My guest is mega-successful entrepreneur and thought leader, Nate Lind. Nate is a husband, a father, and the founder of Legendary Man. At the age of thirty-seven Nate has already experienced huge successes and crushing failures, to the point where he considered suicide. He is here to tell us about depression in men and why openness, vulnerability, and building a tribe are more powerful than the outdated lone wolf idea of masculinity.
Nate Lind is the youngest of six siblings, among two older boys and three older girls. His dad was in the army and they moved a lot. Because of this, Nate learned how to make friends quickly even though he was a total nerd growing up. Nate was overweight, soft, and squishy. He wasn’t into sports. Instead, he liked video games and Boy Scouts. During three or four years while he was in middle school he would spend one weekend a month camping in Kansas. The weather in the Midwest could be scorching and humid, or freezing cold. This helped Nate learn how to deal with the elements.
Computers were huge in his childhood. Nate says he was born into analog and converted into digital. Kids his age had to know basic coding principals just to fix a glitchy game. His passion for computers led him to pursue a computer animation degree in college. Nate says he was on the robotic college path–degree, job, marriage, retirement. But after college, he was burnt out with computers. He became more interested in interaction with people. Then he read Rich Dad, Poor Dad, and focused on how to provide for himself and his future family.
Nate’s Family Today
Nate has been married for fourteen years and has two kids. He says his wife is super-smart and a force to be reckoned with. She is also motivated, passionate, and has the ability to provide for the family. Nate says he and his wife both share a strong sense of morals. When they met on the internet on Match.com, she was an enlisted Marine.
They dated for a few years before getting married. Nate was flipping houses at the time. Then the housing market dove just as they find out they were pregnant.
Nate was mentally devastated. He experienced that deep-seated failure as a man from not being able to provide. Luckily, his wife was able to take care of the bills, but Nate clearly remembers snapping at her. He hadn’t seen a paycheck in months and was a total jerk. Nate learned that repressing feelings is what he naturally did, but maintaining a stoic appearance would make him explode.
Nate also remembers that he didn’t have a tribe for a long time. He suffered in silence and failure alone.
You beat yourself up, instead of looking at where you are and where you’re going ahead.
Nate’s current success is built on his line of beard products. You can see that his beard is impossible to avoid talking about. After he first started growing his beard, he would go to beard contests to meet the men who were his customers. Nate found himself adopted into a sort of bearded tribe and this camaraderie became the bread crumbs that lead to creating the Legendary Man online community.
Champions embody the timeless stories and journeys that all men share. They represent the roles we play in life, the paths we walk, the lessons we learn, and the way we interact. Identifying and understanding your champion is key to starting your journey.
Most guys are oblivious to their capability to reflect on what is causing the problems in their life. They place blame outside of themselves and avoid taking responsibility. This mindset puts them in a low-power position. That is why a tribe is so important. Not only is it a support system, but members will see your blind spots and let you know when you’re sabotaging yourself.
Becoming a Legendary Man
Nate says that failures are part of the hero’s journey, and the hero’s journey is not something we watch over and over again in movies. There is a reason this mythology has lived within our cultures forever. We live it.
You are on a journey, you prepare, you fight, you overcome, and then you return home. You will get a period of rest to integrate what you learned and share that treasure with your family or community, but that doesn’t mean you live happily ever after. Something bubbles back up again. It’s your unconscious letting you know that it’s time to go back out there and challenge yourself.
The New Masculinity
The old idea of masculinity is literally killing men. Middle-aged, white men are the highest suicide rate demographic. It’s taboo for guys to become depressed and to fall into such a weak state to want to kill themselves, and this is why they don’t reach out for help.
Nate has been there. He thought about suicide several times throughout his career. But he felt an urge welling inside him and reached out for help. He took action. He told himself, even if worse came to worse, and he had to shut down his company that he had his health, his kids, and his wife. He would make it through.
It is totally normal to go through ups and downs in life. It’s your unconscious telling you it’s time to make a change.
Biggest Lesson of Fatherhood
Nate says his sons will do exactly what he does, and nothing he tells them to do.
Teaching by doing is so much more powerful than lecturing.
On Being a Husband
Nate focused so much on taking care of his family financially, that he didn’t spend time enjoying them.
They didn’t want just a provider. They wanted me.
Advice to Himself
Nate says that we as dads have an absolute responsibility to raise a different generation of men. He warns not to tell your boys to man up and hold in their feelings. Give messages to your kids on how to be tough through experiences. Camping and hiking teach them what toughness means as opposed to drilling it into them and making them feel that they have to prove something to dad.
To the Man Who Doesn’t Have a Tribe
There is a band there waiting for you. You just have to be willing to allow yourself to be embraced. Opening up to a community is not as hard as it seems.
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