14 personal qualities that are admired by everyone (but lacking in many)

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On a fundamental level, most people admire certain qualities that they come across in others.

These do, of course, change depending on cultural setting, as well as the perspective of the observer.

But for the most part, certain traits are appreciated and respected worldwide.

Here we’ve put together 14 qualities that are admired by just about everyone you’ll come across.

See if they resonate with you too:

1. Creativity.

Creativity can manifest in several different ways.

For example, one person may have the ability to create music or sculpture, while another may find creative solutions to problems, have innovative ways to generate money, or coax garden seeds to flourish.

Ultimately, it’s the creative power made manifest that people admire.

It’s literally the ability to make something from nothing, and if that isn’t awe-inspiring, what is?

Extra reading: 14 Traits Of Creative People (That Provide Their Spark)

2. Integrity.

We all have personal principles that matter to us, and holding to them despite difficult circumstances or peer pressure inspires immense admiration in other people.

Those who are worth being around will admire your adherence to your principles and integrity.

They may not fully understand or agree with your choices but the fact that you choose to uphold that which you believe in will be greatly valued.

Integrity encompasses keeping your word too. Life does sometimes get in the way, but doing your best to hold to what you’ve promised, as well as being punctual and dependable, shows immense strength of character.

3. Loyalty.

Loyalty is an incredibly rare trait and one that others can’t help but admire.

It involves being committed and faithful to a person or a cause out of love and devotion.

A loyal person is someone who can be counted upon no matter what; someone who will stand by their loved ones or comrades without hesitation.

If you have a loyal friend, you know they’ll be there for you whether you need help moving furniture, or need moral support standing up for a cause that isn’t important to anyone but you.

Note though, that loyalty is only admired when the object of your loyalty is deserving of it.

A person who’s loyal to an abuser, or to a cause that turns out to be corrupt, loses people’s respect as quickly as they earned it.

In contrast, someone who rescinds their loyalty from the undeserving will be deeply admired for their integrity and willingness to do the right thing.

4. Self-respect.

There are few quicker ways to lose another’s respect than to sit back and accept mistreatment or to pander to victimhood by refusing to hold people accountable for their actions.

A person who respects themselves will refuse to be mistreated—they know their worth and will either stand up and demand better treatment or walk away from a situation that doesn’t serve or honor them.

To do less would simply demean them.

A person who establishes and defends their boundaries is an inspiration to everyone around them, whether it’s encouraging people colleagues to demand fair treatment at work or encouraging those close to them to walk away from abusive circumstances.

Extra reading: 13 Clear Signs You Respect Yourself (That Many People Simply Fail To See)

5. Strength.

Every culture on the planet appreciates strength, although it may manifest in different ways.

There’s physical strength, but also mental acuity, emotional fortitude, and overall endurance.

When someone displays an inordinate and nearly superhuman amount of power—whether it’s bench-pressing 300lbs or having the willpower to walk across burning coals without flinching—that’ll get a thundering response from the crowd, as well as lifelong accolades.

6. Civility.

It costs us nothing to speak politely, move respectfully, and treat everyone with dignity, but those actions are immensely admired and appreciated by most who encounter them.

For example, if you can maintain a polite and respectful tone, even during challenging discussions, you’ll be admired for your cool head and calm consideration.

On the other hand, barging past someone to beat them to the front of a queue because you’re in a rush is only going to cause disdain.

Those who are truly respectful, know that what’s civil and polite in one setting, may be considered rude in another, and they adjust their behavior accordingly.

Contrary to popular belief, you don’t show civility by imposing your social norms or traditions on people.

Instead, know that respect is shown by treating someone in the way they want to be treated, not in the way you would want to be treated.     

7. Compassion.

Those who show compassion, understanding, and mercy are worthy of immense recognition and respect.

Most of us would like to think we’re compassionate, but when faced with someone who challenges our worldview by acting differently, we falter.

Those who are truly compassionate, however, don’t put conditions on it.

They show genuine concern for everyone and empathize with their experience, even if they can’t relate to it themselves.

This strong capacity for understanding and supporting without judgment sets them apart from the rest. 

It’s a rare and special quality and one that is admired by many.

8. Resilience.

Just about every person alive will face some measure of difficulty while they walk this earth.

Resilience is the ability to bounce back from this adversity.

That’s not to say you can’t struggle or find things hard. Life is hard after all, and it’s ok to feel this and admit it.

But if you can go through the difficulty, then pick yourself up and keep going, you won’t just be admired: you’ll inspire everyone around you to do the same.

Those who pick themselves back up despite their setbacks or hardships are valued much more than those who accept defeat without bothering to fight.

Who would you rather have on your team: a person who falls down and quits at the first obstacle?

Or the one who finds a way over, around, or through it, and then does so again and again, letting no setback impede their forward momentum?

Extra reading: Resilient People Can Be Summed Up By These 8 Key Characteristics

9. Perseverance.

Whereas resilience is the ability to bounce back from harm, perseverance is the ability to keep moving forward despite obstacles or crises.

It’s what happens when someone’s body and/or mind have been badly compromised, but they still keep on keeping on as long as they can, while remaining civilized and dignified.

Many people brag about how strong and resilient they are, but when faced with the reality of serious illness or injury, they prove themselves to be overcompensating loudmouths who wail and crumple at the first hurdle.

In contrast, a person who perseveres with stoic calm and grace is worthy of extreme admiration.

Extra reading: The Power Of Perseverance: 14 Traits Of Those Who Never Give Up

10. Generosity.

This has nothing to do with flagrant, thoughtless gift-giving, but instead has to do with generosity of the spirit.

For example, a billionaire who gives $50 to a homeless person thinks nothing of it: this is no sacrifice on their part, and thus there is no admiration.

Now compare that to someone who’s barely scraping by, but gives a homeless person their last $5, or shares the only meal they’ll have that day with a stray cat or dog.

If you’re affluent and go loud on lavishing stuff on others, few people will view you favorably.

In contrast, you’ll be admired and respected deeply if you give from the heart sincerely, without expecting anything in return.

11. Self-discipline.

Being measured and controlled in your daily actions elevates you exponentially above those who have no self-control.

Not only will you be healthier in both mind and body, but you prove that you aren’t ruled by your base impulses.

You aren’t dependent upon others to govern or discipline you, but instead, hold yourself to high standards because they’re important to you.

Furthermore, you’ll hold to your discipline even when conditions aren’t optimal, such as hitting the gym even though it’s cold and raining outside.

You wouldn’t take any actions that would disappoint or let down those you care about, and you wouldn’t want to disappoint yourself by falling short of your own mark.

Extra reading: 12 Things Disciplined People Do That Bring Them Success

12. Good personal hygiene.

You may be surprised to find this on the list, but let’s face it, there aren’t many places on earth that place low value on personal hygiene.

Wearing clean clothes is usually appreciated by others, and maintaining a clean body, hands, nails, and teeth is a must.

You can undoubtedly remember being horrified by another person’s blinding B.O. or nauseating breath at some point, and how badly you wanted to get away from that person.

You can rest assured that others feel the same way when they encounter such unpleasantness.

Don’t be that guy.

13. Beauty.

As with so many traits, physical beauty or attractiveness is contextual and based on individual preference.

Beauty extends beyond the physical, to a person’s character, personality, kindness, and abilities.

One may be average-looking physically but have the ability to create extraordinary pieces of art or music.

Or their beauty might manifest in their enigmatic personality or capacity for kindness.

Whatever our individual preferences, when we see beauty shining from another, we can’t help but admire it.

14. Self-sacrifice for a noble cause.

A quick scroll through social media will undoubtedly bring up posts about noble acts of sacrifice, which all have countless ‘likes’ and admiring comments.

Some examples include a brave soldier who threw himself on a grenade to save his brothers in arms, a woman who donated a kidney to a sibling, a child who cut their long hair off to make a wig for a classmate with cancer, or medical professionals who refused to leave their patients even though their own lives were in danger.

Not all of us would have the bravery and self-sacrifice necessary for these selfless acts of love, and that’s what makes them truly admirable.

About The Author

Finn Robinson has spent the past few decades travelling the globe and honing his skills in bodywork, holistic health, and environmental stewardship. In his role as a personal trainer and fitness coach, he’s acted as an informal counselor to clients and friends alike, drawing upon his own life experience as well as his studies in both Eastern and Western philosophies. For him, every day is an opportunity to be of service to others in the hope of sowing seeds for a better world.