hits counter The Mask of Masculinity: How Men Can Embrace Vulnerability, Create Strong Relationships, and Live Their Fullest Lives - Ebook PDF Online
Hot Best Seller

The Mask of Masculinity: How Men Can Embrace Vulnerability, Create Strong Relationships, and Live Their Fullest Lives

Availability: Ready to download

At 30 years old, Lewis Howes was outwardly thriving but unfulfilled inside. He was a successful athlete and businessman, achieving goals beyond his wildest dreams, but he felt empty, angry, frustrated, and always chasing something that was never enough. His whole identity had been built on misguided beliefs about what "masculinity" was.Howes began a personal journey to fin At 30 years old, Lewis Howes was outwardly thriving but unfulfilled inside. He was a successful athlete and businessman, achieving goals beyond his wildest dreams, but he felt empty, angry, frustrated, and always chasing something that was never enough. His whole identity had been built on misguided beliefs about what "masculinity" was.Howes began a personal journey to find inner peace and to uncover the many masks that men – young and old – wear. In The Mask of Masculinity, Howes exposes the ultimate emptiness of the Material Mask, the man who chases wealth above all things; the cowering vulnerability that hides behind the Joker and Stoic Masks of men who never show real emotion; and the destructiveness of the Invincible and Aggressive Masks worn by men who take insane risks or can never back down from a fight. He teaches men how to break through the walls that hold them back and shows women how they can better understand the men in their lives. It's not easy, but if you want to love, be loved and live a great life, then it's an odyssey of self-discovery that all modern men must make. This book is a must-read for every man – and for every woman who loves a man.


Compare

At 30 years old, Lewis Howes was outwardly thriving but unfulfilled inside. He was a successful athlete and businessman, achieving goals beyond his wildest dreams, but he felt empty, angry, frustrated, and always chasing something that was never enough. His whole identity had been built on misguided beliefs about what "masculinity" was.Howes began a personal journey to fin At 30 years old, Lewis Howes was outwardly thriving but unfulfilled inside. He was a successful athlete and businessman, achieving goals beyond his wildest dreams, but he felt empty, angry, frustrated, and always chasing something that was never enough. His whole identity had been built on misguided beliefs about what "masculinity" was.Howes began a personal journey to find inner peace and to uncover the many masks that men – young and old – wear. In The Mask of Masculinity, Howes exposes the ultimate emptiness of the Material Mask, the man who chases wealth above all things; the cowering vulnerability that hides behind the Joker and Stoic Masks of men who never show real emotion; and the destructiveness of the Invincible and Aggressive Masks worn by men who take insane risks or can never back down from a fight. He teaches men how to break through the walls that hold them back and shows women how they can better understand the men in their lives. It's not easy, but if you want to love, be loved and live a great life, then it's an odyssey of self-discovery that all modern men must make. This book is a must-read for every man – and for every woman who loves a man.

30 review for The Mask of Masculinity: How Men Can Embrace Vulnerability, Create Strong Relationships, and Live Their Fullest Lives

  1. 4 out of 5

    Mark Henderson

    This was a disappointing book. Healthy masculinity is a topic close to my heart. However, I've rated this book quite poorly. Why? Howes has made an honest attempt here and I think he means well. Despite Howes' efforts in this book, I received the uncomfortable and unpalatable feeling that this book was not about shedding masks. It was about trading stereotypical, toxic masks for new masks. Perhaps I should start at the beginning. First, my bias: I am a heterosexual white male. I did not fraterniz This was a disappointing book. Healthy masculinity is a topic close to my heart. However, I've rated this book quite poorly. Why? Howes has made an honest attempt here and I think he means well. Despite Howes' efforts in this book, I received the uncomfortable and unpalatable feeling that this book was not about shedding masks. It was about trading stereotypical, toxic masks for new masks. Perhaps I should start at the beginning. First, my bias: I am a heterosexual white male. I did not fraternize much at all with males during any of my school years from gradeschool through college. It is by virtue of luck - and not my own virtues - that I found it extraordinarily difficult to empathize with the content that the author chose to focus on in this book. The failure of empathy for the capital-M Man that Howes describes is my own. (Hopefully) sitting past that bias, I feel that this book could have been so much more. Howes posits: Men are the problem. Look at the statistics of murder, suicide, sexual harrassment, and nearly any other statistic. Men sit at the center of the problem and yet we - men and society - seem unable to confront what causes so much suffering. I'm on board so far. Then begins the diversion off the tracks of relatability: Howes describes the stereotypical male experience. The experience is this: That of a man that was once a boy, a boy that was picked on by meaner and tougher boys. The boy fights back not immediately, but by eventually becoming that meaner boy. By proving himself in sports. His struggle is his own because he is not allowed to experience sadness or pain. Numbness is his guide and his norm. Throughout life, he puts on several "masks": 1. The Stoic: Man is invulnerable. Emotions are suppressed. Man must not show that he feels emotion - or, even better, he must not feel the emotions at all. 2. The Athlete: Man is built for domination. Athletics are a pure and physical representation of that divine mandate from evolution. 3. The Material: Man is represented by what he owns and what he has acquired. 4. The Sexual: Man is not only obsessed with sex, but he dominates it. 5. The Aggressive: Men take what they want and hate those who impede their desires. 6. The Joker: Man takes nothing too seriously, except the other masks; he especially does not take emotions seriously. 7. The Invincible: Man does. He always has everything under control. 8. The Know-it-all: Man has all the answers and no one else. 9. The Alpha: There are winners and losers, and Man must, by way of exclusion, be the winner. This describes a wide range of possible experiences as a Man. I not only find it plausible, but know from experience that many men will empathize with these masks. They will read these descriptions, recognize that which is holding them back, that which is falsely defining them, and thank Howes for the revelation. The hope that the fact that I am not one of these men is not the only reason I rated this book poorly. I did not connect with any of the 9 chapters on the masks. What I did find valuable were some of the paragraphs at the end of each chapter, titled, "For Women". These paragraphs provide advice on how to approach men who are deeply hidden beneath these masks. What could have made this book better? 1. A clear definition of what Man's alternative is. It is not simply to recognize masks or to shed them. It is to illuminate a simple fact: Man is defined by what he does, and not by who Man actually is. This book focuses on the facade, but not what is left beneath the facades. 2. More nuanced masks that do not fit the male stereotype. About trading masks for new masks: A potential pitfall of failing to recognize the fundamental plight of Man is that, in shedding (for example) the mask of The Stoic, Man is left without any backup. He still does not know how to find fulfillment. He is still chasing an external definition of himself, even if he recognizes that the toxic external definitions are no longer serving him. All of us humans crave external reflection and for someone else to tell us who we are at times, to tell us why we are here, and how we can derive meaning in our lives. Most healthy humans still strive for meaning on their own. Man happens to be a toxic subset of this general case in which he has no sense of personal value or meaning outside of external definition. For example, in shedding the toxic, stereotypical masks, Man might adopt The Mask of Virtue (or Wokeness). The author himself may fall into this category. I may fall into this category. Man is the height of decorum. He is the epitome of politeness. He offends no one. He makes Woman feel comfortable and safe. In return, he receives the praise of Woman. He receives the love he has so long been without, and finally, in that acceptance, Woman gives him the meaning he has been unable to attain or create for himself. Or there is the Mask of Anti-Identity. Man2.0 hates Man for all of the harmful things Man does to the world. Man seeks to alienate himself as much as possible from the Toxic, Traditional Man. In doing so, perhaps he will finally be accepted and given his meaning. Again, instead of creating it for himself. There is a huge range of depth and conflict behind the basic struggle of Man to consider ourselves inherently worthy of and embodying meaning. That depth is entirely hidden from the reader in this book. Howes has made a start. He tried. That matters quite a lot. I sincerely hope this book has helped some men identify the toxic masks that they were in order to improve their lives. There is so much more to be done. Readers might look instead to the book by bell hooks, "Men, Masculinity, and Love".

  2. 5 out of 5

    Matthew

    I guess I'm not a man either Look, I get it. We all have stereotypes of what men are and the masks they use to hide the pain. I totally believe in this ideal and understand some men suffer from this. I'm like Lewis in the fact I was sexually abused. I have a lot of history in that. However, none of the mask types in here (disappointed there are ONLY 9 and ONLY stereotypes) do not apply to me. I get it. I am already an outsider looking in. I had to deal with a lot so my mental wiring is not like oth I guess I'm not a man either Look, I get it. We all have stereotypes of what men are and the masks they use to hide the pain. I totally believe in this ideal and understand some men suffer from this. I'm like Lewis in the fact I was sexually abused. I have a lot of history in that. However, none of the mask types in here (disappointed there are ONLY 9 and ONLY stereotypes) do not apply to me. I get it. I am already an outsider looking in. I had to deal with a lot so my mental wiring is not like other man. I might as well be called Omega Man for how "beta" I am. I hate the fact I bought this book. I got hooked on the interviews and decided I would give Lewis one more try. We were cut from the same twisted cloth. Except I am not on the male list. If you have a typical male in your life with typical problems of being a male in the normal society, then this book might be for you. If you're one of the few Omega males in the world, save your money. We aren't even Sigma enough to register on the book's scale. Go see a therapist instead.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Adii Pienaar

    This feels authentic and open; unlike other "serious" books that were written with only a commercial goal in mind. I feel that this book starts and adds to an important conversation about what it means to be born a male / be a man in society today. I also had a bit of an epiphany in reading the book: I consider myself an open, transparent, heart-on-the-sleeve guy that is mostly comfortable being vulnerable. But when I spoke to my son about how it is okay to cry, he told me that he had never seen This feels authentic and open; unlike other "serious" books that were written with only a commercial goal in mind. I feel that this book starts and adds to an important conversation about what it means to be born a male / be a man in society today. I also had a bit of an epiphany in reading the book: I consider myself an open, transparent, heart-on-the-sleeve guy that is mostly comfortable being vulnerable. But when I spoke to my son about how it is okay to cry, he told me that he had never seen me cry. I was stunned. I had never consciously tried to hide my tears from my boys. In fact, most of the most significant people in my life would've seen me cry. Yet for whatever reason, my son had not yet seen me cry and subsequently I had contributed to his skewed perception about crying/being a man.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Marina

    This is more 3.5 stars for me, but Lewis is so darn likable and genuine that I can't get myself to round it down. I am quite interested in the topic of masculinity and in psychology in general, so there wasn't tons here in terms of theory that was very new to me. But I really liked the anecdotes/case studies Lewis used and I also liked the idea of the different 'masks'. Many of the things he talks about are esentially about how to have a good life, and apply nicely to both men and women, though This is more 3.5 stars for me, but Lewis is so darn likable and genuine that I can't get myself to round it down. I am quite interested in the topic of masculinity and in psychology in general, so there wasn't tons here in terms of theory that was very new to me. But I really liked the anecdotes/case studies Lewis used and I also liked the idea of the different 'masks'. Many of the things he talks about are esentially about how to have a good life, and apply nicely to both men and women, though with a particular focus on how our culture(s) can get men off course in specific ways. Some observations I liked: - Sports as soap opera - lots of heightened emotion (over something not very real) in players and viewers - For many athletes after they stop playing sports, the selflessness of team play disappears and all they're left with is competitiveness and the need to win. Ironically this often expresses itself in relationships. - Five core life areas to focus on: health (mental, physical, emotional), relationships, wealth (finances, career, education, business), contribution, spiritual. How would you rate yourself on each one? What would a ten look like in each area for you? - "That's the day I became a wealthy man. Because I still didn't have any money but scarcity left my body." - Tony Robbins on giving all his remaining money to a boy in a restaurant so he can take his mom out for lunch - Unaddressed anger is the glue that keeps the aggressive mask stuck in place. Fear, sadness, pain are usually under it. - Anger is one of few emotions men and boys find ok to express (boys see this in games, on TV) - Society will accept you with your flaws, as long as you're funny - Humour as a way of maintaining distance - Beware of experts - especially people who think they know something but have very little experience with it - Two ears, one mouth. - There are no competitions for best listener, and many for best speaker. We are not taught how to listen well. - When you let go of the know-it-all mask, these things can flood back into your life: people want to be around you, freedom to not know, ability to learn and grow, deep wisdom from others, deeper intimacy and support - Most of all, (unempowered) alpha males want control and respect -getting all they're asking for is only third on the list - Looking like you're on top is not the same as getting what you want. Don't let your ego get in the way of getting what you really want. We often mistake posturing for the real thing. - What makes you special is the unique combination of strengths you have. But men who wear the alpha mask (or any other mask?) feel like they can only count on this one developed muscle - they're not sure if investing into strengthening other ones would pay off and they worry it would weaken their one developed muscle. Embrace a fuller view of what masculinity means. - Do what you feel is right and true. That's your only obligation as a man and as a human being. - Two things that matter in life: your relationships, and how you've made a difference/a mark - How to build a legacy - doing something that is meaningful to you that brings value to others

  5. 5 out of 5

    Sergiu Cipcigan

    I really enjoyed reading this book, it really makes you rethink the reasons you are doing some things. The moment you put one of the masks, usually without knowing, you actually get more distant to the actual problem that you are facing, a really dangerous thing to do. I think the best example of a mask would be Robin Williams, a person that brought so much joy and happiness in the hearts of millions when he actually was very depressed.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Eli

    Such a good book. Lewis Howes highlights nine common masks of masculinity with their own chapters: the Alpha Mask, the Sexual Mask, the Know-It-All Mask, the Athlete Mask, the Joker Mask, the Material Mask, the Stoic Mask, the Invincible Mask, and the Aggressive Mask. He talks about his experience with them and the experiences of others (like Mike Rowe, Travis Pastrana, and Alanis Morisette) with them, being respectful of their perspectives whether he agrees with them or not. He closes each chapt Such a good book. Lewis Howes highlights nine common masks of masculinity with their own chapters: the Alpha Mask, the Sexual Mask, the Know-It-All Mask, the Athlete Mask, the Joker Mask, the Material Mask, the Stoic Mask, the Invincible Mask, and the Aggressive Mask. He talks about his experience with them and the experiences of others (like Mike Rowe, Travis Pastrana, and Alanis Morisette) with them, being respectful of their perspectives whether he agrees with them or not. He closes each chapter by telling the man behind the mask of that chapter by saying that they have a lot to offer and what they will gain by removing that mask. He writes some suggestions for men who are trying to take of the mask as well as for women who are trying to help some man in their life take off that mask. This really helped me realize a lot of interesting things about my masculinity and I have a lot to think about in the way that I interact with the world and the people closest to me. I would strongly recommend this to any guy who wants to do some self-reflection.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Caleb

    I checked this book out of my library as a bit of a joke. I was looking forward to many eyerolls and snickers at what I presumed would be a facile treatment of the issue. Instead, what I read was a rather interesting introduction to masculinity studies. Howes made each of his chapters easy to understand through personal and third-party narratives, while peppering academic and scientific stories throughout to support his points. This book ultimately received three stars from me because it lacked I checked this book out of my library as a bit of a joke. I was looking forward to many eyerolls and snickers at what I presumed would be a facile treatment of the issue. Instead, what I read was a rather interesting introduction to masculinity studies. Howes made each of his chapters easy to understand through personal and third-party narratives, while peppering academic and scientific stories throughout to support his points. This book ultimately received three stars from me because it lacked any nuance when it came to gender (which the author admits) and the spectrum of masculinities (something the author did not really touch on). With some minor tweaks, this could definitely be a 4-star read. I will be recommending this to many people in the days to come. Three hefty, masculine stars.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Cody Lasko

    This is a review for the audiobook version read by Lewis himself. I’m gonna be biased because this book struck a chord deep. But hey, it’s my review, so... here we go. I’m a man and I’ve struggled in the past. I’ve had emotional difficulties, intimacy issues, over-aggressive tendencies, and trouble building relationships. In fact, I still do. A lot. Over the years I’ve come to understand why. Or at least partially understanding why. This book hooked in so deep because it cuts directly to these re This is a review for the audiobook version read by Lewis himself. I’m gonna be biased because this book struck a chord deep. But hey, it’s my review, so... here we go. I’m a man and I’ve struggled in the past. I’ve had emotional difficulties, intimacy issues, over-aggressive tendencies, and trouble building relationships. In fact, I still do. A lot. Over the years I’ve come to understand why. Or at least partially understanding why. This book hooked in so deep because it cuts directly to these reasons and utilizes examples from the author’s own life experience himself (who in doing so exposes so much vulnerability it helps to remove the reader’s own emotional barriers). Beyond that real world exemplars of the more extreme variations of each masculine archetype are provided within, tossing their own thoughts into the mix. Travis Pastrana as the “Invincible Man” is a great example here. The combination inexplicably brings out your own past transgressions and allows a deep reflection on how each instance has informed who you are as a man today. Often this is in stark conflict to who we really are as people deep inside. If you couple this read with Lewis’ other work, and particularly that done on his podcast, this is a book that could prove invaluable to so many men out there in the world. I know the self reflection it brought to my life has already proven to be invaluable. Maybe it can for you too

  9. 4 out of 5

    Bella

    I'm finally aborting this book after trudging along with it until I'm more than halfway through. I borrowed this book from the library because it was a new acquisition and I was the first patron to take it out. The title and the premise of the book both sounded promising. You can begin anywhere in the book based on which type of mask you are most interested in reading about. I picked the sexual mask because I found it most relatable. It was when I had finished my section of choice and began readin I'm finally aborting this book after trudging along with it until I'm more than halfway through. I borrowed this book from the library because it was a new acquisition and I was the first patron to take it out. The title and the premise of the book both sounded promising. You can begin anywhere in the book based on which type of mask you are most interested in reading about. I picked the sexual mask because I found it most relatable. It was when I had finished my section of choice and began reading cover to cover that the trudging started. The first thing that jolted me into seriously considering why I was spending my time with this book was the elaborate mention of the guy who spammed YouTube videos with ads to sell his rags-to-riches formula, in houses and next to cars be purportedly rented for the shots. I read on because I couldn't imagine aborting any books and I wanted to "give this book a chance." The references to facetious anecdotes from the author's personal experience and the "manly men" he reveres soon became tediously repetitive and it became apparent that most of the points made are circuitous and seem to always come to a mention (or repeated mentions) of the his podcast and apparently a previous work. If you are looking for properly postulated arguments with some semblance of research and methodology involved, it's not what I'll suggest.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Melissa Stacy

    3.5 rounded up "The Mask of Masculinity: How Men Can Embrace Vulnerability, Create Strong Relationships, and Live Their Fullest Lives," by Lewis Howes, was first published in 2017. I bought this book just before the COVID-19 pandemic began, and read it in March or April 2020. This book is okay. It's not very deep or insightful, but it's readable, and Lewis Howes shares some interesting personal information that I enjoyed learning about. Howes states that the journey of exploring his own masculinity 3.5 rounded up "The Mask of Masculinity: How Men Can Embrace Vulnerability, Create Strong Relationships, and Live Their Fullest Lives," by Lewis Howes, was first published in 2017. I bought this book just before the COVID-19 pandemic began, and read it in March or April 2020. This book is okay. It's not very deep or insightful, but it's readable, and Lewis Howes shares some interesting personal information that I enjoyed learning about. Howes states that the journey of exploring his own masculinity was inspired by Joe Ehrmann's 2013 TEDx Baltimore talk: "Be a Man," and the 2015 documentary, "The Mask You Live In." Howes ends the book, on pg 221, with a section titled, "Now Pay It Forward," which begins this way: "We talked a lot about masculinity in this book, but I have deliberately steered away from the tricky waters of biology and gender. I know nothing about these topics, although I do know about the basic propagation of our species." I nearly fell on the floor laughing when I read that. Howes states, at the very end of his book, that he knows nothing about "gender," but he wrote an entire book ABOUT gender. Masculinity *is* a gender. I'll also mention that the word "patriarchy" does not appear in this book. Neither do the words "gender roles." Page 221 is the one and only time the word "gender" ever appears in this book. The fact that masculinity is a cultural invention is never mentioned in this book. If you are in the mood to read a book with actual depth, this really isn't the best choice. If you are someone who has NEVER questioned what "masculinity" is, or its effects on boys and men, and would prefer to examine these subjects in the most facile way, then this book is a great choice. Howes focuses on the nine most stereotypical types of modern masculinity, and the damage these mainstream forms of masculinity can have on men's psyches. This book is about helping men get in touch with their emotions, and then spreading the message that they can still be men by doing so. There are many more types of masculinity that are never examined or even mentioned in this book. The fact that many women and people assigned female at birth adopt the same stereotypical traits of masculinity that men do, as a function of surviving in the modern capitalist patriarchy, is never mentioned in this book. Transgender people are never mentioned in this book, either. Howes is just focused on "typical"/stereotypical men (people assigned male at birth) being told they can embrace their emotions and still "be men." This is a good and useful message, and I fully support it. I appreciate Howes for his YouTube channel, and for the free content he makes available online. For those reasons, I'm glad that I bought and read this book. I would recommend this book for "traditional men" who are allergic to the word "gender" and believe the word "patriarchy" is a nonsense word invented by hysterical women who just need to have a baby and cook a casserole and calm the F down. That kind of "traditional man" is the perfect audience for this book, and I'd highly recommend it to them. I highly recommend the "Be a Man" TEDx talk and the documentary "The Mask You Live In" to EVERYONE. Both works are more insightful and impactful than this book was for me, but I appreciate this book nonetheless. A big thank you to Lewis Howes for helping to spread a good message to the people suffering from the mental and emotional trauma of stereotypical masculinity.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Peter

    I made my way painfully through this entire book because I've been on a reading quest to better understand multiple perspectives about masculinity. Here's the short version so you can save yourself the time of reading this. Bro-ish straight dude wakes up to the fact that what he's been taught about being a man has caused him some pain in his life. So, he goes about interviewing a bunch of guys whose identities are grounded in Patriarchal masculinity to create a typology of the ways men are harme I made my way painfully through this entire book because I've been on a reading quest to better understand multiple perspectives about masculinity. Here's the short version so you can save yourself the time of reading this. Bro-ish straight dude wakes up to the fact that what he's been taught about being a man has caused him some pain in his life. So, he goes about interviewing a bunch of guys whose identities are grounded in Patriarchal masculinity to create a typology of the ways men are harmed by the boxes sexism creates. His typology is decent, and he has some examples that resonated with me as a queer man who lives outside the world view of this self-proclaimed alpha. The real problem I have with this book is that it's all focused on how the bros can be better bros without giving up any of their privilege or power. He mentions people of color, alludes to non-binary folks, and nods that queer folks exist. And then proceeds to say, but I'm no expert their so I'm not touching that. As for cis-women, they're included as accessories to the bros they love. I read a few other reviews that suggest Lewis Howes is well intended. I can't speak to that. I can say that his impact is negative and he should be accountable for writing a book that should have everything to do with folks with non-dominant identities that basically excludes them all together.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Malcolm Bradford

    Solid Read, with some actionable takeaways. Very easy read and the voice/tone of the book is written in a way that anyone can pick it up and understand the points Lewis makes in each chapter. The end of chapter summaries also make it nearly impossible to not at least pull 1 or 2 things from each chapter. Lewis leverages his experience from interviewing thought leaders and industry leaders from his podcast, and extracts various masculinity lessons within these interviews and places them in indivi Solid Read, with some actionable takeaways. Very easy read and the voice/tone of the book is written in a way that anyone can pick it up and understand the points Lewis makes in each chapter. The end of chapter summaries also make it nearly impossible to not at least pull 1 or 2 things from each chapter. Lewis leverages his experience from interviewing thought leaders and industry leaders from his podcast, and extracts various masculinity lessons within these interviews and places them in individual chapters on ego, sexuality, arrogance, and other "masculine" topics. The insight provided his podcast interviews add color and perspective throughout the book, but all his points are made at the subjective level from personal stories and anecdotes. Personally, would've loved to see some more science, factual evidence, and cited studies to provide more objective evidence to Lewis points. However, all in all definitely enjoyed the read and feel like I became more self-aware of some of the masks I hide behind in my everyday life.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Connie

    I think women have to take some ownership of their role in shaping men's behavior, so this is an interesting read for anyone. Probably the most impactful statement in the book is that men die by suicide at a rate 6 times that of women. Furthermore, this is a US-specific phenomenon and there is a specific point in people's lives when the gender disparity appears. That right there should tell us all we need to be working harder to help each other be good humans regardless of gender. Each section o I think women have to take some ownership of their role in shaping men's behavior, so this is an interesting read for anyone. Probably the most impactful statement in the book is that men die by suicide at a rate 6 times that of women. Furthermore, this is a US-specific phenomenon and there is a specific point in people's lives when the gender disparity appears. That right there should tell us all we need to be working harder to help each other be good humans regardless of gender. Each section of the book finishes with takeaways for men and for women and I liked that. I'm not a huge fan of the self-help/advice/guru genre, and this isn't a book I'll rush to recommend to my close friends and relatives, because like many in its style it's just sort of a collection of observations that may or may not seem useful or applicable, but I'd say if the premise appeals to you, you'll probably find at least a few good takeaways and it's a quick read so give it a go.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Blake

    There is no way I could spoil this book without reading. The way Lewis Howes addresses the many different masks we where as men brought cause for deep reflection in my own life when addressing the root of my behavior. I suddenly brought into question all of the reasons why I responded the way I do to any situation based on events that I had not realized heavily influenced me and shaped me from my childhood. While not all masks were completely relevant to me, I have found that the understanding o There is no way I could spoil this book without reading. The way Lewis Howes addresses the many different masks we where as men brought cause for deep reflection in my own life when addressing the root of my behavior. I suddenly brought into question all of the reasons why I responded the way I do to any situation based on events that I had not realized heavily influenced me and shaped me from my childhood. While not all masks were completely relevant to me, I have found that the understanding of each has allowed me to better relate to the people I love and care for. Once you address and accept the emotional triggers that have cultivated your behavior today, you’ll find yourself to be more in tune with who you are. I have read no better book that allows me to truly know myself while discovering what I stand for so that I can move forward confidently in life.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Julia Wang

    In this book, the author, Lewis Howes, culminates the wisdom of many famous athletes, entrepreneurs, billionaires, marine corps, etc and creates an insightful book that holds an honest mirror. The author shines the limelight on modern day definition of masculinity and unveils the curtains of the insidious dark connotations with toxic masculinity. His book is divided into nine acts and a conclusion that delves into specific masks of masculinity. Though this book is geared towards men, I do believ In this book, the author, Lewis Howes, culminates the wisdom of many famous athletes, entrepreneurs, billionaires, marine corps, etc and creates an insightful book that holds an honest mirror. The author shines the limelight on modern day definition of masculinity and unveils the curtains of the insidious dark connotations with toxic masculinity. His book is divided into nine acts and a conclusion that delves into specific masks of masculinity. Though this book is geared towards men, I do believe that women will derive great benefit reading this book as well. I believe EVERYONE should read this book, but especially boys.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Chenh Hung Phat

    An exceptional book about men’s mental health problems. Lewis has pointed out exactly prejudices men are struggling with and how to deal with those annoying social norms. This book would definitely help male readers to live a more comfortable life, and female readers to understand better their partners.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Sothealita Po

    This book explores what it is to be a man. Lewis Howes acknowledges the myths of masculinity and tells us what to do to remove the mask. Finally, the things you will discover when you drop those masks.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Micah

    This book honestly is an essential read for every man or even women. We all carry around certain masks that we have yet to let go. Thank you Lewis.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Jonathan Björk

    quite good for the basics on toxic masculinity but not much more

  20. 5 out of 5

    Melissa

    Great read. Very validating and non-judgmental. Great introduction to the concepts and left me wanting to dive deeper.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Anel Kapur

    Thought provoking.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Suresh

    I learnt new insights in this nine mask breakdown of the unhelpful male masks, useful contributions for me to take on board with my work and for myself. This is a journey every man can go through, to remove the aspects of masculinity which are unhelpful. Well summed up insights and reflections by Lewis using the resources of that which is closest to him; his interview from his podcasts. I do wonder about the self promotion in having an authors face on the cover. For one, it seems to take away fr I learnt new insights in this nine mask breakdown of the unhelpful male masks, useful contributions for me to take on board with my work and for myself. This is a journey every man can go through, to remove the aspects of masculinity which are unhelpful. Well summed up insights and reflections by Lewis using the resources of that which is closest to him; his interview from his podcasts. I do wonder about the self promotion in having an authors face on the cover. For one, it seems to take away from the larger picture of the message. Thank you, Tama, for thinking of me and borrowing this book for me. I had the privilege of reading this partly on my first dedicated trail run.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Whitney M

    I’m a professional counselor. Found it great for male clients working on identifying emotions and processing the masks they wear. A little repetitive if you read it cover to cover.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Aldo Nunez

    I read this book during my senior year of high school which prepared me to become a man in this world. I feel like every man needs go read this book especially those who are striving to improve themselves.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Eric Feunekes

    I liked the concept of recognizing and removing the "masks" that we wear. The problem is that this book comes at the issue by saying a "real man" doesn't need money or success, a "real man" is true to himself and those around him, etc. Again, I agree with part of that idea, the issue is the concept of there being a "real man". The author doesn't seem to notice that he's advocating for taking of the masks we wear (man = money, or power, or athletic success) but in doing so he's promoting another I liked the concept of recognizing and removing the "masks" that we wear. The problem is that this book comes at the issue by saying a "real man" doesn't need money or success, a "real man" is true to himself and those around him, etc. Again, I agree with part of that idea, the issue is the concept of there being a "real man". The author doesn't seem to notice that he's advocating for taking of the masks we wear (man = money, or power, or athletic success) but in doing so he's promoting another mask, which is that of the "real man" -- it's just another mask, to use his terms. In the end, I like the idea, it may be worth reading for some and it certainly made me think about these concepts, even if I don't agree with the author. That said, I didn't finish it as I got fed up with the repetitiveness and shallowness of it.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Dustan Woodhouse

    I paused this book just a few minutes in, back on Nov 12, and set it aside for six weeks. Because I had work to get done that I didn’t need some introspection jamming up. I reserved introspection for Boxing Day. Arising very early allowed me the few hours of zero interruptions or interaction to power all the way through the book from start to finish. Can you make it through the book without having to stare too deeply into your inner abyss? Yes, most likely you can. Will the book have you evaluat I paused this book just a few minutes in, back on Nov 12, and set it aside for six weeks. Because I had work to get done that I didn’t need some introspection jamming up. I reserved introspection for Boxing Day. Arising very early allowed me the few hours of zero interruptions or interaction to power all the way through the book from start to finish. Can you make it through the book without having to stare too deeply into your inner abyss? Yes, most likely you can. Will the book have you evaluating the value in expending the resources required, (time, money, internal disruption, external disruptions) in order to delve into your inner abyss? Yes most likely it will. Consider this a baby step on fixing a few things with your psyche. Minor or major. It’s a call to action easily ignored, but it’s a call to action worth tuning into...and then hopefully not ignored.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Nathaniel Voll

    Lewis Howes means well. He takes a shallow-end dive into masculinity and means well in doing so. And no book can be universal, so writing to men in general is a difficult task. Some chapters resonated with me on a small level, but most scratched the surface of what I already know about toxic masculinity. This book bothered me for many reasons. Firstly, it is heteronormative and views gender as binary. And maybe that will help some people. I know many men who would benefit from this kind of disco Lewis Howes means well. He takes a shallow-end dive into masculinity and means well in doing so. And no book can be universal, so writing to men in general is a difficult task. Some chapters resonated with me on a small level, but most scratched the surface of what I already know about toxic masculinity. This book bothered me for many reasons. Firstly, it is heteronormative and views gender as binary. And maybe that will help some people. I know many men who would benefit from this kind of discourse. But secondly, it was sexist. In each chapter, Howes concludes with what men can do to shed their masks, and what women can do. And in each chapter, Howes tells women that they can support their men. See point one: heteronormative. But also, it is not a woman's job to make men treat women better. Sure, support each other on a human to human level. But the idea that a partner reads Howes' book to gain insight into male pain and suppression is fundamentally sad. The part that bothered me the most every time I sat down to read this book was the formatting. Howes bolds random sections of text that he deems to be particularly important, and my eye is drawn to that every time I turn a page. Am I to skip the rest of it? Do I skim your book, Lewis Howes? And when using a block quotation, DON'T ITALICIZE THE WHOLE THING! It's hard on the eyes, and confusing when you double the italics so that "important" text is normal again. If you wrote words that matter, make them all matter please! Your book is over 200 pages long. If you only want me to read the bolded sections, please write a 40-page essay next time. And man oh man the metaphors! Symbolism isn't his strong suit as an author. Of course, speaking passionately and meaning well seems to be, and to his credit, I know this book has probably helped many people out there. So good for you, Howes. I hope you follow up with deeper content in the future. Male toxicity and fragility isn't exactly news. Once you remove the mask, what's the plan? Be yourself? Please follow up with more wisdom for the people who might remove a mask, as you put it, and find themselves vulnerable to the societal pressures that took them to the Halloween aisle in the first place. Please dig deeper. Don't settle for surface level. You have a platform and can do more with it.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Tim

    Better than I expected. My first reaction upon seeing this book was that this guy was a narcissist, and just one of the thousand modern self-help gurus trying to sell you something. However, there is more depth here than I assumed. It might not be the most original material, but the author's message is driven home by his effective use of examples. He has interviewed very interesting and qualified people from a wide range of backgrounds, and then he uses bits and pieces of their life stories to sup Better than I expected. My first reaction upon seeing this book was that this guy was a narcissist, and just one of the thousand modern self-help gurus trying to sell you something. However, there is more depth here than I assumed. It might not be the most original material, but the author's message is driven home by his effective use of examples. He has interviewed very interesting and qualified people from a wide range of backgrounds, and then he uses bits and pieces of their life stories to support his theme. Essentially, he argues that men are afraid to be vulnerable. But vulnerability is a bit of a buzzword these days. What does it really mean? I think the idea to use masks as a metaphor was a really good choice. We all wear masks to present a certain version ourselves to the world. As men, we're often expected to abide by social norms in regards to masculinity. But this isn't a healthy way to live. It's just really interesting to read this book and reflect upon the experiences of me and my friends. We've all lived behind various masks during different phases of our lives. It's hard to be vulnerable as a man and let our true self shine through. Altogether, this book is relatively simple and doesn't have the most groundbreaking material. However, the author does a good job of articulating and communicating his message.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Brandon Thomas

    #1.5-2 While I’m sure the author means well, there is still a dominant mention and focus on ‘obvious’, generic male stereotypes. I agree with the concept of breaking down a mask, but there is a broader spectrum of focal points when it comes to exploring masculinity, despite the author’s focus on 9 common ‘labels’. Instead of reaching out to everyday people, the author has looked to those who have already achieved great things. “I am sitting in a multimillionaire’s wingback chair, in his 16 bedroo #1.5-2 While I’m sure the author means well, there is still a dominant mention and focus on ‘obvious’, generic male stereotypes. I agree with the concept of breaking down a mask, but there is a broader spectrum of focal points when it comes to exploring masculinity, despite the author’s focus on 9 common ‘labels’. Instead of reaching out to everyday people, the author has looked to those who have already achieved great things. “I am sitting in a multimillionaire’s wingback chair, in his 16 bedroom Beverly Hills mansion” - it was the choice to begin sentences like this that made me lose interest as I felt the author wanted us to know he had great connections. Unfortunately, not all of us can be seduced by this method. Perhaps had the author interviewed more relatable sources, his work could have felt less pretentious. Don’t get me wrong, sourcing content from persons other than yourself is integral for this type of book, however I’m sure the broader audience would rather hear from a 9-5 working man rather than a YouTube sensation. Overall, the author’s idea and understanding of men comes across very generalised. There are still continuous highlights of labels for men, and gender norms throughout, which is ironic given the issue between man and masculinity is very much about those two things.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Yared Negussie

    This is an excellent book. In my opinion, this might hold one of the main reason of this mass shootings we experience. Very well explanation of what we are taught as what is masculine is, and how to break that societal chain of masculinity shackling our boys and me.

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...
We use cookies to give you the best online experience. By using our website you agree to our use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.