What does it mean to be a strong man?

I have temporarily suspended my sabbatical because I recently heard a story that got me thinking about what it means to be a strong man.

The story goes that a very rich and very, very powerful person (some would say the most powerful person in the world) felt disrespected and made to look weak and it was necessary for the very rich and very, very powerful person to respond forcefully to demonstrate his strength and dominance over the person regarded as disrespectful and over everyone else. 

That got me thinking about what it means to be a “strong” man. (I say “man“ because both individuals in the story are men and because Father’s Day is upon us.)

A strong man:

• Does not need to tell you on a daily basis how smart, intuitive, and very, very powerful he is. Because a strong man is  confident in his strength he does not need to constantly remind others of it.

• Protects those who are vulnerable and in need of assistance.

• Acknowledges mistakes, expresses regret, and apologizes when necessary. 

• Demonstrates his power by consistently advocating for all of humankind, now and in the future, not just for his own family and tribe. 

What would you add or subtract from my definition of a strong man? In what ways would that definition be the same or different if it were describing a strong woman?

8 Responses to “What does it mean to be a strong man?”


  1. 1 rickrepicky June 15, 2018 at 5:47 am

    A timely post, Dennis, worth coming out of a sabattical. I would suggest this addition: A strong leader (regardless of gender) seeks out and listens to advisors with varying views, especially if those views come from people dedicated to what’s best for the organization and not themselves. The leader has to make the final major decisions, but always after contemplating options. Strong leaders have no need to brag that they are the only person bright enough to make these calls. They encourage the views of advisors and give credit to them for their ideas.

  2. 2 Dennis Sparks June 15, 2018 at 5:51 am

    A wonderful and much appreciated addition, Rick.

  3. 3 Michael Fenchel June 15, 2018 at 6:44 am

    Good timing

  4. 4 Romeo June 15, 2018 at 11:01 am

    A strong man weeps when others hurt

  5. 5 dskoreyko June 15, 2018 at 11:04 am

    Dennis, perhaps a Canadian perspective, a strong (person) speaks their truth, does not denigrate their false accuser, and rises to the people rather than expecting them to rise to him/her.
    BTW thanks again for your work with us back in 2005-06.

  6. 6 Kerry Norris June 15, 2018 at 2:30 pm

    Here in Canada we would say that a strong man is able to control his emotions.

  7. 7 Jpk June 16, 2018 at 12:48 pm

    You manifest all these attributes and many there’s, Dennis.

  8. 8 Wanda June 18, 2018 at 3:23 am

    Well done. Thank you!


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