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By Jason Samatas

I feel fortunate and grateful that I get the opportunity to show up to so many different MenLiving spaces, whether it be Full Houses, specialized meetings on interesting topics, or Weekend Advances.  They are all special in their own right.

Two weekends ago, I was given the privilege of co-leading the inaugural Eastern Advance that was held in Calloway, Virginia.  Fourteen beautiful men traveled from places all over the country, from Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Chicago, Denver and even Oregon to participate. It as an amazing event with too many highlights to share.

One of my weekend presentations to the men was a process called Greenlights, based on the book “Greenlights” by Matthew McConaughey. Although many people know him through his vast movie career, he’s written books, screenplays, and been very politically active since he began his acting career in the early 90’s. He was recently being mentioned as a possible gubernatorial candidate in Texas, so it’s clear his talents are quite expansive. His book’s premise is about how people have a hard time recognizing all the green lights in their lives. Most people clearly see the red lights and typically stop for them.  Metaphorically speaking, McConaughey’s message is to examine the red lights of your life, the things or people who you see holding you back, and to make a choice; persist, pivot or concede, as well as to look harder at the actual green lights that are right in front of you in the form of various opportunities – professional opportunities, recreational opportunities, connection opportunities, and so on. There is no wrong answer in persisting, pivoting or conceding, but his suggestion is to make a strategic and meaningful choice and to follow up your choice accordingly with action steps. It’s all in how one chooses to see the world and all the beautiful blessings we all have right in front of us, in both big and small ways.

So as I reflect on the long weekend that just occurred, and I soak in the deep connections I experienced with the thirteen other men, I am reminded just how many glorious green lights there are in my life – like writing this blog every so often, leading men in a Full House meeting, or leading men on a Weekend Advance. No matter the space, I am honored and grateful for all the green lights MenLiving has provided me so that I can continue to embrace leadership and to connect deeply with men of this organization.

Here’s to all the Greenlights in your lives, my friends.


About the Author: Jason Samatas

Jason is a part of MenLiving because of how much it has been a part of his personal development over the past number of years. Having gone through a difficult divorce and a number of family and career challenges, Jason reevaluated aspects of his life that were no longer serving him with the love and support of MenLiving members behind him. As he went through the process (and still is!), he realized how many men were there to support his journey. Now, in any way he can, he tries to give back that same support which was so critical to his own well-being. You can reach him at

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