9 Things To Look For in a Guy Before It Gets Too Serious

things to look for in a guy

You’re newly single and looking for love, but the dates you’ve gone on have been less than ideal.

You thought Joe was going to be your Prince Charming…but he turned out to be a dud.

Then Phil, who smooth-talked his way into your heart turned out to only want to get into your bed.

You want love—you truly do—but you’re starting to feel like you’re looking for a needle in a gigantic haystack.

How can you keep from wasting your time and energy on the wrong men? If only there was a guide that would tell you exactly the things to look for in a guy to know whether he was worth your time or not.

Well…guess what? I’ve created just such a guide right here! This article will help you tune in faster to whether a man has potential or not so you stop wasting time on the wrong ones.

Things to Look for in a Guy to Make Sure He’s Right for You

Paying attention to how a man acts when you first start dating will help you understand whether there is the potential for something long-term or if you shouldn’t waste your time on him. Let’s look at those things to look for in a guy so you know one way or another.

1. You Have Similar Values

Whether it’s having similar religious beliefs, both wanting to get married, or both of you supporting the same political party, these are fundamental building blocks of a relationship.

Consider what having dissimilar values might look like: imagine dating a man who, unlike you, didn’t believe in marriage. Going to church is a big part of your life, and he’s a proud atheist. You believe in fighting climate change, he’s a climate change denier.

Do you really see this being a great and long-lasting relationship? Of course not. You want someone who feels similar, if not the same, about what matters to you.

But don’t fret if you don’t have identical values: Dr. Gary Brown, a couples’ therapist in Los Angeles, says you don’t have to feel the same about everything:

“You can have a very successful relationship, without having to share all of the same values. You just have to share the same basic ‘must-have’ values.”

Not sure what your must-have values are? Take some time to reflect on what’s most important to you. You might find it easier to list deal-breakers to help you filter out men who don’t share your values.

2. He Wants a Relationship

couple looking out window

Is he looking for a relationship too? That’s a great sign!

You know you want a relationship, so it stands to reason that one of the things to look for in a guy is that he wants one, too. And yet, I know countless women who overlook this tiny—yet hugely important—characteristic. They try to convince themselves that down the road, this man will tumble into love with them and be a great partner.

When a man says he doesn’t want a relationship…believe him! Don’t waste your energy trying to convince him otherwise. You’ll just end up frustrated and hurt.

On the other hand, if this man is making every indication that he is looking for something long-term like you, it’s all systems go! Of course, that doesn’t guarantee you’ll end up together forever, but you at least have the possibility.

3. You Have Conversational, Physical, and Emotional Chemistry

These three types of chemistry are essential for a serious relationship. Sure, you can have physical chemistry that will peter out after a few months when you realize you have nothing in common. But the alchemical cocktail of all three makes for a great combination.

When you talk (in person or on the phone), do you never run out of things to say to one another?

When you’re together, do you feel a magnet pulling you to one another’s bodies?

Does he make you feel safe, secure, and cared for?

If the answer is yes, then you are off to a great start with a fantastic match.

4. You’re in a Similar Place in Your Lives

older couple in bed

Are you in a similar phase in your lives? That’s great!

We go through different phases in our lives. In our 20s, many people get married and start having kids. In our 30s, it might be all about moving ahead careerwise. In our 40s, maybe those kids leave the nest. I’ve found that people who are at similar phases in their lives are more compatible. Maybe his son left for college last year and now you’re nervously preparing for your daughter to leave. He can support you and let you know what to expect.

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Maybe you’re both dating post-divorce but are ready to find love.

These similarities are a good thing! On the other hand, if your kids are grown and you’re done raising kids, you probably don’t want to date a man with young children. It’s all about being attuned to what you want in your life right now and looking for a partner who wants the same.

5. He Respects You

Respect is one of those foundation pieces that make for a great relationship down the road. If he respects and supports you, he’ll always do so.

If it’s too early to gauge whether he does respect you, look to see how he treats other people in his life like friends, family, or even the waiter at the restaurant he takes you to. It’s hard for people to cover up their negative flaws for long, so if you see signs that he’s rude to people, he’s probably not going to be the most respectful partner to you.

6. He Makes an Effort in the Relationship


Is he texting or calling you as much as you are him? Do you take turns planning (or even paying for) your dates? Do you feel like he’s actively trying to take the relationship forward? If so, that’s great, because that’s one of the things to look for in a guy who wants a long-term relationship.

There’s debate about whether a relationship is ever truly equal, but there should be a general give and take that balances things out. If there isn’t, if you feel like you’re doing all the heavy lifting, it’s time to move on. Somewhere out there is a man who wants to give as much as you do.

7. He Has His Sh#% Together

My mother is a divorce attorney (ironic, I know), and she’s seen firsthand that the #1 reason for divorce is finances. That might be because one person was hiding a serious spending problem from the other. It might be something else. But you’re at a point in your life where you need a man to have his stuff together financially.

Don’t get me wrong; I am not telling you to date or marry a man who is wealthy for his money. Date or marry for stability. You want a man who is established in his career, who knows how to stick to a budget, and who is open about his finances. He doesn’t have to be rich; he just has to have it together.

8. He’s Emotionally Balanced

man balancing

A man should be able to handle the stresses of life in a balanced way.

When I say “emotionally balanced,” what I mean is that he can handle stressful situations without falling apart. Anxiety, stress, depression…these things happen to all of us. It’s how we handle them that matter. When you’re part of a couple, how you handle them also affects your partner.

It also means that he’s emotionally mature. He isn’t going to run from a conversation about feelings, and he knows how to communicate his own.

In a nutshell, you want a grown man!

9. He Treats You Like a Partner

You are not a child. You have likely been adulting for quite some time, so you don’t need a man who just wants to control the relationship and you.

You need someone who will care about your opinion and make decisions with you. Essentially, you want to be treated as an equal partner in this relationship.

If a man is domineering or throws a fit when you don’t do what he wants, this is not a partnership. You won’t be able to change his need for control, so move on.

If He Doesn’t Have These Qualities…

Now that you know a few of the things to look for in a guy to determine whether he’s long-term material, you have to address what to do if he doesn’t make the list. Few will. The key is identifying quickly whether a man is who you need a partner to be, and if he’s not, letting go of your desire to make him that partner.

Don’t settle for a “good enough” relationship. You may think that the guy you’re dating is almost the things you’re looking for, but if he’s not those things now, he won’t suddenly change and become them. When you settle for a “good enough” relationship, you are selling yourself short from ever finding what you truly deserve in love.

Know that a better fit is out there. I know you may have been looking for Mr. Right for a while, and you’re probably tired of looking, but realize this: you’re closer to finding him than you’ve ever been. You’re getting better and better at filtering through the wrong men so you can make way for the right one.

Don’t be afraid to be alone. It’s far from the end of the world. In fact, there are tons of benefits to being on your own. And if you’ve always found yourself swinging from one relationship to another with no breathing room in between, you might find that being alone for a while helps you reset your expectations about what you want in a mate.


I know a lot of people mindlessly date. They aren’t putting a lot of effort into really intuitively paying attention to what the person they’re dating is communicating with his actions and words, but trust me: if you put a little more energy into it, you’ll be able to see quickly whether a man is worth your time or not.

Do you have other things to look for in a guy that you’d add to this list? Leave a comment below to share with the Sexy Confidence community!

If you’re ready to break destructive patterns that are keeping you from finding love, check out my Breaking Your Love Patterns course.

things to look for in a guy

PS. If you’re ready to start attracting men on a deep emotional level, then join me on this free webinar to discover the 3 steps to building emotional attraction – Register here to get started (it’s 100% free).


Adam LoDolce

Love Strategist

My true passion in life is transforming your love life by giving you specific tools and techniques that you can use to attract long lasting love. I got started when...Read Adam's Story

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1 year ago

Great article! And an important reminder not to settle.!!!

Esther Ezenwa
1 year ago

Am really enlighten by this group and I will love to be a part of this group.

1 year ago

Good information. I appreciate it. Thank you.

1 year ago

hi i am dating a guy 6 months now. in the first 4 months of the relationship went very well until he started pulling away and i see more and more signs that he is not into me. he is doing this hot and cold all the time. i have never met any of his friends yet, we hang out, go out in public , i have just recently been to his flat after 6 months. i also think he is emotionally unavailable and he told me a week ago that he only want a physical relationship but he wants… Read more »

1 year ago
Reply to  marsha

I am sorry to hear you’re struggling to let go of the guy, even though from what you said, you know the score with him. I was in your shoes. I know it’s tough, but promise yourself – say to yourself everyday – that you love yourself and respect yourself and will not contact him. Honor yourself and give yourself the permission to let him go. Best wishes to you!

1 year ago

Hi, I have been in a fwb situation for almost 3 years. Initially I had no idea he had a gf. When I found out I wanted to end things but he would and still does not want to. He says he wants to f..k me forever????… Since then I have tried numerous times to end things. I blocked him on my phone but he then shows up at my house … To be honest, I think I am inlove with him. This article made me realize that he actually has none of the qualities I would like in a… Read more »

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