8 Toxic Traits to Avoid Like the Plague
In this article, you'll discover...
Table of Contents
Modern dating is a mess – online scams, ghosting, sexual harassment, and all the other bad things people do from behind a screen can create a state of constant frustration and overwhelm for any single woman.
After so many disappointments, it’s easy for a single woman to start wondering if the problem is with men (“What’s wrong with guys today?”) or with you (“Why don’t I have a boyfriend?”).
Thoughts like those can creep in even if you’ve had plenty of great experiences with good men in your life.
Like your dad who’s been your #1 cheerleader as you work to grow your own business; your guy friends from college who protect you like a sister; or your favorite barista who always gives you an extra dollop of whip on your dark chocolate mocha because he knows how much you love that chocolatey goodness.
But even with all those wonderful examples, it can still feel like those are the exceptions to the rule when it comes to the available quality men in the dating pool.
That’s part of why dating is so hard these days.
Online dating has become so convenient that many people, unfortunately, don’t value it – nor the people they encounter there.
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
Men stepping it up for you in real life is one of the seven key advantages of meeting a man in real life, without the apps – i.e. offline dating.
When we’re looking someone in the eye in real-time, we naturally step up to the plate and put a more respectful foot forward. It’s a win-win for everyone.
So, what’s the first step to attracting a great guy into your life?
It’s making sure you have a positive mindset about men and dating.
The term “Mindset” refers to the lens through which you view and respond to the circumstances in your life.
Your mindset shapes the way you see everything – men, your job, yourself, and your life.
But if you have too many negative thoughts or experiences that have built up – especially in one area of your life, like dating – your mindset can start creating arbitrary rules and false “facts” that are actively inhibiting your ability to attract a quality partner.
For example, I was working with a coaching client, Sandy, who shared with me that she could only meet men during the “designated single hours,” and it was a very narrow window to work with.
I said I was unaware of this hourly concept before, so please enlighten me.
She went on to share that meeting men first thing in the morning wasn’t good because they would be in a rush on their way to work.
The lunch hour was also a challenge because they would be on their phones still doing business while they ate and wouldn’t want to be interrupted.
Trying to meet a man late at night might infer that you were willing to go home with him – and she wasn’t looking for just a hookup.
So, she felt that the small window between after work and dinnertime was the only time she could meet quality single men.
I pointed out that many of my other clients had met quality men at all hours of the day – and, if a man is quality, it doesn’t matter where or when you meet him.
He’ll be just as good of a guy at 9:00AM at the coffee shop as he will be at 7:30PM walking his dog.
I asked her how it felt to create her own limiting rules that weren’t actually a thing, and she said “Exhausting. And, clearly not working for me.”
When we label a situation (like, “designated single hours”), or even a group of people (like wondering what’s wrong with the male species), by assigning meaningless rules or assumptions to them, we limit our potential to view all the amazing opportunities we could have with them.
Translating that to negative mindsets means if they stay in place long enough, they can start to feel like facts instead of what they truly are: Opinions.
Bitterness is a choice, and unfortunately, some people choose to hold onto past wounds or blame others for their problems instead of accepting that they created – and have the power to change – their own situation.
Left unchecked over time, these negative mindsets are often what stop great women like you from achieving everything you want in life – including attracting a great guy.
So where did the blocks come from and why do you have them? Well, there are two powerful evolutionary forces at play here…
What's wrong with guys today? 8 traits women hate
First, let me be clear about something: there are many truly wonderful men in the world.
But, there are also some less-than-stellar ones. Especially when you’re interacting with them from behind a screen.
If it feels like you’ve encountered more of the latter than the former lately, it’s easy to wonder what’s wrong with guys today.
But it’s important to not hold the sins of a few rotten apples against the entire male gender.
After all, if a man had a few bad experiences with other women, you wouldn’t appreciate him holding their poor behavior against you, right?
It is true that men tend to have some behavior patterns that are different from women.
So before we talk about how to cultivate a positive mindset about men and dating, let’s address the eight most common traits you don’t want in your future partner, thankyouverymuch…
1) Men who know everything
One aspect that’s wrong with guys today is The Braggart.
You know the type – you overhear them at airports, concerts, sports games, and anywhere else they know they have a captive audience being forced to listen to them spouting their latest triumph.
They speak about 30% too loudly and toss out painfully obvious boasts like, “You only sold it for $1.2 million? I said it needs to sell for $1.4 million – that’s right, sell for $1.4 million!”
Or maybe you’ve encountered the Braggart’s not-so-distant cousin, The Man-splainer.
He’s the guy who thinks he’s smarter than you about everything – and more than happy to tell you about it.
Maybe you’re on a first date with a man you met at the park last week, and you happen to be an expert on mountain biking – but he doesn’t know that fact about you yet (because man-splainers rarely ask questions).
You start sharing your latest bike adventure, riding down Waterton Canyon through creeks and boulders, when suddenly he interrupts you to explain – sorry, man-splain – how his latest biking adventure was far superior to yours and did you know the difference between a Specialized Stumpjumper and a Santa Cruz Bronson….blah blah blah.
The more he talks, the less intelligent he sounds and more annoying he becomes.
And the sad part is that you can tell he actually thinks he’s impressing you (even while getting all of his facts completely wrong).
You try to get back to your story, but he talks over you and continues his lecture on the different types of bikes and which ones are better, in his humble opinion.
No matter which topic comes up, this guy claims to be an expert on it: Online marketing, artisan French pastries, traditional Celtic music of the eighteenth century…
He’s clearly not open to hearing someone else’s perspective nor that you might actually know more about something than he does.
And all of that is a huge turn-off.
2) Men who never apologize
Another aspect of what’s wrong with guys today is when a man refuses to admit he’s wrong or apologize, which is also a big sign of insecurity.
Everyone gets something wrong once in a while or messes up, but owning up to your mistakes and saying you’re sorry for the consequences of your choices helps others feel safe and trust you more.
Plus, having to prove that you’re right all the time is exhausting – and no one ever is, anyway!
Without admitting you were wrong, you wouldn’t have the opportunity to grow or learn.
A conversation with someone who can’t admit they made a mistake or were incorrect would simply be, “I know everything about everything, and we’re done here.”
Wow, sign me up for that one!
Giving a genuine apology can feel great not only for the receiver but the giver as well.
For example, one time I was out for drinks with a friend and her coworkers, and a man she worked with sent a drink over to me.
But I didn’t even acknowledge him because I was super shy and didn’t know what to say in the moment – and I had always felt bad about doing that to him.
Years later, I was scrolling through my phone and came across his name. I sent him an apology text – and I can’t even describe how good it felt:
Now, every time I think of that instance or come across someone with his name, I feel proud of myself for reaching out to him instead of ashamed that I hadn’t been kind to him.
Besides, it’s nice to be reminded that, hey, we’re all human and allowed to be wrong sometimes.
But instead of listening to that little voice that says, “You’re not right about this one, fess up,” some people just double down on their incorrectness rather than admitting to it – or blame others instead of taking responsibility for the consequences of their own choices.
3) Men who don't actually listen to you
One of my biggest pet peeves is talking to someone who clearly isn’t listening to me.
As an introvert, I don’t enjoy dominating a conversation or saying something just to fill an awkward silence; I put a lot of thought and intention into my words.
So, when I have to repeat something multiple times because someone didn’t pay attention the first (or second, or third) time I shared it with them, I am not happy.
One thing that’s wrong with guys today is that many of them simply don’t listen.
If you want to trigger emotional attraction in a man (or anyone), listening is the most important conversation skill you can have; specifically, listening in images.
It’s incredibly sexy – and a huge turn-on – when a man truly listens to a woman.
It shows he respects you and values what you have to say – and takes the time to consider and remember it.
It’s like business coach and best-selling author Marie Forleo says in her book, Make Every Man Want You…
And the exact same rule applies to men regarding listening to women.
4) Men who constantly test your boundaries
Another aspect that’s wrong with guys today is when they try to push you past your points of comfort, just to test how strong your boundaries are.
Maybe you’re on a second date with a man, and you made it clear that you want to take things slow on the physical front. But that doesn’t stop him from throwing out, “Let’s go to my place after dinner and just see what happens.”
You politely decline, reminding him that you said you wanted to take things slowly, but he only doubles down on his approach – continuing to pressure you and trying to make you feel bad about setting that boundary.
I spent a week in San Diego with a man who did this, and it was very unenjoyable.
He and I had met through the entrepreneur world and been friends for a few years, then decided to explore taking our friendship into more romantic territory.
We agreed to share a hotel room for a conference, and I said I wanted to take things slow physically – but throughout the week he kept pushing my boundaries to see how much I would acquiesce.
It made the entire week completely uncomfortable and ruined not only any potential relationship with him but also my friendship with him.
I just couldn’t respect a man who didn’t respect me and made me feel like he only wanted me for my body.
Also, lesson learned: do not commit to a weeklong vacation with a new romantic interest. Start with a daytrip.
5) Men who only want you for sex
“Why do guys only want sex?” my client Amber asked me one day during our evening coaching session – and she wasn’t the first to make that assumption.
Many of my clients who’ve tried online dating have encountered men who say they’re looking for a committed relationship, but in often a very short period of time it’s clear that many of those men simply want to get laid.
This isn’t just a recent development of what’s wrong with guys – it’s been a male fallacy for all of eternity.
And the dating app hook-up culture is running rampant with these men – which is why, as an offline dating coach, I highly recommend dating without the apps.
When someone says one thing, but it’s ultimately revealed that they mean a different thing, it can shatter your trust in them.
It’s ok to be in a place where you’re not looking for a commitment. The problem is when you lie about it.
Be upfront about what you’re truly looking for, no matter what the topic is.
A great place to start is by discovering my three-part process to attract the right man, which includes knowing the key qualities of a good boyfriend, questions to ask a guy to know his intentions, and the signs of a good man so you instantly know when you have a potential keeper on your hands.
6) Men who lie (but claim they're "honest")
Yet another thing that’s wrong with guys today is the men who lie.
Lying is a lifestyle, and no one becomes a liar overnight.
It often starts with small lies – “white lies,” they tell themselves – but eventually, the person becomes more and more comfortable with speaking words that aren’t entirely (or sometimes even remotely) true.
The “fibs” then start to get bigger, and soon they’re believing their own lies.
Their moral compass becomes completely out of whack, because the gut feeling that sets in when a lie is told, which is their conscious trying to get them to tell the truth, starts feeling familiar to the point that they are more comfortable ignoring than acting on it.
I dated a man who prided himself on having “high integrity” and often said, “I never lie, cheat, or steal!”
Yet in the time we dated, I caught him in several lies to me and his family and found out he was emotionally cheating on me with an ex-girlfriend.
So not only was he lying to me and others he cared about, he was lying to himself about not being a liar.
Good grief, so complicated.
The point is, when you get comfortable lying, it’s hard to get true integrity back.
And, hey Matt: If you’re only an honest person some of the time, then you’re not an honest person.
Honesty is not just an absence of lies. It’s a commitment to share the complete truth, as it happens – especially to people who are or will be affected by that truth.
Plus, liars tend to attract and be surrounded by other liars, because honest people want nothing to do with any of them.
As soon as you catch a guy (or anyone) in a lie, release him from your life and don’t waste your time on a person who hasn’t yet learned one of the most basic and powerful principles to living a life of true integrity.
7) Men who degrade you or women in general
Women have come a long way in terms of being seen, treated, and paid equally to men – but we still have a long way to go. Especially with the older generations of men.
I was reminded of this one night at a diner in New York with a date who was about 15 years older than me. We were there grabbing a late-night snack with his guy friend and a few of their female friends.
My date’s friend, a man in his late 50s, suddenly started verbally putting women down – just enough that it wasn’t blatant, but had clear undertones of misogyny.
“Women just aren’t as smart as men, haha,” he said with a slick smile and a nauseating wink. The other women were clearly uncomfortable but tried to ignore him.
I asked him why he thought it was ok to be disrespectful to a table full of women like that.
His response was, “Lighten up, geez, I was just joking” – which of course he wasn’t, because none of what he was saying was funny and I could hear in his voice that he meant every word.
He continued with other disrespectful generalizations about women, like how they have it so much easier than men, and only want to date men with money.
Finally, after hearing enough, I grabbed my date, loudly said to him, “Your friend is a misogynist, I’d like to leave now,” and off we went.
I also recommended that he find better friends.
But, hey, the experience gave me yet another example to write about what’s wrong with guys today.
The good news is, when you discover my secrets behind how to attract a high-value man, you’ll know how to spot the wrong men in the very first conversation.
8) Men who will never grow up
Getting older can be tough – part of you may still feel like you’re in your mid-20s, but every time you look in the mirror, you’re reminded that’s, um, not the case.
And while everyone who’s able to live a long life will grow older, not all of them will actually grow up.
Often people get stuck in a certain decade or time of life and sort of… stay there.
Like the woman who still sports a huge ’80s hairstyle that looked great in 1985, when she was 24…but doesn’t hold up so well now that she’s in her mid-50s.
The longer you stay stuck in life – whether physically, emotionally, or romantically – the harder and scarier change can feel.
But remember, “The only constant in life is change,” and if you want to grow, learn, become your best self and live your best life, you have to keep moving forward and take on life’s challenges and responsibilities.
This is why it’s important to know what makes a man chase a woman, so you can let him come to you and see if he is willing to take the lead.
Meeting a full-grown man who’s still living and/or acting like a teenager – whether that’s the way he dresses, how he speaks, or his juvenile fear of commitment – just isn’t attractive.
Am I worthy of love?
If you have a pulse and your last name isn’t Putin, then you are absolutely lovable, my dear.
People are born inherently lovable – to be human is to be lovable.
Even when we have defeating thoughts like, “What’s wrong with guys today?” we know there are still plenty of good men out there. It can just feel hard to find them.
All humans make mistakes, have weaknesses, and don’t always act in a way that makes ourselves proud.
And sometimes events and conditions like mental health, trauma, an abusive partner, or a tough childhood can plant seeds that we don’t deserve to be loved or treated well.
But at the end of the day, most of us try our best, care about our friends, family, and even the well-being of strangers, and all of us – minus the warmongers – are 100% lovable.
Having a good support system, like quality friends and family who love you, can be helpful reminders of this.
Therapy can also be a great validation to start re-programming that negative self-talk and doubts about your lovability factor.
But, where do negative self-talk and doubts like, “Am worthy of love?” come from?
The negative bias of human nature
This was Mother Nature’s mechanism to keep you alive by preventing your ancestors from getting too comfortable, which risked forgetting to be on the lookout for that man-eating bear lurking outside your cave.
But thankfully, times have become much safer for many of us, so our naturally negative bias isn’t needed in the same way it was initially programmed for.
The second natural force behind your negative thought blocks is that you’re wired to spend the majority of your life on “autopilot mode.”
That means you subconsciously tend to go through the same daily routine, feel the same range of feelings, and – guess what – have the same thoughts repeated in your head over and over again.
Scientists say this “state of automate” was designed to keep you alive by limiting the energy you spend on processing new circumstances and changes to your environment. Which makes sense.
Think about your weekday morning routine: you wake up, brush your teeth, turn on the shower, put on make-up and do your hair, get dressed, grab some breakfast, then head to work.
You don’t have to expend brainpower consciously remembering how to wash your hair or chew your bagel.
You’ve conserved that energy for more important one-off or complex tasks – like that operational report due at 2:00PM, or attempting a new recipe for your friend’s housewarming potluck tonight.
When those two forces of negative thoughts and autopilot mode combine, it’s like a powerful “mega-force” that can keep negative mindsets going on repeat, to the point they’ve likely shaped your view of yourself, others, and the world in a not-so-positive way.
But if there’s one thing men can smell a mile away, it’s a bitter woman.
So, we need to remove these mindsets not just for your own sanity and happiness, but also so you can make room to attract the right man into your life and not drive him away with your negative thoughts and biases.
2 types of toxic mindset barriers
The negative mindsets that tend to prevent you from moving forward in your love life typically fall into one of two categories:
- External Barriers
- Internal Barriers
External barriers are where you tend to blame others for your troubles (like, “Guys only want sex”).
Internal barriers are when you blame yourself for not achieving what you want (like, “Am I worthy of love?”).
Clear your barriers to create a new truth
But good news: Just like you can change the default color scheme on your computer, you can change your default way of thinking and shake yourself out of autopilot with just a few simple tips!
The key is to create a new truth for yourself that supports what you want to believe and achieve.
It’s a fairly quick and painless process, once you know how to do it – which I’ll walk you through in the next article “Guys Don’t Date Anymore: The 9 Mindset Myths Keeping You Single.”
3 life-changing reasons to release resentment
Before we get into how to release the mindsets in the next article, let’s break down all the benefits you’ll enjoy once you’re finally able to let them go. Here are three life-changing reasons to release resentment.
#1 Lighten your (emotional) load
Clearing your mental roadblocks will release energy-draining thoughts and emotional weights of your past.
If you’ve ever had a relationship end with someone you deeply cared about, you probably felt a heaviness in the healing process – like a constant weight you were carrying around.
And if you don’t heal those wounds and release that emotional energy, the heaviness of those heartbreaks can start to feel like your “new normal.”
You may even start to forget what life felt like before going through those painful experiences.
Freeing yourself from those weights by re-programming your mindset will help you chuck that hefty baggage to the curb and feel a wonderful new sense of freedom.
#2 Stop attracting the wrong people
The more you let that little voice in the back of your mind chime in with negative thoughts, like, “Why don’t guys approach me?” “Why don’t guys ask me out?” or “Why do guys never want a relationship with me?” the more each of those will turn them into a self-fulfilling prophecy.
One of the fastest ways to attract something into your life is by constantly thinking about it – regardless if it’s something you want more of or less of.
So, shift your thoughts to support and focus on your desires, and start attracting more of those.
#3 Create a more powerful transformation
When you start releasing the negative mindsets about men, or yourself, that have been weighing you down, your path to love will become ten times easier and much more enjoyable.
Skipping this step risks having the techniques from the other eight steps in my Find Love Offline Formula simply be like “going through the motions.”
Even if you take action, you’ll likely self-sabotage to return back to your default negative mindset until it’s fully healed and released.
Conclusion: What is wrong with guys today?
There are always going to be men (and humans in general) who you simply don’t click with or who tend drive you nuts.
If you’ve found yourself wondering, “What’s wrong with guys today?” take a look at the eight turn-off traits you’ve likely experienced with a man or two, and know that you’re not alone:
- Men who know everything
- Men who never apologize
- Men who don't actually listen to you
- Men who constantly test your boundaries
- Men who only want you for sex
- Men who lie (but say they're "honest")
- Men who degrade you or women in general
- Men who will never grow up
The world, including the dating world, has changed a lot in the past few decades.
When you’re feeling down about your present circumstances – tough day at work, another bad first date – it’s easy to look back at “the good old days”…whenever those were…and wish things were like they used to be.
But nostalgia and the past tend to be seen through rose-colored glasses.
The pre-online dating world still had its challenges, and men still did things that drove women nuts.
(and, to be fair, vice versa.)
That doesn’t mean there’s necessarily something wrong with every single guy today, it just means we’re facing different challenges now than we were in earlier decades (and, unfortunately, some of the same ones too).
Don’t let a few – or even a lot – of bad experiences with men ruin how you feel about the entire male gender.
If the roles were reversed, you wouldn’t want to be punished by a man for the sins of other women who came before you – women you had absolutely nothing to do with.
Here are a few of the common negative mindsets around men and dating…
The benefits of releasing these mindsets are many, including:
No matter what you’ve been through in life, it’s never too late to shift your perspective or change your outlook.
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