David Wagner is a spiritual teacher, men’s group leader, and proud father who has dedicated his life to the exploration of personal transformation.
He travels widely leading workshops and retreats for people from all walks of life from all over the world. He is the host of The Whole Manchilada Podcast, is a featured meditation teacher on Yogaglo.com, and serves on the faculties of Kripalu and Omega Institutes.
Favorite Success Quote
1. Fearlessly Look at Your Bullshit
One of the biggest challenges that modern men face is to look at themselves without bias or emotion and examine the bullshit in their lives.
To fearlessly look at your life and examine your bullshit, taking full responsibility for it and where it has gotten you takes courage and backbone. Realize that you can never completely eliminate all the bs in your life, but you can become aware of it and mitigate its effects in different areas.
Be courageous, be fearless, take an honest look at yourself in the mirror and be willing to face whatever it is that you see.
2. You Can do the “Right” Thing and Still be Screwed
Something most men today do not realize is that they can do all of the “right” things by family and society’s standards and still be completely fucked.
Going to college, getting a good job, coming home to a mediocre marriage and a night full of sitcom reruns and reality TV is not success, it’s barely existing.
Society tells men that as long as they stay out of jail, and don’t hit anyone, they are doing ok. But the truth is, most men are dying, in fact, most men have been dying since they left college.
They give up their hopes and their dreams in favor of playing it safe and doing the “right” thing, they stay in terrible relationships that leave them drained and bitter because it’s the “right” thing, and they never risk stepping out of their comfort zone and expressing themselves fully because doing what everyone else does is the “right” thing to do.
If you want to be a real man, a man with grit, backbone, and balls, there will come a time in your life where you must abandon the so-called right thing in favor of “your thing.”
Fuck living for society, your friends, or your family. If you want to be a success and enjoy your life, you must do the things that will make you happy, not the things that everyone accepts as the “right” path to take.
3. There is No One Way to Express Your “Wild Man”
A common misconception in the world of men is that you somehow have to be this badass on a Harley Davidson, sporting a beard and a full sleeve of tattoos to be a real man.
The truth is that being a man is much less a matter of outward appearances and much more a matter of conviction and personal power. It’s a matter of owning who you are and fearlessly expressing yourself to the world
4. Avoid Simulation and Embrace Reality
With the ever growing prevalence of video games and online porn, now more than ever before, it is easy for men to live out their dreams vicariously through virtual simulations.
Instead of going out and meeting women and getting to a place in their sex lives where they can have that vibrant, passionate, crazy sex, men are settling for sitting shamefully by their laptop, lotion in hand.
Instead of creating a life of freedom and adventure and purpose, men are leveling up their Dark Elf Wizard in Skyrim or World of War Craft or getting to the latest prestige in Call of Duty.
Men are settling for results that are far below what they are capable of simply because of the ease and comfort of simulation.
While porn and video games may have their place in some men’s lives, you need to look at why you are using these distractions and make the necessary changes so that your life is so kick ass that no simulation could ever compare.
1. Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill
2. Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas by Hunter S. Thompson
3. Cutting Through Spiritual Materialism by Chogyam Trungpa
4. Iron John: A Book About Men by Robert Bly
5. The Way of the SEAL by Mark Divine
6. The Obstacle Is the Way by Ryan Holiday