The 5 Traits Men Secretly Desire for Partnership
In this article, you'll discover...
Table of Contents
“What do men look for in a woman?” my client Monique asked me during our private coaching session.
“My friends’ boyfriends and husbands absolutely adore them, and I feel like I have many of the same qualities that my friends do. But I’m still single.”
I answered: “Quality men love quality women who love themselves. You’re an amazing woman with so much to offer the right man. We just need to clear out some of that lingering self-doubt so you feel worthy of him.”
In summary: if you want a man to fall madly in love with you, first you have to fall madly in love with yourself.
Most emotional challenges in life (especially in dating and relationships) boil down to the feeling that you aren’t worthy of what you desire.
When you don’t give yourself the validation and appreciation you’re seeking, it’s easy to self-sabotage the great opportunities and people that come into your life because you feel like you don’t deserve them.
Online dating and apps have only furthered this by bringing out the worst in people.
After being criticized for your weight, called derogatory names, ghosted on, or sexually solicited, even women who have extra thick skin can’t help but be affected by all of that.
The traits that quality men are looking for in a potential partner are nearly impossible to see online.
That’s one of the reasons why dating is so difficult these days – and why offline dating (i.e. meeting and dating in real life, without the apps) is so incredibly powerful.
All Readers Welcome
While this article was written with single women seeking men in mind, as that’s the perspective I can personally speak to, most advice is applicable to all genders and orientations.
So, if you identify outside of a heterosexual female, let me extend a warm personal welcome!
I’m glad you’re here and hope my content helps you achieve your love/life goals even faster.
- Camille Virginia
When you discover the key traits that men look for in a woman – which can only truly be revealed in real life – the benefits go well beyond attraction. For example, you’ll:
5 secret traits men look for in a woman
Here are five core aspects that men want in a woman they’re interested in dating (I’ll cover five ways for you to cultivate these traits, coming up).
#1 You've fallen in love with yourself
The first trait that men look for in a woman is self-confidence. Confidence is one of the sexiest traits a woman can have, and an instant turn-on to men.
When you’re confident in yourself, you know your value and what makes you unique, which makes you inherently selective about who you give your time and energy to.
People you meet can feel your self-assurance and they step it up for you. Raising your value in your own eyes naturally raises your value in others’ eyes.
Falling in love with yourself also means banishing negative thoughts and generalizations that don’t serve you, like, “Why don’t men commit to me?” or “Guys don’t date anymore!”
These are instant turn-offs to men who can often tell that you’re holding the sins of other men against them.
#2 You have your own life
Having your own life is also an important aspect that men look for in a woman.
Quality men want to know that you’re not waiting around for them to come along to go for your goals. They want to know you’re already having adventures, joining a Zumba group, or taking an Armenian baking class.
Meeting someone who has their own interests, hobbies, and passions shows they’re confident in themselves and they have the potential to contribute new experiences, knowledge, and activities to our lives.
Meeting someone who doesn’t have an opinion on anything, doesn’t stand for any causes, and has no hobbies or interests outside of binging Netflix or drinking with their buddies can feel suffocating.
It feels like they’re waiting for life to happen to them instead of making it happen for themselves.
Put another way, who would you rather spend time with:
Someone who keeps asking, often to no one in particular, “Why is life so hard?” or someone who confidently says, “I love my life! Let’s grab dinner and catch the sunset at the beach!”…?
#3 You share his values
When you have strong values, you live a life where your thoughts and emotions are aligned with your words and actions – you’re in an authentic, natural flow with life and the people around you.
For example, if you’re an honest person, you need to have an equally honest partner.
Lying is a huge factor in what’s what’s wrong with modern dating because it’s so easy to do from behind a screen.
But if someone tells a lie when you first meet them, you can bet that’s just the tip of the dishonesty iceberg.
Getting clear on the core values you want your future partner to possess (i.e. knowing the qualities of a good boyfriend) is also the first part of my three-part process to attract the right man into your life
It’s followed by key questions to ask a guy to know his intentions, then watching for the signs of a good man.
When you meet a partner who shares your values and is actively applying them in his life, your relationship will be so much easier and more enjoyable.
For example, if you and your future partner share a core value of honesty (which every couple should), you have a solid foundation of trust between you two.
Arguments are resolved quicker because you both trust that, even though you may disagree with each other, you’re both coming from a place of good intention.
That, in turn, opens the door to a deeper, more fulfilling connection, level of trust, and strong partnership.
#4 You're passionate about something
Someone who can take a stand and believes in a cause is much more attractive than someone who never asserts an opinion and always just goes with the flow.
You could be passionate about anything – dancing the rumba, saving the honeybees, or making homemade peanut brittle to gift to your friends and family for the holidays.
When you’re passionate about something and take the actions to apply that passion, you’ll start attracting like-minded people, including men, who share those passions and/or have their own.
When you’re living your passions – like learning key Swahili phrases for your upcoming trip to Kenya – you also become more approachable and have more confidence talking to guys because it provides an easy topic for them to engage you with.
Heck, maybe you’ll even get a guy to ask you out so he can take you to a Portuguese restaurant on your first date together.
#5 You have a sense of purpose
The final aspect that men are looking for in a woman is that she has a sense of purpose in her life.
Your life purpose is how you give back to humanity in a way that lights you up in the process, and following your passions can help lead to discovering it.
I found my life purpose in my business: to help people get offline and create meaningful real-life connections – whether that leads to getting a date, making a new friend, or just sharing a smile with a stranger in passing.
Maybe your passion for playing the guitar eventually leads to your life purpose of composing songs for elderly folks in a nearby retirement home.
Having a purpose in life, especially one outside of a romantic relationship, is extremely attractive and reminds you that you’re part of a larger community of people who want to make the world a better place.
How to fall in love with yourself: Your 5 Superpowers
If you’ve found yourself wondering why guys don’t like you or why you don’t have a boyfriend yet, we first need to make sure that you like yourself.
In other words, in order to make a man fall in love with you, you need to have already fallen in love with yourself.
What’s the easiest way to do that?
First, take a breather from online dating and date without the apps for a while.
You don’t have to dive head-first into offline dating just yet; I’ll give you plenty of ways to meet great men in the real world once you start living your best life and your self-confidence begins soaring to new heights.
Next, discover your five secret dating superpowers! When these powers combine, they make you unlike any other person on earth:
- Hobbies + Interests
Think about a man you’re attracted to in your life right now – whether it’s your cute new co-worker that just joined the team or that hot guy behind you in line at Peet’s Coffee this morning.
Now ask yourself, what makes him attractive?
Is it his boyish good looks?
His charming personality?
His ability to put a smile on your face even when you’re having a terrible day?
Chances are that it’s probably a combination of traits, all swirled together, that make him different from any other man you’ve met – and that’s really hot.
Well, it’s the same thing for men with women.
The men who are ready and looking for a relationship aren’t going to commit to a woman based on physical attraction alone.
Looks may get your foot in the dating door – but after that, it’s about knowing what men are looking for in a woman, what creates an emotional attraction with a man, and the aspects that make a man chase a woman.
Attraction is also about knowing and showing him that you’re a special woman he can’t get find anywhere else, so he needs to treasure and take care of you.
1) Personality: Work with your innate wiring
Showcasing your authentic personality is the first key aspect of what men look for in a woman.
If you’re trying to be someone you’re not – perhaps someone that you believe men may like more than your real self, as I used to do – men can feel that misalignment.
You were born with innate traits, likes, and dislikes that make up your personality and are simply in your DNA.
From your favorite type of music to your taste in desserts, you naturally prefer and are attracted to certain things and people over others. And you have to know yourself before you can show yourself.
It’s time to look under the hood and see all the amazing aspects that make you, you!
When you understand and accept those aspects of yourself, you’re able to live your life in alignment with those natural preferences and desires, instead of fighting against them or trying to change them.
You’ll also attract people who not only accept you for you but absolutely adore your uniqueness.
Understanding and accepting your personality is about showing others what comes with your package upfront, which is a key aspect to catching the attention of the right man to you.
Showcasing who you are will send out a unique signal that attracts people – including men – who naturally resonate with the real you. It’s a natural filtering method that can also save you time and energy.
Unfortunately, most people do the opposite of showing their uniqueness. They conform to the norm and try to blend in with the masses.
How are you supposed to attract the right man when you’re watering down your opinions and preferences to be like everyone else’s?
Accepting and working with your natural preferences instead of against them will massively free up your time and energy.
Here are a few resources to help you discover more about your personality and natural wiring – check out the ones that resonate most with you:
The 16 Personality Types
This is one of the most popular personality assessment tests, based on the Myers Briggs Type Indicator and Carl Jung’s theory that people understand the world through sensation, intuition, feeling, and thinking. The test is fun and the reports are in-depth and very insightful.
The Highly Sensitive Person and High Sensation Seeker
A highly sensitive person (HSP) experiences the world differently than others. Due to an innate biological difference, highly sensitive people are more aware of subtleties and process information more deeply.
Your attachment style dictates how you interact in interpersonal relationships. Learning your attachment style is incredibly helpful in not only validating your past relationship challenges but showing you how to overcome those challenges with your future partners.
The Four Tendencies
The Four Tendencies explores how you respond to expectations and carry through on those expectations, created by author and happiness expert Gretchen Rubin. The four tendency categories are: Upholders, Questioners, Obligors, and Rebels.
Fall in love with your dark side
A big part of knowing how to fall in love with yourself (and part of what men want in a woman) involves embracing your dark side.
On dating apps, people tend to only showcase the good things about themselves – but how refreshing would it be if everyone also owned their less-than-stellar qualities or aspects they were actively improving upon?
Behind a screen, people can say or be anything; in person is where the truth actually comes out. It’s just of the many advantages of offline dating and meeting men in the real world – without the apps.
Having a dark side simply comes with the package of being a human.
Instead of trying to hide the aspects that you may not be super proud of, get to know and understand your dark side so that you can reveal it in a way that feels empowering instead of shameful.
Besides, everyone has a dark side – including your future partner – and it’s going to come out at some point.
Owning it can be a great way to foster vulnerability and lead to deeper conversations than ones just limited to your proudest accomplishments.
2) Hobbies + Interests: Recreation on your road to purpose
Men want a woman who already has a great life – which is why having hobbies and interests are key aspects of what men look for in a woman.
Hobbies and interests are the activities that you’re naturally drawn to, that you do for fun, and that light you up. They don’t require a lot of effort, they’re more for joy and/or relaxation.
A simple way to start uncovering your hobbies and interests is to think about what you love to do on a free Saturday afternoon or what you used to do for fun as a child.
The remaining superpowers (values, passions, and purpose) will require some energy to explore, so hobbies and interests are great to recharge yourself in between the effort required for those.
When you’re enjoying a hobby or interest, it’s easier to meet like-minded people, including men. Doing things that you love puts out positive energy that naturally pulls the right people toward you.
Discovering these superpowers also gives you an interesting answer to the common question, “What do you do for fun?” and provides the chance to showcase interesting aspects about yourself.
Back when I taught live workshops, I’d come to this part of the presentation and ask each of the students how they would respond to that question.
The first answer many of them gave was generic, like, “I like to hang out with my friends” – a sentence that was instantly forgettable.
But, as I dug in a bit deeper with each of my students and asked them to be more specific, I found out these women were doing the most amazing things!
There was a woman who trained her Labrador to be a therapy dog, and every Saturday they went to the hospital and visited cancer patients. Another woman did aerial acrobatics.
One of my coaching clients, Ellen, said she enjoyed soldering. I initially had no idea what that was, so I told her to bring it up in all of her conversations because it was so unique and created instant intrigue.
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The key here is to be specific.
For example, if you ask a woman you meet at a networking event what she does for fun and she says, “Travel,” that’s not memorable or interesting at all – and, you’ll likely assume, neither is she.
But if she answers your question with “Spelunking!” and then shares a hilarious story about getting stuck in a cave full of bats for eight hours, you’re going to remember that – and remember her.
You’ll also want to hang out with her again so you can hear more of her cool adventures.
Sometimes you don’t realize how interesting you are until you actually sit down to think about it.
That’s why it’s great to get clear on your interests and hobbies – the stranger and more unique, the better – and keep them front of mind for your future conversations.
You’ll be instantly more memorable and intriguing to everyone you meet.
3) Values: The core drivers of your life
Your lifestyle supports your values.
Your values create your character.
Your character creates your destiny…
…including knowing when you meet the right man to spend your life with.
Another key trait that men are looking for in a woman is that she shares their values.
It’s crucial that you’re clear on what your core values are, not only so you can live them out in your daily life, but also to see if the people – including men – that you’re attracting share them too.
Values are at the core of what you stand for and what you believe is most important in your life – like kindness, generosity, and honesty. But go deeper than just traits and reveal the underlying value.
For example: If you love running, the underlying value might be that you care about your fitness and respect your body.
Surround yourself with people who share your values so that you naturally reinforce them for each other.
Once you get clear on your core values, here are three life-changing benefits you’ll enjoy…
You'll make better decisions
Getting clear on your values also speeds up the filtering process for attracting the right people into your life. You can instantly spot whether someone aligns with what’s important to you or not.
For instance, if honesty is one of your values and the man you’re talking to at the dog park is telling stories that sound too good to be true, you know that he may not be someone you want in your life.
Remember: You are the average of the five closest people in your life, so choose wisely.
Your values are the guiding force for everything you do.
Getting clear on your values also helps you make decisions quickly and more easily.
When in doubt about what to do or say, always check with your values and see which choice or option they best support and you’ll have your answer.
You'll earn trust quicker
Living your values makes it easy for people to trust you. When you consistently stick to them, people feel safe knowing that you’ll always default to what you see as the right thing to do.
When they see that living in integrity like that is more important to you than blending in or not rocking the boat, it helps them trust you.
When someone does the opposite, e.g. never gives their real opinion or always agrees with the people around them, it’s super shady.
It makes you wonder, “How do I know where I truly stand with this person? Do they have their own opinion? Why aren’t they sharing it? If they’re not sharing it, what else aren’t they sharing with me? I don’t trust them.”
You'll attract quality people
Quality attracts quality, and one of the driving factors of a high-quality person is their core values.
High-value men look for a woman who is honest, authentic, and kind because people who have strong values naturally want someone who has the same.
For example, honest people tend to seek out relationships with other people who are honest.
If you’re not so good with time management, e.g. reliability isn’t one of your core values, you’ll likely do better with someone who also runs on their own schedule and needs similar time buffers and flexibility.
Being with people who share your core values helps reinforce your values to each other.
An honest person who, one day, realizes they might be dating a pathological liar knows they’ll not only be unable to trust that person but also that being exposed to lies risks compromising their own integrity.
4) Passions: Your joyful contribution to the world
What do you stand for?
What do you stand against?
People who aren’t clear on what’s important to them risk attracting a mixed bag of people who also don’t really stand for anything.
Don’t pull a Switzerland. Discover what really pumps you up, be vocal about it, and pursue it with gusto.
The difference between a passion and a hobby is that a hobby is typically for your own benefit and enjoyment.
Your passions and purpose go beyond your own benefit by contributing to others in a way that brings you joy and moves you toward your full potential in the process.
Your passions also typically align with your values.
So, my passion is helping people create meaningful connections to make their life less lonely and more fulfilling, and attract the right people into it.
That passion for connection aligns with my values of respect, kindness, and empathy.
Your passions may start as something small, an activity you do just for fun, but you’ll start to feel called to keep exploring it further and deeper.
For example, I started my business because I created a PowerPoint on how to meet men in the real world after my friends requested my dating advice.
I never envisioned it would grow into a business and have the impact that it’s had – reaching people in 130 countries, being featured in major media like the Atlantic and USA Today, and writing two best-selling books.
I didn’t know I was even passionate about connection until I started exploring it and kept taking the next steps of turning the PowerPoint into a workshop, then into an online course, and then eventually into a business.
Every time I took the next step in my business, the next one was shown to me; I was having so much fun that I just kept stepping!
So, take that first step and keep going in the direction that lights you up. The next step will be shown to you once you’re ready for it – but whether you decide to take the leap of faith and act on it is entirely up to you.
5) Purpose: The secret to a truly fulfilling life
Your passions typically align to support your life purpose, and your purpose is the overarching contribution you are making to others and the world.
Having a purpose in your life is very attractive and the final aspect of what men look for in a woman.
Discovering your purpose and actively living it out will take you from being a spectator of the world to an active contributor, which will fulfill you on a level you never even knew existed.
Most people don’t know their purpose, and never take the time to find it. But I highly recommend you take the time to uncover it – it will absolutely change your life.
It may take a little time and a little digging, but that can be part of the fun.
Start thinking about the ideas and movements you’re naturally drawn to, and why. There are hidden life purposes in all of us, we just need to discover them.
I love how Jack Canfield, co-author of the Chicken Soup For the Soul books, describes our life purpose…
“We are all born with a deep and meaningful purpose that we have to discover. Identifying, acknowledging, and honoring this purpose is perhaps the most important action successful people take. Your purpose is not something you need to make up; it’s already there. You have to uncover it in order to create the life you want.”
So how do you discover your purpose? Taking suggestions from Canfield’s process, I recommend starting with this exercise:
- Think about the times you've experienced the greatest joy + fulfillment
- What do you know you love to do?
- What comes easily to you?
- Look for a pattern and start to come up with ways you can do what you love while contributing to a person, group, or cause outside of yourself
- What do you stand for?
- What do you stand against?
- The world would be a better place if ___________________
Finding your purpose and discovering how you can contribute to the greater good makes your life bigger than just you.
This enables you to navigate hardships easier and feel more connected to yourself and others in the process.
It adds an instant perspective that life isn’t out to get you and you aren’t deficient.
You have your own journey and unique purpose, so you’ll stop feeling the need to continually compare yourself to others who are on their own path, with their own lessons to learn and purposes to discover.
Your purpose could be a cause within your family heritage, local community, or career field – or, extend even broader to a national or even global scale.
Sometimes there’s an existing opportunity to jump onto an existing movement, and sometimes there’s a void for what’s needed that you can fill by creating the solution yourself.
At the end of the day, having purpose goes well beyond the traits men look for in a woman; it’s about living a more fulfilling and happy life for yourself.
Example: My Personal Secret Superpowers
Here’s an example of different superpowers that all relate to my higher purpose.
My personality, behavior, interests, values, and hobbies may change over time – but my purpose will stay in one way, shape or form, for the rest of my life.
I’m the most organized person you’ll ever meet, love watching animal rescue videos on The Dodo YouTube channel, and enjoy calling out bullies to show them it’s not ok to take their own issues out on other people.
Hobbies + Interests
I love learning about myself and other people through travel (especially international), self-development resources, and creating meaningful conversations.
To give people tools to create more meaningful connections so they can live a less lonely, more fulfilling life – whether that means getting a date, attracting a mate, making a new friend, or sharing a smile with a stranger.
You'll still have "those days"
Even the most confident people still have moments of doubting themselves, which means you will too. It’s simply human nature.
But, when you build your self-confidence by discovering your unique superpowers (especially your purpose), those moments of fear and self-doubt will happen less often and pass more quickly.
That’s because you have a strong foundation of self-assurance that will always be there to catch you when you fall.
Envy is a compass
Back in my insecure days when I was young, I felt jealous of people who could easily talk to strangers and enjoyed hanging out in large groups.
But that was because I secretly wanted those same abilities – and felt far from ever being able to do them.
Now, I see my envy as pointing out something I may not have even known I wanted. Because, just like fear, envy is a powerful emotion that helps point you in the direction of your true desires.
This includes aspects, achievements, and approaches you may not have even known you wanted because they weren’t conscious thoughts yet; they were instead coming across as judgments about others.
As you’re bringing your superpowers to the surface, note what triggers you about other people.
Those aspects may be an indication you’ve found a hidden desire that can be turned into a hobby, interest, value, passion, or purpose.
Besides, reframing envy and seeing it as a signal for what you desire feels way better than stewing in jealousy.
Adventure into uncharted territory
In the process of discovering your secret dating superpowers and falling in love with yourself, you’ll likely come up against the edge of your comfort zone.
This happens whenever you go for something you really want, stand up for something you believe in, or create a new habit or way of being.
Men look for a woman they can learn and grow with, so this is all part of the journey to attracting your future partner (and one of the aspects of inspiring a man to commit without pressuring him).
Hitting the edge of your comfort zone may come in the form of fear, failures, mental blocks, or self-doubts. Those aspects are your ego trying to keep you safe by sticking to what’s familiar, which has kept you alive.
But sticking with what’s familiar won’t get you what you truly want, so you need to challenge those approaches in order to achieve your true desires.
A great way to challenge those fears and doubts and push through the limits of your (soon-to-be-former) comfort zone is to ask yourself questions like…
You may also come across unsupportive people who are uncomfortable with the positive changes you’re making because it forces them to take a hard look at their own unfulfilled life.
All of these “bumps on the road” are normal and great indicators that you’re on the right track to becoming your best self.
Getting clear on the actions to take to live your best life and become your best self may take a little time.
But then it’s simply about keeping your actions aligned with the life you want, surrounding yourself with great people, and continuing to grow and hone your superpowers in the process.
Conclusion: What men want in a woman
In this article, we’ve covered the five traits that men look for in a woman…
- You've fallen in love with yourself
- You have your own life
- You share his values
- You're passionate about something
- You have a sense of purpose
We also covered how to bring each of those aspects into your life by revealing your Five Secret Dating Superpowers:
What men look for in a woman actually isn’t very different from what women look for in a man.
Because, at the end of the day, we’re all just humans who want to be seen, accepted, and loved for who we are by a partner who shares our values and our vision for life.
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