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There’s a phenomenon happening right in male lifestyles, and it all revolves around the word “alpha.” Today’s generation of young men have witnessed an immense loss of masculinity, perhaps due in part to an ever-changing society, however at the core more and more men are beginning to associate the world “alpha” with being a real man. But is being an alpha truly a way to define a gentleman of boldness, courage and confidence, or is it a phrase, with a meaning that’s been misinterpreted over the years?
We see the men in action-movies, you know, the men we call “alpha,” who sleep with beautiful women, walk away from explosions on the set, and live a lifestyle of no regrets or remorse. Perhaps this is the life many men desire to achieve, but the reality is these characters in the movies represent only a fractional part of having a manly lifestyle, not all of it. Considering the fact that it’s the movies, we’re missing out on the rest of the characters lifestyle to make a real judgment.
In the real world things are noticeably different, because an alpha and a gentleman are two separate definitions to describe a man. While both give us the impression of a man who’s bold, courageous and sure of his words and actions, its important young men understand the comparison at hand here.
A Clash of Two Terms: Alpha v. Gentleman
With that said, how do the two terms clash in terms of men’s lifestyles, and what does it really mean to be a real gentleman? Well for starters think of the alpha male, he’s cocky, strives for attention, and is bold enough to fight any man who doesn’t adhere to his liking. If you were to observe a younger man you’ll often see this type of behavior, as everyone male as strung themselves into an argument or fight at some point in their lives. Yet in the opposite regard, when you define a gentleman, it’s a man who’s willing to accept the responsibility of controlling his emotions, and act in a manner that’s respectful, regardless of the situation. A gentleman listens, get’s an understanding, and attempts to reach an agreement with his common man. Additionally, a real man speaks only when he feels it is the proper time to do so. In contrast an alpha male will defend himself regardless of taking into consideration those around him. He will display his dominance, intimidate others with his masculinity, and is driven to always have the last word or win.
Now I could go on and get into every other aspect of what it means to be a gentleman, and the real character behind it, but I just want you to rethink about things here. If you’re still not clear, consider the con-man lifestyle. These men live a life according their rules, do anything for power without remorse or regret, and are famously known for luring women into bed only to leave them the next day. Of course that impression might appear fascinating and manly at first, but it’s far from being a gentleman.
“Alpha Male” Is Not Equal To “Being A Gentleman“
Remember, you can still be a gentleman even if you don’t fit the profile for being alpha. A real gentleman has humility and is sure of his words and actions, hence confidence, and respectful of everyone around him, including women. He knows his purpose, and is in love with himself but not in a cocky, macho manner. Gentlemen also know when to defend and stand up for themselves, but they understand how to handle a situation in a calm manner before it escalates further. In the same regard, true gentlemen stand up for their women, but they key here is that they lead the relationship, which is why women are attracted to them. Like the alpha male, they too display their power and dominance with women, only for a gentleman it’s done so conservatively and when warranted.
All in all, perhaps you’re starting to see how each term for describing a man is similar, yet uniquely different. In return, strive to be a gentleman of character and good principals. Don’t let the alpha male approach to life take over your impression on what it means of being a real, honest man. A gentleman can be powerful, respected, and courageous through his words and actions, but only if you how to handle yourself in a manner that’s honorable. So take some time to reflect on things to become a better man, often what we see presented in front of us in an illusion of who we really want to be. Take note of your true self and rediscover new ways in which you can love yourself, but also while considering those around you.
Brian Cornwell is the founder of the men’s magazine and buyer’s guide Next Luxury. Established in 2003, Brian has been sharing male lifestyle advice to help assist men on their journey of becoming gentlemen. He seeks to offer answers for men who want to live lifestyles of positive character and principals. While he shares discoveries of new men’s gear along the way, the foundation of his work is based on defining what it really means to be a genuine gentleman.