How to be a Real Man, According to Andy Frisella

Andy Frisella is amazing. He’s the MFCEO. He busts ass daily. Grinds. No excuses. No bullshit. I’ve been listening to his thoughts that he’s been generous enough to share for the last two years. I’m thankful.

Here’s his Facebook post about being a real man:

Lots of talk about being a “REAL MAN” today.

Sorry to break it to some of you hard asses out there but grease on your hands, guns and beard doesn’t make you a “REAL MAN”.

A “REAL MAN” lets his character speak:

Do your best. Every time.

Take responsibility for your actions.

Know that your problems are AT LEAST 50% your fault…and more than likely 100%.

When you make mistakes (and you will make plenty): Admit when youre wrong.

Apologize.

Learn.

Fix the issue.

Know you know very little.

Forgive.

Bring others up.

Be empathetic.

Dont gossip.

If you have an issue have enough respect for the person to address it privately.

Dont bitch.

When you lose. Dont pout. Come back stronger.

Celebrate others success.

Dont hold grudges.

Wish the best for others.

…and a million other things.

REAL MEN live these values from their heart. Its genuine. Its not a fake facade they put on for the world on social where they say one thing and do another.

Sometimes its hard too.

Sometimes you have internal struggle over it.

Sometime youd rather eat a pile of shit than apologize, take responsibility or forgive

…but that only hurts you, burdens you & chips away at your character & self worth.

Do your best to become a REAL MAN…not just talk about being one.

I Love Being a Basketball Fan

I was born in ’91. My first love (when it comes to sports) was basketball. I had a tiny, little basketball hoop and eventually got a big basketball goal that’s still in my driveway today (from ’97 to now). I played rec league basketball and won a watch from being the best shooter on the team after a day during practice in which I hit more shots than my teammates.

I thought Michael Jordan was the shit (just like every other ’90s kid). Space Jam was my jam; I even had the soundtrack playing all the time. I bandwagoned the Los Angeles Lakers when I was 8-years-old because I thought there could be no duo better than Shaq and Kobe. It pissed my dad off, because he was a Boston Celtics fan who wanted me to like them! He also was a big Tim Duncan fan, and the last NBA Finals we watched together before his death was the 2003 Finals between the San Antonio Spurs and New Jersey Nets.

I don’t really have a singular favorite “team”. I felt a soft spot in my heart when the Celtics beat the Lakers in the 2008 NBA Finals. I have a shithorde of favorite players from over the years. Tim Duncan, Kobe Bryant, Kevin Garnett, Tracy McGrady, Paul Pierce, Ray Allen, Brandon Roy……………. the list goes on and on.

That’s why, I guess, I still love the game now! So many people bitch and cry over the Golden State Warriors running the table, but I find it pretty entertaining. Of course, the league is at its best when big market teams are contenders.

I’m just a southern white boy from southwest Virginia. There are no teams here. I guess the closest one would be the Charlotte Hornets, about four hours away from me. I’m from a rural area that cares more about college and pro football than it does anything else. NBA isn’t talked about here unless you are playing basketball with other fans, and even then — despite it being shit in quality these days — college basketball is favored.

So hell, I love all the shit that is going on in the NBA right now. It’s fun. It’s entertaining. Sometimes I root for certain teams to defeat others, but all in all, I’m just a fan. I don’t feel this way with any other sport (outside of, say, an individual sport like MMA).

I’m a Hairy, Emotional Mess of a Man

My back is fookin’ killing me right now. Lower back. No other symptoms. I went to bed on Sunday night and woke up lying on my back, took a breath and boom, back pain city. Ever since, it’s been fairly consistent. Not severe (except for when I woke up at 5am and took a breath). It’s a dull ache. It radiates around my lower back from the middle to the sides/flank. No other symptoms (again).

My girlfriend bought us a brand new mattress on Thursday evening. Didn’t sleep good on Friday night, because she worked third shift (I never sleep good while she does those shifts; sleeping without her sucks). Didn’t sleep good on Saturday night, and I have no idea why, because we were out and about all day in 97 degree weather and I was pretty tired, but I struggled to fall asleep. Sunday night… went to bed but woke up with the aforementioned back pain, and it just hasn’t gone away.

I mowed the yard yesterday, and that always gives me back pain. While I don’t think I’m very tall (6’2″; average), mowing the yard always hurts my back because I have to bend forward a little bit to push the lawnmower. Probably didn’t help. Going to bed last night was a motherfucker.

Anyway, maybe it’s all due to stress?

How I feel at the moment.

I’m so scared of the future. I’m 26 years old. I just, for the first time ever, accepted my student loans. They are pending. I’m taking online classes, and one physical in person face to face class locally, at a university. The in person class will be local, at the community college I just finished up at. I have a hold on my student account that’s been troubling my mind lately. Anxiety city. Damn. Wish I had another month before classes start, so I can get my shit together, or at least pretend to.

One of my former high school teachers died last Friday. He was my geometry teacher during my junior year of high school in 2007-2008. I didn’t really think he was that great of a teacher — and I did poorly in his class, as a perennial bad math student until lately — but he was a hell of a person. Truly one of a kind. A lifelong heavy metal, all-things-WVU loving headbanger unafraid to say anything, unabashedly himself.

He retired last year. He was diagnosed with cancer in February or March… brain and lung (longtime smoker)… died last Friday.

He posted his phone number on Facebook asking for anybody to call him.

A few times, he asked people to visit him anytime.

He was sent home with hospice on July 5th.

I kept telling myself I was going to call and visit him.

I never did. I feel like a piece of shit for not doing so. I’m going to regret this forever, I feel. A lot of my fears was that, maybe he wouldn’t remember me? I don’t know. I can’t stop thinking about how he passed away. He was always so healthy and active and growing his garden and going to heavy metal (Doro) concerts. And now he’s gone.

I get it. People died. I’ve lost more people in my 26 years than most have. All my grandparents, my dad, an uncle who was like a second dad to me, a great friend in 2010, my uncle in January…. it’s rough. But damn, the regret of never going to see him has been hurting my soul deeply.

Even though I eat a diet that — by all accounts, through scientific peer reviewed studies and research — is optimal for testosterone production…. I’ve been an emotional fucking mess.

For example, my girlfriend came home last night after working a 3-11 shift, and she said she heard some crazy noise outside, like footsteps, and she hurried and got in her car. She then said, “I thought I was a goner! And that I’d be dead, and wouldn’t get to see you again” …. and I don’t know fucking why, but replaying what she said a few times made me bawl like a little baby.

I love her so much.

But this depression/emotional state is killing me.

Usually, I love the summertime. Even if it’s hotter than hell and damn near impossible to deal with, it’s usually the happiest time of the year for me, but this has been one of the most stressful, emotionally taxing summers of my life. And I don’t know why.

I’ll never tell her this, but I feel like a burden to my girlfriend. She loves me so much, and I feel like I constantly disappoint her. She’s never expressed, implied or displayed feelings that implicate that, but I feel like I could be doing so much better. I probably kept her up way too late last night with my back pain. So full of guilty feelings today. Holy shit. Just had to get this all written down.

Suicide? Selfish?

Chester Bennington of Linkin Park committed suicide yesterday by hanging himself.

This death hit home for me, because I was a huge Linkin Park guy in the early to mid 2000s during my preteen and teen years. Hybryd Theory and Meteora were albums I listened to often. My best friend, who resembled Chester (skinny, glasses, buzz cut/nearly bald), and I would play Madden ’05 online with the Linkin Park/Jay-z collaboration “Numb/Encore” on repeat. Those were the days.

I used to think suicide was a selfish act. And, in a way, I still think that way, but not like I used to. If you tell a suicide person they are selfish for feeling suicidal, that only pushes them further to do so. Not a good mix.

The act of committing suicide is an unstable one. To want to do so, you are mentally unstable, because biologically we are programmed to take the path of survival.

I changed my views over the years, because over the past six or so years I secretly (in my real life) have suicidal thoughts on occasion. Nothing in particular triggers them. I’ve just gone through bouts of depression where I can’t pinpoint what I’m feeling. I think it’s possible to be depressed without knowing it. Recently in my life, I’ve felt almost no zest for anything at all…

Because of that, I’ve felt unfair to my girlfriend, friends and family. In that way, I do feel like a burden to them, because I feel like being around them has the possibility of causing them to be unhappy. I don’t voice the way I feel, because I don’t want to be a Debbie downer.

Regardless, I recognize these occasional feelings of suicide are irrational. Still, the thought of going to sleep and never waking up is something that comforts me, in a way. I’m not going to commit suicide, or at least I don’t plan to, but often the thought stays in the back of my head.

Selfishness be damned, when you feel like you are worthless and your value to others is at an all-time low, wielding the mindset that you belong, that you matter, that you are needed is difficult.

The worst part about suicide, however, is if you take your life when you have children that depend on you. Bennington has six kids, and I feel for each of them. If you have kids who need you and you commit suicide, I can’t help but think it’s selfish. But again, mental clarity is blurred in moments like these.

I hope we will find out what was troubling Chester Bennington. Maybe we never will. Depression isn’t easy to understand. It’s difficult to write about. We all have our own struggles and personal battles that often remain unbeknown to everybody. In fact, each person you meet in this world will have something going on in their lives that is affecting them in some kind of negative way, but 98% of the time you’ll never know it. We’ll never know it.

The thought of killing myself and leaving my girlfriend behind breaks my heart. I can’t imagine doing it to her. Even though I do often feel like a burden to her given that sometimes my passion for things is lost, I know she thinks the world of me and would be crushed if I did something like that. At the same rate, there are moments where I believe she’d be better off in the long run.

I’m also scared about the future prospect of possibly fathering a child. Even though I had an amazing father and mother, I feel like I won’t be as good as my dad.

I try to embrace and compound these feelings and sublimate them into positive pursuits, but when you have zero desire to do something and the discipline/habit to do it is lacking, life is hard.

Fuck yeah, life is supposed to be hard. But man. It’s just, I don’t fucking know.

Just talk to somebody. Anybody. When you are feeling like you want to end your life. Maybe I’m not the best to recommend that, but I’m here trying to put it into words.

Much love to anybody reading this. You do matter. Maybe you can’t see or understand it, but you do. You do make a difference.

How You Begin Your Day is a Great Predictor for the Rest of it

This is simply my belief: how you start your day determines the rest of it. Sure, you can overcome a shitty start to a day, but sometimes it puts you in an uphill battle in regards to a negative mindset that’s difficult to deface.

I’ve noticed this the last few days.

My girlfriend’s family came in on Friday night and left yesterday. Each day, we were up early (fine by me; I’m a morning person these days). Saturday, we went grocery shopping for a weekend featuring epic meals (oh, they were). Sunday, we got up early to start up some barbecue smokin’ on my Weber Smokey Mountain cooker. Yesterday, we spent time together at Cabelas and Bass Pro Shops before they headed home.

It was a fun weekend, and it was sad seeing them go. Anyway… I had some damn good days, and it goes back to what I said.

Oftentimes, I fall into a trap. I get up, and well, as a man I’ll often wake up with rock hard morning wood, aching to get rid of it by…. taking care of business, of course.

As I mentioned in a previous post, the biggest waste of time is going to Tumblr and searching the “my butt”, “my booty”, “my ass” tags or going on Reddit’s many NSFW gonewild-esque subreddits and jacking off. It’s a waste of my time, personally, because two or three hours will pass by quickly, and before I know it I will have been edging for too damn long, and I’ll feel terrible about wasting that portion of the day sitting on my ass and doing nothing.

My typical, best days are when I wake the hell up, ignore taking care of my morning wood (saving up for my girlfriend for later), drink my water from my 64oz Stanley stainless steel growler, consume my caffeine, piss/shit and get on with my daily farmer’s carry workout and more. In the summer, I love going outside with just my shorts on, soaking up the morning sun and relaxing. It’s perfect.

Just getting up and doing something marginally productive is a great start to the day.

My Girlfriend’s Mom is an Armchair Psychologist

I’m defensive.

I’ve only ever had one bad experience with a girlfriend’s mother. That was with my first love’s. Despite having good experiences before and since, that has stayed with me.

My current girlfriend’s mom, who I genuinely love and she’s treated me like a son she’s never had, told her that she thinks she (my girlfriend) is unhappy. This was because the conversation that preceded that one was about my girlfriend saying that there’s nothing to do around here, where we live. And that’s true. We live in a rural town — my hometown — with a lack of career/job options. I only plan on being here for another couple of years, so that I can complete college and go beyond.

Anyway, I get defensive easily. Sometimes I feel like her mom plays armchair psychologist or acts like a pot stirrer…

My boneheaded, “say what you mean; mean what you say” cracker ass expressed those feelings. Not a great idea.

We didn’t get into a full on fight or anything. Not even an argument. But there was a few, “What do you mean?!” questions from her. Understandably…

I just get annoyed…

Why the fuck would her mom think she’s unhappy?

Actually, my girlfriend says and appears to be happier than ever. Even though she doesn’t make much, she enjoys her job and the people she works with. She’s going out to the movies with them on Wednesday evening, and I couldn’t be happier about that.

If anything, my girlfriend was miserable from September through February, when she lost her old job and was unemployed for five, long, painstaking months that were insanely stressful as she couldn’t find a job anywhere despite applying literally e-v-e-r-y-w-h-e-r-e!

Her family is coming in this weekend to visit. I have some anxiety over it.. fuck.

I do wish her mom was a little more like mine… y’know… never gets involved in the relationship. I mean, her mom doesn’t get involved per se, but she just says these little comments that irks the shit out of me. My mother stays totally out of my relationship with my little lady, and that’s the way I love it; I’m sure my little lady appreciates it, too.

But goddamn.

I know that mothers will always be protective. My mom is.. I’m all she has, really, as an only child. And it’s especially so for my girlfriend’s mom since they are states away from one another.

But I never want to be in that position of my girlfriend’s mom feeling like I’m not good enough for her or something. I also expressed that opinion last night and my girlfriend flipped the fuck out, telling me that her mother doesn’t feel that way, yet she couldn’t answer me when I asked why the fuck her mom would question her happiness.

I put my girlfriend’s needs before mine as much as I possibly can. She might as well change her name to “Roll” because I can’t stop buttering her up. Then again, it’s the same in reverse sometimes as well for me.

I guess I just want to live to the tune of that song from Boston… “Peace of Mind”… I just want to live peacefully. Please.

You Have to Earn The Right To Feel Good About Yourself

I feel a lot of guilt, sadness, regret and anger. Much of it is related to the past. It’s not constant. It comes in waves, but it hits hard.

Once you learn to accept that the past is the past and that it can’t be changed, you set a precedent to move forward with your life.

But, no matter what, I’ve learned from one of my role models — Andy Frisella — that you have to earn the right to feel good about yourself.


Some people might disagree with that and spew insipid platitudes like, “happiness is a choice regardless of your situation!” but the truth is, happiness is a choice… yes… but “regardless of your situation”? No. While I believe in making the best of every situation and using it as an opportunity, if you are poor, struggling to scrape by in life and hardly able to live paycheck to paycheck, you might be able to take solace in that you have your physical health and are still able to live your life, counting your true blessings, but I highly doubt you are happy, or at least as happy as you could be.

I don’t remember if I wrote it here or elsewhere, but I also believe that action cures fear.

In the way you earn the right to feel good about yourself, you do so by taking action and doing something that yields that result.

2010-2013 were blunders in my life. Those were four wasted years where I did not advance in my life. I did have some good moments in 2010 and on a lesser scale in 2011, but I accomplished nothing in regards to building a better and brighter future for myself. I spent much of my time bitching, moaning, groaning and crying (to myself only) about missing my ex, who was a crazy, dirty, lying, cheating, childish human being, and doing nothing about it.

I could have made myself busy. I could have strode to keep myself busy by working out more and reading, but no. I spent a lot of lonely nights jacking off to erotica on Lush Stories, intermittently playing video games, reading inane bullshit on the internet and doing nothing to ‘level up’ in life.

In 2014, I went back to college. It was at a community college, but still, it’s college. It was a huge milestone for me. Right off the bat, I took public speaking despite hardly being around a whole lot of people for a few years. I knew I had to make this choice in order to grow. It’s funny how one of the girls in that class remarked near the end of the semester that I was “so calm and collected” even though I was nervous as fuck. I always went first in class, because my theory always is, in public speaking, people are too busy  worrying about their upcoming speech to truly pay a whole lot of attention to yours, and besides, even if they do key in on you, they’ll forget about you soon enough!

I felt great. I was building confidence.

I continued another school year in 2015-2016. I took a shitty chemistry class, and I hated my lab teacher. I also made a great friend, at least for that time period, named Dillon. If that was the 2009-2013 version of me, I would have quit going to school just like I did when I first tried college in the fall of 2009.

This past year, I completed my final year at the community college. I think I would have finished up in 2015-2016 had I not been forced to take developmental math for a few semesters. I took a year of math this past school year and made an A last fall and a B this past spring semester. I’ve been accepted to a university this fall as a junior. I’m mostly taking online classes, but I will be taking a night class at the same community college for five weeks through the university.

I’ve built confidence and, in many ways, I feel great about myself.

But you can’t just do the right thing a few times and expect it to last… you have to keep the momentum going by continuously doing what you need to do. Don’t feel like working out? Do it, anyway. Don’t feel like studying? Do it, anyway. Don’t feel like writing that paper? Do it now! Do it, anyway!

Because when you are done, you will feel a whole lot better about yourself than you will if you procrastinate and watch shitty YouTube videos instead.

I heard somebody say, elsewhere, I think on Reddit, that you “should find enjoyment in everything, even if you dislike it”… BULLSHIT. That is nice, in theory, but truthfully, some things just suck! And no matter what, through whatever positive thinking channel your mind goes through, you will never enjoy it, and sometimes it’s best to put your head down and grind through it. Once you start something, sometimes you realize it’s not as bad as you conceive it to be.

If I work out every single day for 90 days, I will feel better about myself than what I would if I kept procrastinating.

By doing so, you earn the right to feel good about yourself.

I struggle almost daily to stay on track.

It’s fucking hard. But that’s OK. Because nothing worth doing or accomplishing in life comes easy!

Sometimes I procrastinate. Not as much as I used to, but I’m still working on it. It happens. No excuses. It’s easy to be suckered into doing things that are not apropos to what you should be doing.

But man, when you get into that flow of doing the thing you need to be doing, accomplishing tasks that need to be done, and you complete them, it feels good. It’s liberating.

You have to earn the right to feel good about yourself. I think that is an undisputed truth. I appreciate Andy Frisella for talking about this on one of his podcasts. If you don’t know who he is, Google him and thank me later.

I’m sure there are antagonists out there who exist that will be antagonists of this mentality, but that’s their thought process and not mine.

I didn’t start feeling better about myself until I started doing shit that made me feel uncomfortable, stepping out of my comfort zone and attempting to achieve a modicum of success.

If I kept sitting in my bedroom, on my computer, jerking off to sluts on Tumblr and not doing anything, no matter how badly I want to feel great about myself, I’d still — deep down — always feel depressed and awful about myself.

Whenever you go out and do something that you feel needs to be done in regards to accomplishing your tasks and goals, you feel good. I believe that’s an undisputed truth as well. But you have to do it day in and day out and build that perpetual momentum to consistently feel good about yourself.

No, not every day will you feel like a million bucks. This is life and we are all human beings, prone to difficult days, but you can’t have sunshine without a little rain.

Keep grinding, keep hustling, do what you need to do. Embrace the suck. Consume some caffeine (or not) and bulldoze ahead. I believe in you. If I can go through hell, you can, too.