If you’ve been filed under the ‘nice guy’ category before, you don’t need us to tell you what that translates to: the friend-zone, the backburner, the no-go league, the sighhhhh.
But while many men worry their less-than-rock-star looks will keep them from landing the ladies, recent research doesn’t have the nice guy finishing last. In fact, while being good lookin’ may initially attract a mate, it’s not what keeps her attention — or wins her heart — or bed.
Studies conducted by biologists who study evolution have found the factors that produce generations. In many animal species — and in human relationships — a fit, able male is definitely a plus for women who want to reproduce. However, there’s one keyword that keeps the offsprings popping: altruism.
If you need a vocabulary refresher from language arts, this concept refers to the kindness or goodness someone is innately born with. It also describes what they are willing to give to make other people happy. In other words: how often do you put others before yourself? Biologists have started to study this trait more closely, since it seems as if those animals who illustrate altruism are more desirable since they will take care of their children.
Sure, you may not be on the road to fatherhood anytime soon — but if a long-term relationship is your ultimate goal, being nice will serve you well. In fact, research indicates that more than anything, women seek a thoughtful, considerate partner first and foremost. This rings true in all settings, including online dating. One study even found that when women are given a choice between three descriptions of a man, they go for the one that describes him as caring. And they didn’t just select him as a shoulder to sob on — but as a steady boyfriend or a potential partner for marriage.
Last but not least — you can create a win-win situation by playing the golden rule. How so? Another study found that when women start to find men more attractive as they get to know them, or are told facts about them that reveal their big ‘ole heart. This bodes well for the guys who, perhaps, aren’t as dramatically stunning as their friends — but can keep up the witty conversation… while holding a door for an elderly woman.
We say, when in doubt, stick to your guns. Even if you aren’t a homerun right from the get-go, with time and investment, the lady in your life will start to see — and admire — the true colors that make you tick. And if she doesn’t? Well, she’s likely not a very nice fit for you, anyway.