Ancient Rome refers to manliness as Virtus. It’s perceived as courage, generally referring to heroic deeds and actions done in public. For the ancient Greeks, manliness is living a life of eudaimonia, which roughly translates to being the best man you can be in every facet of life. These qualities remain relevant in present-day society. That’s why you must be able to define the kind of manliness you want to achieve.
Media greatly influences the definition of modern manliness. It ranges from avenging your dead dog to rescuing your daughter three times. I’m looking at you Liam Neeson.
Not everyone can be an action star, but this article will help you figure out just the right set of skills to be a man’s man.
The Art of Manliness
People seem to react to an act of manliness as if it is so rare in our time, some would even say that it is a lost art that fathers forgot to pass down to their sons. But when you ask men what truly translates to being a man, you might get confusing and even conflicting answers.
A quality often associated with manliness is being tough physically and emotionally. Manly men radiate confidence with just one look. They are often recognized as skilled masters of their craft. Lastly, they are known for their honor, through sticking to their word and being loyal to their beliefs.
More recently, men are encouraged to be much more open, soft, and emotional. This new trend is very much welcomed and comes with a plethora of benefits, like men cooking and gardening.
Although manliness is not limited to these qualities, they are a good foundation to build on. It’s still you who determines the kind of man you want to be. Let’s start your journey by learning some basic manly skills.
Why Learn Manly Skills?
Most men who aspire to achieve a certain level of manliness leans towards mastering a handful of skills. Some do it just to show off, others use it for practical reasons. I firmly believe that most of these skills should be learned by all men and even be taught in school.
Now I’m not asking you to learn how to survive in the wilderness for 10 days or box with bears. I am referring to a few basic skills that will help improve your daily life, like fixing things around the house, cooking a simple meal, and basic first aid.
As a cherry on top for single guys out there, these general skills could boost your odds with women. You never know when you’ll meet the next damsel in distress who might have gotten a papercut or sprained an ankle. Hint: this is where your first aid training chimes in. Let’s get started.
Learn How To Fix Things
You never know when something might break. It might be an appliance malfunctioning, a leaky faucet, or even a flat tire on the road. It would be easier to just call someone who can fix it. But wouldn’t it be better to learn how to fix these things yourself?
It wouldn’t just save you time and money, it would also give you a cool story to tell. Rather than waiting for other people to come and fix things for you, you are now in control. This also applies to technological problems too.
Let’s say your friend’s computer isn’t connecting to the speaker, but you can fix it and keep the party going. You’re at your boss’s house and clogged the toilet, and it’s a good thing you know how to unclog it to save yourself from embarrassment. If you have kids, you can easily impress them just by knowing how to fix their broken toys.
You can basically be the Macgyver of your group, as long as there are tools available. Disasters could be easily averted once you have learned how to fix the most commonly used things.
Basic Survival Skills
In current times, we have everything ready in the palm of our hands. We can order food, deliver our groceries, and request for a ride with convenience and ease. Almost anything you can think of can be achieved through these little gadgets we call ‘phones’ and the internet.
But what will you do if you get stuck in the middle of nowhere with no phone reception? I know what you’re thinking. “What are the chances that’s ever gonna happen to me?” Well, it’s not bad to be optimistic, but it would definitely be better to add some caution to that optimism. We hope for the best, but it’s never bad to always be ready for the worst.
Being able to prepare for any disaster is a good thing to have in your skillset. A hurricane could easily knock your power out, or you could be out camping and get lost wandering too far off the trails. A bad situation can be easily remedied with a few basic survival skills.
This skill is particularly useful if you’re an outdoors man. The smallest survival skill of identifying poisonous animals and mushrooms versus knowing what to do in an emergency could make a life-changing difference.
Negotiation is a part of everyone’s life whether we like it or not. Although, interestingly enough, it’s in most men’s nature to completely avoid negotiation and take whatever deal is on the table.
What we often fail to realize is that many of our everyday transactions can be negotiated. Whether it’s a complex business deal to a simple grocery purchase, there is always some deal to be made. It may seem uncomfortable when you start practicing it at first, but with mastery, you can save yourself money and time.
Acquiring negotiation skills is not only useful for business or commercial deals, but can also be applied to the deals you make with your friends, colleagues, and even family, especially the kids. Kids love to ask for everything. With good haggling skills, you can get them to do more chores at home or get better grades at school.
But the most important haggling you’ll be dealing with in your life is with yourself. Every time you want to do something, you’ll be dealing with yourself first in making the final decision. Mastering the art of negotiating will definitely develop the way you make decisions in life.
Basic First Aid
Men are prone to injuries. With all the roughhousing and adrenaline-pumping actions we get involved in, accidents are bound to happen. That’s why anywhere you go you should always have your trusty first aid kit.
You can have a first aid kit ready in your car or around your home. Personally, I’d recommend that you walk around with a band-aid in your wallet as well. Not quite a life-changing tool but useful to stop a knick or bruise when it’s there.
Aside from remembering to bring your kit, you should be able to know how to administer first aid. Like with other essential skills, first aid is a matter of when it will come in handy. This basic skill might feel mundane and improbably, but it’s one of those things you appreciate you learned when you can use it. Heck, you might even end up saving a life.
Most men can easily be intimidated by cooking, and sometimes men are just plain lazy. From grandmothers, mothers, sisters or wives, women have been mostly in charge of cooking in our lives.
Still, learning how to cook will bring out more to your adult and family life. Imagine the surprise of your loved ones when you serve them a delightful dinner. Let’s start proving to them that men are capable of more than just barbeque.
It will benefit you more as well, not just as a cool skill to impress anyone, but also as a good investment in your health. This will help you avoid those drive-throughs and delivery services. Say goodbye to fast-food meals, and say hello to your very own home-cooked healthier options.
If you are afraid of messing up, just remember that everybody starts somewhere. Gordon Ramsey was not born with a Michelin star. Hell, he might’ve cooked something raw himself and was shouted at! Move at your own pace, don’t be afraid to burn a few fish, and just focus on cooking something you yourself would like. Once you get started, it would be just like riding a bike. You’ll fall off a few times but, eventually, it will all just be reflexes.
Whether you’re a parent, a newlywed, or a bachelor, cooking is something you definitely have to pick up at one point. This is a skill that could improve every aspect of your life as a real man.
Any man who owns a home should learn at least basic carpentry. It is the foundation for any household repairs and can possibly save you thousands of dollars in renovations.
Simple problems like a single picket fence out of place or a loosened cabinet don’t need calling for a professional. Learning basic carpentry skills will let you handle the situation yourself without the substantial fee.
It is not all for fixing stuff in your home. Upon mastering basic carpentry, you can get to a point where you can create whatever comes to your mind. You can build a playset for your kids, a basic breakfast table set, or even a simple rocking chair for you to relax on. You can even go beyond and create beautiful woodcraft pieces for decorating your home.
In addition to physical finesse, some carpentry skills include clear-cut technical knowledge. Developing some of the more specific carpentry skills can help you improve faster. Home repairs and woodwork creation go hand-in-hand, so start learning your Carpentry 101.
Men will always be looking for freedom one way or another. We want to do what we want whenever we want, but we all know that’s not real liberty. Real freedom can be achieved with proper discipline.
If you can master discipline, you can achieve freedom in any situation. If you want to achieve financial freedom, start staying on track of your budget plan. If you want more freedom with your time, commit to life matters. If you wish to have freedom with your physical capability, take consistent care of your body.
If you don’t start practicing discipline in every aspect of your life, you’ll feel less in control of your life and far from the freedom you want to achieve. However, once you get the hang of it, trust me when I say you will feel wealthier, healthier, smarter, and certainly more free.
Gardening, Fishing, Hunting
In the past, self-sufficiency was considered essential to becoming a man. This involves gardening, fishing, and hunting. These skills are traditionally regarded as the requirements of manhood in order to protect, provide, and procreate.
Learning these skills is very beneficial in building relationships, not just with loved ones but also with nature. With this, you can start a tradition in your family, like yearly hunting, gardening, or fishing fest. This could help strengthen your bond with them and sway the family away from all the distractions at home
For dads out there, when was the last time your kid had taken their eyes off of their iPhone or Android device or tablet or desktop? This can be a good time to disconnect from technology and have a digital detox. You might not be able to leave your phone at home, but most outdoor parks and camps have poor to no reception at all. These places are the perfect spot that would force you to put down your devices and focus on improving your manliness, and quite possibly, your relationship with the family.
Aside from saving loads of money from groceries, being able to garden, fish, and hunt also connects you more to your food. You would appreciate what you are currently eating because, well, you did get it yourself. It also makes for great conversation when you have guests over and you are cooking up some wild catch. Not only will they be curious about your ingredients, they’d also surely want to know how you caught it. In most cases, the dish you’re making probably isn’t new to them. Sharing the story of your hunt is what makes the dinner special.
Navigation (Map, Compass, and GPS)
Before going camping, road trips, or trekking, you should first get ready by learning how to read maps and using a compass. As a man’s man, you should always aim to be the designated trip leader and lead the navigation.
Reading maps properly will help you determine the best location for your campsite. You’ll have with you all the important information on it, like near water sources, great exit points, and intermediate campsites for stopovers. Maps can only tell you so much. Getting there is another story. That’s why learning how to use a GPS, or even a compass for emergencies will definitely be necessary.
Of course, these skills are not only essential for recreational outdoor activities. You can also use them in emergencies. As long as you have a map and navigation tool on hand, you know you will never get lost.
It’s okay to miss a turn when you are starting. You may even take a long time to decipher the map. Taking command of a trip is invaluable for your learning, both in boosting confidence and skill development. Trying and failing is definitely better than never trying at all. Real men always learn from their mistakes.
Critical Thinking/Situational Awareness
Every decision you make always affects your quality of life, from choosing your clothes for the day to the career path you will take. If you are willing to live up to your highest potential along with a successful and happy life, you must improve your situational awareness and critical thinking skills when making conscious decisions. You may not always have the right answers, but being able to practice these skills could increase your chances of making the best choice for every situation.
By mastering critical thinking and situational awareness, you’ll be able to think rationally and engage in your own thoughts. These skills will help you to always come with a well-informed conclusion to every conundrum you have.
There is also a chance that you’ll encounter a threat that can put you or your family in danger. Often, you freeze on your feet because of panic. But with continued practice of your critical thinking and situational awareness skills, you’ll be more present and ready for anything that could go astray.
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Frequently Asked Questions About Manly Skills
What skills should every man have?
You can start with the list we provided. Those are what we would consider as necessary skills for a man to learn. Following them are some simple skills that you may overlook, like tying a necktie, shining your shoes, and shaving. Other than that, it depends on your interest. You can go from reading books every day to mountain climbing.
What are some badass skills to learn?
Some badass skills that can make you manlier and improve your life are self-defense skills, like boxing, Brazilian jiu-jitsu, or maybe even go all out with MMA. You could also learn how to use a gun, but always remember to be responsible. There are also other extreme sports like mountain climbing, snowboarding, base jumping, and paragliding. The world is your playground and you are only limited by your imagination.
How do I become more confident with my manliness?
Confidence starts with yourself. You have to determine what you’re really good at and use that to your advantage. Most of the skills on this article will help you believe in yourself more, and as you master one skill after another, you will notice the changes in your self-esteem. Try to start with skills you are comfortable learning. That way, you start off strong.
A Final Word From The Trending Man
This list isn’t complete, but it contains the most essential skills that every man should learn at one point in their life. These skills could be used in your daily life or in emergency situations. We guarantee that they will help you live a better life and become a better man.
But never stop learning, most of the skills on our list take a few minutes to learn but a lifetime to master. There are more skills out there to improve your manliness just waiting for you to discover. Don’t be afraid to explore. Part of being a man is the courage to try new things and be open to everything. Edmund Hillary once said “Why climb Everest? Because it’s there.” So go climb Everest if you must, but don’t let anyone, not even fear, stop you from being the man you want to become.