The High-Value Man in a Relationship: Core Traits, Mindset, and Indicators

“Any man who must say ‘I am the king’ is no true king at all.”​ – Tywin Lannister, A Storm of Swords

By: Milena J. Wisniewska

There are two types of “high-value men.” 

The self-proclaimed ones who, much like vegans or Harvard graduates, will make sure to tell you who they are the first chance they get.

And the mythical ones, who someone saw once, only it was actually not them but a friend of a friend, and maybe it was actually Bigfoot or a Yeti. 

So, let’s dive into the legend of the high-value man. From his origin story to the latest sighting with a cheeky grin and a raised eyebrow. 

Table of Contents:

What Is a High-Value Man?

Oh, the high-value man, the myth, the legend. 

In our rat race of a society, obsessed with status, performance, perfectionism, and an insatiable need to be special, everyone’s scrambling to be on top of the heap.  

Putting aside the medieval idea of assigning traits based solely on gender, a high-value man (HVM) is supposed to be a premium version of your everyday Joe. 

A Pew Research Center survey found that:

More than eight-in-ten say men face pressure to be emotionally strong, with 41% saying men face a lot of pressure in this area. About six-in-ten (57%) say men face pressure to be willing to throw a punch if provoked, 45% say men face pressure to join in when other men talk about women in a sexual way, and 40% say men face pressure to have many sexual partners.[1]

Such an environment is a fantastic breeding ground for all sorts of nice guys, friend-zoned “real” friends, and, you guessed it, high-value men. 

From that perspective, this whole HVM malarkey could be just an attempt to fulfill some men’s need to feel special and valued. And maybe beneath the bravado, it’s really just a cry for love and attention. Perhaps we should just hug them all and ask, “Who hurt you?”

But there is another way of looking at it.

The rise of the “high-value man” or “high-value woman” trend is an interesting social phenomenon. It potentially carries an important message — that

There is a space and need for a new, redefined definition of masculinity. 

In that context, an HVM is an idealized idea of a hypothetical man who possesses qualities and characteristics that set him apart from others, such as confidence, integrity, empathy, and a strong sense of purpose. His actions and behaviors align with his values and beliefs, creating a consistent and authentic persona. 

Essentially, it’s a trope. 

So, in this article, we define a high-value man as a conceptual, idealized portrayal of a modern man. 

Traits of a High-Value Man

From Mr. Darcy to Fleabag’s hot priest, the notion of a “high-value man” has been a staple in literature and film since the beginning of time.  

Let’s investigate what it takes to become a high-value man. 

Confidence and self-assurance

The fairy-tale HVM is the epitome of confidence and self-assuredness, exuding an almost delusional level of belief in himself and his decision-making abilities, like a four-year-old in a Batman cape. 

But the high-value man also isn’t domineering — somehow striking the perfect balance between the two without ever coming across as arrogant. 

Because, you know, that’s what real people do.

His confidence equips him to handle everything from fixing a flat tire to negotiating peace treaties. He leaps into action, makes decisions like he’s merely ordering pizza, talks like he’s swallowed a thesaurus, keeps promises like he’s made of gold, and follows through with the tenacity of the Ice Age squirrel hiding her acorn.

And that’s hot. 

Emotional intelligence and empathy

He has read and/or co-authored every book on emotional intelligence on the planet and is effectively applying the learnings. But he’d never deign to mansplain any of it.

They say that he took empathy lessons from the Dalai Lama but would never admit it. 

He’s a beacon of positivity and compassion, making him the ultimate role model for anyone aiming to be emotionally enlightened and empathetic.

Such a man understands and manages his own emotions, as well as your emotions and those of his neighbors.

He handles challenges with such grace and maturity that even the pope comes to him for confession. 

Still, he never gets drained, exhausted, or angry. He doesn’t hide his true feelings, and he is always happy and in a good mood. He never makes anyone feel bad and sometimes you wonder if he’s even real. But he is. He really is, OK?

Purpose and ambition

This celestial being has abnormal levels of purpose and ambition. He doesn’t shy away from a challenge. He’s action oriented. 

He exudes purpose and ambition, waking up at four a.m. for his morning run before diving into his startup that will surely revolutionize the way we think about biodegradable coffee cups. Real Andrew Huberman vibes.

His clear mission and laser-focused determination make him the stuff of legends, or at least the object of admiration in any social circle. 

HVM takes his purpose as seriously as Ken takes his job . . . beach.

With the gravitas of a man who knows he’s not just Ken, he’s Beach Ken. And that’s more than Kenough.

Integrity and reliability

This rare breed of a man is as reliable as a Swiss army knife. He walks the walk and talks the talk.  

He is dependable, always comes through on his promises and obligations, and is a rock for everyone around him. 

His strong moral compass guides his decisions, promoting fairness and ethical behavior. Like Maximus Decimus Meridius, he’s a man of principle and a man of trust. 

His consistent and principled ways not only make his loved ones feel safe but also set a shining example for others, making the whole world a better place.

And when it comes to relationships, dating a high-value man makes you better.

Independence and self-sufficiency

Independence and self-sufficiency are the cornerstones of this man’s life. 

Unlike those who crumble at the sight of a flat tire or a clogged sink, he handles life’s challenges with ease, a paperclip, and a roll of duct tape.

He doesn’t waste time worrying about problems — he is the solution.

He embodies self-reliance, navigating life with the calm confidence of the Godfather. 

In a world where calling for help is the default, he takes pride in his ability to solve problems on his own. It is said that MacGyver series is based on his adventures. 

Continuous personal growth

He’s a perpetual motion machine of personal growth and self-improvement, forever stuck in the loop of evolution, because he raises himself to a high standard.  

He’s the guy who will spend hours meditating, reading every self-help book he can find, and then rewriting them all because he knows some concepts could be explained better. 

Little known fact: He helped Tim Ferris write The 4-Hour Work Week. Initially, it was eight hours, but he helped him cut it down to four. He’s that efficient. 

And this isn’t just about him; his quest for self-betterment radiates outward, positively impacting his relationships. By being a walking TED Talk, he inspires and supports others to embark on their own journeys of self-discovery. 

Communication skills

This miracle of a man mastered effective communication before you could even write your name. 

He’s an active listener, never interrupts your sentences, always remembers what you said, and never gives unsolicited advice. And when he does advise you, it’s the best advice you have ever heard. 

He expresses his thoughts and feelings clearly and is able to handle difficult conversations with empathy and respect, where you both leave the room happy, satisfied, and validated. 

Respect for others

This man is a living paragon of nobility and grace, perpetually attuned to the sanctity of every human soul he encounters. 

With a boundless reservoir of respect, he validates individuals from all walks of life regardless of their cultural, social, or ideological differences. 

His interactions are not merely courteous but a grand symphony of reverence, each gesture a testament to his exalted sense of self-worth and a masterful display of emotional IQ. 

Generosity and kindness

HVM is a modern-day Robin Hood. 

His willingness to help others is so legendary that even superheroes look to him for inspiration. He doesn’t just give; he practically throws kindness around like confetti at a New Year’s Eve party.

His contributions to the community are so significant that they’ve named not one but several park benches in his honor. He’s on a first-name basis with every charity in town, and rumor has it they’ve got him on speed dial.

In essence, his life is a parade of altruistic acts, each one more dazzling than the last, leaving a trail of inspired, smiling faces in his wake.

Emotional stability and resilience

A high-value man’s emotional stability and resilience are rock-solid, like Dwayne Johnson’s biceps. 

When life throws curveballs, he doesn’t just hit home runs; he knocks them out of the park, over the scoreboard, and into the next county. 

To him, stress and setbacks are mere speed bumps on the highway of life. His calmness is so legendary that meditation gurus call him for advice.

When times get tough, he’s the human equivalent of a cozy, heated blanket on a cold winter’s night — warm, reliable, and impossibly comforting. His resilience creates a pillow fortress of security and trust, allowing those close to him to lean on him without hesitation.

Authenticity and vulnerability

A high-value man embraces authenticity and vulnerability like a knight donning his armor, except his armor is made of pure, unadulterated sincerity. 

He wears his heart on his sleeve so boldly that even Cupid gets envious. 

He’s the kind of guy who when asked, “How are you?” actually tells you. Not just “fine,” but a whole, technicolor saga of his day, complete with emotional highs, lows, and maybe even a song or dance number. 

You were just being polite, but now you’re so glad you asked.

His willingness to be vulnerable is like a masterclass in human connection, turning even any interaction into a profound, meaningful encounter.

His genuine nature is the stuff of legends, making others feel seen, heard, and cherished on a level that’s practically Shakespearean.

Leadership and inspiration

A high-value man’s leadership qualities are so stellar they could lead a parade on Mars. 

At work, he makes CEO positions look entry-level. In personal life, he’s the captain of the Love Boat, turning crises into triumphs with a wave and a witty remark. 

His friends and family don’t just look up to him; they practically build shrines in his honor. His inspirational speeches at family dinners are so moving even the dog listens. Even a first date with him is an Oscar-worthy event.

Healthy lifestyle and self-care

He is an embodiment of health. Mental or physical. His commitment to a healthy lifestyle and self-care puts Wim Hof to shame.

He doesn’t just exercise; he does ganda bherundasana on a mountaintop at sunrise while simultaneously blending a kale smoothie. 

And naturally, he competes in ultramarathons as a mere warm-up for the Spartathlon, which he participates in purely for the scenery.

He’s got stress management covered with a tool kit that includes meditation, aromatherapy, and perhaps a small orchestra playing soothing tunes in his living room.

His dedication to physical and mental well-being is a testament to his self-respect. It’s not just about lifting weights and looking good (though he does that effortlessly); it’s about feeling great and showing up 100% in his relationships and responsibilities. 

What Is the Difference Between a High-Quality Man and a High-Value Man?

Remember when I mentioned that there are two types of high-value men, and one of them is more about talk than action?

Yeah, meet the high-quality man. The Chanel bag knockoff of the high-value man. A total impostor.

While the first one is emotionally intelligent, and all about genuine goodness and respect, the high-quality man is all about appearing like one while having nothing to show for it. 

Worry you won’t know how to sift the gems from the junk? I got you covered! 

Defining high quality and high value

In short, the difference between a high-quality man and a high-value man is that the first is a shiny facade, while the latter is a fortress of gold at the end of a rainbow.

The high-quality man sports a wardrobe that screams, “I spend more on clothes than you do on rent.” His hair is always perfect, and his skin is as flawless as if it were moisturized with unicorn tears. 

When he walks into a room, people part like the Red Sea. He drives a car so expensive it’s practically a moving bank account, and his idea of a casual weekend is jetting off to his private island. He’s a successful man. Or so he thinks.

But he’s all for show. Fool’s gold. Tinder Swindler. Whatever you call it. 

He’s fake.

In comparison, a man of high value is emotionally rich rather than outwardly flamboyant.

And definitely the opposite of fake.

He has a heart of gold, with integrity and kindness that could melt the iceberg that sank the Titanic. He helps others without seeking recognition. 

While high-quality men dazzle externally, high-value men shine from within, proving true worth isn’t always visible at first glance.

External vs. internal focus

The high-quality man, resplendent in his designer suit, counts his worth in zeros and yacht sizes, strutting down Wall Street with rizz that could rival a peacock on a power trip. 

His trophies are the latest tech gadgets, social media followers, and a LinkedIn profile that could make a Nobel laureate weep. 

Yet, behind those perfectly whitened teeth lies a soul as deep as a puddle after a drizzle. 

The high-value man, on the other hand, is a philosopher-warrior in the battle of life. He meditates on desserts and reads poetry to stray cats, and his aura is so Zen that even Buddha would take notes.

This guy measures success by the depth of his conversations, the kindness of his deeds, and the serenity of his mind. As if he were Jesus himself, reincarnated.

Authenticity and congruence

The high-quality man tirelessly paints a masterpiece of perfection for the world to worship. 

Like a twenty-first century Dorian Gray, his every word and action meticulously sculpt his flawless image while beneath the radiant veneer his true essence remains conveniently hidden.

This guy can spin tales of weekend escapades to exotic islands where he saves endangered species before breakfast. But peel back the layers and you might find a guy who can’t see his socks without Google Maps. His life is a glossy magazine cover — shiny but shallow.

A high-value man, on the other hand, is a paragon of authenticity so genuine that even Pinocchio would bow in respect. This guy’s values, words, and actions are as synchronized as an artistic swimming routine at the Olympics.

His congruence between heart, speech, and behavior is like a magnetic force, drawing people in with an unshakable sense of trust and respect. He doesn’t need to embellish his stories or maintain a façade because what you see is what you get — a rare unicorn in a field of show ponies. 

Emotional depth and maturity

A high-quality man glides through life with the finesse of a figure skater on smooth ice. He dazzles with his wit and charisma, but when emotional hurricanes hit, he flounders like a cat in a bathtub. 

HVM, on the other hand, is genuinely in tune with his feelings. When challenges arise, he handles them with the grace of a ballet dancer pirouetting through a minefield, seamlessly blending empathy and maturity. 

While the high-quality man might dazzle with his twinkling charm, the high-value man builds unshakable trust and respect, proving true strength lies in facing the storm, not avoiding it.

Long-term vs. short-term orientation

Behold the high-quality man who is living life like a perpetual flash sale. His decisions are like fireworks — bright, flashy, and fizzling out just as quickly. 

He’s all instant gratification and never heard of long-term goals.

The high-value man sees life as an epic saga, not a series of TikTok clips. 

He plants seeds today, knowing they’ll grow into mighty oaks in whose shade he shall never sit. His every decision and every investment aligns with his core values and grand vision for the future. 

Contribution and impact

A high-quality man is a Narcissus on a dopamine binge. Personal gain is his anthem, and the well-being of others is merely background noise in his symphony of self-adoration.

Now, let’s roll out the red carpet for the high-value man, the Mother Teresa of modern masculinity, who strides through life with a heart so big it has its own gravitational pull. 

This guy isn’t just thinking about his next big score; he’s planning how to uplift humanity one act of kindness at a time.

While the high-quality is juggling egos and trophies, the high-value man is composing the Four Seasons concerti of lasting, positive change.

Continuous growth and self-improvement

While a high-quality man lounges on his achievements like a dog in a sunbeam, a high-value man is like an adventurer perpetually hunting for new wisdom, with the enthusiasm of a caffeinated hummingbird. 

He knows the importance of constant growth and takes the time to understand that true joy in life comes from endless learning.

This man devours self-help books and chases big dreams, knowing that no one is perfect (not even himself). He’s humble enough to ask for help when he needs it, it’s just that he never needs it. 

Unlike the high-quality man who’s focused on attracting women, fulfilling societal expectations, HVM’s commitment to self-improvement is so intense it could power a small country. He strives to become the best (even more best) version of himself. 

It makes him a supportive partner, always ready with advice or an obscure fact about the Roman Empire.

How to Attract a High-Value Man

All right, let’s shatter some dreams: The mythical high-value man isn’t real. He only exists in your mind and on pages of smutty fairy novels. 

But fret not! There are plenty of amazing, real men out there who tick most of the boxes and — guess what — are actually human!

To get yourself one of those, just be yourself. 

Cliché? Maybe. Effective? Absolutely. 

Authenticity is magnetic. Own your eccentricities; they’re what make you unforgettable! For example, I collect LEGO dinosaurs and sample spicy sauces from all over the world. And that’s only what I’m willing to share in public. 

So, embrace the weirdo!

Dive head first into your passions. Focus on what sets your heart on fire, and let your fiery enthusiasm light up the world, attracting someone truly exceptional who can firewalk.

There’s nothing more magnetic than watching someone lost in their element, like a mad scientist in their lab or Harry Styles on stage.🥵 

Chances are, the right person will not only understand your passions but also share them.

Lastly, practice self-acceptance and strive for excellence, not perfection. 

Learn to love the flaws and imperfections in both yourself and others. 

Mr. Right isn’t looking for Miss Perfect; he’s looking for Miss Unapologetically Myself. 

Conclusion

Perfection is a myth. It’s unrelatable and, let’s face it, boring. Anyone who’s trying to present themselves as perfect is simply wasting your time and energy. 

The traits of a HVM paint a picture of a perfect human. But let’s be honest: Do you really want to date someone who has no faults? Are you perfect? If you are, please write a book and share your secrets. 

What makes a person highly valuable is being real. Not being dark and handsome and so absurdly perfect like they stepped out of a fantasy novel. A person who can relate to your problems, laugh at your jokes, and share in your struggles.

Aim for the stars, but remember, it’s the imperfections that make the journey worthwhile. After all, perfection might make for a good story, but imperfection makes for a great life.

As Bo Burnham sings, “If you want love, just pick a guy and love him.”[2]

Addressing Common Questions (FAQs)

Who is a high-value man in a relationship?

A high-value man in a relationship is confident, emotionally intelligent, and understands the importance of high standards. He knows what he wants, respects others, and brings out the best in his partner. High-value men are self-aware, emotionally mature, and take pride in their purpose in life. 

How do you know if a guy is high value?

You know if a guy is high value through his actions and principles. A high-value man doesn’t waste time on superficial relationships. High-value men don’t seek external validation; they are confident and secure. High-value men aren’t driven by ego but by integrity and well-being. 

How does a high-value man treat the woman he loves?

A high-value man in dating treats the woman he loves with kindness and respect. To attract a high-value man, know the traits that define him. He will ask a woman about her needs and desires, showing deep interest. A high-value man might prioritize the woman’s happiness and personal growth, creating a balanced relationship.

References

1. Horowitz, J. M. (2019, January 23). Americans’ views on masculinity differ by party, gender and race. Pew Research Center. https://www.pewresearch.org/short-reads/2019/01/23/americans-views-on-masculinity-differ-by-party-gender-and-race/

2. Burnham, Bo. (2016). Bo Burnham: Make happy [comedy special]. Netflix. https://www.netflix.com/title/80106124

Author

  • Milena J. Wisniewska

    Milena might not be a relationship professor, but she's definitely been through it all, learned her lessons, and is here to spill the tea. She combines the wisdom of renowned relationship specialists with her own romantic adventures to offer relatable and practical advice.

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