30 Days to a Better Man Wrap-Up

by Brett & Kate McKay on June 30, 2009 · 25 comments

in 30 Days to a Better Man


During the month of June 2009, The Art of Manliness ran a series of posts called “30 Days to a Better Man.” Each day we created a task for Art of Manliness readers to complete that would help them improve in different facets of their lives such as relationships, fitness and health, career, and personal finances.

We also had a very active Better Man Community Group where participants reported in how they did on the task and gave suggestions and encouragement to other members. Over all, I was very happy with the project and feel that lots of men got something out of it.

Below, we’ve created a summary of the entire month’s tasks, with links to each individual day. If you started the challenge late or you’re a new reader, this list will help you navigate through each day’s tasks.

Also, at the recommendation of several readers, I’m working on putting this series into a well polished PDF eBook. That way you can have the tasks all in one place that’s formatted for easy reading.  You can even print it off so you can read it on the John.

Thanks to everyone who participated!

Day 1: Define Your Core Values

Day 2: Shine Your Shoes

Day 3: Find a Mentor

Day 4: Increase Your Testosterone

Day 5: Cultivate Your Gratitude

Day 6: Update Your Resume

Day 7: Reconnect with an Old Friend

Day 8: Start a Journal

Day 9: Take a Woman on a Date

Day 10: Memorize “If”

Day 11: Give Yourself a Testicular Exam

Day 12: Create Your Bucket List

Day 13: Declutter Your Life

Day 14: Write a Letter to Your Father

Day 15: Make a Meal

Day 16: Create a Budget

Day 17: Talk to 3 Strangers

Day 18: Find Your N.U.T.s

Day 19: Schedule a Physical Exam

Day 20: Perform Service

Day 21: Write Your Own Eulogy

Day 22: Improve Your Posture

Day 23: Learn a Manual Skill

Day 24: Play!

Day 25: Start a Debt Reduction Plan

Day 26: Take the Marine Corps Fitness Test

Day 27: Start a Book

Day 28: Write a Love Letter

Day 29: Conquer a Fear

Day 30: Get a Straight Razor Shave

{ 20 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Andrew Barbour June 30, 2009 at 8:37 pm

Brett and Kate,

I haven’t fulfilled every single task to the letter, but I’ve given it a damn good effort within the past month. I will, of course, continue to work on those tasks still remaining.

After 30 days, I’m more proud of who I am, I’m more in touch with my friends, family, mentors and community, I’m in better physical shape, and I’ve even broadened my mind a bit.

Thanks for putting together a great program. I am sure there are hundreds out there who share my gratitude for your efforts, and there will be even more in the future.

Thanks again,

Andrew Barbour, a Better Man.

2 Raghu Siddarth July 1, 2009 at 8:37 am

I started with TAOM from this series. I myself haven’t gone through the regime, but will definitely follow the advice given and strive to be a better man.

Great work! It will definitely help countless men out there.

Awaiting the ebook :)


3 Chris Partida July 1, 2009 at 2:01 pm

June was a busy month for me, up until the last 4-5 days worth of the challenge, I really tried my best to get the tasks done on time. I’m going to finish up all the challenges I still haven’t completed, that’s no lie.

Thanks for every bit of the 30 Days to a Better Man challenge, I can’t wait for the next of it’s kind.

4 K July 7, 2009 at 12:48 pm

The few 30 Days posts I was able to read were good. I’m looking forward to the eBook PDF so I can review and catch up from my coffee table. Thanks!

5 Johnny Cawlfield August 22, 2009 at 6:53 pm

Just looking for stuff to help some young men develop resilience.

6 Anthony S August 26, 2009 at 12:47 pm

Just started the challenge. Today is day 1 for me. Thank you in advance.

7 El Clinto October 1, 2009 at 12:34 pm

Just wrapped up the 30 Days. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed this exercise – it came at the right time for me, a very transitional time that has been full of doubt, hope, confusion, freedom, anger and joy and I’m quite thankful for it. It has done so much, helping me in areas of my life I knew needed help, uncovering potential for other areas and revealing things I never knew existed about myself. My role as a father, a husband and a friend have also been “checked” so to speak and thus I feel I’m coming into a new stage of my life. I’m excited for this. Thanks to everyone at AoM!

8 Jeff Young October 13, 2009 at 4:23 pm

I’m part way through my 30 days (Day 10 now, to be exact), and this is resonating with me in a way no other thing I’ve done lately has. I lost my job back in May, and I’ve been bouncing around, trying various short-term self-improvement guides. And this one has been the best, by far. I just want to thank everyone involved with this project, and wish everyone the best in becoming the best man they can be.

9 Andy M October 18, 2009 at 7:37 am

I just discovered this 30 day series today. Read two days worth so far and it looks great. Starting on day one today! Thanks, look forward to the PDF version too.

10 prufock October 22, 2009 at 2:50 pm

I missed this in June, but I’m going to give it a go for November.

11 Rob Hutchinson December 23, 2009 at 1:35 pm

I’m part way through. I have to admit things have been very busy at home so I’m not able to get some of the tasks done in one day, but they are getting done. It has been a fabulous ride so far and I’m looking forward to the rest of it.

12 Michael August 13, 2010 at 7:38 pm

A wonderful compilation. Working through these myself, for the first time. Though if I was to suggest a Day 31 (you know, for those long months), it would be to “Improve Your Penmanship”. I’ve been working on that lately, and it’s been a delight to make the conscious effort of cleanliness and style. I’m using the templates at the bottom of this link:


13 MajorSharpe February 27, 2013 at 10:15 pm

This series would make an excellent book (if not made already) would make a great gift for a brother, husband, son etc.

14 Kevin June 3, 2013 at 6:35 pm

I was hoping the 30 days PDF was already finished? I leave for Afghanistan on Saturday, I figured it’d be a good thing to have for my time there.

15 Kerry July 17, 2013 at 12:00 am

Looks good !
Am thinking of doing it with my grooms men 30 days before the wedding !

16 Mark August 3, 2013 at 7:58 pm

I’m glad I came across this. I have read various posts on AoM, and find myself in a situation in life where I could benefit from such a challenge. I’m finished with day 3!

17 Hesham September 9, 2013 at 2:20 pm

Day 1 is over… successfully. I commented in the other page :)

18 Gregory Bolton September 11, 2013 at 10:58 am

I was looking for any articles comparing Army vs. Marine Corp combat fitness tests and I happened upon your article by accident.
I’m glad I read it.

19 Salman January 9, 2014 at 12:13 pm

Excellent … Good to have a wrap up of 30 days to be a better man !

From the list of 30 tasks, I found the tasks on days 3, 16, 22, 29 very much useful!

20 janani April 9, 2014 at 1:41 pm

i stating this course form today.. i hope that i will be get back with good result thank you

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