The difference between a wise man and everyone else is only this: He has no fear.
The judgements of young boys, as Emerson noted, are swift, confident, and summary. Eventually, they become more equivocal, less certain. Their eyes flicker. They begin to speak from the calculator in the head.
Either I trust myself or I doubt myself. Self-trust is the iron string.
As boys, we were trained from childhood to trust external authority—parents, teachers, priests, doctors, elders, bosses et al. No one said, “Trust yourself.” The price for this is men who lack self-confidence.
The characteristics of a healthy masculinity are energy and confidence. To develop these, we need challenges and difficulties. Life is exceedingly generous in this respect—and preternaturally precise. We get what we need.