Dunedin, Aotearoa New Zealand
May 2, 2021


Living by yourself in a van gives you a lot of time to think - and even more to notice.

One of the biggest differences from everyday life is that if something's happening that I don't like, I have nobody to blame but myself.

And one of the things I've noticed happening is this idea of macho.

The ways I've been programmed, taught. What I'm supposed to do, who I'm supposed to be as a man in the world - and the ways that shows up all across my life.

Making my coffee a little bit stronger, every day. (To my own detriment.)

Driving a little bit faster than everyone else, all the time. (To Horace the van and everyone's detriment.)

The drive to push more, do more, keep going through any obstacle. To not show any weakness.

The ways I push and posture that don't have anything to do with who I am or what I care about, or the values I've spent time exploring, understanding and building my life around.

Nope - these are automatic behaviors. Things that happen when I'm not looking, not two hands on the wheel.

And when I catch them - they really annoy me.

You know, at no point in my life did anyone sit me down and say,

Steven, now to be a man - you better drink ya coffee real strong now.
To be a man, you better drive that car reeeal fast.

And yet, unmistakably, through ten thousand tiny examples, that's exactly what I learned.

And I so I find myself this morning, making coffee - a little less strong.

Trying again, again, to be a little better.

Have an authentic week,


p.s. The best thing I read all week was this thought-provoking opinion piece teasing at the edges of fascinating questions: where does thought begin? In my body? In my brain? Is there free will, and if so, what is it?

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