By David Cruwys
What is a man cave (a man space, mantuary, a manland)?
In short, it’s your own personal space inside or outside your home. Be it the garage, shed, basement, media room, or a spare bedroom, it could be anywhere that lets you just be a man.
You could use it for hanging out with the guys or get some alone time to focus on hobbies you enjoy. A man cave can be anything you want it to be and that’s exactly why you need one.
If you’re looking for the biggest reason to have a man cave, the answer is simple: it’s fun. Having a man cave is fun, but not just the shallow kind of fun, either.
There’s always a feeling of freedom whenever you have a man cave that you can’t get from anything else because it’s yours and no one else’s. Because the pressures from the outside world just fall away, you’re able to focus more on enjoying what you’re doing right in that moment.
Whether you’re decorating, hanging out with friends, or just catching up on your favorite hobby that you don’t show anyone else, a man cave is where you can do it in the most gratifying way.
Did you know that even the simple act of coming up with man cave ideas can release happy hormones in the brain? And that’s nothing compared to how happy you'll feel when you actually implement those ideas.From the process of creating your ideal man cave to actually using it for your intended purpose, everything about man caves can simply be incredibly fun.
Sam Gosling, a psychology professor at the University of Texas and author of “Snoop: What Your Stuff Says About You,” says that space is very important to regulate emotions.
Gosling's research on space has shown that it’s a powerful mechanism to bring about positive emotional effect to someone especially if he owns it and has personally decorated it.
As Gosling rightly put it, “man caves are the architectural equivalent to hanging out with your mates."
This is a good starting point to understanding why you need a man cave, especially if you like having fun.
To truly experience enjoyment, you have to be fully in the moment, and that’s where man caves can really come in handy. Without the distractions of the outside world, you are free to really immerse yourself in fun activities, conversations, and connections that you wouldn’t get elsewhere.
Bars are too crowded.
The office has too many rules.
Your living room could have other people in it that you might disturb.
All of these factors and more can take away from your sense of enjoyment and fun. Guess what? You won’t have to worry about them when you’re in your man cave.
A huge part of this is because a man cave is a space that you can truly claim as your own and no one else’s. You make up the rules, you decide on what activity to indulge in, and you choose what passion to pursue.
If you just want to hang out with friends on the couch and watch a game, you could do that.
If you want to act out a favorite scene in a movie with props and costume, you could do that too.
There’s no one to judge you, no one to nag you, and no one to tell you no. A man cave lets you truly be the master of your own world and that’s what makes it so much fun.
Just consider the following points, for example:
One of the biggest parts to what makes man caves fun is that it’s where you can put all of the things you like.
It doesn’t matter what these are, either. What others call junk, you call your treasure.
A lot of men are acutely familiar with the sense that they don’t have their own space in the house where they can store their stuff. Every closet, shelf, or room is shared.
Whether you’re a single man living with flatmates, someone living with a girlfriend, or a husband with a wife and kids, you’ve probably experienced the dilemma of having to give up something you loved just because you were asked to get rid of it.
With a man cave, this won’t be a problem.
Instead of throwing out that things you truly enjoy, you can put it in your man cave where it can rightfully take its place. You could put up mounted animal heads on every wall and pelts on every inch of floor space, if you want. You could also line every single shelf with your bottle cap collection.
They will all make awesome additions, alongside your kegerator, pool tables, dart board, and whatever else you got from the man cave store.
Stress is both the enemy and friend of fun.
Think about it.
When you’re trying to have fun, you’re actively working to get rid of negative feelings like stress. If there’s no stress, it’s difficult to know when you’re having fun.
It’s all a balancing act that too many people don’t get right simply because they don’t know how. If you have a man cave, this becomes a lot easier.
Having a man cave is basically like having a stress-proof chamber where only fun is allowed.
You’ve got fun wall art, quirky furniture, a huge flat-screen TV for watching sports, and all the books, magazines, and video games you could want. It’s where all of the stress that built up through the day just drains right out of you and is replaced by that warm sense of being in your own little world.
From there, you can get busy doing exactly what you want to do.
Watch that sports match you and your mates were talking about during your break.
Play your favorite video game.
Enjoy a nice glass of scotch or a bottle of beer..
Alternatively, you could just laze around in your own couch and do nothing. This can actually be one of the most enjoyable non-activities you can do if you spent the whole day being busy.
What you do doesn't matter as long as you unplug from the outside world.
There's a saying that goes, “In every man is a little boy.”
To that end, even grown up men can still have hobbies leftover from yesteryears, which might not be appropriate to show anyone else. What is a man cave for if not for indulging in the pastimes that you have always enjoyed?
It doesn't matter if it doesn't suit your age.
You could build a kingdom made of Legos, if you want. No one’s there to give you the stink eye.
You work hard all day and are crushing it in this whole adult business. Why shouldn’t you be able to be do childish things every now and again?
Sophisticated gentlemen with equally refined interests can also feel free to tinker with classy projects like building a wall clock or putting together a ship in a bottle if they have a man cave. You could call it a den, but why argue semantics?
Regardless of where in that spectrum you fall into, the most important point is that you’re able to have fun with what makes you happy and in your own terms.
A man cave is a space where you can have all your gadgets and stuff all on your own, listen to loud music, play your favorite computer game, read a car magazine, or where you and your buddies can hang out to watch sports, drink some booze, and goof around.
It’s a place where you can be yourself, whether it’s a cabin or a man cave garage. It’s a space where you can continue to develop and learn about yourself so that you can become a better person while still having fun.
So, now it’s our turn to ask you something. Why don’t you have your own man cave yet?