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A Brief Guide To Being Sad


I just ended a relationship with a woman who I love dearly.

Loving her was like drinking fresh water after a lifetime of drinking saltwater. Being with her was like bathing in light.

Time spent together moved at quarter speed. A week together felt like a month. Nothing else mattered in the world when we were together in our love bubble.

In reality we only spent less than a couple weeks together over the course of the past six months, but I feel like I’ve known her forever.

Despite the mind-blowing intimacy and connection we had, she wanted more than a couple days or a week every month.

But I’m not ready for more. Yet.


I’m allergic to lying now.

It’s a drastic difference from the man I used to be a decade ago. He lied a lot. To everyone, including himself.

He worked jobs that he didn’t like. He dated women who he knew he didn’t have a future with. And he lied to people to make them like him more.

But now I just tell the truth. All the time.

And I told this woman who I love times a billion that when I really, really tap into what’s true, I’m not interested in a relationship that’s 1. Monogamous or 2. In Arizona. They both feel constrictive to me. At least in this moment.

I’m not done traveling. I’m not done living in a 24/7 TED talk. And I’m not done being young and wild and free. Yet.


So I walked out of her apartment and back out into the world. The world where I have no home, no office, and no schedule.

And today I sit on my friend’s couch in Venice, CA, a block from the ocean, and I’m sad.

Overwhelming sad.

“Holy shit am I going to die?” sad.

The pain has taken over my chest cavity. Most of the time it’s dull, but sometimes it’s sharp. Sometimes I feel like I can’t breathe. It’s been with me since I saw her last a couple days ago. It gets worse when I’m alone and quiet. The moment before I go to bed and the moment when I first wake up are the worst.

In the past I would immediately mask this pain with another woman, an alcoholic beverage, drugs, or any other distraction. But today I’m just sitting with it.

Because in reality the only way out is through. And sometimes it’s ok to just be sad as hell.

Which is what I’ll be doing for the next couple of days. Oh joy.


As men we’re taught to hide our emotions. So instead of feeling them, we stuff them back into our bodies and carry them around with us.

Maybe the only time we cry is when we get drunk. Maybe we cover the pain with getting high, eating bags of Doritos, or losing ourselves into a video game.

Either way, it’s unhealthy.

Emotions are just a neurological response to the stimuli in your life. They aren’t good or bad. They are just part of being human.

Not giving yourself permission to feel your emotions is like not pooping. Ever.

It’s not natural and it’s hurting you.


I want you to follow these three steps.

1. Ask yourself, “What am I feeling right now in this moment?”

2. Then ask, “If I gave myself permission to fully feel this emotion, would it kill me?”

3. Feel.


I almost quit writing this post at least a dozen times.

I don’t even know why I’m hitting publish. I’m kind of an idiot.

But if it helps one guy feel again for the first time, it’s worth it to me.


PS – Uggggggh, this sucks.

PPS – But yaaaaay, at least I know I’m alive.

  • Matt Horwitz

    I feel you Mike…

    Like you said, just going through is the only way. Recently, I’ve been waking up feeling a bit sluggish, easily procrastinating… a slight slump. Rather than avoid it, or think I’m an idiot for being like this, I just rock w/ it… feel it, be w/ it, integrate it.

    I think it takes a balanced man, an authentic male, to be willing to feel deep emotions and process them. In time, it builds True strength.

    I admire the share, and you be wiling to just be with it. No way through but through.

    Reminds me of a book I’m reading, “Fire in the Belly… on being a man”.

  • Anouar Tahiri

    I’ve never heard of you before this blogpost. You have no idea how timely this is. I guess the shortest (and only) way to the other side is to go right through it.

  • ziv

    emotions in men are double edge sword. throughout history man was always meant to be the rock foundation of every family house country or nation… in the Western world.
    men that attempted to express emotions and show signs of the weakness in order I to cope with there emotional baggage we’re always perceived as week and un worthy of being men by the very people who wanted them to express their feelings and emotions.

  • Figure it out

    Honestly man, u need to hear this.

    Stop fucking up!!! & stop whining! Your “yet” is a bunch of bullshit! Life does not have time to wait for your “yet”! Aren’t you like 37? What the fuck are you really doing with your life besides whining about a bad bitch that u fucked things up with for no reason and about not being the man that you want to be. By this age, at the pace you are going, you wont be him unless you get your head out of your ass and start making moves. Stop blogging about other people and get a real job where you will be able to afford your own adress. Hard work, dedication, and commitment to the ones you love are how you are going to be this man.

    Its how you are going to be a decent human being. I am almost 10 years younger than you and I am more successful than you. If I am going to get a life coach I want someone who inspires me and will help me feel empowered, not a bum with virtually no job and talks about other people on the internet or whines about how he missed amazing opportunities because of a “yet”. You need to recognize opportunities and grab them, not pass them by and blame it on a “yet.”

    Good luck bro.

    • Mr. Tasteful

      Whoever you are, your comment is beneath seriousness. First of all, he’s not 37 years old, and if you knew how to read, you’d understand that he decided to give up his lucrative job to understand the purpose of life. This blog is very informative and actually helps me and others see things from a different perspective.

      Your rude comment is pretty pathetic. You don’t even know him. And I highly doubt you’re more successful than someone who has the privilege to do whatever it is that he wants.

      Mike isn’t whining about anything, he’s simply expressing himself.

      Finally, I doubt Mike wants to turn his blog into something where people are arguing and being negative, but the last thing I have to say to you is that — Mike helps people. I don’t know what it is that you do, but to be anything else, no matter how great one’s financial or professional success, is to be rabble, just another commoner, a natural slave (in Aristotle’s term), out there struggling under the blazing sun with the only shade available that provided by Plato’s cave for the uninitiated ignorant. You are obviously unclear on what success really is.

      It’s time for YOU to grow up and out of such thoughts. It’s time for YOU to see the world as it really is, which ignorance, even in small doses, makes it all but impossible to do.

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