We are all as different as we can be, we men. We come in all shades and sizes and understanding how different we are is a very wise move for better co-existence.
That said, there are attributes that we should all posses; attributes that will lead to attitudes that will foster better relationship with other men and of course, women.
This list is in no way exhaustive; we could go on and on but these ten things are proven enhancers of a great life:
1. Learn to say: I love you. I am sorry. I forgive you, after you have learnt to say please and thank you. Say nothing more afterwards. If you are not absolutely sure, never make these 3 statements. It is better to hurt her honestly than deceive her with a lie.
2. Cry: Yeah, cry. I know what you are thinking: ‘Cry? How?! Isn’t that what sissies do? A real man doesn’t cry, simple!’ Not exactly bro. Have you ever wondered why women tend to like vulnerable men? No, I don’t mean you should cry at the drop of a hat or turn into the mythical bush baby constantly crying for his mat. But there’s a reason musicians who sing about their vulnerability fill concert halls…Banky W’s ‘My Regret and Don’t Break My Heart, as well as Darey’s ‘You’re Not the Girl’ and ‘No Stars’ are constant on every request list on night shows on radio.
Women have a natural maternal instinct that makes them want to take care of men; if you refuse to let her see your vulnerable side, you don’t know what you’re missing.
3. Listen: Yeah, shut up and listen. When people open up to talk to you, they seldom need you to tell anything; they just need someone to listen. You will not die suddenly from listening and not saying anything. Also, don’t monopolise discussions. It’s not always about you. Shut up and listen.
4. Ask for Help: Trust me, asking for help does not reduce the size of your manhood. It is absolutely fine to throw your hands in the air and scream for your friends and family to come to your aid when push comes to shove. Yes, be careful who you ask but if you are not surrounded by people you can ask, perhaps you have failed in cultivating useful relationships? Or, perhaps you love being asked for assistance but won’t ask others so you can lord it over them? Shame on you; that’s stuff for kids. Grow up.
5. Dance: Have you ever seen a woman who didn’t find a man that can dance sexy?! Are you a learner? Get back in good terms with your feet bro, dancing raises your chances by 101%. I confess to possessing 2 left legs but when the 3rd bottle of Star kicks in, the dance miraculously takes over. Rediscover your rhythm, make any dance space your temple and they’ll come worship…
6. Kick Ass: Talk to the waiter with respect; don’t verbally or physically abuse people who work for/with you; be kind to those who seek your assistance; talk to women and other men as you would expect to be spoken to. But, when the need arises, kick ass. Kick it so hard that the mere thought of how you kick someone’s ass will put the fear of God in others that they will ensure they don’t do anything that would require you to kick ass. Do it sparingly but be bloody good at it.
7. Name your poison: Vodka on the rocks, double, neat. That’s how a man orders his poison. If you cannot name your poison with clarity, how can you be trusted with giving precise instructions or making important decisions?
8. Read an important book: Yes, the Bible, Quran or the Bhagavad Gita are important texts, if you’re a man of faith. But you will find yourself in many important settings where the discussion will not be about religion. Read an important book; test the waters of knowledge, agree with what you find illuminating, question everything.
9. Cook a meal. It doesn’t have to be anything elaborate. A simple meal will be equally appreciated, although plain Indomie noodles does not count. She knows you can’t cook to save your life but she loves that you can make an effort. It’s the effort that counts, really.
10. Be loyal to something or someone: Loyalty goes a long way, in many ways. Be loyal to a brand, a pet, a football club, a place, a clothing label, an artiste…or somebody. If there’s nothing and no one you can practically die for, who or what do you live for?