The Pitfalls of Trying to be an Alpha Male
This is an excerpt from my free eBook, The Myth of the Alpha Male.
If you want to read the whole thing, click here!
The debate is framed in a manner that is naturally appealing to human psychology. We are programmed to avoid pain, and so this argument slides nicely into our lower brains while bypassing our logical mind.
The purpose of this post is not to argue that alpha males do not exist. They most certainly do. They exist in nature, and they exist in human civilization. The purpose of this post is to argue that those out there who seek to profit from your anxiety have lied to you.
The Alpha Male in Nature
One thing to be clear about, most of the literature out there on how to become an alpha male relies on your imagination to fill in a lot of gaps. Humans are not a species with readily available examples of alpha males. So what most gurus mean is something along the lines of social dominance, but they rely on the images in your head of the alpha wolf to fill in the rest.
If you look at species that do have alpha males, gorillas, for example, you see an entirely different picture. What you have is a hierarchical society where every male has a role, and the alpha does all of the matings until the point when he is overthrown by another male.
That image is much different than that of human societies. Someone could be a janitor by day and post videos that his 300,000 YouTube subscribers listen to every day.
Additionally, there is the issue of physiological characteristics. If you look at male genitals in relation to body size, you can get a good idea of how promiscuous a species is. Gorillas have tiny genitals in comparison with their bodies because not many of them get the chance to mate. Chimpanzees, however, are pretty much just a walking set of genitals, and the structure of their social groups and mating habits reflect that.
Humans sit close to chimpanzees when it comes to this ratio. This suggests that our social behavior is closer to that of chimpanzees rather than gorillas. The ratio of body size to genitals also makes sense from an evolutionary perspective as we are much more closely related to chimpanzees than gorillas. So the people out there who advocate a gorilla mindset do not have a firm grasp on human evolution or the fundamentals of biology and sexual selection.
They want you to believe that being an alpha male is something that you can learn by reading their book. A book that is nothing more than a list of character traits, behaviors, and activities that, if you can pick up, will transform you into an alpha male.
This is not how it happens in nature. This is not how it happens in humans. Becoming an alpha male is about cultivating confidence in who you are, not adopting the advice of an ‘alpha guru’ wholesale.
The big lie in the manosphere is that becoming an alpha male will fix all of your ills. It is a very convenient position to take when there are so many men out there trying to figure out how to be a man. The information you are sold does not work and will, in fact, turn you into the worst kind of beta male.
The reason why trying to become someone else’s version of an alpha male does not work is that men who rely on alpha/beta are using external metrics to evaluate their worth. Now, I ask you, does trying to change yourself to measure up to an external standard sound like a very alpha thing to do? When you adopt another man’s standard, you are letting him dictate your life to you, and that is a very unconfident thing to do.
If you have taken another person’s definition of being a man, then you have turned yourself into a slave. You have abandoned your faculties and desires to achieve a prepackaged identity. You will constantly be evaluating and critiquing yourself to make sure that you measure up. This will spawn anxiety and dissatisfaction causing an endless loop of vicious self-attack when you do not stack up to an external metric which you have imposed on yourself.
To become an ‘alpha male’, you need to give up your authority over your own life to adopt to another man’s blueprint. This typically involves paying for coaching, books or some other sort of product. There is nothing wrong with paying for information. I have done it countless times as I would rather pay for something with money rather than time. The problem arises when the information you are buying strips power from you rather than gives you more.
The theory of how to be an ‘alpha male’ is a dangerous one as it is completely non-falsifiable. The picture of the ‘alpha male’ cannot be verified or denied. The person selling the image to you insists that it worked for him. You have no way of knowing for certain if it was being ‘alpha’ or something else entirely which helped him to succeed in his life.
The brilliant part of this is that when you inevitably fail to reach the same level of success as the man who sold you the book the fault always lies at your feet. Your failure is due to your inability to apply all of the principles that he outlined in his books. There cannot be a flaw in his principles because they worked for him.
The reason why the version of the ‘alpha male’ peddled online will inevitably fail is that it forces you to adopt a lifestyle that you do not wish to live. There will certainly be men who have success with the ‘alpha male’ program so commonly found online. But for the vast majority of men who fail at it, their self-esteem will be undermined because they will engage in self-attack when they are unable to achieve all of the success laid out in the book.
I hope that this excerpt from my free eBook was interesting. If you want to read the whole thing, click here!