What is the opposite of toxic masculinity? Some might use “wholesome masculinity” and others might say “positive masculinity.” Others, like this video, simply state that masculinity is the opposite word for toxic masculinity.
We could use better vocabulary to describe what we’re talking about here. Alex Olshonsky, writer of Fridays on the Olo, suggested the answer to that question is something he calls Tonic Masculinity. We talked at length about what this term might mean for all masculinity, not just those identifying as men.
“I believe there is a true masculinity where we are able to respond rather than react.” Alex, also sometimes called Olo, says. He then goes onto to quote the famous Viktor E. Frankl about the space between stimulus and response being freedom.
Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom.― Viktor E. Frankl
Alex Olshonsky is a writer, businessman, yogi, and coach on a mission to spread seeds of light that have allowed him to blossom as he continues to study, celebrate, and help to elevate the human experience. The topics of his thought-provoking conscious pieces revolve around masculinity, addiction, metamodernism, and spirituality.
At the end of our talk, Alex also suggests some books to read as jumping off points for healthier masculinity. Robert Bly, he says, is the grandfather of modern masculinity. However, his work has been carried on and improved the likes of David Deida. He also suggests mens groups like ManKind Project.
You might say Olo is carrying that work on as well. You can watch the full episode below or listen on your favorite podcast app.