The topic “40th birthday gifts for men” seems innocuous on face value but if you have never been a man or never straddled that 40-year-old hurdle you won’t fathom the importance. Let me enlighten you. To really understand the importance of the fortieth we may have to get a bit philosophical but don’t be scared. For a start (whether it be conscious or unconscious) the 40-year-old mark signifies to a man the end of his uphill journey in life and the start of the downhill stretch. Don’t underestimate just how important this revelation is to a person’s mind frame. Women have a very well publicised and fretted over period of menopause to signify this occasion. Men don’t. Whilst some doctors do advocate a male equivalent (the Andropause) I would have to say the jury is still out.
I do believe that men go through a transformation around the age of 40 just as significant as a woman’s menopause. What it is though is a hard thing to quantify. One analogy that I like is an awakening. Symptoms are varied but from what I have seen they always revolve around him turning his attentions inward and less focus the external influences (usually to clean the slate and make a fresh start for the downhill stretch).
In most cases things like a shiny red sports car are an attempt to fulfill gaps left in the psyche from childhood but it just gets written off as something a lot shallow, he gets shamed and if not fulfilled will start him down a misguided path for the second half of his life too. Those who are wise in this field will often talk about balance and in particular balancing the psyches mind body and spirit. I am also a strong believe that for a man to smash through to 40 barrier and successfully put to rest the demons of the past, ready himself for the future he needs achieve such balance. I have even heard of culture’s advocating a second initiation at this life stage.
The “Humanity Trinity” – Mind, Body, Spirit
Don’t let your preconceptions about religion scare you off now the mind body spirit concept predates your religion. All the self-improvement and personal development (not to mention some religions) all aim to better your life, achieve success and optimize your life by balancing the mind & body with spirit. I wasn’t raised by religious parents so I am still catching up but what I can tell is that the concept of enlightenment that pretty much all religions touch on also achieved to balance mind, body and spirit. Lets scale the all empowering concept down to something a big more grounded. Something a bit more in line with what you actually came here for, a gift.
What I do want to do though is recommend a few gifts that will help your man (or you) inadvertently start you down the balanced path. Almost like a kick start.
Now I have personally been through this journey myself so what I can recommend is kind of along the lines of education but in the format of entertainment. Education is good, we should all strive to fill our brains up with useful stuff but let’s not try to fit a round peg into a square hole here. It has been decades since any 40 year sat in a class room after all.
This is a TV series I stumbled across by accident late one night and it captivated me and I can honestly say sent my life into a different trajectory. What I particularly liked here was the science infused with big picture philosophy. Questions like what does it mean to be human. Is the world you see all there is & What is your purpose for being here.
There are all questions that naturally come up around this time of a man’s life (more than other times) so I can honestly say he will at the very least get some companionship out of it and a few hours of pondering the big questions. Mix with alcohol sparingly and collaboratively.
For some reason facing the inevitable downhill stretch will also give him a new burst of energy and quite a few men will bust into a new exercise regime. Sometime initiated by a bad doctors report, sometime self-inflicted but nonetheless it is a good thing. Don’t fight it.
I tried dumbbells and power racks and all sorts of gadgets when I was going through this stage but there is nothing more manly than smacking something that you can pretend is your old high school enemy (or more recent enemy as the case may be). The humble boxing bag comes in dozens of different shapes and forms: some a lot more intimidating than others, what I have linked below is a good mix of functionality and form. No roof hook required, no huge big frame just some ballast and a good deal of aggression. Help him unleash the beast. It will do his testosterone levels a world of good.
In the modern world we live in now spirituality can be so easily overlooked. Quite often it takes a huge and devastating life moment for a man to contemplate his spirituality. For me it was events like deaths of close family members, near death experiences or the biggest one divorce. It is a real shame that this side of our humanity gets ignored so much. For me spirituality means the way in which I am connected to the universe and connected to every creature within it (humans and non-humans alike). It is really important to get this perspective sometimes because it can be a real ego killer.
I found Eckhart Tolle to be the most accessible leader in the field. His book “The Power of Now” is just as much a guide to help you through the next asshole encounter as it is a guide to get you through those longer term life goals.
Thanks for sharing your last ten minutes with me and thanks for reading all this way. It was a lot longer article than I hoped for but as it turns out the 40th birthday mark for a man is a lot more than it appears to be.
Let me know your thoughts below.
Hi there, My friends call me Remy. I am a middle aged divorcee that has decided not to walk the path other people decided to set down for me. I have gained the most strength in my life from my failures. Resilience is a very powerful attribute if you can manage it, I am still building mine up but stick with me and we can forge ahead together.