How To Tell If A Guy Loves & Respects Himself (Because You Don’t Want To Be With One Who Doesn’t)

How To Tell If A Guy Loves & Respects Himself (Because You Don’t Want To Be With One Who Doesn’t) ©iStock/Geber86

Something we don’t talk about enough is the importance of self-respect in guys. It’s so important because, let’s face it, there’s no way a guy will respect you if he doesn’t respect himself first. Here’s how to tell if a guy has a healthy amount of self-esteem, because would you really want to be with one who doesn’t?

  1. He respects everyone else. Pay attention to how he treats others around him. Is he kind and courteous to people generally? If he considers himself to be “above” certain people, that’s a bad sign. It could mean he’s cocky, and usually guys who over-project confidence are doing so because they’re so insecure, it’s turned them toxic.
  2. His life story is balanced. How does he talk about himself? Is he always the victim in narratives about his life? Does he talk about himself disparagingly? These are all signs that his sense of self-worth is out of whack. If he’s able to tell his life story with an air of fairness and balance, chances are, he sees himself accurately.
  3. He owns up to his mistakes. This means he has to acknowledge them without self-pity and take on the task of changing so he doesn’t repeat himself. If he’s stuck in the same cycle, but doesn’t make any movement away from it, he doesn’t think he’s worth it. If he treats himself with respect and wants to do better, he loves himself enough to give it a shot.
  4. He’s not satisfied with the status quo. Does he challenge himself or is he complacent? If he’s always on the go to make his life, and the lives of those around him, better — that’s a surefire sign he cares about himself enough to try.
  5. He’s not down about his body. Does he generally seem to like his body? Does he notice that he has one and needs to care for it? If he isn’t good at caring for his own body, chances are he won’t be great at caring for yours… or anyone else’s, for that matter.
  6. He takes care of himself. He’s got good hygiene, a tidy apartment and a sense of style — or he at least doesn’t wear the same shirt every day without ever washing it. There are certain standards of living that indicate whether or not someone cares about themselves. If it seems like his personal care is severely lacking, it could be that he doesn’t think he’s worth anything better. Pay attention to the clean factor.
  7. He’s not vain. Vanity is not the same as self-respect. Vanity is self-absorption, and self-absorption is rooted in insecurity, which is the opposite of healthy self-love. He can be confident without being cocky, and it’s not actually that hard to tell the difference.
  8. He pays his bills. And he pays them on time! This just shows that he’s conscientious about his own well-being. Getting the lights shut off isn’t the best way to take care of yourself.
  9. He doesn’t put himself down. Self-deprecating humor is fun, but if his punchlines are always “I don’t deserve good things,” that’s a little scary. He doesn’t need to put himself down that way if he’s truly accepting of who he is.
Becca Rose is a writer with high hopes for her student loan debt. She's a musician and aspiring novelist, but don't ask her to write poetry, because she's terrible at it. She has written for HelloGiggles, The Toast, The Huffington Post, and more. You can find her on Twitter @bookbeaut