He's a rare breed.
It seems difficult to find good people these days, whether you are interested in men or women. And the older we get, the dating pool seems to turn into more of a puddle.
But the truth is, good men and women are still out there — though they may be scarce. Many times we allow ourselves to become jaded from past experiences and not give someone the chance they deserve. How do we know if they are for real, or just someone else who is going to break your heart?
As someone who consistently speaks and writes about what makes a "good man" and how to become one, I've decided to compile a list to help you identify when you've found what we will call the "Modern Gentleman."
1. He is on a path of self-improvement.
The modern gentleman is never content with mediocrity. He is on a mission to improve in all areas of life and accomplish his goals. Someone like this will understand your hustle as well, and be more likely to support you along your journey than someone who simply accepts what life brings to him.
2. He lives a well-balanced life.
Any man who is serious about you will make you a priority in his life. He will put in consistent effort to see you, spend time with you, and get to know you. But he will do this in a way that integrates your relationship into his life, not in a way that makes him become obsessive over your relationship.
A well-balanced man with a well-balanced life will have many sources of happiness and fulfillment, and he will welcome your relationship as an important one.
3. He pays attention and puts in effort for you.
It is too often that I hear women complaining about men who seem oblivious to their wants and needs; men who don't put in proper effort or seem to take a relationship for granted.
The man we're referring to as the Modern Gentleman will pay attention to things you say (and don't say), and act accordingly. You'll notice this particularly in the small things he does for you. Will he always get it right? Of course not. Will he always be trying? Absolutely.
4. He always supports and encourages you.
The right guy wants to see you at your best, and he wants to support your mission to get there. He will never discourage you or make you feel like you can't do anything you set your mind to, because he knows you can. He will never feel as though he needs to bring anyone down in order to lift himself up. A man of quality never shies away from equality.
5. He will jump at the chance to help you.
He will understand that as a strong, independent woman, you don't need him for anything — but that won't stop him from always being there to offer his help just in case. Whether you need another set of eyes on your presentation from work, or have gotten a flat tire at 4 AM with nobody else to call, he will be there.
6. He takes pride in protecting you.
Whether or not you physically or emotionally need someone to protect you, men biologically have the urge to protect the people they love, particularly significant others. You may never need him to fend off a mugger or save you from a burning house, but he will make it clear to you that if he ever had to, he would.
7. He is always keeping things fresh.
The only thing more important than starting a great relationship, is maintaining a great relationship. Relationships are like fires: you cannot start one, walk out of the room, and expect for it to burn forever. You need to continuously stoke it with love, affection, appreciation, respect, and all of the other fundamentals that ignited your blaze in the first place. Complacency is a sure path to letting things get stale — a path he will never take.
8. He will not be a doormat.
Some people think that my advice to men sounds a lot like I'm encouraging them to become a servant to the woman in their life, but it is actually the opposite. No high-value woman will respect a man who just follows her around like a puppy dog. If that's what she wanted, she'd get a puppy dog.
What she wants is a man who has his own identity. His own beliefs. His own opinions. And stands by them regardless of what she says. He will understand that you can disagree with someone on some aspects of life and still love them. He will be on his own path in life, as will she, and they will merge them to walk together.
9. He is always honest with you.
There is too much dishonesty and flakyness in the world. People are easily distracted and have a difficult time keeping their word, because they made a promise in a fleeting moment and forgot about it five minutes later.
The modern gentleman will not say anything he doesn't mean. He always backs up his words with actions, and understands that people who make promises do not deserve respect; people who keep their promises deserve respect.
10. He will never, ever be abusive in any way, shape, or form.
No good, genuine, caring man will ever even have the idea of being abusive cross his mind. Under no circumstances will he be emotionally or physically abusive toward you or anyone else. The second someone displays warning signs or becomes aggressive with you, you need to walk (run) away. It is not the first time he has been that way and it will not be the last.
While the "modern gentleman" seems to be a rare breed, he is certainly not extinct. In fact, he is likely equally as frustrated as you are with the state of dating in today's world. But he will never allow his frustrations to change his goodhearted nature, because that is who he is at his core, and he is proud of it.
No matter what.
This article was originally published at JamesMSama.com. Reprinted with permission from the author.