The term “Alpha Male” is more than what it got a name for. And it certainly got some bad rap in the last few years.
People associated ‘Alpha’ male characteristics with wannabe tough guys, six-pack gym-going muscular guys, and pick-up artists.
All in all, it had become this rage of testosterone and machoism where it is way more than that.
Arrogance and superiority are also quickly attached to the so-called Alpha Males. But it isn’t true.
Strength, dominance, and physical fitness certainly are the primary characteristics of being an Alpha but that’s what it is foundationally.
It is more about being a leader and person who care about people around them and sets out to protect them when needed.
So here we go explain more about what an actual Alpha Male is.
What Is An Alpha Male?
Before you dive in deep to understand what is an Alpha, it is first essential to recognize that being an alpha male is multifactorial in nature.
The term ‘Alpha Male’ was first introduced by people involved in the field of Ethology, a word that describes an objective study of animal behavior.
So, it all started from the researchers who spend long years observing and analyzing various kinds of animals and how they interact with their environment.
The word ‘Alpha’ comes from Greeks because ‘A’ is the first letter of the Greek Alphabet.
Researchers when observed that there are particular animals who possess certain leadership abilities along with dominant traits, they termed them as ‘Alphas’.
When it comes to American nomenclature, people link Alpha males to wolves. This reference comes from the studies conducted back in the late 1940s.
It was conducted by Dr. Rudolf Schenkel from the University of Basel, who was a researcher known for his extensive study on grey wolves.
Traits Of Alpha Males
Self Respect Is The Core Of A True Alpha
Self-Respect is the most dominant and underlying foundational trait of a true alpha male.
In fact, it is the concept that you will see common or somewhat underlying traits in all the other traits of a real alpha.
Self-respect, however, shouldn’t be confused with Ego. So this often happens that Alpha males are negated to be egoistic as people assume ego for self-respect.
Also, the very image of an alpha that is a macho muscular person becomes too much of an image but alpha is way more dense and in-depth than that.
This image is just a hollow stereotypical image of a so-called ‘alpha’, so much so that if you ask a real alpha about this image, they would say that they don’t see one at all.
In fact, they further will tell you that all they see is an insecure individual who is puffing themselves like a threatened animal.
Self-respect, as the core of a real alpha, makes them respect themselves, value their time and so of others as well.
They are aggressive in their profession to deliver the utmost quality and the best possible they can.
A true alpha listens when others speak giving them full attention and they aren’t scared to put across their opinion as being a vocal and opinionated person.
They also do not comment on things that they don’t know unlike the image of an ‘alpha’ who tends to put him forward in every way.
They Are Persistence
Alpha Male is persistent as they never, and under no circumstances- give up! They do not quit things easily.
You would see the last man standing when things get ugly and point out them to be definitely an alpha.
They do not submit or back up from the challenges they set out to face. They are the people who believe more in the Tortoise than the hare because he is persistent, calculating, and smart.
Even if they seem defeated but if they’re in the game, chances they will arise again and win it.
They persist with their beliefs and value system and do whatever needs to be done in order to meet their goals.
They Don’t Know What Failure Is
Alphas remain at the top of their order, no matter what. They don’t get disappointed easily on a stage and label them as ‘failures’.
What truly differentiates other men from Alpha men is their perspective. Usual people generalized the concept of ‘success’ as a path of simply achieving something.
Alphas understand that there is nothing but hurdles to stumble upon as it is not a presumed straight shot but a journey with many challenges.
They value and inhabit perseverance. Alpha men understand that life is in fact made of these hurdles, pain, and challenges.
Alphas are not the men with success handed over to them as they do not have any quality of character, they don’t know how to act in a crisis, how to improvise, and what to do when things are getting tough.
In fact, you would see a certain aura of Zen to those true Alphas where they have centered their inner reserve for strength and self-respect.
If you do not face a challenge, you would never know who you truly are. True Alphas are just built of those moments. They are defined by these challenges.
The utmost quality of men is called to be Alpha, and it is certainly not decided by their stock portfolio or the number of their abs.
They Are Coded With Courage
Courage is another highlighted quality of an Alpha that you can count on your fingers.
However, courage is often confused with fearlessness and also the lack of apprehensiveness of consequences that comes from your action.
So Being brave for an Alpha isn’t following the purpose of their love along with accepting all the challenges wholeheartedly.
They jump on every opportunity that takes them towards their vision. Alphas do not allow the fear of failure or inadequacy to pull them out of the action.
Alphas are highly active and they believe in doing, moving forward no matter what.
One of the Alphas’ greatest qualities which modern man lack today is their ability to take justificable risks.
They are the kind of men who are willing to take risks, pain, setbacks and still believe in themselves to gain what they truly desire for their own as well as for others.
Alphas Are Gentleman
One of the aspects of being an Alpha is their capability to be a gentleman. However, this is something that may not be put forth and highlighted.
It is a quality and developed trait of an Alpha. Not to forget, it helps Alphas to become even great men in society and for themselves as well.
They can develop the ability to treat others with humility, gentleness and respect. Lot of it comes from them being highly statured with self-respect, so they value others as well.
Alphas also often show exceptional strength of character through defending who are unable to defend themselves and treat them with the same gentleness they do with others.
‘Weakness’ is often associated with a feminine but there are other men who chose to be less aggressive but in no way ‘weak’ or even ‘femine’.
Men don’t need to be bullies in order to be strong. Rather they need to use their strength to defend others.
Alphas can show how strength and power don’t mean to be broadcasting it for physical prowess.
They Are Well Read
The image of a so-called ‘Alpha’ is not of someone smart, wise, or well-read. But that’s not true at all!
In, the fact real men are well-read. They don’t have to be intellectual.
And it is also not about how much education you have gained, grades you get in school, or how many great books you’ve read.
It is about having a basic understanding of the world and how it works. They are aware of their surroundings and the circumstances they’re in.
Inner Characteristics Of Alpha Male
This is definitely the most noticeable characteristic or trait of an Alpha male. They have the ability to be highly assertive.
Being assertive is totally different from being aggressive which is more about being hostile towards people or situations.
Assertiveness in other words can be framed as confidence. Confidence, the true one comes from experience.
You would notice how Alpha males reflect this inner quality of assertiveness, confidence through their outer demeanor.
They are mindful about their posture, always straight whether they sit, stand, or walk. It shows their brute strength and stands on the values and principles they believe in.
They keep their shoulders always squared, chest raised but never puffed. Being an Alpha is about being a real man, and that means being honest, truthful, and raw.
You would see them being polite and smiling when they greet someone. Also, they tilt their head to show their interest in other people.
Alphas also make strong and firm handshakes. They keep eye contact and avoid looking away when talking or addressing someone.
Assertiveness is the key quality of the Alpha whether it is their decisions, their approach towards life or opportunities, or even challenges.
The same they reflect through their physical presence, behavior, and in their social interaction.
Dominance is amongst the topmost behaviors of an Alpha. In fact, it is the very dominance that puts the Alphas in a somewhat bad light.
It portrays them to these non-negotiable aggressive males that are often painted in media in the form of movies and television.
But the truth is, dominance doesn’t play out like that in real life. It is not something that puts people to respect you or like you.
Dominance is about having this overpowering presence, commanding which is primarily shown in their body language.
It gives them the strength to overcome hardship and hostility only in bad situations and not people.
Dominance pretty much comes from a person naturally, in Alphas mostly and it is indeed one of the traits that are hard to develop.
However, it is not impossible. It is mostly about identifying your strengths and using them to project self-confidence and authority in situations.
Leadership is a trait that pretty much drives Alpha male characteristics. To say the least, it is the key trait of the Alpha Male.
However, leadership is a much more complex phenomenon with different constructs and definitions to understand.
Leadership involves the combination of a balanced trio of physical traits, personality traits, and behavior.
It is something that is defined differently in all different types of study or research.
The definitions are certainly similar but not the same. There are ‘science’ as well as ‘art’ parts of it to look at.
The ‘science’ part of it is something that people are usually born with but the ‘art’ aspect of leadership is more of a skill that can be learned and grown with.
Leadership is something that involves the following process :
- Leading people towards right direction or certain direction
- Developing a vision for long term
- Inspiring others
- Developing people and their skills
- Asking questions
- Modeling desired behaviours
- Developing team-work
- Challenging people to make them reach new heights
and much more.
You also need to remember that leaders are different from Managers. They aren’t the same. A supervisor may be a good Manager but that doesn’t mean he/she can be a great leader too.
However, it is also not to say that Managers can’t be good leaders.
Another highlighted characteristic that is in-built in the Alpha males is courage.
It is important that courage is not be confused with any extremely risky behavior or taking any extremely foolish step.
Courage is a quality that is more intrinsic than that. It is about overcoming your fears.
Alpha men don’t get paralyzed by the fear that puts them into some kind of indecision and inaction.
They are brave enough to take risks and push their comfort level. They go against the stream, the traditional, and dare to do something different. That is the courage, a true Alpha possesses.
It is not that they do not get scared but they still face it with all their courage and never turn their back against it.
The ability to face the fears head-on is true courage and that’s made for an Alpha.
Curiosity means leaning towards one’s intellectual curiosity and it is certainly not about putting yourself in other’s affairs or getting nosey.
It is about seeking, looking into the wild, and finding your own way to do things.
Alpha males are curious, just like Alpha wolves who keep investigating their environment and identifying the things around to secure the area.
Alphas constantly strive to increase their intellectual capacity, so they keep on learning and exploring new things in life.
You would see them always looking for new possibilities rather than holding too tight to a rigid idea or thoughts.
They are also always asking questions and further investigating the answers to get more and more.
These are the most obvious characteristics to find in an Alpha, and that is their Physical strength.
It is also the most common trait of Alpha Males in the whole animal kingdom.
For Example, if you take Alpha Wolves from where the whole concept gets started, they are also bigger and stronger than other males in their pack.
Alpha Males are also generally more strong as they focus on those areas. They take care of their body, train physically or work out through exercises.
Their physical strength helps them to make them more assertive in their presence as well mentally.
Alpha Male supposed to use their strength and power to help others or to defend themselves.
Alpha Males, just like from the Animal kingdom, are protective of their clan, their territory.
Compared to the Wolves again, Alpha males and Alpha females are only in charge of the pack.
So when a non-pack member walks near their territory, Alpha Male turns to attack those. They have this protective instinct that has kept them surviving in extreme wild conditions.
Something similar extended to the human where Alpha males are protective of their subordinates, family, or friends.
They have this inner voice, instincts, or more of a ‘sixth sense’ that tells them when something is looking forward to attacking them.
Alpha males have this situational awareness and very good instincts that help to protect themselves as well as their loved ones.
These developed instincts are further linked to the strong leadership skills they have and it is also something their potential mates.
Signs That You’re An Alpha
You Are Quite Happy With Your Life
Winning in life begins from being pleased and satisfied with your life. This is something that reflects on everything you approach and do.
Also, when you are happy with your life, it impacts your personality and your behavior with others.
It is something everyone around you notices. It is one of the traits of an Alpha as they feel fresh and alive – just enjoy living their life.
For you, life might be more of an adventure where you must be taking things in every second, one at a time.
Your way of life may be unique and mysterious to others but it is something that truly works for you, and get you the best results.
You are someone who doesn’t look forward to the weekends as well as not feel tired on Monday.
This is because your structured your life in a way that these things are the least of your worry.
You Are In Control Of Your Life
Alphas are happy with their realities and more than that they are actively participating in the shaping of their reality.
They feel control of their needs, desires, and wants in order to move things the way they want.
Most of the things in their life are something that they do rather than something that happened to them.
So you may be someone who is consistently striving to change things and actively control what happens in your life.
When you don’t think something is good, you work on it and make it the way you want.
Alphas, even if things are not going well according to their plan, they still control how they react to these situations.
You Are Someone Who Get Things Done
A true sign of an Alpha is that they get things done no matter how. You might be also someone who doesn’t just say things for saying but actually get it done.
You may don’t get back on your word. You say things that you truly meant as well aware of your environment, your capabilities, and circumstances.
You use your willpower and strategic moves of management in order to focus on what’s important and get it done.
You are someone who lets their work speak for themselves rather than just words.
You Are Protective Of People Around You
Alpha is the leader and he is protective of his pack and always looks out for their own. And that quality remains highlighted if you’re one an Alpha Male.
You would be someone who doesn’t only want to win alone but want to share your win with others too.
You look out for your inner circle, the people you truly care about and love. Some you mentor them, some you fiercely protect, and some you become even offensive to protect them.
You believe in stepping together to the next step and you want your inner circle to move forward with you.
You Don’t Play Safe
Neither you like it nor you do! Playing safe is the last thing you would ever think about doing.
In, the fact you like to play the high-risk and high-reward game and you also win it. You just don’t settle with merely satisfying your needs.
Also, you don’t like to simply follow the footsteps of others rather you would find a different route for yourself.
You like to take risks as Alphas do. They like to put challenges in their way and get a rush out of them when they overcome them.
They are more afraid of the mediocrity they have to settle with as compared to the challenges and risks they would take.
Alphas are always an inspiration for people and others to become like one.
You Made A Brand Out Of Yourself
You are someone who gets noticed when you enter a room. This is because of the way you position yourself throughout your life and publicly.
Alpha male tends to become a brand of their own. They have certain values and principles which they advocate.
A personal brand is quite a characteristic of an Alpha where people consider you an authority in your industry.
You Don’t Need Other’s Validation
You live your life on your own terms. And living life based on others’ approval or validation is more of a form of slavery.
Being an Alpha you are completely aware of who you truly are and how your life should be, how you want it.
So you do not need validation of others, their feedbacks, or approvals to get on with your life.
You as Alphas mostly rely on the data as you understand that people can be, and are biased and always have agendas.
The only approval or validation you need in your life is yours. You try to be happy with who you are and strive to become the best version.
You don’t need other people to like you as you are completely a different journey from them.
You Might Notice That People Want To Be Around You
It is quite a bold sign that you’re an Alpha. People are generally attracted by you and they want to spend time with you.
Alpha males are the kind of vibrant personalities that inspire people through their confidence and success.
Due to your qualities, people feel gravitate towards you. It can be because you inspire them or it can be because they feel good with you.
People want to be on the winning side and they want to be the part of a group that achieves success.
Also, they are even interested to know you personally and being friends with you. They feel that associating their lives with yours makes their own better.
It is also because they want to learn from you. If these things relate to you, you’re definitely an Alpha.
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Carol T. Mahaffey is a certified American Author And a creator of Theleaderboy. Carol is a Self-Taught Marketer with 10+ Years of Experience. She brings her decade of experience to her current role, where she is dedicated to writing books, blogs, and articles, inspiring the world on how to become a better Leader.