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What do women mean when they say they want a guy to be confident?

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This is a question that might be a bit more for women.  I am trying to understand your point of view.  It is a positive question.  I am sure there are good reasons for what I heard on a discussion on a podcast and I would just like to understand what you are getting at.

A few months ago I was listening to a podcast between two women.  They were talking about the kind of man they would be interested in.  I got the impression that they were pretty easy going about various aspects of men.  For example exact looks, or how heavy they might be, or the kind of job they worked.  But one thing that they seemed to agree on fairly strongly was that they wanted the guy to be "confident".  There was not much explanation.  It was like a codeword that they understood quite well.  It was like "Oh yes definitely, he must be confident."  "I agree, yes he must be confident."

The word seemed to be difficult to understand for me.  What does confident mean in this context?  I am sure there is a good explanation.  It just seems difficult to get the meaning.

For some context in my life.  I feel like the world is a pretty unpredictable place.  I try to have some humility.  For example, at work I try to learn from others.  I am aware that there are many things I don't know.  There are situations where I don't feel particularly confident and I ask for advice.  I am often discovering that I didn't know something, or that there is a different better way of doing things.  I know that I may need to change my approach in life for career reasons, for financial reasons.  So I am not particularly confident in any one way of doing things.

In life you also have different hierarchies.  You may be in situations say with your boss where you may need to be a good listener instead of talker.

Also I think that generally women don't like men who are conceited, or aggressive, or self-centered.  They also don't seem to like men who are too loud or pushy.  These things make sense to me.

So the question remains.  What do women mean when they say that a guy has to be confident?  

It feels like there could be quite a bit of pressure there.  Like do women expect a guy to know what to do in most situations?  To consistently know what to say?  To be consistently outgoing and extroverted?  How is being confident manifested in actions?

I have a feeling that it is not the above and I am just not understanding how this word "confident" is being used.  Please explain.  Thank you.

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I'd say IMO, them saying this, means they want to see that the man is proud of himself, his accomplishments in the ways he's gone in life.

If they encounter a man who's unsettled and unsure about himself, his job.. complains a lot (negative) about too much, it will set them off.

No need to be a 'show off' and act like it's all about him, but just be sure of himself.  Hold himself well, etc.... I guess, maybe they've been around some who were super- whiney, miserable, etc..?

So, being confident, shows them the guy and his life is going well.. therefore, they may feel okay around him.

I have met many different men in different stages of their lives & experiences.  Some negative, some moody.. some leading a risky or unhealthy lifestyle.  Everyone's different.

 Things You Can Do to Boost Self-Confidence
  1. Visualize yourself as you want to be.
  2. Affirm yourself.
  3. Do one thing that scares you every day.
  4. Question your inner critic.
  5. Take the 100 days of rejection challenge.
  6. Set yourself up to win.
  7. Help someone else.
  8. Care for yourself.
Edited by SooSad33
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2 hours ago, bluejay said:


I can't speak for all women.  However, what I found extremely attractive in my husband was his self confidence with everything in life such as his job, career achievements, general good health, character, personality, morals, sincere, gentlemanly behavior and overall traits which are very appealing. 

A confident man has his act together and going places in life.

Confidence is security and knowing that you have that "can do" spirit whether it's education, career, sports, etc. 

I personally despise men who are conceited, aggressive, self-centered, selfish, loud, pushy, arrogant, inappropriate and rude. (Men don't like these traits in women either.)

I've noticed that a lot of women want a man who is self confident and on the fast track with his career.  Perhaps it's not important to all women but some women prefer a man who is confident to be a good provider or a financially secure partner.  Everyone wants a comfortable standard of living without financial hardship and struggle.  No woman in their right mind wants a hard life.   

It works both ways.  Men are very attracted to financially independent women. 

Edited by Cherylyn
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Sounds like code for not clingy. And also being straight forward.

The opposite is wishy-washy. That means indecisive, blase, boring, etc.

Sometimes it's code for "has a good job".

To me it means meaning what you say and saying what you mean without meandering, pontificating, redirecting to one's own stories, repetition or saccharine coating.

It also means actions...being reliable, decisive, consistent and operating with integrity and deliberation.

It's not however, strutting around like a pickup artist peacock who's desperation is just below the surface.


Edited by Wiseman2
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Confidence in the dating world: Not afraid to go up to a stranger and strike up a conversation, not afraid to ask out a lady or pay her a complement, not afraid to make the first move, not afraid to make strong eye contact, doesn't concern themselves or analyze signals, has np taking the lead, carries himself well walking into a room, is relaxed, self assured, can flirt with ease, etc.

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Wiseman summed it up very well. It's a straight shooter who doesn't have to shout his point. Hope this helps. 

Regarding your comment on finances or career, there's always some internal questioning about that. It shows that you're learning and growing. I think this is a separate matter. Curiosity or interest in growing or evolving is attractive also in any gender/sex. I wouldn't mistake curiosity for lack of confidence. It's quite the opposite if you're able to look at yourself honestly.

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From the example you are giving about work, it seems like you are doing something that is very common - confusing arrogance with confidence.

A confident person is never afraid to ask questions or admit that they don't know something. They keep an open mind and are willing to learn new things or new ways of doing something. They can hear a different opinion, express their differences and agree to disagree. They can see, appreciate, or accept a differing point of view without turning it into a who is right fight while remaining true to their own point OR adjusting their point of view because new information makes sense to them. Basically, confident people are open minded and curious.

Arrogant people are closed minded and busy pretending that they know everything, are self proclaimed experts without any basis in reality. They actively fear asking questions or learning something new because they think it will make them look weak or bad. If confronted with something they didn't know or different from what they believe in, they'll get into a heated argument over it. They are projecting their own judgmental and insecure nature while cloaking it as arrogance and aggression, being a loud mouth or a know it all. Arrogant people are highly insecure people cloaking their insecurities with aggression or pompous behavior.

In the dating world, a guy who is confident is clear about his interest and intentions. He'll do what he says he will. He will plan but also respect reciprocation. If a woman expresses an opinion he disagrees with, he will hear her out, but never pretend that he agrees with her. He will state his point of view clearly and politely. No pandering and never pretending to be someone or something he is not. Think of it in terms of being comfortable in your own skin. Think of it like, this is who I am and if you like it, let's date and see where this goes and if who I am is not your cup of tea, it's OK, we'll move on and find more compatible matches. Not clingy, not controlling, let the chips fall where they may because you know that you can always handle the outcome and be just fine.

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Confidence is knowing how to behave properly, treating yourself and others well without being perceived as cocky.  Confidence is self security with your life and how you choose to navigate it wisely.  People can still be not too talkative, confident yet modest and humble. 

Emotionally intelligent people are confident.  Google "emotional intelligence."  

Confidence is also saying to yourself, "I know how to perform a particular skill or skills."  There's a time and place to say it appropriately to others. Or, if you don't say it, sometimes it isn't necessary because you're secure.  My mother said confident people are on the quiet side because they're secure.  Confident people don't have to say much because they've "already got it."  I've noticed this quiet self confidence in several people in my life.  They're kind, successful, prosperous yet humble and extremely modest.  Their lives are stable and content.  There is no need to say anything at all.  Why?  Because they're confident and secure.  


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just curious.  Surely you know someone outside of dating . .either family, work related, a neighbor that you can possibly identify with being confident.  It's the same in the dating world.  Someone who is comfortable in their own skin and who isn't looking outside of them self for validation.

 I think the real question here, is how does someone become confident?   A list too long to go over, but somethings that would attribute to it - a strong family background, where as a child you knew you were valued.  Achievements.  Challenging oneself to try things and finding out youre successful at it, or proud of yourself for having tried.  Self care.  Being kind to yourself and nurturing yourself even if you didn't get it as a child.  Genetics and disposition. 

Edited by reinventmyself
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On 1/25/2021 at 3:53 PM, DancingFool said:

confusing arrogance with confidence.

Yep. This ^^^ is really important. Arrogance is over-compensation, and it signals a lack of respect and regard for others. Not a good look--in a career or in love.

Confidence, to me, simply means that a man is looking for his equal.

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