Man Up, Be an Alpha Male


Somewhere along the line, starting in the 1970s, men lost their way. Men came to believe they were responsible for all the relationship woes in the world. It wasn’t true then and it’s not true now. Women were fighting hard for long overdue equality at home and in the marketplace, and somehow in that quest for freedom equality became synonymous with sameness. Men were the problem.

The solution wasn’t for men to become more feminine.

Its been almost 50-years since the gender wars began, and I sometimes wonder if we’ve made any progress at all. The solution wasn’t for men to become more feminine, the solution was for men to become more open-minded and accepting of a woman’s role in the world. There is a difference. I think many women today lament the passing of the alpha male prototype.

Alpha males aren’t brutes.

How do we define alpha males? Alphas aren’t Neanderthals; alpha males aren’t brutes. Alpha males possess most of the traits we’ve come to consider noble in mankind. Most women are intuitively, biologically attracted to the alphas. It’s a matter of evolutionary survival, and it’s well documented in scientific literature and through empirical evidence. Attributes of an alpha male:

  • Confidence. An alpha displays confidence. He is sure of himself and his abilities. He is a leader and not a follower. He walks his own path and invites others to follow.
  • Strength. An alpha radiates strength. Not physical strength, but intellectual, emotional and psychological strength. He possesses a “mental toughness.”
  • Loyalty. There isn’t much an alpha values more than loyalty. They are pack leaders and expect those they lead to commit and stay loyal to them. They in turn are fiercely loyal to their pack.
  • Intelligence. Alphas are smart and often cunning. They readily see things that others don’t. This shouldn’t be confused with education. One is innate, the other is learned.
  • Passion. Alphas are passionate about what they believe in. They have a strong sense of justice versus the fickle laws of man. They will fight to the death to protect the weakest member of the pack.
  • Vision. Alphas are often visionaries. Idealistic and even romantic. They move towards goals with drive and determination. They aren’t easily distracted, and stay focused on their objective.
  • Control. Alphas stay in control. Considered by some to be stubborn, the reality is they’re pragmatic and methodical. An alpha gets the job done.
  • Courage. Alphas are courageous and demonstrate great presence under pressure. They will make the hard decisions even if not popular, and swim against the tide when called upon to do so.
  • Unpredictable. Alphas are flexible and will often do the unpredictable. They aren’t afraid of change, and will often embrace it with great success.
  • Patient. An alpha is usually patient, preparing himself for opportunity. People will say he’s lucky, but an alpha creates his own luck.

There is a lot of gender confusion in our society today.

As I enter the last phase of my life I am determined to go back to my alpha roots. They had it wrong in the 1970s, a man can be a real man and still be a liberated human being. Conversely, a woman can be a real woman and still enjoy all the benefits of complete equality. There is a lot of gender confusion in our society today, but we owe it to ourselves to be true to our intrinsic natures, whether it’s:  heterosexual, bisexual, gay. lesbian or transgender. Equality for all, discrimination against none.

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Stephen F. Dennstedt

Photographer, Writer and World Traveler

Lima, Peru


4 responses to “Man Up, Be an Alpha Male

  1. While I admire & value many of the virtues that you attribute to the “alpha male” here, and I can certainly empathize with wanting to vindicate and honor authentic masculinity, I think it’s presumptuous for someone to think that they get to define what a “real man” or a “real woman” is — I mean, think of it this way: it says, in the Psalms, that “every way of man is right in his own eyes.” And you realize that almost everyone has their own idea of what gender means, right? And you realize that they all think that their idea is the right one? So then, do you really believe that you’ve just somehow won the cosmic lottery and you just happen to be the one that’s right? Really?

    • Nope, not at all John. I certainly don’t have all the answers, as anyone who knows me will attest. Presumptuous? Possibly. Wasn’t my intent. Just sharing one person’s struggle with identity (mine). That can be one purpose of a blog, to discover one’s own identity and voice (the author of the blog). Preaching and pontificating rarely solves anything, but sometimes sharing and personal disclosure can help someone else evaluate their own questions and struggles. My adult son often says: When I have to make a decision I just ask myself what my dad would do, and then I do the opposite. Seems to work for him. Thank you for your comments and perspective, they are always welcome.

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