By Phoebe Moses
Life coach Paul Angelo, MHA, MBA, says that gay men need to look at their self-esteem from the unique perspective of their lifestyle. In doing so, he offers the possibility of falling in love to the accompaniment of a 25-pound weight loss. (Is there a downside to this?) Angelo, who began to offer life coaching services professionally in 2009, has identified an orientation-specific condition he refers to as Gay Low Self-Esteem (GLSE). It isn’t something that you will find listed, though, in the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM).
“GLSE is not found in the DSM, nor is it a clinical diagnosis,” Angelo emphasizes. “Because of the preponderance of ‘straight’ psychology and therapy, gay life-related issues are poorly understood, and measured only in the context of HIV and AIDS.”
Angelo says that when men are in a challenging environment, they grow faster and develop more creative problem-solving skills. Their confidence and sense of accomplishment increase, which he says simultaneously lifts their self-esteem, and brings them a feeling of satisfaction and well-being. These are potent weapons to have in one’s arsenal, especially in a world where the game is stacked against the “gay.”
“GLSE is different because it is ingrained into the gay culture and the identity of a gay man today,” Angelo notes. “Today it is almost impossible to be gay and have high self esteem without extensive coaching or therapy. So GLSE is the reason why HIV incidence will continue to rise uncontrollably. A person with low self esteem will not follow safe sex instructions. It’s like asking a man on crutches to run a marathon.”
Angelo says overcoming low self-esteem is connected with the qualities possessed by champion athletes and those who are successful in the field of romance. He has developed a 12- week high-performance program to enhance self-esteem and encourage better health, based upon the principles of accountability, motivation, and coaching, designed to bring out the “killer instinct” in gay men who have confidence or self-esteem issues. “Losing weight can be a boring task but when you combine it with the fun aspect of dating and starting a relationship, exercise and proper nutrition can become fun and engaging,” Angelo says.
Angelo worked in the fitness industry for over 25 years, starting out as a personal trainer, and moving into hospital healthcare administration. He trained with the American College Of Sports Medicine, and studied healthcare administration as part of his Master’s program. He says that health advice and marketing methods can collide, and often serve the business instead of the consumer, resulting in the consumer hurting himself, or becoming convinced of the existence of a magic pill. Angelo’s gay matchmaking and life coaching teaches gay men over 40 how to lose weight, because he says it is easier to find the right match when one looks and feels better.
His 12-week intensive high-performance gay group coaching program teaches gay men over 40 how to turn short term results into a mindset for a long-term healthy and happy life.
“High quality gay men are out there available for relationships, but they will not settle for the average Joe,” Angelo adds. “And while the looks matter, it is also crucial to know how to make your partner feel good, and how to build intimacy with a new date.”
For more information, visit paulangelo.com.