Helping men who feel something missing in their lives

The Disquiet in Men

Helping men who feel something missing in their lives

Working with your Disquiet takes humility

I have written often about the sense of personal failure and shame that accompanies the feelings of Disquiet in a man’s life. In many of the interviews I’ve been conducting as part of my study, men describe this sense of personal failure that goes right to the core sense of what it means to be a man.

When a man feels he is no longer successful in his career or other aspects of his life, despite all the trappings of hard-won accomplishments, there is often a feeling that something is wrong with him. Many report feeling embarrassed to be telling me that they feel lost when they have everything one could want in life. “What is wrong with me?” is the most frequently voiced lament that I hear with my clients.

For a man to successfully work with his Disquiet, there needs to be a fresh and open mind for learning. That is pretty hard to do when you feel like you have been a failure. So the first thing we work on is understanding that having Disquiet in your life does not mean you are a failure. On the contrary, the Disquiet is a powerful feedback mechanism telling you where your life may have gone off course. If you are listening and willing to learn from it, you are taking a very powerful step to taking charge of your life.

To do this though, a man must turn down the volume of his ego’s need to get it right, look good or be smooth about it. The act of learning to listen to where you are out of synch with what is most important to you takes courage and openness. It takes a willingness to look at some raw stuff and be able to be awkward as you learn a new way to go in your life.

That takes humility.

How do you bring humility to your Disquiet?

  • Accept that your Disquiet does not mean you are a failure for the reasons mentioned above.
  • Know that you are not the only one struggling with Disquiet. It is a common condition. Read my report on this.
  • Learn how not engaging in your Disquiet not only causes you suffering but is impacting your family, you friends and even society.
  • Begin to explore how you can “get out of your own way”. What do I mean? When I forget that I am supported in life by my spiritual beliefs and that my God-given talents and gifts are an expression of that support, I can relax a bit. I then can experience a clarity of direction and action. My effectiveness goes way up. And I have a sense of living life in a very full and powerful way. I will be writing more about how to get out of your own way. Stay tuned.

What does bringing humility to this work mean for you?

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9 Responses to “Working with your Disquiet takes humility”

  1. Adam Kayce : Monk At Work Says:

    Hi Dave,

    It’s interesting to hear that one of the most frequent questions you hear is, “What’s wrong with me?” Especially when, from my perspective, there’s not anything necessarily wrong at all.

    Being hungry isn’t wrong; it’s a sign. You’re noticing the absence of something (food) in your life.

    That’s how I, on a very simplified level, see achings like the Disquiet — as a sign. Something’s absent. Not wrong.

    Anyhow, I think humility is key, too. For me, humility is about stripping away what we thought and assumed, to be open to what is.

    And I think that’s a prerequisite to what you said, about being willing to look at what’s raw, and go through the all-too-necessary awkward phase.

  2. Dr. Dorree Lynn Says:

    Fascinating ideas. And of course are rarely discussed anywhere much less a great blogging platform as The Disquiet.

  3. Engaging the Disquiet » Blog Archive » What if there’s nothing wrong? Says:

    Related article

  4. Dave Schoof Says:

    Dr. Dorree Lynn: Thanks – I am trying to dig into these issues.

  5. Dawud Miracle Says:

    Here, here for what Adam said.

    We’re men, right? We’re supposed to be strong and invincible, right? Yet, soft and understanding.

    The problem with that statement is the ‘supposed to’ part. There are no supposed to’s, really. There’s only what is. And from the what is we can decide what we want to be.

    Symptoms are not bad at all. They’re only signals of something not working – just like your tagline.

    Humility, in my opinion, comes in with the willingness to be honest with ourselves about what we’re feeling. It doesn’t make us weak to explore our feelings – even those that are depressing or dark.

  6. Stuart Baker Says:

    HI Dave and all,

    This is great discussion. The “disquiet as friend” I just wrote to Adam Kayce.

    And on the humility end, every time I acknowledge the uncomfortable feelings and limitng thoughts and look for spiritual guidance in my small “self” insufficiency, new and suprising doors open. I know you folks know this, but it is good for me to be reminded again and again.

    This discussion is highly supportive. Thanks.

    Stuart Baker

  7. Engaging the Disquiet » Blog Archive » …and courage Says:

    related article;e

  8. Dave Schoof Says:

    Dawud – there is tremendous power in what you say. It interrupts the victim mode of powerlessness. Leaning into it is the key (IMHO).

  9. Dave Schoof Says:

    That seems right Stuart. Whenever I dont go into those feelings of being inept or insufficient, I get separated from what seems real and even easy – like flow.

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