Your Gift to the World
We all receive a wound. It’s a must for male initiation. How you get the wound is not up to you. It may be a physical wound or it can be an emotion wound. The wounds are usually given by a parent as they received their wounds from their parents.
The father gives the physical wound and the mother the emotional wound—a baptism of shame.
Which speaks to their nature.
The father is more physical.
The mother, more emotional.
“Your wound is a gift. And it’s that wound where you’ll find your greatest gift to the community and to your family. You’ve gotta honor the gift of where you’re wounded—it’s where your gift to the world lies.”
I’m about to share with you is something I’ve NEVER told any one. My own mother didn’t know until I was an adult. I’m sharing this because...
it’s how I’m working through my pain—my wound. And how I'm using it as a gift to enter into my zone of genius (more on the zone of genius in another post).
I shared some of my physical wounds with you in this post which I receive from my remote father. Today I’m sharing the emotional wound I receive from my mother. My mother is an amazing strong woman.
Without her, you wouldn’t’ be reading these words.
And without her, I would not be the determined man I am today. She didn’t give me this wound intentional... what mother would intentionally wound their son?
But it was a wound Our Lord intended for me to receive from her... so I could step into my zone of genius and serve you today through this blog.
I received my wound ~8 years old. A typical age for children to lose a piece of their “gold”—their sovereign power.
One Saturday morning, my mom was in the family den putting together her new computer.
(I remember thinking as a kid... “people who had computers must be RICH!” . I mean, it was the 80’s)
I don’t know what she had going on in her life at that time (I now know she was going through a lot). I walked into the family den and said these 7 words—and I’ll never forget them.
"Hey mommy, I need to tell you something."
The same EXACT words my daughter would say to me 30 years later. All I remember was her “shooshing” me away.
"GET OUTTA HERE... I CAN’T TALK TO YOU RIGHT NOW!!!"
Is what flew from mouth in frustration.
It's was the first time I can remember feeling devalued. The feeling of shame.
What did I do wrong that she doesn’t want to talk to me?
What she didn’t know was, I’d been holding something in. A "secret" I’d been carrying for a couple of years. Something I’ve never shared with anyone, not even my wife (as of writing this post).
For years I was sexually abused by a man in my neighborhood from ~6 years old till I was ~12.
I couldn’t take how confused and uncomfortable I felt any longer and I wanted to tell my mother. I couldn’t tell my father—my ordained protector because he wasn’t around.
She denied me.
I later shared this with her when I was an adult. She too remembered exactly when it happened and shames herself because of it and apologizes to me often.
I don’t judge her for it nor do I hold it over her head.
My mother gave me a gift.
A gift which now allows me to step into my genius to create art and heeling for the world.
I kinda grew up a "middle child." I have two older sisters, both of which were doing their own thing and out of the house.
And I have a younger brother.
My mother spent most of her time keeping up with my older sisters and baby brother (at least from my point of view). I was pretty much self-sustaining.
I lived a life of: isolation, devalue, and shame.
These wounds are my gift.
When I think of family... isolation comes to mind.
You’re probably wondering, "how in the hell can feeling devalued and living a life of physical/sexual abuse, and living a life of isolation be a gift??!!"
Did I mention, I was also bullied from 6-14 years old. Each day I had the shit kicked out of me when I walked to and from school (it was a long walk too, for a kid anyway).
It’s what you did in the 80's and 90’s... you walked to school.
I felt I had no control of my life.
It’s the bullying, sexual abuse, and isolation which called me to martial arts. Growing up in the 80’s and 90’s I LOVED martial arts. In the 80's every kids grew up a Chuck Norris and Bruce Lee fan.
So many great debates.
Chuck Norris or Bruce Lee?
Van Damme of Steven Seagal?
Johnny or Daniel?
The list is long.
I knew one day, I would be strong enough and know how to kick anyone’s ass... so no one could ever mess with me again. And that's when Our Lord revealed Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu to me.
And through BJJ, the kettlebell.
Little did I know... this was the journey which would help me get my power pack, reclaim my masculinity, and enter my zone of genius.
As I began sharing what I was learning in Jiu-Jitsu... I started getting attention and soon praise for, "how good I was... how strong I was."
Soon I immersed myself into strength training with kettlebells.
And again. Received praise from what I was teaching. The more I experienced the power of what I was teaching... and how it was helping others become better people. And this is when I knew I was onto something.
Rising Above the Wounds
It took me 10 years to discover my wounds and what a gift they would be to the community and soon, my family. In fact.
... I avoided my wounds for years.
Instead I decided to rise above them. To quote Robert Bly, I was a "grandiose ascender."
Grandiose Ascender: A man who is not grounded in his masculinity. A man who denies his wounds.
A man who say’s, “he’s good.”
But deep down he’s hurt and looking for a father figure—one he never had. He's lived a life without fatherly guidance, mentoring, and peace knowing... "someone always had his back."
You can identify him by his works.
It’s the wildly successful business man.
A man focused on the "grind" and making money.
He was the kid driven to get good grades at all times.
This was me.
I was a grandiose ascender and rose above my rounds for years.
I built a successful business from nothing... to a recurring multi 6 figure income at 21 years old... and sold it for a healthy profit.
But down in my soul, I still wasn’t happy.
All I had was money and a big truck.
I lived an unfulfilled life.
... Denying My Wounds
After selling my first business, I used the money to become a coach and open my training studio. The only kettlebell and BJJ studio of its kind.
As I look back, these are the two disciplines God called me to... so I could find my purpose. And use my wounds to enter into my zone of genius.
In 10 years... I built a successful gym and online men’s coaching business that has stood the wrath of a global pandemic.
How’s that possible?
I took hold of my wounds: Isolation, devalue, and shame.
Through these wounds, I discovered my purpose. And that purpose is to teach (and I’m pretty good at it).
When I look back over the years of when I had the most success and when I struggled the most... it’s when my actions were (or weren't) aligned to my purpose.
Teaching/coaching is... my zone of genius.
When I’m in this zone, I’m no longer isolated. I’m surrounded by others who value me. Through my genius, I feed other men to become better men.
Each time I stepped away from this... I struggled.
Every time I dip my wounds (isolation, devalue, and shame) into my genius... I am reclaiming my power. I am reclaiming my masculinity.
It is my right of passage, my initiation as a man.
What does this have to do with you?
What are your wounds?
And how long have you been avoiding them?
Put your ego aside for a moment to find them... and don’t bullshit yourself.
It's these wounds which will be your greatest gifts to the world. But only if you're willing to face your dark twin, enter into the wound and... take hold of them so you can expand into the man God called you to be.
He's there, waiting for you.
It won’t be easy.
In fact... it’s gonna be scary as f*ck!
It took me 40 years to figure this out for myself.
But if you refuse to do the "bucketing work" of your soul... you’ll continue to remain stuck in the vortex that is your "toxic cycle."
And what I know to be true is... men pass their pain to their children. And it's your responsibility to break the toxic cycle and heal the pain in the person who gave it to you.
I'm pullin' for ya.
Thanks for reading man.
Your brother in strength,
P.S. - If you’re tired of being stuck, are looking for that mentor—that father figure—to guide you and have your back. I’m looking to take on 10 new students this month for my men’s coaching program, Better Man Blueprint.
For 16 weeks I’ll clear the path for you to become a more balance man, husband, and father.
It's so effective because I guide you through my "5S" Framework to becoming a more balanced... and fulfilled strongman. How to become:
- Strong in Mind
- Strong in Body
- Strong in Emotion
- Strong in Spirit
- Strong in Community
Unlike my competitors where they only focus one aspect of your being (e.g., workouts and nutrition). Which only represent ~6% of your day.
With the "5S" Framework, you'll become a more complete man... a better man.
Here's what you need to do.
On the call we'll talk about where you're at, what's not working and what it's gonna take to get where you wanna be. And if it makes sense to work together. We can talk about the enrollment process to join our gang of better men. So you can become a more balance strongman.
2 reasons why you need to do this NOW:
- I'm only taking on a hand full of coaching students this month.
- I have limited space on my calendar the next 10 days and...
I look forward to seeing you on my calendar.