If you look out into the world of popular culture, media and academia today you can get a sense of what the general zeitgeist or “society” suggests is of great value in a woman. This includes things like physical beauty (think Instagram), economic/consumerist considerations and credentialism (think the emphasis on college/graduate degrees and high-paying jobs), and modern feminism (think of contemporary troupes like that of the “strong independent woman,” the desperation for more female CEOs and presidents, or the popular view that women are “exactly like men” in their dating desires for lots of casual uncommitted sex). As a guy, if I introspect on what I find desirable in a woman I can find several qualities that are emphasized in the zeitgeist today, but a few that are much less prevalent. In this take, I’d like to focus on three of those unsung qualities:
Physical fitness: This is really any disciplined habit of exercise and fitness. Staying in shape confers huge benefits to overall health (including emotional health), general hotness, and sex drive. All good things! This is generally under threat today due to poor diet, sedentary lifestyle, inadequate sleep and chronic stress. A woman who takes care of herself and has a regular workout routine is a huge plus. This can be any sensible combination of resistance training, cardio, yoga, etc. If she’s moving and sweating regularly, it’s all good! Maintaining physical fitness and peak attractiveness used to be universally celebrated in the zeitgeist, but today is being at least partially undermined by the more nonsensical wing of the “body positivity” movement—hence its inclusion as an unsung quality.
Emotional stability: Emotional stability is one of the “big 5” personality traits, often measured using it’s opposite – neuroticism—which is a sensitivity to negative emotion. For biological reasons, women are generally higher in neuroticism than men, yet nevertheless emotional stability is a HIGHLY attractive feature in a woman. For a man in a long-term relationship, his well-being is substantially improved if the woman in his life is able to avoid having small setbacks put her in a foul mood or if she is able to quickly recover. Several features of modern life have a tendency to increase neuroticism including social isolation, interactions increasingly intermediated by technology, and “panic-porn” news. A woman possessed of emotional stability tends to have a much lighter and more positive energy or even a “glow” about her. In addition to avoiding or mitigating the aforementioned factors, a daily meditation practice can do wonders for improving her emotional stability and decreasing her neuroticism. This becomes increasingly important over time as women also tend to see a further increase in neuroticism upon having kids. So it pays to get ahead of the curve!
Connection to the spiritual/transcendent: This is increasingly rare in modern society, particularly in overly-intellectualized environments like a university or in the professional world. A woman who has a strong connection to the spiritual or transcendent is a rare and wonderful thing. I find it tends to really unlock the “divine feminine” in her which is something that’s wonderful to behold! Particularly for a man who is very focused on the physical world, having a woman with a strong connection to the transcendent can be very anchoring and refreshing.
I hope you enjoyed this myTake! Let me know some of your favorite "unsung" qualities in the comments!