This morning I’m walking along the beach, the sun is coming up. Small clean waves are breaking close to shore.
And up ahead is my favorite part of the walk. It’s the summer surf camp. Everyday there’s a group of goofy little kids out there with colored zinc on their faces and big smiles getting pushed into waves by a squadron of Baywatch worthy instructors.
I always stand and watch them catch waves. Arms out wide. Squatting down. Strike the pose. Big smile. Always a big smile. And then they usually wipe out and and come up laughing as water pours out of their nose.
And I don’t even know these kids, but I’m hooting them from the beach, fists in the air.
I’m sure each of those kids was scared to get in the water. To them those waves were big. Sharks and sea monsters could be everywhere. And if you’re a kid, is there anything more vast and powerful and mysterious than the sea?
Even with a recent string of shark attacks here in North Carolina, why did those kids get in the water and learn to surf?
#1 — They were part of a group.
They felt safe and supported and encouraged because they were doing it with others.
#2 — They were focused on having fun.
Instead of thinking about all of the things that could go wrong, they were playing and exploring new possibilities.
#3 — They were focused on learning.
They haven’t yet gotten to the point where looking clumsy is a deal breaker. They’ve given themselves permission to suck and grow from the experience. There’s no expectation to be a pro or an expert. As the buddhist’s would say, they have “beginner’s mind”.
So what does this have to do with you?
Most guys I talk to are doing well. And they want to be doing much better. Professionally. Personally. Relationships. Or all of the above.
These guys are usually isolated.
They may be listening to The New Man and reading lots of books, but they’re not talking about it with others.
They’re not making progress because they’re afraid to screw up.
They’re afraid to go through that learning phase — they want to jump right to the “have it altogether and look good in front of others phase”.
And they’re not having much fun either.
Somewhere along the way, things got so damn serious. Instead of imagining all kinds of fun new possibilities, they focus on everything that could go wrong. What happened to being playful?
My point — the thing they’re avoiding is the best part. Being part of the squad, facing your fears, pushing each other, being pushed by others, trying new things, making progress. Knowing that these guys have your back. Knowing that you’re not going to allow yourself to stay stuck on the beach.
The New Coaching Group
If you get my emails you’re probably aware of the new coaching group that I’m creating.
The first group filled up quickly and we’ve already started meeting a month early.
So I’m starting a second group. If you’re interested in learning more, click here to fill out a few questions and we can explore the possibility of having you join this group of extraordinary guys who are excited to create more freedom, meaning, and fun this year.
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