10 signs you’re a genuinely good man, according to psychology

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Where have all the good men gone? 

It’s a question you sometimes hear, and it’s sort of an upsetting question, to be quite honest. 

Personally, I’ve met plenty of good men who are honest, full of integrity and motivated by positive intentions towards other people. 

In some ways I’d like to think I myself am a good man, with plenty of ways to go, of course. 

Are you a good man?

These characteristics suggest you most certainly are. Let’s delve into them:

1) You do your best to offer encouragement and support

Everyone benefits from encouragement and affirmation. 

A pivotal trait of a genuinely good person is the ability to provide unwavering support and belief in others’ capabilities. 

Whether family, friends, or colleagues, you stand by them, instilling confidence in their abilities to overcome obstacles and reach their potential. 

In many cases you just let others know you’re there for them and listen, rather than providing any advice or words at all. And it makes a big difference.

Psychology writer and magician Tim David puts it well in his advice to a father on how to be a good man and good dad to his son:

“Sometimes the best thing you can be is available. Let him know that he always has an ear to bend or a shoulder to cry on.”

2) You care about other people and your impact on the world

Thoughtfulness extends beyond self-awareness; it means real consideration for others.

Each person is the main character in their own life, and it’s natural that you think of yourself at times and put your own wellbeing first. It’s also healthy.

But you don’t have an excessive preoccupation with your own welfare that veers into egotism and selfishness. 

Instead you have real thoughtfulness towards others. You have good intentions towards them and want what’s best for them. 

You’re on their side and care about them for real. You’re a good man.

3) You are forgiving and don’t hold grudges

Forgiveness is both an ability and a choice. It’s especially challenging when confronted with significant wrongdoing. When somebody’s hurt you badly it’s not like you can just “forget it.”

But a willingness to forgive signals a desire to move forward, unburdened by resentment and trapped, bitter energy. Choosing forgiveness over holding onto pain and hatred is a hallmark of a genuinely good man.

You let grudges go because you love yourself and you don’t want to waste your time trapped in what was done to you and obsessing on it.

“They don’t serve the purpose that they are there to serve. They don’t make us feel better or heal our hurt,” notes psychotherapist and minister Nancy Colier LCSW, Rev. 

“The path to freedom from a grudge is not so much through forgiveness of the “other” (although this can be helpful), but rather through loving our own self.”

4) You care about politeness and courtesy

Simple acts of kindness, such as holding a door or assisting with groceries, have profound impacts on others’ well-being. 

Chivalry isn’t dead for you, and you go out of your way to treat both men and women with respect. 

This isn’t just on the surface or when it’s expected, either. 

Your politeness isn’t merely superficial; it signifies respect and consideration for others that comes from your heart. 

Demonstrating such respect reflects genuine goodness and a desire to treat others with dignity.

5) You tend to be quite generous

Generosity shines brightest in challenging times, where acts of kindness offer solace and support. 

You tend to be quite generous and give your time and energy to help others whenever you can.

This isn’t just about helping people in literal ways either, and can often be in a more emotional sense.

A genuinely good man demonstrates generosity not only in material assistance but also in hosting and supporting loved ones.

“Feelings of empathy, compassion, and other emotions can motivate us to help others. Certain personality traits, such as humility and agreeableness, are associated with increased generosity,” observes Summer Allen, PhD.

6) You prioritize honesty

While honesty may not always be convenient or popular, it remains a fundamental virtue when it comes to being a good man. 

A key trait of genuine goodness is honesty, even in situations where the truth may be uncomfortable or unwelcome. 

Your commitment to transparency and integrity garners respect and trust, despite potential consequences.

You aren’t only honest when it’s convenient, you tell the truth and stick to your word.

7) You honor your word

Promises are commitments, and honoring them demonstrates integrity and reliability. As a genuinely good man, you follow through on your promises, even in the face of obstacles or unforeseen circumstances. 

Transparency about any disruptions reaffirms your commitment to accountability and respect for others’ expectations.

“Keeping your word is an essential component of integrity. Your word is promising to do what you promise,” points out career coach and psychology researcher Ashley Stall. 

“According to psychologists, breaking your promise sends a message that you don’t value the person to whom you gave your word. It teaches people that they cannot trust you.”

8) You try your best to be empathetic

Empathy means having understanding and compassion for others’ experiences and emotions, even when they differ from your own. 

A genuinely good person empathizes with others, offering support and presence without imposing judgment or solutions. 

Your capacity for empathy fosters connection and understanding in relationships and makes you a sought after and well-liked individual by most people. 

A good man is genuinely interested in the well-being of others and does his best to be a positive presence in their lives; if that sounds like you then you’re a good man.

9) You are very patient

Patience is a virtue, often challenging to maintain in a fast-paced world. 

But a genuine goodness is reflected in patience and self-restraint, even in a busy, stressful world.

As a man of patience, you do your best not to get worked up when things are taking longer than yourself. That includes sometimes giving yourself a break and not being overly hard on yourself to move faster and produce more. 

Recognizing the value of time and perseverance, you know that patience is often the answer to questions that seem impossible to solve.

“Patience helps us avoid acting out of frustration or anger, thus preventing us from making hasty choices that could have negative consequences,” explains Robert Puff PhD.

10) You always look for win-win solutions

Your approach to societal and communal issues reflects a commitment to win-win solutions.

In terms of your ideas and your actions in the world, you look for ways that everyone can get what they want. 

You’re not in it for your ego, you’re in it to find solutions and real improvement, whether that means your job, your relationship or problems and challenges in society.

This mindset not only fosters innovation but also leads to building new connections with people and having a lot of folks who are on your side. 

They’re on your side because you’re on their side. It goes both ways. 

Seeking win-win outcomes signifies genuine goodness and a desire for collective flourishing. It means you’re an excellent man. 

Being a genuinely good man

The concept of goodness is multifaceted, often leading individuals to overestimate or underestimate their own moral standing. 

Rather than fixating on labels or categories, true growth stems from focusing more on your actions than a static label. 

It also comes from thinking about the points above and how rewarding they are for their own sake. They’re worth doing because they’re good and make life more meaningful, not because they make you good!

Ultimately, embodying goodness is its own reward, transcending external recognition or validation. If you know deep in your heart that you’re a good man, do your best to make that a reality in the world around you and the rest will fall into place.

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