Article originally written for date.com and matchmaker.com
THE TOP 5 THINGS WOMEN LOOK FOR IN A MANBy Patrick Wanis PhD Celebrity Life Coach, Human Behavior & Relationship Expert & Clinical Hypnotherapist
In a recent online survey of women, out of a total of 40 characteristics, females across the US identified the top 5 characteristics that they seek in their perfect man. What are they, why are they so important to women and how can a woman quickly and easily identify those characteristics in her man before she gets too involved and has regrets?
It’s a question that has been posed for centuries: what does a woman want? The answer depends on whether we are referring to qualities in the ideal man or they way she wants to be treated within a relationship.
For the purposes of this article, I am referring to those characteristics that women identify as priorities when looking for the ideal man.
An online survey primarily questioning women in the US, offered forty choices. The results of the top 5 might surprise you, particularly if you are a man who has his own ideas of what women want:
1. Good Judgment
5. Financially Responsible
Now, let’s define these qualities, explain why they are important to women and what women need to do to identify them in a man.
1. GOOD JUDGMENT
Good judgment refers to good sense, common sense, discretion, discernment and the ability to make decisions based on logic, objectivity and wisdom rather than wild rampant emotion or irresponsibility. Decades of research into the gender differences has revealed that women are primarily associated and concerned with responsibility; men are primarily concerned with justice. Accordingly, women seek good judgment in men because it represents maturity in men, and maturity is all about responsibility.
Responsibility is critical to women because women are innately nurturers and to nurture and raise children requires responsibility, maturity and good judgment. Women also seek men with good judgment because whether they want to admit or not, a man with good judgment will help to provide a stable family life. Thus a man that exercises good judgment will also be someone that a woman can rely on to be a good partner.
Good judgment is critical to a healthy relationship and marriage: The first reason is security. A woman feels safe in a relationship with a man who displays good judgment because she feels she can trust him as a leader, a protector and provider. It means that she can depend on him to lead and share burdens and responsibility.
Identifying the man with good judgment
Spotting and recognizing good judgment in a man is not as difficult as some might think, nor does a woman have to wait to get into a serious relationship to find out if her man is discerning and has good sense. The key is to look for the small signs of good judgment:does he think before he acts? Is his behavior generally responsible or is he neglectful, thoughtless, forgetful or lacking in discipline? Are all of his decisions highly emotional decisions or are most of them based in logic and common sense? Keep in mind, men will make emotional decisions – spontaneity, surprises and romantic gestures are emotional decisions that women welcome from men.
In the early 1970s studies revealed that most women seek out partners who are generally smarter than they are. Why? It is believed that the answer may be hard wired in our brain. It is believed that women have been behaving this way dating back to the Stone Age, seeking out men who are more intelligent than them in order to pass on the best genes to their children. Additionally, women seek intelligence above physical beauty in their partner because women seek to connect with a man at a deeper level and enjoy mental and emotional stimulation. Women generally also love to learn from their partners and thus are often attracted to men with life experience; be it in the form of wisdom, book smarts or street smarts.
Intelligence is an important factor to women for the longevity of a relationship or marriage. Intelligence (often marked by verbal reasoning skills, creativity the ability to grasp concepts) goes a long way to keep the relationship interesting and exciting. It is also significant to note that unlike men who are primarily sexually stimulated by what they see, women are primarily sexually stimulated by what they hear which is why women fall for men with magnificent voices, accents, intelligent ideas and poetic words. When the passion has waned, the words, humor, bright conversation and witty banter will help to keep the romance, bond and attraction alive.
Identifying the intelligent man
Listen carefully to a man’s conversation and you will quickly tell if he is intelligent or just a hot body in an empty shell. Is he well educated? Does he have a general knowledge and grasp of current affairs? Can he speak about topics that do not relate to sport, food or the physical features of a woman? Does he think fast and think outside the box i.e. is he open to new ideas and does he enjoy some philosophical discussions? Are his romantic gestures creative and playful or are they simply lifted off the back of a breakfast cereal box?
The male and female brains are different. Of course, many women who have suffered the pain of betrayal will tell you that men don’t think with their brain but rather with a different body part. However, the truth is that women are much more emotionally charged than men. Women are primarily feelers and more imaginative than men who tend to be analytical, primarily concerned with cause and effect. Why? The answer lies in the differences between the makeup of the male and female brains. And the makeup of the female brain combined with her hormonal profile results in women being nurturers, caregivers, nesters and bonders. Therefore women place great emphasis on faithfulness and loyalty. Generally speaking, women want one man for life, one man that will prize and treasure her above all else and above everyone else.
Scientifically speaking, the limbic system, or emotional brain, tends to be larger in women. The limbic system is the emotional bonding center of the brain. The larger limbic size makes bonding easier for women. Women tend to have more friends in life and have a larger nesting instinct than men. Women also have the ability to use both sides of the brain simultaneously and have greater access to the right hemisphere than men do. Yes, women can multitask. Men focus on one side of the brain at a time.
Hormones also affect women’s desires for loyalty. For example, testosterone (the dominant hormone in men) makes them aggressive and competitive. Estrogen (the primary hormone in women) makes them more nurturing. Also, Oxytocin –hormone of love and cuddle chemical is present in both genders but is more prevalent in women. Oxytocin is associated with bonding, a sense of partnership and urge to care for a child. It is often released during times of stress and labor and delivery (and creates the bond between mother and child.) During times of stress a woman seeks out personal interaction, someone to talk to, “tend and befriend” – which explains why women who have a stressful day simply want their man to listen and be a friend – not an advisor.
In a relationship or marriage, a faithful man makes a woman feel safe, secure and able to be herself, to express herself, open up emotionally and trust him. When a woman feels safe and confident that her man is faithful, she feels safe and able to be emotionally and physically intimate. A faithful man also results in his partner feeling significant, special and loved.
Identifying the faithful man
Women express shock when it is revealed that her man cheated on her, but in almost every case, the woman subconsciously knew that it was going to happen or that it was happening (without her conscious knowledge.) In other words, use your intuition – your gut feeling about the man – can he be trusted? Nonetheless, there are also subtle signs or red flags. For example, if he mentions that he cheated on a former mate, expect more of the same -unless he has been through therapy. If you notice that he cheats on small things (restaurant bill, taxes, business dealings, etc) then be ready, because “the way you do anything is the way you do everything.” If his morals allow him to cheat in one area, then he will do it in almost every other area of his life. If you are still unsure how to tell if your love interest is a faithful man or not, introduce him to mom and listen to her reading of him – mothers have usually honed their intuitive skills and thus are often phenomenally adept at reading potential suitors.
The dictionary defines affection as possessing warm, kind, tender, loving feelings toward another person. But for most of us when we think of someone as being affectionate, we also think of him or her as being able to openly express those feelings. In other words, affection isn’t just a feeling, it’s a feeling or emotion in action; it’s emotion in motion. Affection can take many forms such as kind gentle words expressed with warm heartfelt sincerity or kisses, embraces and hugs.
We all communicate feelings and attitudes three ways: words (7%) voice tonality (38%) and body language (55%) but for women, non-verbal communication (body language) is paramount. The female hormonal profile increases the significance and necessity of touch, kissing and embracing. For this reason, women are more sensual and erotic than men. Touch and physical affection are critical to women because they view it as a strong expression of love, concern and caring.
Being affectionate is a vital component of a healthy relationship or marriage particularly for the woman because she needs to feel love, and not just see it in the form of gifts or hear it in the form of romantic words. Expressing affection to a woman reassures her of her man’s love and helps her to feel special, safe and loved. Kindness, sweet words and physical touch are also healing to the spirit and help to keep alive the romance and deepen the connection.
Identifying affectionate men
A man that is affectionate will often hug and embrace easily, openly and freely. He will feel comfortable and confident in hugging your female friends and making them feel accepted and significant. He will freely give kisses on the cheek without trying to take it to the next level and will naturally hold your hand and know how to touch you without being sexual. If he is cold like a fish or hugs the air instead of you, then be aware, he isn’t affectionate and he can’t openly express love or warmth.
5. FINANCIALLY RESPONSIBLE
In today’s modern society, good credit is equivalent to good judgment. A man who exercises good judgment in most areas of his life, will most likely exercise good judgment in his financial life.
Being financially responsible refers to using good judgment and balance towards spending, saving and investing.
A financially responsible man appeals to women because he is thoughtful and conscientious about expenses and budgeting and he has the skills and foresight to plan for the future such as buying a home, vacations, college, retirement, etc. The financially responsible man does not take unnecessary financial risks and creates another very important level of security for the woman/family. It is also critical to note that if a man is financially irresponsible and gambles his money either in the casino or on “sure-bet” investments, then he also makes too many decisions based on emotion which he will also apply to other areas of his life.
Therefore, financial responsibility offers women in relationship a sense of security and dependability. It removes from the relationship or marriage unnecessary stress, burdens and fear. Instead of creating anxiety for the woman, a financially responsible man makes her feel safe and secure, able to trust him to lead with good judgment.
Identifying the financially responsible man
There are many key signs to help you identify the financially responsible man. Notice if he is constantly trying to impress you with expensive gifts and dinners. (Of course, if you know without a doubt that he is wealthy, then that might not make such a difference.) Become aware if everything he owns and does is done on credit; if so, run away. Does he choose restaurants and venues that suit the occasion or is he completely flippant? Is he proud of smart buys (bargains) without being cheap? Does he gamble regularly or only on a rare occasion or vacation? Are most of his choices and decisions emotionally based? If so, he will do the same with money!
Look for the man who knows how to have a good time on a dime and often relies on his creativity to find imaginative ways to have fun that don’t involve an excess of spending. Look for the man who appreciates and respects money and what he owns.
**** ALSO READ THE ARTICLE by Patrick Wanis PhD: http://patrickwanis.com/blog/what-women-look-for-in-a-man/