One of our favorite guest post contributors is back! Diego is my absolute favorite. Sure, he's my husband so this might go without saying, but the truth is he is writing on a subject I've watched him truly study and strive to understand. Today, Diego shares with readers his sincere thoughts on being a gentleman and how to develop gentlemanly habits because "chivalry isn't dead"! Take it away Diego...
I was asked to write on what it means to be a gentleman. I’m not sure if I qualify as an authority on the subject but it is something I do take pride in.
So here goes: What I first thought of when this subject was brought up was my father. I thought of him for the “obvious” reasons - opening the car door for my mother, bringing her flowers, cooking for her and generally being a pretty romantic and thoughtful guy. While we were growing up, people would frequently ask my parents how long had they been “dating.” People could hardly believe that my father would still treat my mother as if they were on a first date.
But I also thought of him for some not-so-obvious reasons. In studying my father I realized there are actually two distinct areas where men can exemplify true “gentlemanliness.” The first is in situations as I described above - situations where a man can outwardly demonstrate kindness, consideration and even reverence for his wife/girlfriend/colleague/acquaintance, etc. These conspicuous demonstrations are what most people would think of when describing how a gentleman acts.
While a gentleman will behave in such a way, I believe this is only a small part of what makes males, true gentlemen. The second, more inconspicuous area is what I would like to focus on.
I think as men we are all called upon to be gentlemen but I feel only a few truly answer the call. Opening doors, being polite, “ladies first”-type of behavior are habits that can be created. To be a true gentleman, we must go beyond external displays. We must be gentlemen first in our thoughts. We must develop kind thoughts. We must understand internally the intrinsic value of people.
|A gentleman husband AND father|
What are our thought processes when we are angry? After a long day at work, are we mentally prepared to deal with our kids? What do we think of our bodies, minds and souls? Are we replenishing them often? Are our egos in check?
I believe a true gentleman must fight the good fight. He must develop himself to such an extent where there is no alternative but to live a life of excellence, a gentlemanly life. I feel the challenge facing men today is exactly this. Our society needs more men to fully develop and be emotionally mature. We need more men of character, more men to lead with kindness, more gentlemen.
My wife will be the first to tell you that I fall short of these ideals. But (I hope!) she would also be the first to tell you that I try to live up to these ideals on a daily basis.
The reason my father reminded me of this second area is that I have seen him fight this fight throughout his 30+ years of marriage. The way the world would perceive my father would be as the epitome of a gentleman. But through the years, I have seen my father falter. And I’ve seen him humble himself. And I've seen him build himself back up. And I’ve seen him dedicate his life to making things better. I have seen him be a gentleman.
Diego Quevedo is a father of three and a loving husband. Professionally, he manages a team of medical experts. Personally, he's a self-professed geek who loves to read and exercise! He's excited to contribute a male perspective to HerMamas.com.