All boys will one day be men, but not all men will be gentlemen. Here are some tips I have put together from a little research as well as a little bit of my personal life.
1. Get the door. This is obvious, but time and time again I watch men fail. I don’t even really consider it to be ‘gentlemen’ like, this is a basic qualification for calling yourself a man. Open the door, every time! This includes the car door too. Also, don’t just open it for your date. It is rude to let the door slam as someone else is approaching it. Just take the extra five seconds and hand the door off to the next guy.
2. Get out of the car. I’m guilty. I have had times when I am going to pick a woman up, friend or lover, and I have sent the classic “I’m here” text message. Don’t be like me! There is something special and classy about getting out of the car and meeting her at the front door. If you are afraid you are going to catch her off guard, send her a 15-minute warning text. But, don’t make her come to you!
3. Walk them out. If you have had a party with friends over or maybe you just spent an evening with the lucky lady, don’t let them make the journey back to their car alone. It is a nice thing to do plus it will make them feel a little more comfortable, especially if it is late at night.
4. Dish out the compliments. Everyone likes compliments. Not everyone knows how to react to compliments, so they don’t appreciate the awkwardness that comes with it, but everyone loves compliments. Don’t be excessive, but be sure to let the people your with know that you appreciate something about them, even if you really have to dig to find out what that is.
5. Don’t go for the kill. This could mean a lot of different things to a lot of different people. So I will just explain it like this, a gentlemen is patient. With whatever you are dealing with, whether it be a first date or you are out with a group of friends, a gentlemen is patient. He doesn’t try to force anything and he doesn’t have a hidden agenda that he is trying to accomplish. Just be patient.
6. Dress to impress. It isn’t necessarily go big or go home, but when you have taken time to put yourself together it shows that being with these people are important to you. I probably wear sweats and gym shorts in public more than the average human being, but when it comes to doing something fun with my friends, I always put on something nice. Whether you are taking out your lover or your mom, dress nice.
7. Hold your tongue. No one wants to hear you talk like a pig and they definitely don’t want to hear you talk about sex. Nobody is perfect and nobody expects you to be, but it is nice to hold a conversation without having to hear an F-bomb every other sentence. Clean up your vocabulary. Also, beware of those ‘undercover’ vocab killers like ‘gay, douche, or slut.’ Be cautious of what you’re saying and clean it up.
8. Stay off your phone. Guilty. When you are out with friends, learn to set the phone aside. While it is difficult for me to leave my phone in the car, I have found it effective to leave my phone facedown on the table and encourage whoever I am with to do it also. It is still there in case of an emergency, but it isn’t distracting you by blowing up your pants every 30 seconds. Nobody wants to hangout with someone who is constantly buried in their phone.
9. Be a one woman man. I feel like it is pretty obvious that you should only commit yourself to one woman at a time. But, you should also only be dating one woman at a time. I have gone on multiple first dates in a weeks period of time, but you should never be continuously dating multiple people. After the third date, you have obviously shown there is some interest and by going out with someone else the next night, whether you have defined your relationship or not, is emotionally dishonest. Just be patient, slow down, and focus on one.
10. It is not all about you, so don’t make it about you. Don’t be that guy who spends the whole night talking about how awesome he is. Honestly, you’re probably a pretty cool person, but if you’re THAT cool, you won’t need to continuously tell people how awesome you are, they will see it. Our lives speak louder than our words, anyways. Ask questions about the people you are with and get to know them. A good margin to aim for is that you are talking less than half of the time. If you are aiming for this goal, it will pretty hard to be the guy illustrated above.
11. A woman is a woman, treat them all the same. You wife, girlfriend, mother, sister and grandmother. They are all women so you should act accordingly. Open the car door for your mother and don’t be afraid to compliment your sister. It may be weird, but being a gentlemen is weird these days anyways.
12. Learn to dance. I mean really dance, not have sex on the dance floor. Surprised I threw this in there? I have yet to meet a woman who doesn’t enjoy real dancing. Granted, a lot of people don’t know how to really dance, but after begging them to just to give it a try and get over the embarrassment factor, they always end up having a good time. Plus, you look like a stud. There isn’t anything sweeter than being able to really dance with your grandmother at your wedding. Pick up the trade, it doesn’t take a lot of time.
13. Break out the flowers. Women love flowers. Don’t be cheap. I’m balling on a budget too, but don’t cut this out, it is essential.
14. Respect her. She may have different morals, standards, or beliefs than you do. Don’t try to get her to conform to what you want, respect her where she is at and over time you guys can find the ground where you meet in the middle.
15. Keep your word. Don’t be a tool. If you say you’re going to do something, do it. If you say you are going to be somewhere, be there. Sometimes life happens, but if “life is happening” to you every week, you need to make some changes so you can be a man and honor your word.
16. Be slow to anger and slower argue. Maybe you are like me and you suffer from the “I’m always right” syndrome. Regardless of whether or not what you are talking about is true, take it easy. You don’t need to get in a heated argument and you definitely don’t need to get mad. Plus, it is embarrassing when you’re wrong, so just don’t spend too much time on what you disagree with. Just politely tell them you disagree and pick a new topic.
17. Don’t be that guy. By ‘that guy,’ I mean that guy who always has a better story, memory, or experience. There is nothing more annoying than someone who is always trying to “one-up” everybody. Just let someone enjoy the moment instead of trying to steal it from them.
18. Don’t lift yourself at the expense of other people. There are few things more unattractive than somebody who bashes on other people for a living. I get it, sometimes we get frustrated and we need to vent, but be careful not to let all your time and energy be used on talking about people you don’t like. Also, don’t bring others down to make yourself look better. A good friend of mine says “he who exalts himself will be humbled, but he who humbles himself will be exalted.” Be humble and be nice.
19. Boasting = bad. This is quite similar to the last one. If they want to know about everything you have or everything you have accomplished, they will ask you. There is no need to lay out your long list of achievements and merits on deaf ears. Plus, if they aren’t interested in hearing it, it is just annoying.
20. Be honest. Don’t bluff your stats. Don’t make yourself seem better than you really are. If you are humble and honest about who you really are 1) you aren’t going to create a false perception 2) people are going to be able to see who you really are.
Don’t lie. Just be honest. Your lies are going to catch up with you. Sometimes the truth hurts, but getting caught in a lie six months later hurts worse. Be straight forward and honest.
21. Spread the floor. The spotlight doesn’t always need to be on you. Admittedly, I enjoy being the center of attention at the dinner table when I am out with a group of friends, but don’t hog the stage. If you have that personality type that attracts people to yourself, use it to shine the light on the other people. It is not that you can’t be the the center of attention, it is that a gentlemen is humble and confident enough to share the floor.
22. Wait for everyone to get their food. This is just a nice thing to do. Everyone is hungry, wait and enjoy it together.
23. Whenever you are shaking hands with someone a) stand to your feet. Most people probably won’t even notice it, but it shows respect and importance. Just do it.
24. Whenever you are shaking hands with someone b) shake it firmly. You’re a man, learn how to shake someone’s hand.
25. Give up your seat. If you find yourself in a situation where there are not enough places for all of the women to sit down, give up your seat. No exceptions.
26. Grab the check. Right away. Don’t let there be that awkward moment of “Are we going to split it or?” Just grab it. Some people can’t afford it, trust me I understand that, but we need to think about those things before invite someone out to dinner. A gentlemen is prepared to cover the tab before he invites someone out to eat. If they really want to split it with you and you are okay with that, then split it. But, be prepared pay.
27. Take the danger zone. If you are walking on the street, the man should be walking on the side closest to the street. That way, if someone pops the curb, you are the first to die. Not really, its more to block the splashing of water from cars driving through puddles on the street. Historically, it goes back a long time, but that is not really important. Just do it. If you are hiking a trail, the man should be on the side closest to the edge. Take the danger zone.
28. Be confident. Keep your head up. Maintain good posture. Talk loud enough for people to hear you. Know who you are and believe in yourself. It makes you look better, plus women generally like a confident man. Note: Confident does not equal cocky. Check yourself before you wreck yourself.