I wasn’t always ready to show up in a relationship the way I needed to. Here’s how I knew that changed.
As we grow through phases of life, priorities change, as does what we feel ready to step into.
For some men, myself included, we want to have a variety of experiences in order to know for sure what path we should be on and what kind of life and relationship we want to pursue. If any relationship at all.
These experiences bring us new perspectives and a level of maturity that allows us to show up the way we need to for a significant other.
1. He’s living with the future in mind.
I have a tendency to live in the moment. To make decisions based on what I see in front of me and what I want immediately. Purchasing something that wasn’t a good investment, pursuing someone I knew wouldn’t lead to a lasting relationship, ordering takeout even though I was trying to lose weight.
When I began to make decisions based on longer term outcomes, it signaled to me that I was ready to build a deeper foundation. Whether it be a relationship, a career choice, a home buying decision, or otherwise, when we realize the decisions we make today have repercussions down the road, we live a fuller and more meaningful life.
2. He only says what he means.
It takes a man who is secure in himself to stop saying things just because he thinks you want to hear them.
Maturity means being willing to express yourself fully and to stop making promises you can’t keep.
3. He won’t avoid uncomfortable conversations.
As an extension of #2, sometimes we avoid conversations we don’t want to have because they’re awkward, or could hurt someone’s feelings.
While we should never intentionally hurt or insult someone, maturity shows us that clear communication about both the good and the bad is always the right idea.
It was only when I learned that, that I could build deeper and stronger bonds in my relationships because they were based on honesty and truth.
4. He’s not just trying to get into your pants.
Don’t get me wrong, obviously a healthy sex life is an important part of a happy relationship. My point here is, the sex isn’t going to be the end goal.
Men know when they’ve met a woman they want to invest more time in, and when that happens, sex will be pushed further down the list of priorities and be replaced with conversation and connection.
Maturity also teaches us that all of this makes the sex even better and more fulfilling. Win/win.
5. His intentions are genuine.
How do you know the difference between someone who’s just playing a role and someone who’s genuine in their actions?
Consistency over time is the only way to establish real trust. Consistency in how he acts around you and others, in how he lives his life, in how what he says and what he does are fully congruent.
6. You don’t intimidate him, you inspire him.
Great relationships function as a team. You will have strengths he doesn’t have, and vice versa.
A man who is secure in himself will understand this and allow you to shine in the areas where you excel. Conversely, he will show you his own strengths and what he brings to the table as your teammate.
Men who are still insecure and immature will shy away from a woman who has stepped into a new level because they simply won’t know how to interact. Allow him to be on his way and to find someone in the same stage of life.
7. He faces challenges head on.
Whether it be in his personal or professional life, something shifts in a man when he stops being afraid of rejection.
He will set higher goals, dream bigger dreams, work harder work.
He will take bigger risks and understand that he has the ability to climb out of any defeat.
He trusts himself because he has built up the confidence over time through trials and tribulations.
No relationship comes without challenges, and we need to know our partner will be there to handle them alongside us.
8. He prioritizes you.
When I was younger, I just wanted to do what I wanted to do. I had no interest in making decisions that affected two people, so I purposely stayed single for a long time while I lived my life in whatever way I chose.
It was only when I felt ready to be part of a team and prioritize another person’s interests that I knew a healthy relationship was a possibility.
If I was still unable to compromise and be flexible for someone else, I’d have no business being in a relationship.
9. He always encourages you to be even better.
Relationships are the strongest when both teammates are lifting each other up. Encouraging, inspiring, supporting.
A man who tries to hold you back or drag you down hasn’t yet developed the maturity to understand that you both work best as a cohesive unit when you’re both at your strongest.
Anyone who tries to keep you down is nervous you’ll outshine them and take away their thunder.
The man who’s ready for you will stand beside you so you can shine together.
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