Jane the Virgin star, filmmaker, and author Justin Baldoni sat in with the Heal Squad to discuss his new book ‘Man Enough,’ and the process of undefining masculinity. When asked what inspired him to write this book, Justin could not pick an isolated moment but did share that he is only the man that he is today because of the grace and patience of the women in his life. In the same thought, he also shared that he found it odd he was considered extraordinary when expressing beliefs and opinions that he perceived to be standard, such as his support of women’s rights. Justin argues that he is seen as “radical” because he is a cis-gendered, white man. He is challenging a system that benefits himself, and people view that as shocking.
However, the interview does not end there. Justin, who has worked closely with people in their last stages of life, shares powerful thoughts and experiences to help us all cope with death. Furthermore, he teaches us how to recharge our energy and provides us with tools to improve our overall quality life.
1) View death as a messenger of joy.
Baha’is think of death as a messenger of joy and even as a re-birth. We can still communicate with those who have passed through prayer and symbolic messages.
2) Challenge the norm
Justin found that when he stood up for his beliefs, such as women’s rights, he was seen as radical. Stop and examine if your opinions are truly your own, or if you just conformed to the environment around you.
3) Stop seeking external validation
We must stop competing with one another. There is no value in comparison. Instead, turn inward for validation and learn to appreciate yourself.
4) Be cautious of who you give your time to
The most valuable thing we have is time. If you spend all your time pleasing everyone else, you won’t have time to do what needs to be done for YOU.
5) Center yourself everyday
Justin recharges through reading, writing, or prayer, however you can choose what is best for you. But, at the end of the day, he urges us to ask ourselves “how am I being of service.”
6) Use the “Why Ladder”
“Why am I doing this? And why? And why…” If you reduce it to 2 “whys,” you will reach the core of your answer. For example, if you ask yourself why you are working out and the answer is to get bigger muscles, asking yourself “why” again. If the answer is because you want to look like someone you saw on Instagram, then you know you are exercising for the wrong reasons.
7) Examine your own internal misogyny
Women and men are both brought up in the same patriarchal system. Women also suffer from their own internal misogyny and need to have more empathy for men, and vice versa. We all have biases to unlearn.
Listen to full interview here: