Parapsychology Journalism: The People, The Theory, The Science, The Skeptics
Pretty much everyone I have ever met has had a persona that they show to the world. The question is though, does it fit? That is a question that has plagued me all my life. I grew up on Dirty Harry, Shane and a host of other tough guy role models. I tried to emulate them when I was a kid, but I never felt comfortable with it. For one, I’m 5’7″. I lack the height and another, I lack the look and feel of the tough guy. Back in Jr. High School I could just never pull it off and no one seemed to notice when I tried. I joined Jr. ROTC in High School and after a couple of years of that I had pretty much come to the conclusion that I was absolutely not cut out for the military. But this tough guy role model was what people looked up to and I wanted to be like that.
This was confusing and difficult for me and I think in some ways I have carried that forward to this day, still trying to be the tough guy. I carry some of my family beliefs in this area including being calm when I am quite hurt and in pain and a tendency to scoff at people who “can’t take it.” I carry a certain amount of pride at being able to do difficult, dirty and dangerous jobs well. But while I have learned from this and taken some positive things from being a handyman and having crawled through dirt and through attics, dealing with potentially lethal electricity and toxic chemicals, I have not felt at home doing it and over time I’ve started to wonder why I’m putting myself through all that. Ultimately, being a tough guy doesn’t do it for me.
It doesn’t quite fit and it never really has. It certainly beats a desk job in a company, but that doesn’t mean that it’s what’s right for me.
So this brings up the question: What is right for me? As a psychic person I have the typical problem of no one to look to. However, I’ve come to know my strengths over time and this has given me some clues that finally led recently to a moment of realization. A few days ago I was on a job and just working away when it came to me. It was time to let go of the tough guy in the back of my head altogether. I have chosen to reconfigure that image I have of myself into completely embracing who I knew I actually am. I have three obvious strengths: Compassion, kindness and understanding. I can see why it took me until I was almost 50 to understand this. Those are not the traits of manly men who do manly things, far from it, those are the traits of girlie giggling girls who still have pictures of unicorns on their bedroom walls. Ok, I’m exaggerating, but emotionally, that’s kind of how it feels.
One of the advantages of having gone down the hard physical job route is that I don’t have any questions about myself and whether “I can take it.” I know I can. This has prepared me for embracing these new ideas about myself. It is a strength to feel compassion and kindness and it feels right when I imagine myself adopting this as my persona. I can feel the power of it. The question I have for myself though, and it’s one that I can’t answer is what sort of person is this. I feel like I’m heading into unknown territory. Oh, well, so be it. I need to do this for my health if nothing else. My body does not like the tough guy stuff.
So I’ve made the decision that I will do this. No more Mr. Tough Guy.