10 signs you’re dating a genuinely nice guy, according to psychology

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Modern-day dating in a minefield. 

As everyone is on their best behavior when they start dating someone, it’s challenging to determine if your new guy is as lovely as he seems.

A guy pretending to be nice can only put on a facade for so long. 

But often, by the time you uncover a man’s true personality and intentions, you’ve already fallen for him!

Wouldn’t it be great if there was a way to spot the ‘fake nice’ guys sooner rather than later?

Well, thanks to psychological research, there is. 

Look for the following 10 signs during your first few dates with a guy to better determine if he really is one of the good ones!

1) He attentively listens to you

As research shows, effective communication is vital to any successful relationship. 

Particularly, being heard and understood by your partner is essential for fostering emotional connection and intimacy. 

According to psychologists, genuinely good people demonstrate active listening. 

This communication style involves listening to the words spoken and understanding the underlying emotions and intentions behind them. 

So, how do you spot this sign?

A nice guy will make you feel valued and respected by giving you his full attention when you speak. 

He will not think twice about putting down his phone or stopping whatever he is doing to listen to you. As you talk, he will ooze empathy, responding thoughtfully to what you share.

As a result, you will feel comforted and content in his presence. This is because perceiving active listening activates the reward system in the brain, which arouses positive feelings.

2) He values & seeks your opinions

Nice guys are highly respectful. 

They see the real value of the women in their lives, whether it’s their mother, partner, or sister, and they treat them accordingly. 

Nice guys don’t see themselves as superior to you. Instead, they genuinely value and respect your thoughts and opinions.

So a nice guy will listen to and take your views on board. They won’t dismiss your opinion or make you feel like you are unworthy or do not know anything.

Moreover, a nice guy will seek your opinion when he needs clarity or support, as he recognizes the importance of your perspective in decision-making and problem-solving. 

This creates a relationship rooted in mutual respect and equality. Research shows that relationship satisfaction is higher when both partners feel heard, understood, and valued. 

3) He respects your boundaries

Nice guys will never:

  • Pressure you
  • Push your limits
  • Make you feel bad for asserting boundaries

Unlike manipulative men, nice guys can and will take no for an answer. 

For example, if you express that you are uncomfortable doing something, they will simply say ok and let it go. 

They won’t try to make you feel bad or guilt-trip you into changing your mind. They will also not get offended by the rejection and respond with an insult.

This is because nice guys respect your need for personal space and acknowledge your limits and preferences.

Demonstrating sensitivity and respect for your boundaries fosters a sense of trust and security in the relationship.

4) He takes responsibility for his actions

Because nice guys are not driven by ego, they can identify and admit when they are wrong and thus take responsibility for their actions and mistakes.

This significantly differs from a man with manipulative qualities or a huge ego who will lie and shift blame to protect his image.

Psychology shows that accountability is an indicator of emotional maturity. 

A guy’s ability to own up to mistakes and apologize sincerely fosters trust and forgiveness in the relationship. 

And as this 2012 study found, forgiveness is key to sustained relationship satisfaction!

5) He supports your decisions no matter what

In a healthy relationship, both partners should feel supported and encouraged to pursue their goals and aspirations, even if they differ from their partner’s desires. 

A genuinely good guy will stand by you and support your decisions, even if they challenge his preferences or expectations. 

For example, let’s say you have a career or hobby that many people would frown upon. 

Even if a nice guy would prefer you had a different hobby/career, they would never dream of trying to change you.

They know it is important to you and prioritize your happiness above all else. So they will support you in any endeavor you take.

According to licensed psychologist Dr Michael Messina, feeling supported by our partner increases emotional intimacy and relationship satisfaction. 

But nice guys aren’t just supportive; they are also encouraging…

6) He actively encourages you to pursue your dreams

A genuinely decent guy will actively encourage you to pursue your dreams and aspirations, cheering you on every step of the way. 

A nice guy will always be your biggest cheerleader, whether it’s a career goal, a new hobby, or a personal challenge.

They will:

  • Regularly ask you how things are going
  • Give your encouragement and motivation whenever you’re struggling or feeling down
  • Look for ways to help you move closer to your goals

If the guy in your life does this, he is undoubtedly one of the good ones.

Even though your dreams and goals do not directly impact his own life, he knows that they will impact your happiness, and your happiness determines his happiness.

Therefore, he knows that taking time to encourage you is well worth it!

His willingness to do this comes from his priorities and values, which we’ll discuss next…

7) He prioritizes personal development

Nice guys are typically always trying to improve themselves, so naturally, they want to help you improve, too.

Nice guys are self-aware. They reflect on their actions, words, and behaviors and identify areas for improvement.

And then they seek to improve, becoming 1% better every day.

When someone prioritizes their growth and development, their actions and habits often inspire their partner to do the same. This creates a supportive environment for mutual growth and exploration.

A guy’s commitment to self-mastery will be apparent in many other ways, such as his openness and honesty…

8) He doesn’t hide how he feels about you

As all psychologists will agree, open and honest communication is essential for building trust and intimacy in a relationship.

A genuinely decent guy will not hesitate to express his feelings for you

He will let you know if he likes you rather than keeping you second-guessing.

But this doesn’t mean he will only show his feelings through words.

According to author and counselor Dr Gary Chapman, most people have a primary “love language.” And out of the five love languages, only one involves words of affirmation.

Therefore, rather than telling you how he feels, he might let you know how much you mean to him through nonverbal expressions like:

  • Physical affection
  • Acts of kindness
  • Quality time
  • Gift giving

However he chooses to show his feelings, his openness fosters deep emotional connection and creates a sense of security in the relationship.

Another reason you’ll always know where you stand with a nice guy is because of his consistency…

9) He is consistently available for you

Nice guys do not blow hot and cold. 

They will not act super affectionate one minute and then ignore you the next. They also won’t take hours (or days) to respond to a simple text.

Because nice guys’ intentions are always genuine, they do not waste time playing games. Instead, they are consistently available for you, both literally and emotionally.

They are there through the good times and the bad. So you can rest assured that a nice guy won’t disappear after an argument.

This behavior builds immense trust and reliability, as you know that your guy will always be there whenever you need him. 

And in my opinion, reliability is one of the biggest indicators of commitment!

10) He treats everyone with kindness & respect

Finally, how a person treats others says a lot about their character.

So when determining if a guy is genuinely decent, don’t just look at how he treats you, but how he treats everyone.

For example, ‘fake-nice’ guys may shower you with compliments and affection but then treat their restaurant server, or worse, mother, like scum. 

This is a HUGE sign that they are just pretending to be nice.

They are only treating you with kindness because they want something from you, which is a form of coercive control.


A genuinely good guy will treat everyone with kindness and respect, regardless of background or status.

He won’t:

  • Talk down to others
  • Judge them
  • Be nice to their face and then insult them behind their back

Final thoughts

While dating is never easy, psychology offers valuable insights into deciphering the character of your new partner.

By looking for the signs above, it will be easier to spot and filter out any secretly toxic or manipulative men and finally nab yourself one of the good ones!

Gemma Clarke

I am a certified yoga and mindfulness teacher and an experienced content writer in the spirituality and personal growth space.
I’m passionate about sharing my expertise through the power of
words to inspire and guide others along the path of personal and spiritual development.

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