What defines a Modern gentleman: 15 Rules to Follow in Life!
The world is changing and you should with it. The concept of a modern gentleman has become a status symbol most men would love to associate with.
Here’s how to do it!
For some reason, less and less men choose to behave according to a highly regarded skill of ethics that surrounded the idea of gentlemen of the past.
Just because technology is getting better, it doesn’t mean we have to forgo everything the past has struggled to teach us.
The gentlemen are superior individuals in a society which through their etiquette, the way they act, the way they talk and by their presence are in the grace of others and are seen as models for others.
That’s why on this Sunday Motivation, we’re taking a look at 15 rules for being a modern gentleman.
If you don’t feel like reading, there’s always the video version you can watch below:
With that said, here are 15 Rules to be a Gentleman:
Number 1: Have your life figured out
..or at least the core of it.
A gentleman is not someone who controls every aspect of his life, but he who understands the rules of the game and is aware of the direction he’s heading in.
Understanding what your values are and what you stand for is the basis for daily decision one has to make.
You will notice that people who do not have clear goals for themselves, an established destination, are often chaotic in choices and behaviors, this is because unless you know where you’re going, any road is as viable as an option.
Gentlemen do not live in this state of unknown, they have surpassed it and now are making progress towards attaining the life they want.
This simple difference immediately separates them from the wanna-be’s and is one of the most respectable characteristics a man can posses.
Number 2: Be well read, educated and informed
..or simply put, know what you’re talking about.
A gentleman, doesn’t voice an uneducated opinion.
He will listen to a conversation with the purpose of learning from the person he’s speaking to and only join when he is confident on the knowledge of the topic discussed.
While most men only have a superficial understanding of the world and usually their conversations revolve around the mundane, a gentleman’s ideas and opinions are rooted in a variety of sources and schools of thought. He is aware of what’s happening in the world but doesn’t waste time with trivialities of celebrity life.
Most of who we are as persons is a combination of everything we have learned and encountered in life. The more you read, learn and educate yourself, the more complex the ideas and beliefs you can master. This leads to massive shifts in behavior, you are more empathy towards other people and rise above the noise brought in by ignorance.
Number 3: Master the art of Presentation
..because people will always judge a book by its cover.
A gentleman knows that there’s more to life than jeans and t-shirts. There are different seasons and different occasions where your presence will be required and a gentleman has the knowledge to dress appropriately under these circumstances.
Tom Ford said it best:
Dressing well is a form of good manners!
And you need to be polite.
It’s such a shame how men are intimidated by clothes and never bother to understand the basics and end up making fools of themselves.
Instead of going through 10 similar items, invest in quality pieces and take care of them, the long term value will become evident once you start experimenting with premium items.
1 Rolex watch will always say more than 100 Casio watches.
A gentleman should possess appropriate footwear for each occasion, from oxfords to sneakers to summer footwear.
Moving up, you’ll be amazed by the existence of fabrics other than denim and especially in the days of summer you’ll find more comfortable and stylish alternatives once you start learning about these things.
The way people perceive you can radically change for the better when you upgrade from a t-shirt to a tailored shirt with your sleeves rolled up.
And then there’s an entire array of accessories for every occasion which will set you light years ahead of the mediocre man.
And that’s just fashion wise. The way you walk, the way you sit, the way you groom, your mimic, your gestures, what you do with your hands, these are all elements that can be improved and mastered to your advantage.
Number 4: You let your actions speak for yourself
A gentleman doesn’t put an emphasis on his plans and instead, allows for his results to showcase his position. Everyone thinks they’re special and designed for greatness, until you draw the line and peek behind the curtain. Unfortunately for many men, there’s nothing there.
It takes a lot of effort to be a poser, to pretend you’re successful or virtuous. The irony is that if you would take the time and put in the same effort you could make progress towards genuine success.
Some people mistake confidence for arrogance. A gentleman is confident in his ability, but never arrogant about it.
Number 5: Understand that life is about serving others, not serving yourself
Ohoooo.. This is a big one, that just a very few get right.
This happens because it’s a more advanced way of thinking about life which requires you to have already overcome the fundamental hurdles of existence.
To summarize the fundamentals: you should be able first to take care of yourself and than take care of others. You should first criticize yourself and than criticize the world. Before you can change the world you have to change yourself.
Only after an individual has managed to move beyond the basics he can live this life of true fulfillment.
These individuals are usually change agents who by sheer dedication to their work manage to change the world for the better.
And you see these people being heavenly rewarded by the world for their service and contribution.
Life is not about serving yourself, but about serving others!
The more people you serve the higher the value you put in the world is. Some of that value will inevitably be reflected back to you, but that’s not the driving factor once you reach that stage.
Elon Musk is a great example for this. His so called fame, popularity and wealth comes as a result of pursuing an ideal beyond himself. The desire to transform life as we know it, from energy to transport to becoming a multi-planetary species. This man wants to facilitate the move of over 1 million people to Mars in his lifetime.
Sure, he’s making billions in the process, but if he wanted to be rich, there would’ve been way easier routes than building a rocket company or even a car company for that matter.
Their pursue and dedication for the betterment of others is what lead to them being regarded as successful and put on a pedestal. If you look at all really successful people in history, they all followed this exact model.
If you’re interested in learning more about Elon and how he went from a shy kid in Australia to becoming this industry tycoon, we highly recommend picking up his biography by Ashley Vance. Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future. We know the book is fairly expensive and because we find his story so interesting, if you go to Alux.com/freebook and sign up you can get the audiobook for free, thanks to our friends at Audible. You’re welcome Aluxers!
Number 6: Be punctual
There’s one resource we all have in a limited capacity, time!
A gentleman will always value his and other people’s time. You should never cost others of time you could’ve optimized for.
Being punctual says so much about who you are as a person, that you can build an entire profile on someone based on this simple act.
People who are always late are lazy and poor managers of their own lives. Not arriving on time not only says that you do not value the time of others, but it shows you don’t have your life together. You are simply unable to plan for things accordingly, you’re not really bright and get easily distracted. You don’t take relationships seriously and actively disrespect others by not behaving in the matter you have agreed to behave.
Simply put, your word doesn’t mean anything because you don’t live by it!
You want to turn your life around? Start by doing what you say you will do, at the perfect place to begin with is by showing up on time when you say you will.
Number 7: Master the art of Conversation
..stop being a weirdo and talk to people.
It’s shocking the number of men unable to have a decent conversation with other people. They lack basic communication skill and choose to close themselves in instead of learning how to overcome this disability, which many people call being an introvert.
Nobody is born with pre-installed walking skills. You get good at it by practicing. You fail, you get up and try again.
The same thing happens with your ability to speak in public or talk to people of the -trigger warning- opposite gender.
What you call introversion is just a software you have yet to install on your drive.
Once that’s done, you can begin the mastery of the art of conversation.
A gentleman should be able to entertain discussions with any type of interlocutor and have it be a pleasant conversation for both themselves and their companion.
Get to a level where you can talk to anyone about anything with both parties enjoying it.
Number 8: Never get drunk or wasted when you go out
..losing control over your actions is just a reflection of who you really are: a loser.
A gentleman can have fun without making a fool of himself. This feeds into everything we’ve mentioned earlier about being a respectable individual and living according to a set of principles that will make you come out ahead than you would’ve ended up otherwise.
Consume it, experience it, enjoy it, but never in excess. There’s more to drinking than beer and occasionally wine. There’s an entire universe of fine drinks all with subtle differences and nuances that are indistinguishable for the everyday man. You can explore this real without the need to embarrass yourself and those around you because of your lack of judgement and control.
This type of mindset applies to everything you put in your body.
Getting wasted is a typical BETA MALE behavior. If you want to know what are the signs someone is a beta male, click in the top right corner to watch our take on the issue. It’s filled with harsh truths you might now want to hear about yourself, but at least you know where to start.
Number 9: You do not embarrass your partner
..by behaving in a manner that would put them in a bad light.
Building on the previous point, a gentleman prioritizes his relationship, his family over the trivialities of life.
If you’re serious about the relationship you’re in, you make it a priority. This is the person you will spend the rest of your life with, preferably. You build each-other, you raise her she raises you, that’s how you both end up higher. You have each other’s backs no matter what.
A gentleman is able to engage sincerely in difficult conversations and be open about the struggles a relationship goes through, with the goal of overcoming them and coming out a stronger couple at the end.
Do not embarrass your partner by seeking alternatives behind their backs, by flirting with others and looking to get some “side-action” without them knowing.
These are never isolated incidents and once you but the tiniest of cracks in what was once a perfect relationship, it’s just a matter of time until the entire thing crumbles.
Number 10: Go after what you want without sacrificing your morality
A gentleman lives an extraordinary life, but extraordinary because he’s pursuing his dreams while everybody else is compromising on them or abandoning them altogether.
As a culture, we have a fascination for people who never quit, who go after what they want and who beat the game by still following the rules. The world sees them as special people.
Poor countries are envious and hateful of the rich and successful. This hate comes from an inability to understand that success can be achieved by following the rules if you work hard enough. It is cemented by obvious cases of corruption and people outmaneuvering the law and coming into easy money.
Put these 2 together and everybody ends up thinking that successful immediately implies a crooked behavior. While this may be true for developing nations as time moves forward we come to realize that these cases are slowly fading away and are replaced by people who through hard work, incredible intellect and dedication have achieved success beyond imagine.
Just look at the 5 richest people in the world right now, Jeff Bezos, Bill Gates. Warren Buffett. Bernard Arnault & Mark Zuckerberg. They all built massive fortunes from the combination of the traits mentioned earlier.
The richest people with a criminal background no longer come close to those who play the game by the book and win.
If you’re looking for the rules to win the game of money and life, our best recommendation would be to pick up a book called Principles by Ray Dalio. For those of you unfamiliar with who Ray Dalio is, he’s got over 125 billion dollars of assets under management from the richest people in the world, through his hedge fund Bridgewater Associates. The book underlines a clear set of behaviors needed to go successfully after the things you want in life. If you go to alux.com/freebook and sign you, you can get the audio version of Principles by Ray Dalio for free.
Number 11: Compliment your date
What might seem obvious for some of us, it’s usually something most people simply ignore.
A modern gentlemen will always compliment a date when they start going out. It’s a simple thing to do that buries a lot more value than people think.
The first thing it does, is acknowledge the interest you have in the other person, through the compliment.
The second thing is reinforce the idea that you pay attention to your date. Almost everybody will put some extra effort in before going on a date. It’s likely that she spent some time getting the hair right, picking an outfit, at least 30 minutes of make-up, with the hopes that she will spark your interest. A simple, “I love the way you did your hair… you look amazing tonight” will go a long way.
The 3rth thing is that it sets the tone for the night. The compliment clears some of the unknowns, it defines your interest and helps her relax and enjoy herself.
Throughout the evening let her know you the things you find interesting about the way she looks at life and the way she thinks, if that’s the case.
The world needs more good and the perfect place to put more out is by verbalizing it!
Number 12: Be in good health and clean
A gentleman knows that his life depends on the experiences he’s able to enjoy. The healthier you are the more you can experience, it’s as simple as that.
It all starts with better personal hygiene, then you move into what you consume, then you start training your body.
It’s shocking to us how many people know that they should be clean, eat healthy and exercise, but never do.
For the rest of the world, this is a sign of who you are as a person, that you don’t value your health and could care less if you smell bad. The direct effect is that valuable people will not want to waste their time with you, thus you end up surrounded by people with the similar mindset and habits.
Number 13: Speak well of others and avoid gossip
We always appreciate people to say nice things about us to other people. That’s how we’re wired.
We avoid people who can’t hold secrets, who gossip and who would switch sides in an instant.
This is because these individuals can no be trusted. Their word doesn’t mean much so why bother investing time into that relationship.
A gentleman is the exact opposite of this person. He looks for the good in people and choose to reward positive behavior of his colleagues and friends. Everybody wants to be around someone who’s rooting for them and who’s willing to hold them accountable. Be that person.
Number 14: Do not offer unsolicited advice
A gentleman should be willing to help those who are open to receiving advice and act upon it. There’s a subtle difference there that is incredibly important.
Everyone loves to give advice, nobody wants to follow advice.
What’s the point of wasting time on someone who’s not going to follow through. Even if you have the best intentions, after being proven wrong once or twice, you have to let them go.
They all want to give their opinion of what THEY would do if THEY were in your shoes, but they are not, they do not have the same values and mindset as you do. The reversal is also accurate.
You can’t give extraordinary advice to people with a mediocre mindset!
Number 15: It’s the little things
And by that we’re thinking of small actions that reflect on what kind of person you are, how attentive you are to your partner and those around you.
It’s not old fashioned to offer her your jacket if it gets chilly in the evening, it’s not old fashioned to switch sides with her so you are the one who walks closer to the road, it’s not old fashioned to hold the door open for anyone.
You can tell someone is a gentleman from the way he behaves, the way he shakes your hand, the way he talks to the waiter and his willingness to help in case of need.
Speak your language currently, speak more languages if you can! There’s no need to use slur words in casual conversations!
The things that we used to regard as being a decent human being are now seen as chivalrous and outdated.
Here’s one question for you Aluxers, Why do you think the culture changed? Is the media? Is the music, is it the internet? Why did people lose their etiquette? We’d love to hear your take on this.