I received an interesting question.
Question for Paul: You answered a question to a guy about the top two qualities that women like, but I would like to know what you think are the top qualities men find attractive in women?
Well, I wrote a post answering a question on My Ideal Wife. I would put intelligence and virtue at the top of the list, but let me see if I can break this down a little further.
1) Honor Not everyone is given the gift of intelligence, per se. Men desire a woman with a good, kind, and loving heart and a healthy respect for herself, so that she guards her honor. This is idealized in the beautiful “girl next door.” Some women are taken advantage of by jerks and the women keep coming back to these guys after being treated like dirt– often time and time again, in a cycle. Why? Some girls or women don’t think highly of themselves– and they should! It’s unfortunate.
But men should still respect women who don’t respect themselves. One needs only to read Don Quixote and remember how he treated Dulcinea! His love for her, thinking she was a princess instead of what she was, a prostitute, had a transformative effect on her. That doesn’t mean a guy should be walked all over by women–but it does mean treating everyone with dignity.
Anyway, men– of the non-jerk variety– are attracted to women who hold themselves up with honor and have high self-esteem. Guys with low self-esteem– which is usually a cause of being a jerk– go after women with low self-esteem. Why? Because women with high self-esteem aren’t going to put up with a jerk. It’s that simple!
Women have a nesting instinct, even the most career oriented. Over the age of 24 or so– maybe even younger– stability or having some money play a factor in whether a woman will date a guy. I’m not talking about gold diggers, I’m just talking about the natural practical mentality of women, especially those with high self-esteem. She’ll ask, “How am I going to live? What kind of life am I going to have with this guy?” Being in love in a cardboard box will get really old really fast.
Men are attracted to women that are creative. They are drawn to women who cultivate beauty: aesthetic pictures or photos, food dishes, fashion, literature, decor, gardens, crafts, or any other type of imaginative creation. It is artistic intelligence, which gives a glimmer into a beautiful soul. Men are attracted to women who have this quality because it subconsciously tells us that she has the ability to love and can potentially create a beautiful, blissful nest to live in together.
But I could be wrong.
La vie est belle, profitez de chaque moment
I ‘ve been speaking to audiences large and small since I was in fourth grade—when I delivered MLK’s “I have a dream” speech at church. The largest crowd I have ever addressed was at a rally at San Francisco Civic Center in 2002—40,000 people protesting the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan and against the Israeli Occupation of Palestinian territories. Since then, I’ve given many one-time lectures at universities, high schools, youth organizations, and policy organizations– in addition to teaching college and university courses. Most of my presentations have been of high quality; at times, I’ve been in the zone and seriously moved a crowd—on fire, the words rolling like crashing waves. A few times, I’ve made the mistake of speaking over the heads of my audience. You certainly can tell you are doing that when you look at the audience and see people sitting up tall like merkats with wide open eyes and befuddled gazes, straining to understand the information. One or two times, I momentarily blanked out and completely forgot what I was talking about. The one time this happened in an extremely noticeable way, a year and a half ago (perhaps it was from mental fatigue or a high TSH level or just nerves), a woman sitting in the front row whispered to me—“You’re okay, you’re okay. You got it.” And I got back on track. Thank goodness!! There’s nothing like being in front of a full room and thinking to yourself– what was I going to say? Thankfully, that hasn’t happened more than a couple of times. Anyway, it was a great gesture by this very nice woman. I appreciated it, because it refocused my brain and helped me get back on track. It wasn’t a great presentation at all, but those are the ones you can really learn from and make improvements and work to get better. It helps to get a video copy of your presentation to review. Remember, an audience, unless you are going into an unusually hostile situation, wants you to succeed. They feel awkward too if you mess up. The audience is on your side. So speaking, like writing or painting, is an art form, and one grows better with practice. Some performances are going to be better than others. If you have talent for it, some days you will be in the zone and may amaze the audience, other days it will be good but not great. But the job of a professional speaker is to make sure that you reach a level of consistency in your presentations, so that you never disappoint and that the audience always leaves feeling informed and hopefully slightly entertained.