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12 Things A Real Gentleman Does Differently

12 Things A Real Gentleman Does Differently

Three-piece suits, pocket squares and fob watches may be coming back into fashion, but that doesn’t mean the guys wearing them can be classified as ‘gentlemen.’ Today we’re going to have a look at the qualities a true gentleman possesses. I’d also like to point out this is just as relevant to women, because essentially being a gentleman means not being an arsehole to people, and there are plenty of girls who can apply this philosophy to their every day lives. So when you’re reading these points, be aware I’m talking to both genders. Also, know you won’t be finding any rubbish about dress sense, wine knowledge or vocabulary here.

1. They’re Respectful…To Everyone

I get really annoyed at the misconception that a gentleman, or an actual guy who is nice, should be respectful to a woman he is interested in. This simply perpetuates the idea that respect is merely a tool to be exchanged for sex. A true gentleman, and gentlewoman for that matter, should be polite and respectful to everyone, regardless of gender. He or she shouldn’t be using it as a means of attraction.

2. They Support Their Partners’ Dreams And Goals

Unless his partner aims to be a crackhead, a gentleman should respect her life ambitions, even if they can be difficult to achieve. In my case, my partner is incredibly supportive of my freelance writing because he is awesome and believes in me. By the same token, I don’t think it’s anyone’s sole responsibility to financially support someone who isn’t bringing anything to the table themselves. Again in my case, my partner does earn more money, but I also work two additional jobs to contribute to the household. That’s my choice, not his. In my opinion, you should never expect someone else to support your goals and dreams if you won’t support your own; financially or emotionally.

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3. They’re Honest And Open

A gentleman is less likely to engage in the oh-so-attractive game playing when it comes to romance. He is open and honest, because when you find the right person, neither of you feel the need to go down the road of calculating how many days after a date you should call, pretend not to actually like them so they’ll like you more, and purposely withdraw affection.

4. They Don’t Abandon Their Partner When Things Get Tough

Relationships aren’t always sunshine and rainbows. Some days they can be incredibly tough, no matter how much you love each other. A gentleman doesn’t run away when things get a little hard; he supports his partner and the relationship itself.

5. They’re Polite – To Everyone

Again, politeness shouldn’t be used as a weapon for pants-dropping. A gentleman should be polite to everyone, with no ulterior motive.

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6. They Keep Doors Open For Everyone

This may be a controversial point, because I know a lot of people hate it when guys open doors for them. But here’s my philosophy on the subject: If I’m about to walk through a door, I always either let the person behind me go first, or keep it open for him or her once I’ve gone through. Perhaps the former is a bit much, but it’s something I’ve always done. I do however think it’s incredibly rude if I’m right behind someone and he or she lets the door close in my face. So in my humble opinion, I think a gentleman should keep a door open for someone behind him, regardless of gender or age. It’s just common courtesy.

7. They Compromise

Gentlemen know compromise is a necessity when it comes to a happy, healthy relationship. Regardless of their own wants or needs (including rules about anything they have in their heads, including this list) they take their partners’ opinions and needs into consideration. Once again, the same goes for us too ladies. No matter who you are, it is not all about you.

8. They’re Feminists

Yeah, you heard me. Feel free to start writing your flame comments now if you like. Despite the fact that it’s 2014, plenty of people (both male and female) are laboring under the misconception that feminism is a dirty word. In addition, they confuse the word ‘feminism’ with ‘misandry.’ A real gentleman is aware feminism is the belief that both men and women deserve to be treated equally, and they will have absolutely no problem with that.

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9. They Help People

Gentlemen go out of their way to help people around them, whether they’re loved ones or someone they haven’t met. I’m not saying they need to devote their entire lives to helping others every second, but random acts of kindness never go astray.

10. They Put Family First

Whether their partner, parents and siblings or even close friends; these people will always come first to a gentleman. They don’t abandon their sick wife to go drinking with their mates, or stay home on Easter because they can’t be bothered seeing the in-laws. Family is everything to them.

11. Their Actions Speak Louder Than Words

A friend said to me recently, a gentleman is “someone whose actions reach further than his own self-interest.” I think that sums it up beautifully.

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12. They Don’t Claim to Be ‘Nice Guys’

Gentlemen, in the truest sense of the word, are not ‘Nice Guys.’ In case you’re unaware, ‘Nice Guys’ are dudes who claim to respect women and to be super nice and yet complain when girls don’t immediately drop their pants for them. Usually this is because the girl in question didn’t react favorably to unsolicited poetry, declarations of love, expensive presents or referring to her as “milady” within the two weeks of meeting. This is usually followed by calling her ‘slut’ or the b-word and whining about being ‘friend zoned’ again. These guys are in no way nice and are certainly not gentlemen; regardless of how many doors they open or dozens of roses they send. They simply cover up their psychological issues and inherent misogyny with a veil of outdated chivalry and fedoras.

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Tegan Jones

Tegan is a passionate journalist, writer and editor. She writes about lifestyle tips on Lifehack.

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Last Updated on May 28, 2020

10 Success Principles for Living Your Dream Life

10 Success Principles for Living Your Dream Life

Are you stressed out and overwhelmed, wishing you had more time to do the things that really matter? Are you ready to do something better, something special in your life or your career?

You were born with a gift that no one else in the world can express like you. When you dance to your own music, you naturally develop your innate abilities and excel in work and life. You are a total rock star. But when you live someone else’s idea of who you should be, it throws off your groove.

Many people—maybe you—stopped following their dreams way too early in life because their talents were ignored, minimized, or shamed. They didn’t have the chops to win an American Idol competition or nab an Olympic gold medal, so they stopped expressing their inborn gifts altogether.

You don’t need to be an award winner to rock your life. Living your dream life is about discovering your superpowers and feeling vibrant and joyful when you use them. It’s about owning what makes you unique and finding like-minded people to support you.

Here are 10 success principles to help you live a rich and rewarding life on your terms that have worked with thousands of people in my workshops and will work for you, too.

1. Get a Hobby to Move Closer to Your Dreams

If you never became a professional dancer or a world-renowned author, it does NOT mean you should stop dancing or writing! These activities make you come alive, even if you “only” do them as favorite pastimes.

Engaging in a hobby is one of the most important success principles you can follow to move closer to your dreams.

When you try something creative for the first time or in a long while, you begin to see opportunities at work and in life that you were unaware of before. You also feel happier and more energized, according to a recent study from New Zealand.[1]

Some of my most burned-out executive clients reinvigorated their careers by discovering a creative outlet that refueled them after the workday ended. Research at San Francisco State University shows that having a hobby lowers stress and helps you succeed at work.[2]

So, give yourself permission to try new things and revisit old passions you gave up long ago. Setting aside just one hour a week for personal exploration can significantly change your life.

Who knows? Your creative outlet could transform into a thriving business or lead to a new profession down the road.

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2. Focus on Your Strengths, Not Your Weaknesses

Did you know that you are more likely to succeed when you develop your natural strengths rather than work on your weaknesses? The problem is that you probably don’t know where your true talents lie.

Here are a few options to help you discover your unique strengths. You can:

  • Take the VIA Character Strengths Survey[3]
  • Try Gallup’s CliftonStrengths Assessment[4]
  • Answer a few Superpower Questions

Once you understand what makes you tick, you can use these skills at work and your personal life to get more done in less time. If you boost your unique abilities through practice and study, you can accelerate your career and become a leader in a field that matters to you. It’s worth investing in yourself this way.

3. Jumping off a Cliff is NOT Required

Here’s the deal: most people are too afraid to change. When participants first come to my workshops, they tell me they have mouths to feed, bills to pay, and fear that if they follow their dreams, someone will get hurt.

The old saying “leap and the net shall appear” does not comfort them. Because they are hesitant to plunge into the unknown, they believe their only option is to stay put where they are in life. Can you relate?

You do not have to sacrifice the life you have now to start a new one. I was a psychology professor by day and singer by night for years before I transitioned into a full-time music career.

Just take a little time out each week to do what enlivens you through a hobby, volunteer work, etc. Get a feel for it.

Is it what you really want? If so, increase the time you spend doing it and make the transition when the time feels right.

4. Give Your Inner Critic Some Love

The main culprit that keeps you from stepping outside your comfort zone and getting the life of your dreams is KCRP or K-CRAP – the radio station that plays 24/7 in your head. The moment you try to do something interesting with your life it slaps you down with such chart-topping killer hooks as “Who do you think you are?” and “You’ll never be good enough!”.

Have you ever noticed that KCRP’s mean-spirited DJ sounds like your parents, teachers, bosses, and other authority figures who shut you down creatively? These folks don’t need to stifle you any longer (although they often still do) because your inner critic does it for them. That keeps you stuck in a rut.

To break free, try thinking of this DJ as a gruff old grandfather who gives you crap to keep you safe. Remember, this grumpy grandpa is woefully out of touch with the times. So, his stern opinions don’t really matter much, do they? Give him a pat on the back for his good intentions, and put your focus back on what makes you come alive.

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This success principle will give you the courage to venture into the unknown where you can dance to the beat of your own drummer.

5. Embrace Your Inner Weirdo

Many of us don’t go after our dreams because we’re afraid folks will find out how odd or strange we are. But our little eccentricities often turn out to be our greatest strengths. Yes, it’s good to be quirky.

Odds are, you lost track of your true passions and talents before you were even old enough to know you were getting off-track. You became slowly “adulterated” by learning to:

  • Take on family roles that don’t match who you really are.
  • Spit back what teachers taught you in school rather than risk getting bad grades for being original.
  • Hide parts of yourself that don’t seem acceptable to certain social groups.

The price for fitting in is that you may wind up leading a life that doesn’t fit you all that well. Your true calling becomes clear when you embrace what makes you different from others and allow yourself to stand out from the crowd, even if it feels awkward.

Often, the very qualities you view as your flaws are your greatest gifts.

6. See the Bigger Picture to Find Your True Calling

I cannot stress the importance of this success principle enough. Your true calling is right in front of you. But you may miss it because you’re looking for it in the wrong place.

To “see” it clearly, try widening your point of view.

Case in point: Maria felt she needed to retire early from being a police detective, so she could travel abroad. I encouraged Maria to think of ways that she could continue to serve as a law enforcer (a career she loved) and travel overseas at the same time.

A few months later, Maria landed a job with the United Nations in Bosnia training the local police force to understand and embrace human rights procedures.

Like Maria, you are an everyday rock star capable of accomplishing greater things than you can imagine. Is what you’re looking for right in front of you, too? Do you have an inkling of what it may be?

Look beyond your day-to-day activities, your current job, and even the town you live in. View your life from an eagle’s perspective and be open to new possibilities.

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7. Try a Little Wish-List Magic

Pretend I’m your fairy godmother and I give you permission right now to be your most magnificent self. What kind of life would be music to your ears? It doesn’t matter whether it seems unattainable or even downright crazy. Write it down on a wish list.

Get quiet. Be honest. Think big.

What would you like your career, your relationships, your health, your finances, and your spiritual life to be like? Jot down enough details so that your wishes seem tangible to you. Then, look at this list every morning before you start your day and every night before you go to sleep.

Sounds silly? It’s not. It works! Permitting yourself to daydream about a rich and fulfilling life is the first step to manifesting it.

8. Take Breaks to Get Clues About Your Ideal Future

Did you know that working straight through to a deadline leads to diminishing returns? Research shows that taking a break for 15 minutes every 75 to 90 minutes can help you recharge, refresh your focus, and get more done in less time.[5]

Wait, it gets better! A Stanford study shows that walking increases your creative output increases by 60 percent. Doing repetitive activities such as walking, running, riding your bike, swimming, and sweeping allow solutions to problems to pop into your mind out of nowhere.[6]

What does this success principle have to do with creating your dream life?

These mini-breaks allow you to get vital clues for what to do next to attain your ideal future. Plus, you won’t waste precious time and energy getting lost in other people’s agendas.

9. Take Action on Your Inspired Ideas

Once an inspired thought pops into your mind, take action.

This is one of the most powerful success principles for turning your dreams into reality; the sooner the better. Whatever it is—from calling an old friend to taking a new route home—be sure to do it!

Pay attention to your oddball hunches. You need to go after what you want, not just dream about it. As comedian Jim Carrey warns,

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“You can’t just visualize and go eat a sandwich.”

10. Count Your Rockstar Moments

Still not sure you have what it takes to get your dream life? This final success principle is guaranteed to help.

Make a list of everything you’ve ever accomplished. As you read back through it, put a star next to each item, and let it sink in.

You’ll be pleasantly surprised by how good you’ll feel about yourself afterward. You’ll also see how effective you’ve been in the past at getting what you want. You’ve succeeded before, you can succeed again.

You already rock. You just need to own it. Trust me, you’ve got this!

Final Thoughts

Eleanor Roosevelt said,

“The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.”

Following these success principles will help you find the time and energy to do the things that really matter and live with clear intention.

By spending just one hour a week doing something you love, focusing on your strengths and achievements, embracing what makes you different, and acting on inspired ideas, you can create a life that is a perfect fit for you, step-by-step.

If you don’t have a clue about what your dream life could look like yet, don’t worry. Your heart knows. It has been “talking” to you for a long time. It’s just being muffled by KCRP, buried under a lot of “shoulds” and fear.

This article can also help you figure out the life you truly want to live: How to Get Motivated and Be Happy Every Day When You Wake Up.

Stand still, get quiet, and listen. It’s constantly telling you what you need to do to realize your own rockstar potential. It may be just a whisper now, but the more you pay attention to it, the louder it will get, and the easier it will be to follow.

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Featured photo credit: Rahul Dey via unsplash.com

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