A Man is never Powerless
Posted by Claude Warner on Monday 25th January 2010 at 15:32:29
In 2008 the Sunday Times, a South African Sunday paper, published a letter which I wrote in response to a distressing article they had published about the increase in male suicides.
This complements the article I wrote more recently called “The truth about your stress”.
This is the letter as I submitted it.
Response to newspaper article "White male suicides on the rise"
This article greatly distressed me. As a former medical aid broker two of my clients committed suicide, and I have experienced firsthand the devastation that this can cause.
The ending of the emotional pain and any financial gain from death payouts for the family is far exceeded by the lifelong emotional pain of a wife losing her husband, children their father, and the effects on other family and friends.
There is no doubt that the present times have brought financial difficulty, career uncertainty and business setbacks for many men.
For men used to being in control, to making decisions and acting on them, and to providing for their families, circumstances like these can make many men feel powerless. This can cause real emotional pain that in time can result in men becoming so desperate that they consider drastic options such as suicide.
I fit into the same pale male 40 to 50 demographic and am not immune to the same challenges, but what really stopped me in my tracks recently was a quote I read that said “a man is never powerless, no matter how powerless he is”. That seems like a contradiction, but what it speaks to is your attitude and perspective.
As a life coach I am at best one step ahead of those that I coach, so I myself had to apply the wisdom from this quote and re-examine my own attitude and perspective to one of these challenges that I am currently facing. I decided that, even though I may not currently have the power to change the outcome, I can take control of the process, which is what I have done.
My encouragement to all men experiencing emotional pain is to examine your attitude and perspective around it.
Our situations may cause us to feel powerless, but we can still be powerful in our response to them, and often, when we change our perspective, we start to see options that we were previously not aware of.
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