Live Your Real Life – Not a Reel Life

This story originally appeared on the Gents Cafe Newsletter. You can subscribe here.

I have been writing for Gents Cafe since August 2020 – give or take two years and a half, and I enjoy it greatly. It gives me the opportunity to deep dive and share my interests with like-minded people. But most of all, I enjoy hearing from you guys, our readers, and hearing your feedback. Luckily it is mostly positive.

There is however one kind of feedback that reoccurs almost with every newly published issue and sounds something like this: “It brings me hope that a refined life can still be found in our days”.

This is a topic I often read about, and it is easy to get dragged into the social media trap – which I occasionally do myself. I would however argue that it is possible to provide yourself with your own version of “the refined life”.

As some may know, I am a father of two – which means my life is nothing like all the Instagram high-rollers out there. It’s a full-time job, it’s kids, and everything that comes with it. But still, I quite often get DMs from like-minded and equally situated guys. So, I gave it some thought – and here is my take.
Hope it can be of some inspiration.

To me, I think it all comes down to mindset; a lot of what I do, what I purchase, etc. comes down to choosing with the heart and what brings me joy. Why do I not drive a sensible Toyota? Because I want to look back and smile when I walk away from my car in a parking lot; and the Alfa Romeo gives me that (if a Toyota gives you that – by all means, choose that).

I choose to wear the white jeans, DB blazer, and tassel loafers to work on a dull autumn Tuesday because I want to – and man, I do get a lot of heat from my colleagues (and some friends). I always make an effort to dress my best; then I feel good and in the end, that’s what matters.

I mix myself a Negroni on a Wednesday – because, why not if I feel for it?

Allow yourself, do the little things for yourself, incorporate them in your choices, pour that drink on a Wednesday if you want to, wear that blazer on a Tuesday, and make an effort to look your best so “dressing” isn’t just for the parties and weekends. It is the little things in life, stop and smell the roses, enjoy the sunset with a glass of wine!

One of my favorite Danish artists, Jacob Dinesen, wrote a song called “Reel life”, where a line goes: “Reel life, it isn’t the real-life baby”.

Maybe worth considering…

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