Jator Pierre takes a deep dive into the subject of masculinity and discusses the difference between healthy and toxic masculinity in a time when gender roles and gender identity are going through a transformative phase.
Where does teenage male behaviour come from?
Male/Female Power Dynamic
Masculinity Is A Quality Not A Gender
Does Masculinity Affect Health?
Is Masculinity Under Attack?
Shaming of Masculinity
Have Governments Displayed Toxic Masculinity?
Margaret Thatcher's Masculine Energy
We Need A Lot More Feminine Energy In People In Power
What Can We Do To Optimise Healthy Masculinity
Look for Role Models
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Jator: And I don't know when this shift occurred, because if you look in nature and you look at a typical alpha male like Silver back gorilla, those animals are yes, they are dominant, yes, they are aggressive, yes, they can be violent, yes, they are protective. They're also grounded and nurturing and kind and gentle. And they don't only lead with aggressiveness and shame, they lead with courage and acknowledgement and stretch. Here. They lead not just with their head, they lead with their heart.
Announcer: Welcome to the Radical Health Rebel podcast with your host, Lee Brandon. If you enjoy the podcast, please leave a five star rating and the warm review. Your opinions are important and your ratings help grow the podcast and help educate people to lead a healthier, more productive, fulfilling and happy life. This video is your thing. Please check out the Radical Health Rebels YouTube channel where you'll find fun bitesize clips from each episode. And now, here is Lee, the radical health rebel, with this week's podcast.
Leigh: Jator Pierre. Welcome to the Radical Health Rebel podcast. How are you doing?
Jator: I'm doing sleepy late night hockey practice, early morning hockey practice, and maybe the more tired I am, the more truth will flow through my lips. We'll see.
Leigh: Awesome. So today's episode is entitled healthy Masculinity with Jator Pierre. Now, prior to our discussion today, I decided to look up the dictionary definition of masculinity. And it's defined as qualities or attributes regarded as characteristic of men. So that's the dictionary definition. But in our current world, where gender roles and gender identity have changed greatly over the last few decades and years, respectively, I thought it would be a great topic to discuss with one of the coolest cats on the planet. So I'm really pleased to have you to tour on the Radical Health Rebel podcast today. So to kick things off, what I'd really love for you to do is to share with the Radical Health revolution and for them to get to know you. Can you tell us about your upbringing, your background, a little bit about your professional training and career to date?
Jator: Yeah, and thank you for having me on, Lee. Pleasure to be here. Yeah. Background kinesiology, CHEK Institute, Cresser Institute Journeys of Wisdom, JP Sears here as being one of my really good friends and I think really sparking the interest in psychology and emotion and feeling and sensation. And throughout that process over the years, I think maybe about twelve years in to being a personal trainer or strength and conditioning coach, I became deeply fascinated with what was going on inside of me emotionally. What were these experiences of when I would get defensive or proving or irritated, or why was something so joyous or celebratory for me? So I really got fascinated by my own experience of myself and others and working with athletes and people, getting to certain peaks that would taper off and couldn't keep peaking, or issues or symptoms that weren't being addressed even though I was doing everything right with myself or with others. And that really sparked my interest in what was going on in my heart.
Leigh: At what age were you when you started going down that pathway?
Jator: 23. 23. I went to my first Vipassana ten day retreat, and that really sparked a lot of self awareness and the interest in what was going on inside of me. That experience was life changing, and I wish I could take all credit for that experience in terms of going there, but I've been influenced by two parents who have always kind of been outside the box in terms of normal cultural ideas and society and tai chi and qigong and the universe and chanting and all that was things I grew up with. So it was maybe a natural expression. And after coming back from Pasha, there was a much higher degree of interest in myself and interest in others and why we do what we do. And when you bring up this topic of healthy masculinity, I was apprehensive, to be honest, and also excited to chat about it.
Leigh: Me too.
Jator: Because there seems to be man, there's a lot going on right now with these topics, and there's also a lot going on right now with political correctiveness and what you say and what you don't say. And I'm a person that often breaks down those doors and bashes through them and doesn't really of course there's a part of me that cares what other people experience about me, but there's also a part of me that is excited to share my truth and my perspective on some of these topics. And I think before we jumped on, you and I were talking about some vulnerability ideas, and it's important for me to share that. Often behaviors that are shamed or feared are necessary for us to learn a different way. And so I'm 45, and I can happily and uneasily say that there's been lots of times in my life where I've played the role of, let's say, an unhealthy masculine or unhealthy male. I've used my power for myself. I've been a bully, I've manipulated, I've seduced, I've lied, I've cheated, I've broken a lot of rules throughout my history. And I'm sharing all of that because it's important, one, for me to share openly things that I still feel some sense of shame or fear about sharing. Two, to humanize me. I am not perfect, I'm still working on this stuff too. And three, the more that I share my inner world or secrets that I want to keep from others, the less powerful those secrets become. And the more in touch I get to be with myself and understand myself. And from my perspective, that also leads me to a place of being able to change a behavior. The more shame or fear about a behavior, in my experience, often the more stagnant the behavior actually becomes, the more that we learn to acknowledge tap in, understand, reframe, integrate, and learn to trust ourselves. Often what I found in my practice with myself or with others, and the behavior has a little easier time changing or shifting. So it's been a wild ride. It's taken me a long time to learn some very challenging and hard lessons. And I feel as a general theme, I'm on the other side of that and living my life now in the most integrous, honest, grounded, and let's say, authentic way that I can.
Leigh: So the time when you started to kind of look deeper into yourself and other people, you said you were about 23. You're 45 now. Can you tell us a little bit about before you were 23?
Jator: Yes, let's see. Before I was raised in an environment with a father, in my experience, that was very stereotypically masculine, the traits that many of us attribute to, let's say, a healthy mask, and then also unhealthy aspects. And he was very soft and emotional when I was young and then became, in my experience, very militant and very unforgiving. And that influenced me tremendously at those younger years of becoming hardened, closed off, unemotional in the sense of anything other than joy, aggressiveness, happiness and lust was pretty much off the table. Depression, fear, insecurity would never be shared or talked about. It was very tight lipped, at least my expression of it as I was living life as a teenager or a young man. And then with my group of friends, I also attracted a group of friends that were essentially into the same perspective. And as I was driving home this morning to chat with you, I was listening to some music. And I was thinking, it's really interesting, the music that I was listening to at that time. Snoop Dogg Two Pond, NWA, JP's favorite. Snoop Dogg's favorite E 40. Nothing against those cats and their music. I still enjoy their music today. And the music, though, that I was ingesting at the time, I didn't have the conscious awareness to kind of separate out. Those behaviors aren't behaviors that I need to act out to be cool or to be accepted. And a lot of those behaviors in that music, at least at that time, was using women and not caring about women in any sense, honestly, other than to use them for your self gratification. And that was definitely a large part of my youth, being a player and alcohol and drugs and getting my needs met by using other people so I could look cool to my friends. And I learned a lot through those experiences and over the years have shifted to acting out in a very different way. And yet it took a tremendous amount of awareness and work to change those behaviors over time to the point of almost everyone that was in my circle is no longer in my circle, no longer fits. And that's been a challenge. And new people have come into my circle. But those people are much fewer and far in between because at least in my experience it's not normal for a male to be emotionally expressive or to be vulnerable and intimate at least from an emotional perspective to share fear or to share shame or to not be defended or proving or always competing and comparing so that we can feel some sense of self righteousness or arrogance about that. So I've learned a lot of what I don't want to do in the world and that has informed who I've become today which again has taken a lot of work.
Leigh: So what you described your life to be like when you say a teenager, I think it's very common, right? It's not uncommon for young males to behave that way. Where do you think that comes from?
Jator: Well, I think there's some level of biology involved in this. Of course the old nature and nurture argument which I don't really understand the argument, but they're both important. And if we take out biology and we just look at culture, at least in my culture here it's acceptable to teach males, at least historically acceptable to teach males to not have feelings, to push through no matter what the experience is, to be hard, to be hyper independent, to be aggressive almost to the point often of being mean or shaming others through sport or action. And when that's coming from the top down in terms of the people that were surrounded by our family of origin and culturally accepted and celebrated I'll use a side example to this celebration. You've heard of something called man flu? Assuming so, what's so fascinating to me about something like man flu? You have men who get sick. I've been sick, you've been sick and we get sick. And when we actually share the pain of that or the fatigue of that or I can't push through or I need to stay home, something like man flu comes about. And the interesting thing about that is that is a way of shaming men into more of the behavior that so many people say that they don't want men to experience or to proliferate anymore. So when I say celebrate there is often this subconscious agenda culturally to proliferate behaviors even though many people say that behavior is toxic or unhealthy or shouldn't be around anymore. And this happens at very subtle levels like something like a man flu. It's funny, it's a joke and really it's not really shaming to a man who maybe finds a safe place to express his vulnerability when he's sick, get shame for it and then that causes more hiding of emotion in the future. This reminds me of something from my past. I knew I shouldn't have done this. I should have just kept it to myself. I should have manned up and hid my real feelings. And that just continues to proliferate the situation. So when you ask where it comes from my experience is that it comes from our experiences of family of origin and culture. And that's a very hard piece to change unless we start to change at the bottom at the child level and at the top at the adult level. Those two places need to work together to adjust for behavior or else we're just going to continue to get more of the same growing up in those environments. Right now I'm coaching 14, you ice hockey, and I'm paying attention to how other coaches and how other parents interact with young men. And it's still the same perspective. You're not that hurt. Shake it off. What are you crying about? If you cry or overly emotional and the opportunity that I have now in that is like just last night I had to cut a kid from my team and that's not an easy thing to do. I was anxious about it all day long, and as I'm sharing this with him from the most heartfelt place I could find, I tiered up too. He was crying. I started to tear up and have tear shed and for me that's an extremely beautiful moment for him. And for me, he gets to see a male tear up and not shame himself about it. And he also gets to experience my words to him where your feelings matter and they're important and it's okay to cry and it's okay to be hurt. I've been through this too, and I know what it's like. So back to your original question. That's partly where it comes from is this historical idea of what being masculine means to us and what we project onto men and expect men to act like. And when men don't act like that, we often get shamed for it, which pushes us further into that shame for your cycle, which creates more propensity for the behavior to act out. I've been in relationships or partnerships where I've been told, you're not a man. You're not a man because you want to go to therapy and work on things prior to issues coming up and or when issues or challenges come up. You're not a man because you're more emotionally expressive than I am. And that's been an interesting experience for me in dating women, is often I've heard women want an emotionally expressive man who's grounded and thoughtful and can be present. And some of my experience in that place has been the woman becomes threatened by my ability to be more emotionally expressive than she is.
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Jator: And that creates an interesting change in what some might call a power dynamic. If the woman in a typical traditional relationship, if the woman is more emotionally expressive on that spectrum, there's a sense of power and arrogance and righteousness that can come with that, in the same sense that the man might have power, arrogance, and sense of righteousness in terms of...
Jator: What he thinks he can produce or do in the world, et cetera. It's a very interesting catch 22, and the conversations in my experience need to become extremely nuanced and less emotional so that we can understand, acknowledge and hear each other, rather than being so charged about the past and what has occurred and how do we learn from the past, work together to move forward in a different direction for the benefit of all men. You look at the statistics, at least, that I've looked up around male suicide, and it's almost three and a half times more prevalent in male than women. And my guess would be in some regard. When we're not able to express our emotional vulnerability or we're afraid or ashamed to express what's going on inside of us. That becomes extremely stagnant and leads to all kinds of act out behavior inclusive of I hate myself. Or I hate this part of myself. Or I don't have the will to live anymore because of the heaviness that I'm carrying around all the time that I don't even know that I'm carrying around. Which is all of this unprocessed emotion and experience that's happening in the background that I have no concept of how to deal with. To manage to share. And when I do share it, manflow, I get shamed for it in some regard. I think there needs to be a wider breadth of people being more and more honest of there's a part of me that wants toxic or unhealthy masculinity, let's say from a male perspective and from a female perspective. And there's parts of me that want a healthy male expression from a male perspective and a female perspective. But until we can kind of start to admit that both are necessary and both serve a purpose, and in some way we all benefit and have consequence from those behaviors, it becomes a stagnant situation. It becomes very difficult to change. And as long as we're feeling a sense of shame and fear about who we are stuck, you're going to be stuck in that expression, and it's going to be a very hard way out.
Leigh: So the start of the show, I gave the dictionary definition of masculinity. How would you define masculinity?
Jator: Yeah, that's a tough question, my friend. I would define masculinity through energy, not through gender. So as I understand, masculine energy would be getting things done. Power. You could say great spirit source. Jehovah god. You could say that's masculine energy. And you could make the case that we on Earth and Mother Earth are feminine in nature in that sense and receptive to that masculine energy so that we can do and produce and experience and all of that. When we look up the dictionary definition of masculinity, it's often assigned to a gender. And so the gender roles that we've assigned to each other are constructs. They're constructs that are socially normalized and that we agree upon. And unfortunately, or fortunately, what's been assigned to most males is aggressiveness, lust, overly sexual, walled off, blocked, unemotional, unavailable, and a very short amount of emotions that you're allowed to feel or express happiness, joy, anger and lust are often ones that we have socially normalized over the years. And I like to think of it more from an energetic perspective of what's the energy because a male gender could have a lot of masculine energy, the desire to get it done as well as a female gender could have a lot of masculine energy in the same sense and or whoever identifies as whatever people are identifying as. Now, you can carry aspects of masculine energy and feminine energy. Maybe the pinnacle of a balanced male maybe would be someone like Superman, who is a power for all person. I want to share this power to support others, to support myself. And I'm not only in this for me, I'm in this for the betterment or the support of everyone. Whereas maybe the in quotes negative or the shadow side of masculine energy might be the joker. I'm in this for power for me, power for no one else. The narcissist. This is all about me and what I'm going to get out of it. In very interesting ways, that shadow aspect of masculinity often attracts the shadow aspect of femininity and vice versa. Men, in my experience, aren't often celebrated for being, I'd say, women as well. We're often celebrated for our doings. For our masculine nature and getting things done and what we produce and the external validation that other people give us from that and when these are the common ideas around masculinity and then assign to a gender energy then assign to a gender and these traits are. Let's say. Negative or dysfunctional in nature that causes a lot of challenges within us as males. It also causes a lot of challenges with our partners. And it creates, in my perspective, very simply said an unhealthy male is an unbalanced male. An unhealthy male isn't able to express his emotions. An unhealthy male isn't able to express nurturing. An unhealthy male isn't able to be kind and gentle to himself as well as others. And I don't know when this shift occurred because if you look in nature and you look at a typical alpha male like a silverback gorilla, those animals are yes, they are dominant, yes, they are aggressive, yes, they can be violent. Yes, they are protective. They're also grounded and nurturing and kind and gentle. And they don't only lead with aggressiveness and shame, they lead with courage and acknowledgement and stretch. Here they lead not just with their head, they lead with their heart. And my experience of the state of male gender right now at least coming back to the United States where I'm at after being in Denmark, it continues to be the same. I am so insecure that I need to make others feel small so I can feel tall. Whether that's with physical violence or mental abuse, emotional abuse, prowess control. We've got a lot of work to do and it's part of why I'm here with you. Lee is part of my purpose, as I see it, as an ex, unhealthy, toxic male is to demonstrate that you can do it differently. You can be a high level hockey player who gets down with the best of them. At the same time. You can also be soft, kind and gentle when you need to be. And if you can marry those two places, it's gold. If you can marry the very kind of overt violent masculine with the grounded heartfelt, emotional masculine, it balances it out and helps to create safety and security in yourself and safety and security in others around you so that they can become more emotionally expressive and be less afraid of being shamed or feared because of their expression. We have to learn to trust ourselves and learn to trust each other again, to be intimate. And that's a big stretch for a lot of males who have been shamed their entire lives for being human, just for being human.
Leigh: You've kind of touched on this a little bit already, but how would you say masculinity if it does affects health?
Jator: Well, if we look at it from the unhealthy side, and we look at our physiology and HPA access, etc e. And we look at one of the main influences of HPA access, disregulation is perception. And when we perceive ourselves just for.
Leigh: The audience when you say HPA Access, you're talking stress, right?
Jator: Yeah, stress. The entire system that captures stress. Essentially, when you start to consider that emotions are designed to move, they're not designed to be stagnant. And when you're afraid or ashamed to express your emotions from childhood, because let's say you had one experience of you came home and you cried because you got into a fight at school or something, and someone says, Big boys don't cry, or I'll give you something to cry about, or Go to your room for crying. What we're learning in those moments is how to hide ourselves. We experience a sense of shame about our expression. And often as children, we self-identity with shame. We become ashamed of who we are. And in that moment, we have to start wearing masks. We have to present something else so that we can survive and fit into the environment in which we find ourselves. And those moments are not far and few in between. They become prolific. And the more that we hide their emotions, the more those emotions become stagnant within our tissues. People often you look at an old recorder, like a VHS recorder or something, or cassette tape, and it's this little piece of plastic with some magnetic interesting science on it to capture a lot of information. Well, how much more complex are your tissues? I'd say a lot more complex. And what if that complexity also holds the ability to store information that isn't processed or moved through the body? So over time, you get this build up of pressure, pain, tickle, tingle, numbness. And that's one level. Pressure, pain, tickle, tingle, numbness, another level, and another level, and another level and another level. And all of that is in the body, causing stagnant pain, trigger points, distortion and movement, et cetera, and leading to symptoms of headache, back pain, gut issues, IBS, IBD, depression, anxiety. But with a lot of males, that is even more hidden. I will numb out my IBS. I will numb out my back pain. I will continue to numb until I have no choice but to express this pain, injury, surgery, death. It's a very painful human experience to not share what's going on inside of your heart. And I know where I'm doing my best to skew this toward masculinity. This is really a human challenge. And the more that we wall off or hide or mask, the less grace or satisfaction or even the experience of purpose that will have in our lives and that is extremely painful for a human being to go through. And for a male that often can lead to more of the unhealthy or toxic expression towards self or towards others. When all of this unprocessed emotion is playing in the background and we don't know that it's playing in the background, it often will have a short fuse and will strike out at others at any chance it gets to actually get some of that emotion moving through the body. Maybe it's an unhealthy expression but it's actually getting it to move. It's bringing the person's awareness to what's going on underneath the system or underneath the curtain. But without a sense of awareness of that then it's just expression happening. It's not oh wait a second, I wonder if I'm overly reactive. When I was at ice hockey this morning trying to beat somebody's *** because of something that happened to me five years ago, very few people asked that question and yet it's very influential what's happened to us in the past and how that influences our current experience and accentuates the emotional response. And that leads to all of the things that you deal with in your practice or that I deal with in my practice or any other check practitioner deals within their practice. It's symptoms of unprocessed emotion. If we look at the human body from my perspective, the physical body is essentially downstream from the organ and glandular system which is essentially downstream from the mental and emotional system and they all are interconnected and expressive of each other and also bi directional. And so when you have a lot of pent up emotion and pain that isn't expressed you're going to have a lot of symptoms, whether that's physical or acting out behaviors in your life that might be considered at least by you or me, inappropriate.
Leigh: So do you feel masculinity is currently under attack from certain political or media groups at the moment?
Jator: I think it is my experience of that it is and it's under attack and being extremely shamed and creating, at least for me, it's creating in a very interesting way. It's going to cocreate more of the expression of what people are trying to stop rather than trying to understand the roots of where it comes from so that we can get to the root and change it. Today it's also under attack, quite frankly. And there are, I will say, some rightly so because if we have a tremendous group of unhealthy masculinity that it goes unchecked, we're going to have a lot of people in pain, men and women across the board. I think there's some convolution around what is healthy and what is unhealthy behavior. And for me healthy behavior of a male is protective, is coherent, might be proving and defending to a certain extent, is strong, is grounded, is leadership. All of those said with a sense of awareness of how. It's being expressed and how the receiver is experiencing the words or the intention or the action. As an example, I might be triggered in a conversation, and I might feel a sense of underneath that, a deep sense of fear and shame. But I'm afraid to say that or I don't even know the language of that. I don't even know that. Fear and shame is, from my perspective, at the root of a lot of secondary negative emotions. And I might be expressing a little bit more sharply or harshly the person that I'm chatting with or in dialogue with or an argument with that person's. Experience also matters. I am responsible for my words, but I am not responsible for their experience of my words. And yet I am responsible for a healthy male trait, which is compassion. How does this land for you? How are you experiencing me right now? Well, I experienced there's a tone or an energy that I feel a bit afraid. Okay, thank you for sharing that. That's your experience. My intention isn't to cause fear or to attack. And as you say that, it brings some sense of awareness for me to check in with myself and ask, I wonder if I'm leading into that unhealthy space, am I being overly aggressive? Am I being overly emotional with anger? And so then it becomes this very two way street that conversation needs to occur and understanding needs to occur from me to one person and then back to me. I lost sight of your question, brother. Where were we at?
Leigh: The question was, do you feel that masculinity is currently under attack from political or media groups? And I guess my following question for that would have been, why do you think that there's an attack on masculinity?
Jator: I think because it's misunderstood. I think it's under attack because there is a lot of expression of unhealthy masculinity currently.
Advert: By whom?
Jator: Yeah, it's a good question. I don't watch a lot of media, so I'm trying to there is a section of the world that I've experienced that I guess the language is the woke crowd and shaming masculinity into being more feminine energy. I don't think it's ever going to work for me. One of the ways to balance is if we have a lot of imbalanced males who have unhealthy expression of masculinity, we need to ask the question as to why and if they're imbalanced masculine in a negative nature. That implies that they're lacking in some feminine nature traits. Receptivity, softness, openness, flow, understanding, compassion. We have an imbalance going on.
Jator: Go ahead.
Leigh: It's interesting you say that, because when you were speaking a little bit earlier, and I guess this is an add on to the question I've just asked, how do you see governments and politicians masculinity over the last two and a half years?
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Jator: Here's some good questions. I would say in my experience over the last two and a half years, granted I was in Denmark for most of that, which wasn't as well for a while it wasn't. I would say it was overly masculine in the sense of power for one and not power for all. There is a tremendous amount of defensiveness about anything other than the rhetoric that governments are offering us. If we look at that metaphorically, our governments have been extremely narcissistic. It's me about me. And as far as I understand, I'm no statistician or really well versed researcher. People that I have listened to around these topics, who are extremely well versed in research and research methodology and the sharing of that, are having a very hard time looking over what's been shared with all of us from a governmental perspective and not subscribing malice to that. There's an old saying be careful what you subscribe malice, which could basically come from stupidity. I terribly requoted that as a paraphrase, but essentially not able to find anything but malice in what's been disseminated to us over the last two and a half years. And if we take that one step further what I find interesting as well is even at this point, as there seems to be a low of this kind of, let's just say, calming down with the current research and with the understanding of vaccine injury, et cetera, there's been no apology, there's been no acknowledgement of maybe we did this the wrong way. In fact, there's been a doubling down on pushing that agenda even more forward, which from my perspective is classic narcissistic behavior, power for one. I am never wrong, I will never admit I did something wrong and it's your fault and I'm going to gaslight you until you recognize that. Let's just say it's a **** show and we can also look at it from another perspective, which is the same thing with the shaming of masculinity right now, at least let's say unhealthy masculinity. I haven't personally heard a whole lot of shaming of healthy masculinity. I have heard a lot of shaming of toxic or unhealthy masculinity. And in the same sense, how our governments have acted as a general theme, at least in my perspective, in my value set. All of that **** show also can lead us to how do we do this differently? And how do we fight to do this differently as well? How do we change the game that's being played? And I don't have an answer for that, unfortunately. I have some thoughts, but often, just like in my work with clients, sometimes we have to hit the bottom of the barrel to decide to change. And in my perspective, we are kind of nose diving right now to the bottom of the barrel. I don't know that we've hit it yet. I think it's coming. And sometimes structures need to be destroyed or enough people need to hit rock bottom to say now we need a cultural shift, a cultural change in how we do this, or a rebellion in some sense. There's so much distraction going on in the world right now with all of our toys and trinkets, et cetera, that there's a saying in psychology it often takes trauma to wake us up out of trauma. We're steeped in the middle of that right now. And I'm curious as to how many people will wake up and want to do things differently and or back to something that we talked about earlier, how many people will experience more trauma which will continue to numb them out and push them further in the other direction. It's why, in my experience, fear and shame are horrible change agents, and yet most of the world uses them on themselves and with each other at a household level, at a flat level, all the way up to a governmental level. We have a very skewed way of navigating each other and ourselves. And if that doesn't change, I don't see us going down any other roads than the ones that we've been going down for quite a while.
Leigh: As you were talking earlier, the thing that got me going down the road of government was there are a few words that you use when you're talking about masculinity. One was aggression, one was control, and one was a lack of compassion. And it seems to me you could almost summarize what governments have been doing for the last two and a half years in those three words, right? Aggression, control, lack of compassion. And it almost seems it almost seems to me like the very people that are trying to clamp down on masculinity are the ones that are actually portraying toxic masculinity themselves.
Jator: It's a great awareness that you just shared, at least from my perspective. Often those that shame behavior the utmost are often acting out the same behavior to cause the shame. And it's a little bit of a paradox that seems very challenging to get out of because of the normalization of unhealthy masculinity, which would be power for one, not power for all, which would then mean I can't see myself, I can see you, and I can judge and criticize your behavior so that I can feel a sense of power. And I will attack you with the same behaviors. I'm judging and criticizing, but I'm blind to the same expression passing through my lips.
Leigh: As you're saying that. I'm thinking of Trudeau and Arden. They're probably the most two politicians that have played that game, the most in the last two and a half years.
Jator: And maybe this is why the delineation between masculine and feminine energies, not gender assignments, might be a little bit more helpful, because when people become extremely emotionally charged and you want to have a nuanced conversation, they will have a very hard time as a general theme, seeing themselves and their own unhealthy masculine expression, even if it's coming from a female gender.
Leigh: Well, Margaret Thatcher was a great example of a woman who had a huge amount of masculine energy. So we had a program in the UK some years ago called Spitting Image, and it was a puppet show, but it was a satirical comedy parody show. And there was a scene once where you've got all the Conservative MPs at urinal, and in comes Margaret Thatcher, and she starts peeing in the urinal.
Jator: Oh, urine.
Jator: What is that?
Leigh: So even at that level, they recognized that Margaret Thatcher had huge amount of masculine energy because they're almost saying, well, look, she's more of a bloke more of a man than any other man in her cabinet. So she's a really good example of a female that's got high levels of masculine energy.
Jator: Right? Which to our point is it's not gender specific. And so we need, at least from my perspective, with government or even individual conversation, we need a lot more feminine energy in those spaces. I hear you. I want to understand you. Wait a second. I want to put myself in your shoes, and even if I don't agree, I still want to hear and understand where you're coming from and even put myself in your shoes and see if I can feel that. Feel what you felt or look at what you're experiencing and say, okay, well, I don't have that literal experience, but where could I find that experience, metaphorically or symbolically, in my life? Where have I felt the same emotions that you're feeling? I think we're all pretty clear that when you have a lot of masculine energy without a lot of feminine energy, what occurs? We could watch Discovery Channel and see that very quickly around main season, but you have feminine and you have masculine, then we can soften that and work in a very different way. But that goes full circle back to some of the things we were originally talking around when we're kids, most, if not all of us have a lot of unprocessed shame and or fear and a lot of unprocessed insecurity and are desperate for a sense of either being powerful or being powerfully pathetic. And it's a bit of a paradox there. And there's a lot of work that needs to happen for all of us, myself included, to deprogram ourselves. So that we can start to understand each other without all of the emotional volatility that's involved and or the immediate reactive behavior. When a man or a woman walks into a room, there's a lot of reactive behavior that, if we're unaware of, will be acted out in our conversations or in our politics or in our houses or with each other. This is going to be interesting. It'll probably get me in trouble. We don't need a lot more women in power, although I hope we have women in power. That's not a statement of I don't want women in power. We need a lot more feminine energy in our powerful people because as you said earlier, you could have a woman who's very masculine energy, dominant to the unhealthy toxic side, which could play the same exact games that these guys play.
Leigh: Got you. So coming up to my last question for you. So what advice would you give to someone who wishes to develop or optimize their healthy masculinity?
Jator: I love that question. One of the first things I'd offer is to notice in yourself if you can start to create a practice of noticing in yourself when you're proving and defending, when you're being aggressive, when you're searching for power for yourself and no one else, when you're extremely defended, when you're unkind or critical to yourself. If you can start to notice some of those moments, it helps to grow your awareness of what might be going on underneath the surface. And I want to be really clear with this point. Often there's a lot of conversation about what needs to happen after that, how to process it, how to integrate it, how to reframe it. I would invite many of us to consider that the first step, and maybe the biggest step by far is noticing those behaviors and letting yourself feel the emotions that come along with the expression of those behaviors. What does that mean? So if I'm overly aggressive towards someone and I notice that, and I reflect on that later in the day, and I say, what were the emotions that I felt engaging in that behavior and directly after it, I'd offer that many of us would be able to find a sense of shame about our action. It's not easy to find shame hides. Maybe an easier place to start is, I wonder if I acted out that aggressive behavior because I was afraid. Well, that's weird. Why would I act out aggressively if I was afraid? Well, many of us as children are pretty in touch with our fear and pretty expressive of it. I'm afraid of the dark. I'm afraid of monsters. I'm afraid of snakes. I'm afraid of spiders. It's something that's acceptable for us as children to be afraid. And at some point, it becomes unacceptable, especially for males, to be afraid. If you can start finding places where you're afraid and tap into that and let yourself feel your fear, and I don't mean, just for a second, oh, yeah, I'm afraid, and then move on. I mean, wow, I acted out aggressively. I was really afraid. Maybe I'm going to let myself sit with fear for a minute by doing that alone is part of the healing process, by allowing yourself to feel your fear. It's starting to move. It's starting to UN numb. It's starting to melt. Maybe there'll be more expressions of it, but it's such a powerful place for the change process to notice what you hide from yourself and to get really, really clear on what you're feeling emotionally. My experience of most men, and I'm going to go on a limb here and say a lot of women, their emotional vocabulary is like five emotions. And most people think they're expressing emotion when they're really expressing thinking, well, I felt like you were a jerk. That's not a feel, that's a thing. So growing your emotional vocabulary, wow, I feel insecure. I feel afraid. I feel ashamed. I feel zesty, I feel joyous, I feel lackluster. Growing your ability to understand yourself through your emotions is it just hit me is feminine in nature. You have to open up to receive that from yourself. And that for me, has been one of the greatest keys I've found, is instead of pushing myself away with more masculine energy, allowing myself to receive myself so I can understand and acknowledge and get to know parts of me that, quite frankly, I'm afraid to know because they were shamed and where I was afraid of them as a child. Without that work, at least in my opinion, it's going to be really challenging to change your unhealthy masculine behavior if you can't even see that it's occurring. An example of a healthy masculine well, I'll use myself as an example for a moment. I'm working with 14 year olds. I also am working with 14 year olds with the awareness that I have an opportunity to help these young men do life differently than I did life. So that's already in my intent and attention. And there's a lot of, at this age, 14, testosterone. A lot of testosterone. It's new experience. And there's a lot of, let's say, unhealthy expressions of that toward each other, attacking each other, being really mean to each other. And so in our locker room. We have a lot of conversations about. Again. The healthy masculine stepping in and putting an end to the unhealthy masculine behavior by demonstrating and modeling a new way to do it and showing these young men what it looks like to have conversation. To have nuanced experience. And when there's a fight going on with each other. For me to play the mediator. To help them learn how to communicate through their emotions. Through their thinking and not through just aggressive behavior or what often would be acted out. So what am I saying? I'm saying that another change factor would be finding models that model the behavior that you're looking to increase in your own life so that you can actually use that model as a reflective mirror to look at yourself and then compare where you're at to how you're experiencing this other person. Asking yourself a question, who have I been historically and does that still serve? Who I want to be moving forward? Do I want to change. Those would all be some practical, I hope there are practical enough steps that I would definitely initiate.
Leigh: I think the greatest thing that I took from that is to optimize your healthy masculinity, you need to embrace your femininity. In particular being receptive. That was the key that I got from that.
Jator: And receptive in some regard also requires reducing your defenses. Because if your defenses are up so high due to your insecurity, it's very hard to receive or be receptive to someone else's experience of you. It can become a very powerful place for us to hide that's your experience of me. It's not true. I'd say that's your experience of me. And I'm curious how much truth is it? You get to have the masculine I don't know. And you get to have the feminine curiosity of how do we meld these together and let them work together rather than against each other. And it seems as you've alluded to, there's a lot of working against each other rather than working with each other.
Leigh: Awesome. Great stuff. So what's next for Jator?
Jator: Yes, what's next? I just released a free master class on Instinct or intuition which I think is really good and super cool. I think there's some cool discernment between the two. That is a pretty interesting exploration. I have a new program coming out in the next few months called Open Hearted and that is around communication with self, with other, learning the language of the heart, learning how to get in touch with your emotions and become more expressive of them and kind of shaking and dissolving the fear and shame of the past. Around communication and emotion and sensation and learning how to unlearning and then learning how to do things differently. I started my own podcast which isn't released yet and it's going to be basically coach based. And for now no guess because I don't know, I'm just going to start.
Leigh: What's your podcast called?
Jator: Neon Debt.
Leigh: Okay, interesting.
Leigh: Look out for that.
Jator: So that will be out soon. Coaching and business and a lot of deep concepts around coaching and psychology and playing hockey, working in hockey and having a blast. Being back in California and adjusting to that. Yeah, that's all it's on. Totally.
Leigh: And where can the audience find you online?
Jator: Easiest place is www.jatorpierre.com. Instagram handle is at jatorpierre and same with Facebook.
Leigh: There was a little something that you wanted to offer for listeners.
Jator: Yes, a free course on instinct and intuition and that is www. Explorewithjator.Com/intuition. And there you can sign up for a video, audio and a PDF. It's a really deep dive and very excited about my free baby that's out there.
Leigh: And I'll make sure the details, those are in the show notes as well.
Jator: Awesome. Thank you.
Leigh: So people can check that out. So Jetor, thank you so much for taking your time out today to share your experience with the Radical Health Rebel listeners and viewers. And to all the Radical Health Rebel tribe, if you know someone who would benefit from watching or hearing this episode, please make sure to share the love and forward it onto them. After all, the mission of this show is to help people lead a more fun filled, healthy, productive, fulfilling and happy life. So that's all from Ja Tour and me for this week, but don't forget, you can join me at the same time, same place next week on the.
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Announcer: Thanks for tuning in to the Radical Health Rebel podcast with Leigh Brandon. You can find Leigh at www.bodycheck.co.UK at BodyChek.Co. UK. Please hit the like button and share on your social media and with someone you've feel will benefit from watching this episode. So together we can help them lead a healthier, more productive, fulfilling and happy life.