Tag Archives: Gentleman

Transformations: Monday Motivation-Living The Life of Mastery vs Mediocrity


I write a lot on this blog about changing yourself from the inside out. Becoming an “Internal Stylist”  to your personality is a very revealing and often surprising endeavor. “Character Tailoring” forces you to look in the mirror and see how you really think and feel about the real important issues in your life. This gentleman’s journey has had some  interesting twists and turns. And now I’m on the path to become the best possible version of myself. I feel as if I am giving my mind and heart a complete system overhaul like I would do my laptop. I’ve upgraded my attitude, re-installed my motivation and tweaked little habits here and there to run a little smoother, quieter and more efficient. The process has been full of crashes and reboots but I think I’ve become more compatible with my purpose and I’m now at version 4.0.

Maybe you’re in that same place, looking to upgrade, reboot and make some changes in your life to gain some mastery over your purpose or passion. Well, for most getting started isn’t an issue. We all have pretty good internal motivations. Some of us may not even have a problem staying the course. For most of us the trick I believe is staying balanced.

“Try not to think and act in extremes. Instead,  become a student of balance. There is wisdom in balance. Balance is the ability to see danger in excess or inertness. It’s the ability to  keep up our physical, mental, emotional & spiritual health-become a student of Balance.”

When we are balance we are able to look at ourselves in a constructive way (not too harshly or loosely) so that real change can be made and goals achieved. I often think about it this way: If the thing that you are reaching out for throws you out of sync with your health, relationships, your mental, spiritual and emotional stability, then you may be in danger of not being balanced. Mastery comes when we can say no to the interruptions of that balance. Life makes all of us its students, the key is learning in the least amount of time so we can get to our purpose faster. We do that by knowing ourselves, we get to know ourselves by questioning our motivations.

Some  people might say: “I don’t want to settle, sounds like balance is another word for mediocrity.” But balance isn’t like someone having no motivation at all. It’s the difference between doing nothing and doing too much at all cost. Here’s a suggestion: the next time you watch TVOne’s Life After or VH1’s Behind The Music think about the energy that was spent on the goals the person had and the physical, emotional and mental cost vs the happiness they did or did not gain. Ultimately, most of the people are happy because they found purpose or better yet, balance in the things that they are doing in their lives now . but it was only AFTER they learned to be balance did they really realize the full mastery of their purpose.

We all should live a life of passion, move closer to the thing that drives us to wake up in the morning and conquer our fears. Go out there.Work hard. Be. Do. Just remember to master the balance of goals vs the true cost to our happiness.

Dress Internally.


“Think like a man of action, and act like a man of thought.”

Henri L. Bergson (French philosopher, 1859 – 1941)

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Fashion Friday: “Suit & Tie” Shows You How To Do This Son

Justin Timberlakes fifth appearance on SNL shows why he’s got not only the singing chops but the style to go along with it. The music adds a little of the Big Band (1935-1946) Pop and Funk (listen to the bass line during the Jay-Z verse) making this a great soundtrack for a good time.

Timberlake, decked in Tom Ford, even looks good rocking some serious Christian Louboutin footwear during the performance. What I love here is the celebration of getting dressed. It’s not just the act of dressing up, but the feeling that you get when you know you’re at your best. When you look good, you feel good and that energy resonates to those around you.

Here at the The Transformed Male we do a lot of posts about the inner man, maturation of the soul and reflection on character. Justin shows us “a few things” about enjoying the moment…

Just because.

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My Focus

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Transformations: The Gentleman Is D.E.A.D? (A Rebuttal)

A few months ago a fellow twitter user @GentLife proclaimed with the hash-tag #TheGentlemanIsDead  in his twitter timeline.

I thought it was a bold and engaging statement. I smiled as I began to read his reasons. It basically comes down to two factions trying to define what being a gentleman is: One by archaic, medieval or possibly 19th century etiquette standards and the other by 21st century Jet-Setting, sartorial means. So I decided to put my thoughts into this post on what my perspective is on the subject.

If you’ve read posts on my site you may already know my angle on this. But I thought it important to delve a little deeper into this for simple clarity. In his article Mr. Alexander says the gentleman is:

“used to market everything from books to cologne, the word and image that it evokes have been made a commodity.” 

and divides him into two versions:

 “The fashionisto: More concerned with lapel widths and thread counts then living The Gent Life, the fashionisto spends a large amount of his time reading fashion blogs/magazines and a significant part of his income chasing trends. Though his time/money could better be used on other pursuits, this “gentleman’s” focus is primarily on appearance.”

“The  simp: the overly nice guy so concerned with manners and proper decorum that he’s lost all edge and spontaneity. Predictable and artificially effervescent. His observance of all etiquette guidelines, even irrelevant ones, are often a kill joy.”

I tend to agree but only partially. The realization that companies have remixed, repackaged, and marketed him to the masses saddens me. He has been reduced (and I use that term specifically) to someone overly concerned with status, clothing and his sexual prowess. The “Purist”  or as Mr. Alexander calls him the overly “Nice Guy” although well intended in motive, tends to give the gentleman an old-fashioned and nostalgic slant that some may find irritable because of its rigidity or lack of relevance in the 21st century. There is a third kind, a sycophant, a more insidious type of man. “The Player” who has found a new game, a new way to wrap himself in a different skin, who appears genteel just to get the accolades from women and the envy from other men. I’m most disturbed by this type because he hides himself more craftily and effectively, making it hard to discern the real ones, thus eroding the spirit of the true gentleman.

To level out the playing field there are three areas that I believe define the gentleman:



No matter how many clothes you own, designer or otherwise nothing will ever hide bad behavior. NOTHING. If you have ever watched Scott Disick in action then you’ll understand where I’m coming from. No ones saying you have to be an automaton, There is room for variety, but treating people with respect is always a first. There is more value in opening doors than burning bridges. Part of genteel behavior is putting others first. Opening a door, Sliding in a chair for a woman is not even half of the real work that needs to be done. Grow. Learn from your own mistakes or even better, from  the mistakes of others.


Having the necessary ability, knowledge, or skill to do something successfully. Ambition and the plan to execute is necessary, It’s what wakes you up in the morning, gets you moving to meet your goal.  A gentleman should also question his goals as well. They are linked to his character so he should always ask himself the hard questions: Do I have goals? Do I have a plan to meet them? Why is this goal important to me? Am I doing this for the best reasons possible? Learning life lessons reinforces good habits and banishes bad ones. It effects his everyday interactions with others and makes him well read, well-traveled and well-rounded. It doesn’t make him haughty,  just grateful to those who came before him.


A gentleman takes pride in his appearance. whether he owns 1 suit or 100 he understands the power of clothing but is not a slave to them. This is true despite what the magazines or blogs will tell you. It’s time to get some balance on this subject. You don’t define yourself by your clothing, you use clothing as an expression of who you are. Clothing can be a powerful tool for this expression, but it should never be used to hide who you really are or as a deceptive ploy to be someone you are not. Having a balance view will help you make better choices for your wardrobe.

Those are the three “C’s”. I invite you to put them in the order that you believe important.

Aspiring to be a gentleman isn’t like going to etiquette or charm school and you don’t need to own a suit, know thread counts or the difference between a blazer and a sport coat to be one. Your cologne choice won’t make you a gentleman, your place of residence won’t make you one. The amount of stamps on your passport doesn’t give you that credibility. You don’t need to have a ” little black book” app or dozens of female conquests in your smartphone either. Being a Gent is the quiet nobility that comes from doing the right thing at the right time. It’s being mentally strong and powerful. It comes from a deep sense of responsibility to experience life in all it’s beauty and trials, not taking anything for granted, rising above the fray and making out for yourself and those around you a life of meaning. Bring this nobility to the small things you do and every environment you place yourself in and you’re only halfway there.

“Don’t be misled by ‘grind’ talk. Theres a difference between working to be famous & working to be greater.” – Jessie Adore

Special thanks to Mr Alexander (@GentLife)  for throwing down the gauntlet and stimulating the conversation.

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Transformations: The True Gentleman

Dr John Walter Wayland, a historian and teacher, submitted “The True Gentleman” toThe Baltimore Sun in 1899 as part of a competition for the best definition of a true gentleman with Wayland’s submission being crowned the winner.

“The True Gentleman is the man whose conduct proceeds from good will and an acute sense of propriety and whose self-control is equal to all emergencies; who does not make the poor man conscious of his poverty, the obscure man of his obscurity, or any man of his inferiority or deformity; who is himself humbled if necessity compels him to humble another; who does not flatter wealth, cringe before power, or boast of his own possessions or achievements; who speaks with frankness but always with sincerity and sympathy; whose deed follows his word; who thinks of the rights and feelings of others and not his own; and who appears well in any company; a man with whom honor is sacred and virtue safe.”

– John Walter Wayland 1899

I particularly like this definition and I am thankful I found it – thanks to Wikipedia.

Today The True Gentleman is used as the creed for Sigma Alpha Epsilon (the North American college fraternity) and it must be memorised and recited by all prospective members.

*This post first appeared on  Today’s Gentleman by Peter Ryan

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