Happiness Should Be Every Man’s Goal
Men are happy when they are productive. They get satisfaction from solving problems. Whether it’s learning new skills, sharpening old ones, or overcoming adversity, they gain understanding about themselves and also grow as a person when they conquer new challenges. Great and small.
Happiness should be every man’s goal. That’s the conclusion I’ve come to.
I started looking into this topic quite a bit.
Who would know what’s important? Who would be able to really break things down to a bare bones assessment and triage what should take priority?
Answer: Dying Men
These people were expressing what they considered things they wished they’d done as they were lying on their deathbeds.
Think about that.
As a man, think of how these statements resonate with you, these are the top regrets:
1. I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.
It does not get more “Red Pill” than this. Societal pressure makes men conform to what women want, not what you as a man want. If your wants are in alignment with society, all the better, but if you want to live your life for yourself, you have to have the courage it takes to become the man you want to be. Men are forged. We don’t get to coast along on our good looks.
(Overwhelmingly, it seems these people often said “I wished I had traveled more when I was young”, when asked what they meant)
2. I wish I didn’t work so hard.
Really, this comes to me as a logical extension of the first regret, however it should really drive home the point. Don’t sacrifice your happiness for commitments you make to others that you wouldn’t have made if you were concerned with your own happiness.
3. I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.
The palliative nurse recording these regrets probably couldn’t distinguish the difference between “thoughts” and “feelings” but the message was still the same. She noted how many people held on to past grudges, or bitterness that eventually manifested in the illnesses they were dying from. If you are living for yourself, there is less room for this type of regret.
4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.
Men develop strong bonds when dealing with adversity and other challenges. Women will never understand what it’s like to go to battle together. Be it team sports, train together for individual pursuits, or actual war. We as men will often let too much time pass between “golden” friendships out of laziness or even worse, commitments to others we never truly wanted to begin with.
The nurse noted that when death approaches, all the physical details and easily negotiated obstacles fall away, and you are faced with the cold realization, none of that shit should have mattered.
5. I wish that I had let myself be happier.
Apparently this was a common sentiment. It sounds almost redundant until you actually understand what’s really being said. All these people realize that the difference between being happy and unhappy was about allowing themselves to be so.
I read the individual regrets as well and the general theme that is expressed over and over boils down to:
“I wish I had taken care of myself”
“I wish I had seen the world when I was young”
“I wish I had learned more”
It sounded like every person regretted trying to keep up with the Jones and would have traded anything to have done more for themselves.
At this point in my research into the topic, I realized a few things.
The parallels between these dying regrets, and what I have identified as genetic drivers as the keys to male happiness are identical (Book Coming Soon).
Taking this knowledge from the end, I decided to go back to the beginning; I surveyed the best young knowledgable minds with the most adventurous spirit (I surveyed the opinions of RVF members) on what they considered to be “Must Have Experiences, Must See Things, Around the World”
In only two days I was given all sorts of information to sift through. While not a complete list, I took my favorites because they also appealed to the regrets of dying men as well.
Seeing and doing things changes the dimensions of your mind, acts of merit will change your character for the good. Enriching your life should be every man’s pursuit and happiness should be every man’s goal in my humble opinion.
Some of these things are obscure and remote, one commentator pointed out that it was the journey itself to see or do these things that was just as important and I 100% agree with that travel sentiment. Every epic adventure involves a journey.
Some of these things are well known and their existence is common knowledge. That doesn’t make these experiences or sights any less life changing or special.
Travel experiences are some of the most rewarding things a man can do for himself. You are forced outside your comfort zone, you have to negotiate all sorts of obstacles, and unless all you do is sit inside your hotel room, you are forced into adventures.
The more powerful the experience, the more each man forges his own happiness.
The bottom line, these are things that I think reach an overlap from the young man’s aspirations and the dying man’s regrets.
So without further ado:
Angkor Wat – Cambodia
These 900 year old temple ruins are considered the largest of their kind in the world. Their magnificence is a testament to the ingenuity and creativity of man. Even though it is one of the most photographed sites in the world, it is said that nothing compares to seeing it in person.
The Killing Fields
Conversely, Cambodia is the site of one of the worst instances of genocide in recent history by the communist Khmer Rouge regime. 25% of the population was murdered or tortured with almost 2 million people killed and well over 2 million dying as a result of disease or starvation from the Regime’s policies. At one point, people were being killed with hammers and screw drivers to save bullets. Children and babies had their heads smashed against “The Killing Tree” because their parents were accused of crimes against the Khmer Rouge . Soldiers would routinely laugh while they did this because NOT to laugh was an indication of being guilty as well.
It’s hard to believe but the leader, Pol Pot was claiming all these atrocities were for the “greater good”. Without getting too political, I think everyone should ask themselves how something like that could happen.
Drink Ayahuasca in the Amazonian Jungle
Ayahuasca is a drink containing the psychodelic drug DMT (among other herbs and plants that reportedly work together) made by a “Shaman”.
A trip through a triple canopy jungle alone will give you perspective once you start realizing no one in the jungle gives a damn about whether your clothes are fashionable or not, if you have the latest iPhone, or if your hair looks good. Everything is reduced to “will this keep me alive”? And “Is this a functional tool”?
Taking a drink under those conditions has brought reportedly overwhelmingly positive changes in the lives of the participants where spiritual revelations about the purposes of their own lives are made known.
This isn’t some hippie bullshit game. This is learning about yourself, and gaining insight into your own life that you wouldn’t otherwise ever be able to have.
Door to Hell – Turkmenistan
Out in the middle of nowhere a crater that swallowed a Russian drilling rig was set on fire and has been burning for 40 years. Recently the President of Turkmenistan has ordered the Door to Hell closed. Just getting to this place could be a once in a lifetime experience that will soon be gone forever.
Hang Soong Doong Cave or Son Doong Cave – Vietnam
The name “Son Doong” cave means “mountain river cave”, It was created 2-5 million years ago by river water eroding away the limestone underneath the mountain Where the limestone was weak, the ceiling collapsed creating huge skylights…
2 to 5 Million years ago.
Let that sink in.
Motorcycle Trip From Hanoi to Saigon Following the Ho Chi Min Trail – Vietnam
3 week long motorcycle trip where you see gorgeous vistas, overcome adversity, negotiate obstacles, evade out right danger, while you travel through the remnants of a war torn country that is in every phase of development from modern living to mud huts?
Sign me up.
Swing at the End of The World – Ecuador
“Deep in the Ecuadorian wilderness is a seismic monitoring station known as Casa del Arbol or “The Treehouse” because it is simply a small house built in a tree used for observing Mt. Tungurahua, the active volcano in the near distance.
While the simple wooden room is a sight to behold, the real attraction is the crude swing hanging from one of the tree’s skinny branches. With no harness, net, or any other safety feature the swing (itself nothing more than a thick stick suspended by two ropes) arcs riders out into the void over the canyon.
Adventurous visitors are welcome to take a ride on the swinging seat, but swingers should be aware that it is their own responsibility to not to accidentally fling themselves into the void”.
Giants’ Causeway – Ireland
The Giant’s Causeway lies at the foot of the basalt cliffs along the sea coast on the edge of the Antrim plateau in Northern Ireland. It is made up of some 40,000 massive black basalt columns sticking out of the sea. The dramatic sight has inspired legends of giants striding over the sea to Scotland. Geological studies of these formations over the last 300 years have greatly contributed to the development of the earth sciences, and show that this striking landscape was caused by volcanic activity during the Tertiary, some 50–60 million years ago.
Eat at the oldest restaurant in the world, Casa Botin in Madrid – Spain
There you are in Madrid, possibly after having run with the bulls in Pamplona
Where do you think you should eat?
I know ONE of the places I would go while there.
Running With the Bulls of Pamplona – Spain
You’re energized by the crowd’s mixture of fear, excitement and very real danger.
People are being trampled and you can hear the stampede behind you and the sound of the bulls snorting and blowing.
You’d better run your ass off.
Take the Trans Siberian Railway From Moscow, though Mongolia, to Beijing China. – Russia, Mongolia, China
And stop along the way whenever you can.
Legendary stuff will happen.
Extra legendary stuff will happen if travel in 3rd class.
Bagan – Myanmar (Burma)
“Bagan in central Burma is one of the world’s greatest archeological sites, a sight to rival Machu Picchu or Angkor Wat but – for the time being at least – without the visitors. The setting is sublime – a verdant 26 square-mile plain, part-covered in stands of palm and tamarind caught in a bend of the lazy-flowing Irrawaddy (Ayeyarwady) river and framed by the hazy silver-grey of distant mountains.
Rising from the plain’s canopy of green are temples, dozens of them, hundreds of them, beautiful, other-worldly silhouettes that were built by the kings of Bagan between 1057 and 1287, when their kingdom was swept away by earthquakes and Kublai Khan and his invading Mongols. Some 2,230 of an original 4,450 temples survive, a legacy of the Buddhist belief that to build a temple was to earn merit”.
How can you see these photos and not have something tell you inside that you have to go?
Mount Roriama – Brazil, Venezuela, Guyana
The tabletop mountains are considered some of the oldest geological formations on Earth, dating back to roughly 2 billion years ago
It’s a personal goal of mine to do a handstand at the top of this thing.
I’ll let the photos do the talking.
Practice a Martial Art – Thailand or Brazil or the USA
Every man should have the confidence that comes with being able to defend himself. The fitness and respect for combat sports that come with becoming competent as a fighter will enrich you for the rest of your life and the friendships you form will last just as long.
Victoria Falls Bordering Zimbabwe and Zambia in Africa
355 Foot water fall that is the widest in Africa. Another place where the journey getting might be just as rewarding as the location itself.
Hiking the Sun Gate into Machu Picchu
“Embedded within a dramatic landscape at the meeting point between the Peruvian Andes and the Amazon Basin, the Historic Sanctuary of Machu Picchu is among the greatest artistic, architectural and land use achievements anywhere and the most significant tangible legacy of the Inca civilization”.
“The Sun Gate or Intipunku is made of steps that makes believe that these were some kind of control gate for the people who enter and go out of the Sanctuary.
Is one of the most important archeological constructions that connects with Machu Picchu, is dedicated also to the cult of the INTI, the Sun god, and that’s because the Sun on determined times of the years, comes out from this building.
Getting to Inti punku means the end of the of the road, due that from that place is all downhill, and from that you can watch the entire Sanctuary, the view is amazing, takes your breath away observed The Machu Picchu Mountain, the Vilcambamba or Urubamba River, the Putukusi mountain and the Huayna Picchu mountain.
Located at 2745 meters above the sea level, is a wide place, with windows and gates that are hold by terraces, is the first place that you can actually see the whole Sanctuary, and that’s why his name, because you can see how the Sun rises over the whole mountains that conformed Machu Picchu, and realized that not many people lived or visit Machu, given that the location of the gate was to watch and control the pass of the people”.
“It was probably the most amazing urban creation of the Inca Empire at its height; its giant walls, terraces and ramps seem as if they have been cut naturally in the continuous rock escarpments. The natural setting, on the eastern slopes of the Andes, encompasses the upper Amazon basin with its rich diversity of flora and fauna”.
Paragliding or Hangliding – Anywhere You Can!
This has always seemed so awesome to me.
Zhang Jia Jie – China
Ever wonder what it would be like to be in the movie Avatar?
“The city itself was previously named Dayong (大庸), and has a recorded history dating back to 221 BC. Humans lived here along both banks of the Lishui river (the mother river in Zhangjiajie), now within the boundaries of Zhanagjiajie City, very early during the Stone Age. Human settlement in this region dates back 100,000 years, rivaling such famous sites as Xi’an, Beijing and others. In 1986, the Academy of Chinese Social Science discovered Stone Age relics in Cili County, unearthing 108 articles of stoneware; mostly tapered-form, hacked-tamped and plate-shaped works. According to archaeological experts’ textual research, all of these wares were produced about 100,000 years ago. Shortly thereafter, in 1988, the Archaeological Institute of Hunan Province found other relics in Sangzhi County, including three pieces of stoneware which were estimated to have been fashioned over 100,000 years ago”.
Northern Lights – Norway
One of those things that must be seen in person to believe. Until then I’m convinced it’s Photoshop!
Salt Flats – Bolivia
Salar de Uyuni is the world’s largest salt flat at 10,582 square kilometers. It is located in the Potosí and Oruro departments in southwest Bolivia, near the crest of the Andes and is at an elevation of 3,656 meters above mean sea levelJust make sure you go during the rainy season if you want the sky mirror effect.
Finding Sights Like These While On Your Soujourn – Parts Unknown
Abandoned Hotel in Colombia Near a Waterfall
The S.S. America – Canary Islands
I hope I’ve been able to give some motivating ideas to the people that read this post. It’s far from a complete list and perhaps unbalanced but it’s job is to spark creativity and give a glimpse at what is possible to be seen. Happiness should be every man’s goal. It’s the doing that makes it all come together. You’ve got to be like a shark that keeps moving. If you stop swimming you won’t die, you’ll just stop living.
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