One thing I pointed out in Nice Guys vs Good Men was that a major difference between the two was strength.
Look at every person or celebrity you think of as a gentleman. If you look at pictures of them they never look weak, do they? Strength may not be the first thing that comes to mind. Their muscles aren’t necessarily huge and they may not have a domineering way of walking or speaking. But, look closer, and you’ll realize there’s no aura of weakness. An aura of subtle strength defines them; tempered strength.
If strength isn’t measured by muscle mass or a cocky attitude, what ARE the pillars of gentlemanly strength?
Gentlemanly strength is disciplined. A gentleman is master of his actions, and will never use more force than necessary.
It is beyond physical. A gentleman should take care of his body, but not all of us can achieve huge physical strength. That’s okay, because gentlemanly strength is often emotional too. No matter how many beatings and challenges life throws at the gentleman, he will get back up again, come back stronger and push through.
It IS physical. Sometimes. One of the 10 Ways to Win a Girl’s Heart is to be protective. And while this is usually shown in small gestures, sometimes we need to don the armor and physically fight in order to protect the people we love. This situation might be rare and unlikely. But, a gentleman can and will fight. He will give up his life if need be to protect those he loves.
Gentlemanly strength is gentle. It’s in the name. I heard it once said that only the strong can be gentle. It takes more strength to gently lift a baby and place her into a crib than it does to carelessly and nonchalantly drop her in there. In the same way, sometimes we can best demonstrate our strength by holding back, keeping cool, and being gentle or kind when it’s difficult.
Gentlemanly strength is consistent. A gentleman has integrity. He’s tried through and though. He’s strong in moral matters, and will refuse to bend when morality dictates that doing so is wrong.
It’s silent. “Confidence is silent. Insecurities are loud.” The same goes for true strength. A true gentleman doesn’t need to prove to others he’s strong, nor does he attempt to shame anyone who’s not. A deeply rooted tree doesn’t need to make a sound for us to know that it is strong. Rather, it’s the tree that makes noise when the wind comes whom we know is weak
Gentlemanly strength is rooted in something beyond himself. Be it God, family, friends, or community, a strong gentleman has someone or a group to fall back on when his own individual strength is not enough. As Rudyard Kipling wrote in the Jungle Book, “For the strength of the pack is the wolf. And the strength of the wolf is the pack.”