What makes a man worth admiring?

Speaking on behalf of women is to be on dangerous ground. I rarely “go there"; I’m no sociologist or researcher where I can speak to the data, statistically, of what women want.  All I have is anecdotal evidence of what it takes for me to say,

“Wow! That guy is awesome!”

The person who makes me do this the most is my husband Billy.  This is high praise, because I am very familiar with his flaws, short-comings, and quirks (no squeegee?). Still, there’s no one I admire as much as I do him.

In fact, when I see young men dating, managing their careers, or merely tackling life, I wish they could follow my husband and take notes.

He is some kind of remarkable man!

So, in honor of Billy’s forty-something birthday today,  and since shadowing would be creepy, I thought I’d write a few specific attributes for guys who want to captivate a woman.  And while these may not earn EVERY woman’s respect and admiration (I make no promises!!) having these qualities certainly won’t hurt!

Lead With Humor


Life can be pretty stinking intense, so it’s best to meet the challenges of the day with humor.  No one I know does this better than Billy.  He finds the funny in the middle of the pain and rarely, if ever, resorts to sarcasm.

Humor is a gift (but also a muscle) that, when cultivated, can dispel almost any tension.

Be Interested


Truly fulfilling relationships are those where people feel known and valued.  This doesn’t happen by having the most interesting adventures, but by having attentive conversations.

I am a storyteller and “occasionally” share details which, while fascinating to me, may not hold that much interest to others (e.g., Latin names for plants).  Still, Billy listens patiently because he chooses to be interested in things which interest me.  Granted, at least in the case above, he has been know to tease me mercilessly about my ability to butcher the Latin language, but at least I know he’s engaged!

Practice Humility


Me first!

This is the attitude we’re born with, and, in the absence of some serious discipline, we die with self-centeredness still locked in place.  However, when you’re around a man who routinely makes your deal more important than his deal, well, that’s something awesome!  I watch Billy lead our family (and his work team) by serving and making much of others.

I realize humility sounds counter to leadership, but when you see a servant’s heart in action, it’s  flat out impressive.

Cultivate Your Faith


Everyone believes in something (yes, even atheism is a faith!), so when a man does the hard work of wrestling with his beliefs, there’s a peace in his self-worth; he knows he’s not the God of the universe and he’s willing to submit to a higher authority.

From my vantage point, this submission is critical because I know God’s standards for Billy are higher than mine (plus, I don’t want to be the arbiter of how a husband should treat his wife!).

Happy Happy Birthday Billy!

Thanks for being a husband and leader worth following!