By Steve Wells
I wrote this article ahead of International Men's Health Week which will be held next week (June 15-21):
Here’s a radical feminist joke for you:
Q: Why do men die earlier?
A: Because they deserve it!
I’m not even going to ask how many of you find that funny.
Probably the same number that were affronted by the assertion that men suffer more. (Actually, they do, but since they caused it anyway they don’t deserve compassion, says our radical friend!)
It’s a fact you know: Men DO die some 6 years earlier than women on average. And they come out ahead in a huge number of areas (they love winning competitions!), such as cancer, heart disease, respiratory diseases, accidents generally, and motor vehicle accidents specifically, diabetes, and the list goes on.
And the situation is even worse when it comes to mental and emotional health. The suicide rate for men is 4 times higher than women.
But who cares really?
If you’re a man, probably not you. As one Australian Government website states:
“The poor health status of Australian men is complicated by the fact that men are more likely than women to shy away from medical treatment of any kind. The lack of health awareness and unwillingness to adopt a healthier lifestyle also disadvantages men.”
My research shows this is the same for men in other countries too.
With apologies to Thoreau: Most men do live lives of quiet desperation. Then their bowel drops out. Then they die.
Oh, they might go to the doctor at the point when their bum starts dragging on the ground, with a request like, “Put that back in will you doc?”
Or maybe, for the more enlightened new-age man it might be something along the lines of, “Do you think there might be something wrong?”
You bet there is buddy!
We need to do something about our health BEFORE it comes to this. And yes I personally had to learn the lesson that health is important by first suffering a health crisis… (not my ass though, that is still attached!). But I would love to save you from suffering a similar fate.
So I went online today to look at some of the things that are being done for International Men’s Health Week. In my searching, I found this quote on a UK site stating the goals of this special week:
“The purpose of Men's Health Week is to heighten the awareness of preventable health problems and encourage early detection and treatment of disease among men and boys.”
I thought about that.
Not to encourage us men to be more healthy, but to encourage early detection and treatment of disease…
Can’t we do better than that? Can’t we focus on getting us men to care about our own mental, physical, and emotional health… Oh, don’t be stupid! You’ll be lucky if you can get them to go for a check up…
So it makes me think, am I stupid for thinking that Andy Bryce and I can get a few men and caring women in the UK to come along to a workshop with the provocative title, Emotional Freedom for Men?
I hope not. (That I’m stupid I mean)
I want to see this as just the beginning of helping men all over the world to gain relief from emotional issues and release emotional blocks.
Emotional issues? You mean anger don’t you? The world is full of angry men. If men could just learn to manage their anger they would be a lot easier to get along with and the world would be at peace.
Yes. No. Maybe.
Anger is perhaps the only negative emotion that is semi-legitimate for us men to express. But it’s not really anger that’s the biggest problem. It’s fear, sadness, and hurt.
Larry Nims, the creator of BSFF, taught us that underneath anger there is almost always fear, sadness, hurt, and/or deep hurt. And I have found this to be spot on.
But you don’t usually get to see the underlying hurt because number one we men aren’t allowed to show it, and number two, unless someone helps us to see, we may not even know it. It’s unconscious.
We men don’t have as many connections from our feeling centre to our language centre as women do. That’s not an excuse, it’s a fact. And talking about our problems does not usually make many men feel better, it makes them feel worse.
But tapping helps.
I’ve now worked with hundreds of men using tapping and I can tell you that the thing that comes up most consistently when we get underneath their anger is deep hurt.
Anger is just the surface emotion.
I’ll never forget talking with Rehana Webster some years ago about her work with chronic recidivist (ie repeat) offenders. Rehana is an EFT Master, now based in Perth, and she gained a bit of notoriety in New Zealand for significantly reducing reoffending rates with these offenders (yes, they were all men) using tapping.
How did she do it? Well primarily by tapping with them on their past traumas. By the way, Rehana found that every one of the guys she worked with had a significant trauma prior to age 12, such as having been abused or losing a parent.
What stood out for me back then was when she described working with one big man, and as his traumatic stress dropped away, he said essentially, “I don’t even know why I did all those bad things … I was just feeling so angry.”
Anger fuelled by hurt.
When the traumatic experiences driving the anger were addressed, the need for the anger dropped away.
You want to tap on something? Try tapping on your deep hurt, and any past memories you have of feeling this way. It will rapidly accelerate your progress.
And here’s something to contemplate, when you think about all the angry men in your life:
“People are very tender, very sensitive inside. I don't believe age or experience makes much difference. Inside, even within the most toughened and calloused exteriors, are the tender feelings and emotions of the heart.
- Stephen R. Covey
We just have to be willing to look beneath the surface…
If you are a man or woman who wants to be part of a revolution in treating male emotional issues using tapping, consider coming along to the first Emotional Freedom for Men Workshop to be held this August in London. You’ll learn a whole host of new distinctions for using Energy Techniques like EFT and SET to treat a whole host of men’s emotional issues. And we’ll have fun too. Even though we shouldn’t.
You can find all the details of the Emotional Freedom for Men workshop here:
By the way, the title of this article is not mine - It is the title of the 6th Biennial Congress on Men's Health and Gender to be held in Vienna, Austria in October...
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