What makes a high quality man?
If you want to become one, it’s an important question.
And, even more important, is the answer to that question.
By the end of this article, you will know exactly what traits you need to develop to become a high quality man.
- The Basics of Male High Value
- Balance & High Quality Men
The Basics of Male High Value
This article leverages sound psychology to go to at the core of what makes a high quality man.
Each single trait directly affects personality or, more or less indirectly, allows the individual to acquire important life assets such as status, resources, mates, or friends.
To keep the list concise, the traits are high-level and can be broken down into further subsets.
#1. He Is Emotionally Intelligent
- Self awareness (one’s own emotions, drives, personality, passions)
- Self management (deferring pleasure, staying power, grit)
- Social awareness (other people’s emotions and social dynamics)
- Relationship management (building and managing positive relationships)
Albeit some psychologists contest the existence of a measurable “emotional intelligence”, we can all agree that the above traits do exist.
And they do vary among people.
They are important qualities for a high value man because they heavily influence his ability to acquire social status, move forward in life, develop as a man and, finally, effectively relate with women from seduction to relationships.
Self Awareness + Self Management
Some people get “emotional intelligence” all wrong.
They think it’s some touchy-feely approach to life, sitting on a mat and doing yoga, crying or being “vulnerable“.
But it’s not.
Self-awareness and self-management are what differentiate men who meander around life from those who know where they’re going.
When you have self awareness you don’t go around asking “what’s my passion”.
Because self-aware men know what their passions are. And with self-management they work to get there.
That’s the N.1 trait of a high quality man: a drive, a goal, and a determination to get there.
Knowing what you want sets high quality men apart from the masses that follow what others want them to do.
And self-management, without mincing words, is what differentiates the bums from the high achievers of this world.
Bums chase the immediate high of booze and drugs, without any regard for tomorrow (and for themselves).
High achievers instead work their way to the top by deferring pleasure and doing what needs to be done.
Social Awareness + Relationship Management
Same as the above.
Some people think this is about long talks and hand-holding.
Which it might as well be.
But it’s also much more.
Social awareness is simply self awareness applied to social situations. It allows high quality men to understand the social dynamics around them. Who’s in charge, who’s confident, who’s chasing whom and who is submissive and counts for nothing.
Relationship management leverages social awareness to build a network of positive and value-adding relationships.
It’s what allows the high quality man to be that great friend who can help you out in difficult (social) situations, and it’s the same skills that make him a great boss at work.
And, at home, it’s what allows him to keep a strong relationship.
These are not innate traits by the way.
You can increase them with focus.
This whole website is nothing but a big exercise of emotional intelligence.
#2. He Has a Purpose
When a mans know what he wants and likes, then it only takes a minimum amount of drive to develop a purpose.
A purpose, in Simon Sinek’s words, means a man has a WHY.
And when a man knows his WHY he moves through life with confidence and purpose. He displays the charismatic leadership qualities of those who seem to know their paths, even when it’s dark and difficult.
It’s especially captivating for those who don’t know where they’re going which, of course, is the vast majority.
A purpose is what differentiates the men spending their evening watching football and drinking beer from those who work and plot to move ahead in life.
Example: James Bond
James Bond is so charismatic and attractive to women also because he always seems to be on a bigger pursuit:
Reversal of Purpose
A relentless drive to achieve a certain goal will definitely make it more likely he will achieve that goal.
But it comes at the cost of the overall personality.
The stereotype of the crazy genius with bad air and messy place is the tale of a man with too single-minded drive.
And you can already see the limitations there.
Could you have a conversation with someone who lives and breathes for only, say, black holes research?
Would such a man fare well in a crowd of socialites, at an art gallery or at a house warming party?
Exactly, he would be out of place and sticking out like a sore thumb.
Could he manage a happy relationship?
Too driven people also often don’t make for good relationship partners (see Einstein), friends or even conversation partners.
To be a high quality man, you also need some balance.
#3. He Takes Care of Himself
Driven men with a purpose look at themselves as if they were machines.
And they have the mindset that the more they take care of the machine, the farther they will go.
Also, they know how things work, and they know that the dichotomy of “being or appearing” is nonsense.
The two feed into each other. Everyone judges the book also from its cover, so you also need to take care of that book cover.
So high quality men always:
- Eat well
- Keep learning and investing on themselves.
High quality men are like high quality wine.
You meet them today and they’re good. You stick with them and tomorrow they’re very good. You stick with them until the day after tomorrow and they’re great.
… And Of People Around, Because They Got Leadership Qualities
Equally important, high quality men take responsibility for the people around themselves as well.
Taking responsibility for things and people around is what turns high quality men into high quality leaders.
#4. He Is Secure In Who He Is
I said secure, not confident in who is.
Secure, it’s different.
Confidence ebbs and flows, a sense of security stays.
Confidence is founded on strengths and results, while security encompasses losses and weakness.
This also intersect with attachment styles.
When a man has a secure attachment style he is emotionally grounded and mature.
Men with a secure attachment style are never clingy and tend not to be less needy.
They tend to be more comfortable with vulnerability and emotional vulnerability because they don’t feel the need to hide or defend and are not as afraid of not being liked and loved.
Vulnerability is a high quality trait because it highlights the courage of being oneself.
Including the flaws.
Truly vulnerable men step out of the fakeness rat race and are more likely to achieve a contagiously soothing inner confidence.
Vulnerability also makes sure that:
- He is genuine: You get to know the real him: he’s not wearing any mask
- He is more honest: he has less need for lies because he has no need to cover his shortcomings
- He is not abusive: he doesn’t need to “prove” his masculinity
Example: Lewis Howes
I consider Lewis Howes, author of The Mask of Masculinity, to be a great example of a high quality man with a secure attachment style and who also manages to fully embrace vulnerability.
The guy is warm, welcoming and he always gives off the vibe of a man who is just being himself, comfortable being himself, with little or no social masks.
See an example:
He fully opens up, doesn’t try to sound cooler, doesn’t even try to stand straight to look better
#5. He Generates His Own Self-Esteem
Why is this important?
Because as long as you depend on external forces to prop up your ego and self esteem, you will always be dependent on those external forces.
And, of course, dependence is the root cause of all potential weaknesses.
Now, granted, few people if any can reach a level of being completely independent of results, external environment, and other people’s opinion.
But high quality man have a much stronger control of their own self-esteem than most other men.
I call this “the antifragile-ego“.
Men with an antifragile ego enjoy more confidence, more internal strength and more emotional resilience in the face of adversities.
Since a man with an antifragile does not build his self-esteem around other people’s approval, he is more confident in his opinion. Even when they are unpopular.
These high quality men are not afraid of standing up for what they believe in because they don’t need your approval.
They look like they have stronger inner conviction than anyone else, and everyone looks up to people with inner conviction.
Especially in times of uncertainty. They are our rock in the hurricane.
#6. He Enforces Proper Boundaries
High quality men know what’s fair and not fair, what they will take and what they will not take.
And they set and enforce their boundaries accordingly.
The high quality man is not a too nice guy afraid of standing him up for himself.
And when someone crosses his boundaries, he will let them know he’s not cool with it and that he has to insist on the limits he thinks are fair.
He will also do it with higher ups, because he doesn’t take gratuitous disrespect, not even from a boss.
High quality men know that disrespect is a slippery slope, and if you allow it to happen once, people lose respect for you and they will keep doing it.
They know it’s a risk, but their self-respect and their moral code is worth more than a job (plus high quality men can usually get good jobs anyway).
At the upper echelons, high quality men will also defend the boundaries of the people they care for and the people they take responsibility for.
And of course, needless to say, they demand fair behavior at home as well and they take no disrespect.
If their spouse cheats, she’s out.
And if she threatens to break up, they know how to handle it.
#7. He Is Honest To His Own Value System
High quality men are not naive.
They know that you can’t always be 100% sincere and that’s not even a good goal to strive for.
Indeed, high quality men don’t subscribe to any externally mandated system of values, ethics or rules about “what it means to be a man”.
They read and researched, studied from the best, experimented and grew… And they have come up with their own moral compass. And that’s what they stick to.
Their moral compass vary from men to men of course, but it includes a few crucial rules that all high quality men strive to respect.
For example, high quality men:
- Don’t get into a relationship if they want to sleep around
- Don’t promise endless love if they don’t plan to stick around
- If they promises something, they will do their best to make it happen
And, if they get into a relationship and promise monogamy, they’ll try to stick with it (and demand the same back).
#8. He Has A Growth Mindset
Carol Dweck in her seminal psychological research outlines two different approaches people have to skills and talent:
- Fixed mindset
- Growth mindset
Fixed Mindset people believe their qualities are set at birth and carved in stone.
You are who you are, and there isn’t much you can do about it.
People with a fixed mindset shy away from challenges because losing means “they’re bad” and that would hurt their ego.
These people are highly outcome dependent and when they fail, they make a lot of excuses because they feel the need to “cover up” their lack.
It’s difficult having open discussions and honest feedback with fixed mindset men because they are always guarded and take things very personally.
Growth Mindset people believe their can learn and grow.
They seek learning and growth opportunities because failing does not define them. To the contrary, failing is the only way they can improve.
Men with a growth mindset move forward in their life, are open to feedback and criticism and are generally happier and more pleasant people to be around.
#9. He Takes Extreme Ownership
The locus of control is the degree to which people believe that they have -or don’t have- control over their life.
The locus of control determines whether you feel like you’re at the helm of your life or like a castaway in a rudderless life boat.
And high quality men feel like they are at the helm of their lives.
The locus of control also determines how much ownership people take in their life and how much ownership they take for the events that happen around them.
These are the two types of locus of control:
- Internal locus of control
- External locus of control
Internal locus of control means you believe you are in control of your life.
External locus of control means you believe life events determine the course of your life and you don’t have control over them.
Brian Tracey says that people with an external locus of control feel helpless, are sadder, get angry more easily, and are more prone to depression.
On the other hand, people with an internal locus of control are confident, energetic and optimistic.
They even tend to be healthier!
Men with an internal locus have a high tendency of being high quality men.
Example: Tom Bylieu
Tom Bylieu didn’t build a billion dollar company by accident.
He built one because he takes ownership of everything that happens in his life.
This is how extreme internal locus of control looks like:
Everything is your fault
Balance & High Quality Men
Finally, keep this in mind:
Almost everything related to humans is about balance and trade-offs.
You could take almost any single positive and, when you take them to the extreme, they would become a drawback.
Taking care of oneself to the extreme crosses into narcissism, too much vulnerability can become an excuse for ineffective crybabies and too much honesty is what dic*heads use an excuse for offending others.
Indeed, like Benazir says in The Tao of Dating, balance is just another sign of high quality men.