5 Signs You’ve Found a Great Man

“A great man is hard to discover.”

I remember my mother saying these words to me when I wanted to begin dating. The words pushed pause in my mind and made me question my heart. Was the man who asked me out not good? Was my mother giving me this warning for a reason? Can she not trust my judgment? Or, were great men as rare as my mother said they were?

I learned my mom did not make up those words. They were created from a short story written in 1955 by American female writer, Flannery O’Connor. Flannery’s catchy name soon became branded to the psyches of romantics everywhere like some sort of twisted truth.

Flannery, who died of Lupus in age 39, wasn’t married, though she had a love affair with a book salesman. I wonder whether her good man was there someplace between the salesman and the traces of the novels he sold?

A Good Man is Hard to Find.

I have spent years considering what a fantastic man really is. I have seen great in every man who has graced my world, whether romantically or platonically, however twisted up they could be inside. The better question may be, how in tune are they with their great? How do they manage their pain? How can they process their anxiety? And which sort of support system do they have in this world? My therapist self understands that working tools and support systems are the main indicators of someone’s mental health.

I had been trained not to trust my instinct when it comes to guys. Perhaps you were too. I’ve needed to reparent myself to trust my gut instincts by paying attention to the green and red (as in good) flags along the way. Below are a few of the green flags that male friends, coworkers, and past fans have held.

How do I know if he’s a fantastic man?

1. He’s ready to listen rather than leap to advice-giving or try to correct me once I want to vent.

There’s a two minute Youtube video called, “It’s Not About the Nail.” If you would like to comprehend how the male brain automatically functions, watch it. Active listening is a learned skill rather than an innate ability. A guy who can listen is far more sexy than a guy with a six-pack. One of my friends recently said her favorite foreplay is using a profound heart to heart conversation with her husband. “When he listens with his heart, I swoon,” she said with a big cheesy smile.

How can you know if your guy is listening? He’s silent and careful, and if you are sitting in front of one another, he gives you direct eye contact. “So that made you feel frustrated and caused you to close down because you had space to process. Can I get that right?”

You have it right. You heard me. You didn’t attempt to modify or fix me. You simply re-stated what I expressed to you and that’s all I needed. Alright, let’s make out today.

Make-out session aside, it’s hot, enticing, and Oxytocin-producing (aka very bonding) when a guy can just listen and be present for a woman.

2. He expresses his feelings easily and effortlessly.

I am not talking about overexpressing — such as carrying a box of tissue around and honking his nose every 20 minutes. I am talking about a guy who has no trouble telling you how he feels. I had a man yoga student who recently walked into the studio and said,”I feel nervous, I have never done this before. I just wanted to inform you that.” The secretary and I were floored by his willingness. I said,”Can every man be like this?” For many men, the courage needed to say: I am nervous, I’m scared, I’m feeling lonely is buried behind years of man-ups and do not be such a sissy. They are not any different from sex to gender. They begin with a thought and then form into physiological senses. Men have them just as often as girls do. A man who expresses his feelings, however, is a rare jewel. And when he expresses them, he’s one step closer to processing them through.

3. He’s mindful of his working tools and he uses them.

No codependency here. Whether your guy has been to treatment, he’s mindful of his own stress management tools and he uses them like a champ. Perhaps I am biased, but a guy who’s in treatment and possesses it’s his own I am about self-growth type of sexiness.

Coping tools are healthy outlets for anxiety or stress-preventative practices. This is a guy who knows what balance is. If he lifts weights goes to yoga or conducts, he does not burn himself out in the procedure. He feeds his mind, body, and soul with just-right doses of healthful activities. He might even motivate you to join his or her furry companion (insert your favourite pet here) at a morning meditation or test out the new sensory deprivation chamber or go to opening day at the baseball stadium.

If you are used to playing with a caretaking role, you can hang up that hat with this guy. He has himself covered. No unresolved mother issues. He understands that he doesn’t require a connection to fill in his psychological wounds. He’s a relationship that enriches his life. He’s attracted to you because you appear to get that self-care things going on too!

4. He thinks you are enough because he believes he’s enough.

This is a man that’s as humble as he is protected. He is not cocky or arrogant or narcissistic. Instead, he’s authentic. He enjoys himself enough to take space when he is stressed and gets that you will need to do the same sometimes. You do not feel a strong need to impress him with a new hairstyle or outfit or hours in the spa. When you dress him up, it is for pleasure, not for approval. You can be your sometimes messy, sometimes ultra-feminine self and it does not change how he treats you. He believes your vulnerability is as beautiful (if not more) than your bum. He doesn’t need to run when you express your insecurities. In actuality, he becomes more attentive and available to you.

5. It is possible to set boundaries and he honors them.

Insecure egos need not apply. You can also trust that he’ll express his feelings rather than repress them. He might say,”I will miss seeing you for our date night, but I am glad you are taking care of yourself.” You melt. Why? Because he said his sense straight and while also validating your need for space.

You feel protected setting boundaries with him since he’s open and honest. He will not hold a grudge against you and do something passive-aggressive like cancel your next date night to go out with the boys. You know how he feels, making you feel much closer to him. Your open communication permits you to honor one another’s needs for space so you enjoy the time you have together.

When healthy boundaries are a part of a relationship, couples have the ability to appear for each other with their entire selves. A man who takes no is a unicorn. Do not let this one go.

There are no perfect men.

However, I think there are loads of good men. And they might not be that difficult to discover. Look carefully at the men in your life. How can they exemplify any of these 5 attributes? And furthermore, look within. How can you resonate and embody these traits?

We bring what we amplify. You want more goodness, be goodness.

When you begin to embody everything you like, the great men will not be so tough to discover.

This post was formerly published on Publishous and is republished here with permission from the author.

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As a good man is hard to discover.

The article 5 Signs You’ve Found a Great Man appeared on The Great Men Project.

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What’s Love?

Love is a strange thing.

Love has come and gone {} my life span, and I have experienced many types of it.

Looking back, I can remember my “first love” (crush!) ; a girl in college who paid me absolutely no attention whatsoever, but that did not stop me from fantasizing about what our life together is like when we were older.

Then there was my first online love; a blonde-haired woman from Florida. Her mind was sharp, and her humor was razor-edged. She had no romantic feelings for me however, I was only a friend!

Then there was the girl I traveled to Malta to fulfill. Boy, that was tacky love. This was a new type of love. She was the first woman that I had been in a relationship with that had taken me the entire nine yards. It came to pass that I found out she had another guy on the side also.

That was mad love.

Then I found real love.

I am not here to define what love should be for anyone else so I will say it was the best love that I could have for my well-being. It was a love I had never experienced before; it had been all those preceding loves in precisely the exact same package — but one additional love; I believed it was reciprocated. I felt it back.

All that I had been giving her I was getting back. It was and is remarkable.

See, I have heard a great deal about love through deep reflection through the years. 1 thing I have discovered is that we often love each other in the ways we’ve been shown in youth. The ways that our parents loved us is the manner by which we love ourselves and the people around us. I learned some excellent things about love through my parents, and a few not so wonderful.

Mum was a fighter; she hated liars and cheats. Mum would walk into the ends of the earth for people that she enjoyed and often found herself in trouble because of that exact same trait. She gave her spouse thousands of dollars to begin his own organization. The less I talk about that, the better.

I was shown great selfless love by my mom; to forget and give, to love and to cherish — but terrific Yang does not come without equal quantities of the Yin. See, mum was a remarkably unconfident young lady. She was placating to others so that they would like her as a person. She didn’t possess the self-confidence to enjoy herself on her own — and both of that awesomeness, and the not-so-awesomeness transcended on me, and I carried on the family tradition.

I’d boundless love to give — but at a cost. I did amazing favors for everybody — but emotionally chalked up in my mind as”owed in future” — love for me was conditional. Offend my morality and you would end up in the doghouse.

Needless to say, since this was all that I knew or knew I thought in my youthful naivety that was love throughout the board. This is how folks adore and love back.

When a young boy (or girl) moves into puberty they change needing to obtain approval from their mother and dad, and add a new element in; it is dreadfully important to get approval from their peers; their school mates, their friendships they build out of school — and this is part of the reason why adolescence is extremely stressful. It is no easy ride.

And through all this, we reach out to individuals with similar conditions to our own. If you examine all your friendships throughout the years, you will realize that each individual has a shared scenario that you have bonded together over. And many (if not all) connect with individuals to similar mentalities and mindsets to one another. That is why the jocks seldom hang out with the nerds in school — there is very little cross within that section.

Thus, it’s very difficult. Very tough to see beyond my conditional mindset when all I’ve understood is my love, and that’s been reinforced through my loved ones, and my friendships circles. It can be quite tough to open your mind to anything else.

Through the past ten years, I have gone on a trip. I have sat and listened to a lot of men and women. Just listened. And each and every time I believe I have the notion of love nailed down someone comes along and blows my thoughts from the water.

It’s simply not consistent enough. Life is highly diverse, and through profound personal experiences, people love in very different manners. I have seen people that love each other through contending every night, and the very next day they’re happy again — it’s all they have known. Us? My spouse and I are likely weirdos to them.

“All silent and lovey and shit, something isn’t right there.”

So, I shy away when folks tell me how love should be. They do not get to define that for me, or for anybody else for that matter. Life is varied and different and mostly mad. As I grow older, I am more and more about the celebrating rather than the telling.

Only you can tell if it is love for you. You know. You’ll know whether you’re happy, or if something is not perfect.

Build on that!


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