nearest burning building to save Mr. Fluffles from the fire. Not everyone is a hero. Characteristics like those, however, are traits that society deems ideal for masculinity.
In the world of business, selflessness is actually a strong driving factor in getting ahead. A post from Entrepreneur Magazine’s website said it best, “Businesses give you the chance to change the world and influence others. Kindness does the same thing, and with a single act you can influence countless others. Pairing kindness with your business can make for a powerful opportunity.” (Boitnott, J., 2020) The action doesn’t have to be big. Helping a co-worker with a document due in a timely manner could help land a company client boosting sales and maybe even present promotional opportunities. A helping hand could signify opportunity at work. Yet, that’s not the only door selflessness can open.
Selflessness also plays a major part in relationships. Beauty is in the eyes of the beholder. Sage Journal also published an article stating, “Altruism plays a role in mate choice, particularly in women’s preferences and in long-term (LT) relationships.” (Farrelly, D. et al., 2016) Altruism is a synonym for selflessness. That’s right, selflessness can be a game changer when it comes to relationships. A man who is genuinely kind tends to have a lot more doors open to him romantically.
Lastly, selflessness has a role in maturity. A post from psychology today read, “A mature person knows how to prioritize others before themselves. A wise man once said: A mature person is one whose agenda revolves around others, not self. Certainly this can go to an extreme and be unhealthy, but I believe a pathway out of childishness is getting past your own desires and beginning to live to meet the needs of others less fortunate.” (Elmore, T. 2020) So, are you selfless?
SCHWALBE, M. and WOLKOMIR, M. (2001) ‘The Masculine Self As Problem and Resource in Interview Studies of Men’, Men and Masculinities, 4(1), pp. 90–103. [online] Available at: <https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/1097184X01004001005?journalCode=jmma> [Accessed 28 October 2020].
Farrelly, D., Clemson, P. and Guthrie, M. (2016) ‘Are Women’s Mate Preferences for Altruism Also Influenced by Physical Attractiveness?’, Evolutionary Psychology. [online] Available at: <https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/full/10.1177/1474704915623698> [Accessed 28 October 2020].
Boitnott, J., 2020. 11 Quotes On Kindness That Every Entrepreneur Needs To Read. [online] Entrepreneur. Available at: <https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/341097> [Accessed 28 October 2020].
Elmore, T., 2020. The Marks Of Maturity. [online] Psychology Today. Available at: <https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/artificial-maturity/201211/the-marks-maturity> [Accessed 28 October 2020].
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