15 Sure Signs You’re Dating A High Value Man

Stephen Hussey

I’ve spoken many times in these blogs about what makes a high value woman.

Because of this, sometimes Matt or I will be accused me of not paying enough attention to the men’s side of things. For example, I’ve often read comments asking “Why not write a piece about what men have to do in order to keep a great woman?”, and more recently, a reader who asked “How do I tell the difference between a high or low value man?”


Ok. I’ll bite.

Usually when confronted with these questions I have a stock answer, which is simply that, were I writing for a male audience, of course I would have a great deal more to say about what men should be doing to impress women and improve themselves (and I have much to say on both).

But then I realized: it can only be a constructive and useful exercise to talk about how the best men ought to behave in relationships.

I don’t want to patronize anyone here by assuming you don’t know a good guy from a creep or a selfish a**hole when you see one. But it never hurts to be reminded of the standard of treatment you should expect from any man in a relationship.

I’m very particular about the close male friends with whom I keep company. And I’ve realized the ones I truly respect, that is, those I would recommend to women as great boyfriend material, all share certain traits in common.

So, from my experience, here are the sure signs you’re dating a high-value guy:

He cares about seeing you play at your best

A great guy has no interest in seeing you scale back your ambitions so that he can feel good about himself.

On the contrary, he loves to see you flourish. For him, supporting your success only means more excitement and adventure. He loves seeing what you make of your life and cares about protecting your dreams.

In short, the high-value guy lives to see you playing at an extraordinary level.

He isn’t afraid of you over-taking him

Guys worth dating aren’t fussed about out-earning you or worried about who is further ahead in their career.

He won’t get insecure because you happen to be a lawyer or have a PhD, nor will he fret about your substantial paycheck. He doesn’t measure his life in competition with yours, because (would you believe it?) he has self-esteem and measures his life on more than just achievement.

He wants to provide for you

This one might seem like it immediately invalidates the previous point, but it doesn’t.

Here’s why: Even though he’s fine with you over-taking him financially, a high-value guy still wants to be someone who can provide for you in all kinds of ways.

This doesn’t mean he wants to pay for everything, but he’ll work hard to be the kind of man who can protect and serve you, whether by being emotionally strong, financially independent, or by being able to treat you to incredible experiences and indulgent surprises.

He’s turned on by your independence 

“Damsel in constant distress” is not sexy to a high-value guy.

A man worth being with delights in seeing you handle your own life (even if he loves to help now and then), and will want to encourage anything that promotes your autonomy and independence.

While every man loves to feel needed, only insecure daddy-type guys seek to acquire importance by seeing you helpless and entirely dependent on them.

He’s responsive to your needs, even if he doesn’t always get them right first time

Ok, he might not know the *exact* words that turn you on most right away, or he might not realise that “quality time” is your love language, or he may not know that handwritten birthday cards make you melt.

But he learns. And responds when he drops the ball and gets it wrong.

The best guy isn’t a mind-reader, but he is an expert at following the signs if you make them clear enough.

Just enjoy it (and for god’s sake let him know how happy his effort makes you ­– positive reinforcement works!). Showing him that you notice and appreciate his listening skills is the best way to get more of it.

He doesn’t need to be asked twice to come and help you out of a bind

You’re in trouble? You need help with your university paper and want someone to come and read it at 4am the night before submission? You need to be saved from your family?

He’ll jump out of bed and into his car to come and save you before you’ve even put down the phone. He might not like the “damsel in constant distress”, but the “damsel having an occasional freak out” will make him drive all night like a knight riding to save a princess.

He won’t take your crap

Be warned: high-value guys have high expectations. If you’re ok with that, this will only raise your game.

He’s strong, and that means he doesn’t put up with draining people in his life.

He has no interest in indulging complaining and doesn’t have time to waste endlessly going over old problems or moaning about the past.

If you’re being unreasonable, he’ll tell you. To your face. Like a man. In other words, be ready for a guy who will stand up for himself and won’t stand for being walked over.

He takes care of his life with minimal fuss

High value guys limit the amount of time they spend wallowing in self-pity after a setback. They are responsive in the face of failure and spring into action at the sight of problems rather than falling apart.

Of course, he’s still human. And vulnerable. Which is a good thing. So sometimes he’ll need love and reassurance that everything will be ok. But then he’ll be back on his feet and fighting to get a grip again.

When the castle crumbles, he’s the one who starts stacking bricks to rebuild the fortress.

He cares about keeping small promises

In the book The Road by Cormac McCarthy, the son tells his father: “If you break little promises, you’ll break big ones.”

This is essentially the philosophy of a high value guy. It’s his code. He doesn’t feel ok simply shrugging his shoulders when he promised to pick up your shopping on the way home and just forgot. He kicks himself when he promised he’d book that restaurant and it totally slipped his mind.

The idea of not living up to his word is death to him. As it should be for all of us.

Speaking of which…

He chooses his words carefully

A guy who is great relationship material says nothing idly. He doesn’t make empty proclamations of love that he doesn’t feel in his heart.

He won’t say trite phrases or go through the motions if he thinks he’s just using cheap sentiment to soothe you without addressing the real problem.

If he says he adores you, he means it.

He’ll comfort you. He’ll stroke your hair and tell you you’re incredible. But he won’t make everything sound easy or simple when it’s not. Because he cares about big ideas like Truth and Honesty.

He wants to improve without needing to be asked

Great guys are always looking for ways to be better.

He doesn’t want to get healthy because you asked him to, he wants to do it because he takes pride in caring about his body.

He reads books not to show off, but because he takes education seriously.

He seeks adventure not to impress you, but because he wants to grab life and suck up experiences while he’s on this earth.

He seeks success because he wants to fulfil his potential, not because he arbitrarily wants a bigger paycheck.

At his core, he’s self-motivated. That might sometimes mean he tries a bit harder than he needs to, but that’s a much better problem to have than having a lazy man who never makes an effort.

He’ll “grasp nettles”

I stole this one from advertising genius David Ogilvy, who wrote “leaders grasp nettles”.

What Ogilvy meant by this is that leaders in life are willing to do the difficult action that no-one else will. This is the same of any high-value guy. He doesn’t run from the difficult or sensitive conversation. He confronts problems. He makes the difficult phone call.

He doesn’t put off troubles hoping they’ll just blow over. Which is why others respect him and look up to him.

He’ll invest in the relationship without losing himself in it

Maybe it sounds romantic to think of the Edward Cullen obsessive-love type boyfriend, but in the real world a high-value guy is capable of falling loving without obsessing (he can still be passionate and intense, just not in the creepy stalker-esque way vampire romance novels portray it).

Guys who are well-balanced have multiple sources of joy in their world. Friends. Family. Fulfilling work. Because they’ve learnt how to be happy being single first (as I’ve spoken about before).

All of these are important to him, even if eventually you become the most important thing to him.

He listens to what you tell him and responds

As mentioned earlier, high value guys want to make you happy. And this means they listen. They look for clues. They are endlessly curious about you as their partner and want to understand your mind.

You’ll usually see this in the amount of thought he puts into gifts and trips, particularly if it involves things he’s clearly decided based on your previous conversations.

Of course, that does NOT mean he’ll always get it right. Even high-value guys will sometimes get it completely wrong and screw up badly (we have to be realistic, after all). But crucially, he’ll keep trying to fulfil your needs. He’ll remember when he messed up and adjust his behaviour. And if you communicate your standards well, he’ll strive to live up to them.

He has unique pairings

High value guys, like high value women, don’t rely on a single personality trait.

He can be intellectual and deep, but he can also be exciting and totally silly. He’s comfortable being sexual, but he’s also a gentleman and has class. He’s fiercely loyal, but ready to double-down on his principles when his view differs from everyone else’s.

The best people always embody both sides of the coin.

He builds a future with you

 The high-value guy who is serious about you will want to make you the strongest team in the world. He’s loyal and wants to find ways to bring you closer together, which means he thinks about the future with you and discusses it openly.

That doesn’t mean he’ll necessarily move quickly, but it does mean he wants to invest in the relationship and make your emotional connection stronger so that he can share his world with you.

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So there it is.

I feel like these traits could go on and on, so I’m fascinated to know what you think I’ve missed or what you might add to this list. Let me know in the comments below!

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Stephen Hussey helped co-write the Get The Guy book and is a wealth of knowledge on dating and relationships.

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101 Replies to “15 Sure Signs You’re Dating A High Value Man”

  • Thanks for the article. It was interesting to read and inspiring to find out all the featuers and behaviors a high value man…I am quite doubtful that such man exists, it looks as an ideal. most of the time, you will find more or less of theses traits but not all. Does it lower the value of the guy ?

  • Steve,

    This is a fantastic article! Very comprehensive. I will certainly bookmark it, and probably even print it out to hang on some magnetic surface. This is the kind of man to hold out for!

    I also want to add, which you touched on a bit, that a high value man is open to exploring his own emotional experience. They don’t have to be the most verbal, or communicate 24/7 how they are feeling, but it is so important to have those emotions communicated in a clear manner. Communication is important to me, because it allows us to talk about the things that are going well, and the things that could use work. A man who values honest, respectful, and open communication… winner winner, chicken dinner!

    Another thing would be, he takes interest in some of your passions. Even if they aren’t his favorite things, he learns to love them by seeing how special they are through your eyes (and vice versa regarding his passions).

    The more I re-read this, the more I love it! It is no wonder why I am such an admirer. :)



  • Stephen,

    As usual I find what you say incredibly useful and fascinating to read. I can look back on past relationships and see that they all had some of these characteristics but none of them had all of them. I will keep the in mind as I continue dating. Thank you!!

  • YES Stephen, I agree with everything on the list! I would add also “has his own thing going on” – it’s important for me that a man have his own passion(s), whatever that is (as long as it’s not morally dubious) that I don’t really have much to do with, just as I want my own thing that’s not connected to him directly. I suppose related to that I would add “gives you your space”. Don’t nobody want a clingy clinger! That’s just me personally, though.
    Love this, sending it to my friends.
    Quick tip: you might want to proofread :)
    Love! x

  • Hi Stephen,

    I couldn’t not comment after reading this article in particular. I agree with what Ariana said in regards to how crucial and significant the article is, I am marking it too. I felt like it is a good list to go over every now and then to make sure that we are on track and more of like a self reminder of what needs to be worked on, I guess. Having said that, some people out there might argue the accuracy of this article and they might challenge the existence of such magical being. And that does not matter because I know for a fact that Matthew is a living example of all you have talked about and I am pretty sure that you are as well. Thank you both for all of your teachings!

  • After reading this I thought wow! Where can I find a guy such as this? I am amazed as it’s very accurate, it sums up a high value guy.

  • This is a great list. I’m afraid it is also entirely too good to be true and I doubt such a man exists. And if he does exist, I doubt if we would be a good “fit” for each other. I’m pretty sure that the competition would be fierce and he would be snagged by the time I blink my eyes in astonishment.

  • I feel so lucky! Most of the traits listed above, i found it on my boyfriend <3 This is very accurate! I love this site! Thanks

  • Stephen, thanks so much for writing this. Sometimes it seems so demanding to be a high value woman and “Never stop trying to impress your partner” when all we really want is someone we can call and say, “I feel so overwhelmed today” and be encouraged. I know that this guy you wrote about is really what I should hold out for. Relationships and life is hard enough without bringing a guy who isn’t worth it into the equation. I would say a guy who doesn’t have these things would cause more pain than anything because these things really are pretty basic and essential for a healthy, mature guy. Thanks again!! Once again you’ve provided a super great cheat sheet and organized / spelled out something vital for us perfectly.

  • This perfect man is able to show both being very strong & masculine even if he’s not physically very built & he can be so very sweet & subtle in words or physically by a graceful touch or little attention & he has sensibility in being attentive to your desire of being truly loved & respected & he makes you feel protected in his presence ! He is a gentle/man!
    He is willing to let go of his desire to flirt with other woman if he sees it makes you truly sad cuz you love him!
    His mind is really subtle & playful,
    He’s really intelligent & wise,
    And has a glimpse of spirituality if not more! So that he would be curious about trying for example tantra instead of laughing about it if he doesn’t even know what it is!
    Such a man would litteraly make me melt & be so happy!:))
    I wish i am not just @ dreamer or expecting too much… cuz aren’t dreams existing in our minds to become living creations & possible & beautiful realities?? Or are they only illusions that we create in our minds that will someday dissipate since everything is impermanent/or cuz reality shows another play that we didn’t expect nd we become desillusionned & lose our optimism..?
    I even came to a point i wanted to renounce man cuz i want to feel like a respected goddess in his heart but rare are man who get it…or who want just one woman! So i prefer to stay alone than being hurt…
    I guess i have to do it myself!
    I know…i mean create this reality?
    Thank you Matt 4 encouraging me/us to stay optimistic & to give moral strenght & advices to help not losing faith in beautiful human values.
    You made me see that such “perfect” noble man still exist in this world,
    and that many people are looking 4 better & higher though simple too.
    So i am not alone in this!
    You are a very good man & i wish you to be totally blisfully happy!

    1. I too dreamt of such a man, and was firm that wont let any man in my life who doesnt beleive in commitments….but alas i got a man who has every quality you described + the above post, except the fact that he cant stop flirting to other girls, neither can he stop checking them out in front of me, moreover he says he wants a polygamous relationship…..its quite painful to bear this attitude of his, neither he wants to leave me nor change.

  • This couldn’t be more accurate! Made me really realize what I have. I’m lucky to be dating and hopefully soon marrying one of these! Thank you Stephen! So grateful for the wisdom both you and Matt have imparted on matters of the heart. Cheers!

  • It was a refreshing change to see you write this. Good job! I think a high value guy also appreciates and understands that we are are biologically and neurologically programmed differently than men. That means he’s looking for a woman who compliments him, not someone who is a prettier version of himself. I love dating a man that acknowledges, understands and even embraces these facts. We are different and that’s what makes relationships fun, exciting and beautiful!

  • I envision Matthew and Stephen sitting across from each other arguing about what traits to include in this article and what not to.
    I was going through your list generally, and of course I would want to find all of these in one man…someday…but I started to apply them to my last relationship. He fit into 10 of the 15. He would probably argue that he meets all 15 without question. But the meaning behind some of those is different to me than it would be to him. But he did not have some of the base qualities. There are no value qualities on your list pertaining to respect-trust-forgiveness-honesty. I’m guessing because those are obvious base building blocks, but that can appear deceiving if only reading this article. Having an opening listing out the basic values, morals etc could help some people.

  • OMG! This guys actually exist? You mean I don’t have to go to Narnia or Wonderland to find them? That’s great. My standards just went up 500%

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