Wednesday, 1 December 2021
The confines of masculinity...
Two days in and we are 25% funded. I cannot thank you all enough for your support in making Mind the Inclusion Gap a reality. I truly believe that more skills in this space are key to unlocking the future we want and am hopeful that the book can play a role in bridging that skill and confidence gap.
I am feeling very emotional today – a bit because this crowd-funding thing is very intensive and slightly vulnerable. But that's only part of why I feel the way I do.
This morning I met an old and dear friend for breakfast. He and I worked together for nearly a decade and every year we meet around this time for a coffee or a glass of champagne to celebrate life. Today, was a more sombre occasion. We talked at length about a mutual ex-colleague of ours, who at the young age of 40, tragically took his own life. Our colleague was, for all-intensive purposes, in his prime. A successful businessman. A husband. A dedicated father. But he was also under extreme pressure at work and for reasons we may never understand, he felt his only option was exit life.
When we talk diversity, we don’t often consider men, and especially white men, in our focus. We must! Just as we need clear and focused effort to fix the challenges that women, people of colour and other minority groups face, we need diversity programmes which solve for men too.
Men appear to have it all. Around the world men rise to the top of society leading companies and countries and making a lot of money in the process. But when you look closer, the truth is not that simple. Whether we are talking suicide rates, addiction rates, or even incarceration, the data suggests men are not okay. We tell our boys to ‘man up’ to ‘grow some balls’ to not be a ‘pussy’ - there are consquences to our words and our actions. Men who talk about their feelings are not less of a man, just as women are not less than men either.
I look forward to the day when we have broken the confines of masculinity and opened up a whole new world of possibilities – for everyone.
Thanks for playing your part.
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