19 Little Known Alpha Male Character Traits

There’s a great myth that all alpha male character traits are basically: disrespect, anger and violence. But the truth is: being alpha has nothing to do with any of those character traits.

In my article about becoming an alpha male I make it very clear what it truly means to be alpha:

The alpha male feels so secure about his identity that it’s impossible for anyone or anything to shake him up.

It’s all about having an incredibly strong inner game and massively high levels of self-validation.

In this article I am going to tell you about the 15 character traits that make up awesomely confident alpha males.


Alright, let’s get started!

1. High degree of self-validation

The alpha male loves and accepts himself at an extremely high level. He feels at home with himself.

He may be alone, but never feels lonely. 

Mildren Newman, In his famous book How To Be Your Own Best Friend, explains the necessity of loving ourselves:

If we do [become our own best friend], we have a friend for life. We can buoy ourselves up, give ourselves comfort and sustenance in the times when there is no one else.

In other words, when you become your own best friend you feel like you have a place in this world. You feel validated.

And feeling validated in this world is as important as breathing oxygen. Without feeling validation we simply can’t function.

Mildren Newman explains that without self-love we lose all power over ourselves:

When you rely on a person for approval & Validation, you give them power to hold it against you

This is because anyone can train you to do exactly what they want by feeding you validation when you comply with them and then taking it away when you disobey their commands.

When you stop loving and validating yourself you are essentially becoming a slave to whoever decides to give you validation.

What makes the alpha male special is that he validates himself at a level that most people don’t even dare to reach.

That’s where all his power comes from. [1, 2]

2. Determined 

In my post about becoming an alpha male I list 25 things you must be doing before you can consider yourself an alpha male. 

Becoming an alpha male is tough.

That is why all men that have already earned the title of being alpha have a high level of determination. 

Without their single minded determination,  they would have never succeeded in any of their worthwhile endeavors. 

The famous Napoleon Hill in his masterpiece Think And Grow Rich writes:

…lack of persistence is one of the major causes of failure.. [and] is a weakness common to the majority of men… Without persistence, you will be defeated, even before you start. With persistence you will win.

Alpha males see failure for what it is: a chance to learn from old mistakes and take their own success to a whole new level.

They understand that the beginning of any challenge is going to be exceedingly difficult and that they might not see any significant growth for months.

Men who understand this develop a very determined character and ultimately become alpha males.

3. Calm

We mentioned at the beginning that the alpha male is unshakable. He is able to retain a deep calmness to his character even when chaos ensues. 

He has this character trait because as Napoleon Hill would put it: he has killed the 3 inner enemies:

  1. Doubt 
  2. Fear 
  3. Indecision

Being calm gives the alpha male special power that most don’t have because he is able to keep his rational thought even when traumatic events happen.

This allows him to be strategic and make the smart moves that others can’t.

Specifically he’s gotten over the 6 basic fears (as laid out in the book Think and Grow Rich):

  1. Poverty
  2. Ill health
  3. Criticism
  4. Loss of love of someone
  5. Old age
  6. Death 

Most people live their lives running away from these fears effectively locking themselves in a cage never knowing what life is all about.

But this is exactly what makes the alpha male special: he makes peace with those fears and decides to live life fully without any regret.

This gives him a level of calmness that most people can’t imagine, but of course it doesn’t come without hard work.

4. Focuses on his strengths

This character trait is about seeing yourself as you are, the strong and weak parts, while capitalizing on your strengths. 

The alpha male understands that he’s not perfect, nobody is. We all have pathetic, weak parts of ourselves no matter who we are.

But the alpha male also understands that if he focuses on his strengths and puts himself in situations that work with what he’s got he’ll have a higher chance of success. 

Here’s an example of this concept that I learned from Joshua Pellicer, the creator of The Tao of Badass dating course:

If you’re an extrovert and you’ve got this hot girl set up for a date, don’t take her to a quiet restaurant, you’ll end up feeling drained!

Why not use your extroversion to your advantage? Go to loud concerts, bars, or crowded parks, you will feel so much more confident.

(Joshua Pellicer talks about many, many other personality traits in his course, this is just a simple example)

But if this is so simple why doesn’t everyone do this?

Because most people aren’t willing to look at themselves “as is” and see their weaknesses, they never get to discover where they’ll shine. 

And ultimately it only makes them weaker.

5. Always improving

By definition being alpha means your at the top. You are the number one.

But for the alpha male to keep his position, he better improve himself non-stop. They are constantly men in second place ready to knock him out. 

In this is where we break into the 2 classes of alpha males: 

  1. Long term
  2. Short term

The short term alpha males rule like monarchs. They have no respect for anyone, can’t make alliances, and attempts to destroy all opposition.

Eventually people get fed up with him and overthrow him in a coup.

But successful, a long term alpha male is the leader because people want to follow him. He simply is the best anyone has to offer.

His competition can’t catch up because he’s in a perpetual state of self-improvement. 

He’s constantly looking at his situation objectively, making strategic decisions, and pushing his way forward.

6. Congruent 

This character trait is found in every alpha male, whether he’s Batman or a drug lord. It doesn’t matter, they are always 100% congruent.

Being congruent means that whatever your beliefs are, you live out. You are the opposite of a hypocrite.

The alpha male does whatever he believes is right. No exceptions.

The core of this is the masculine trait of keeping emotions out of the equation. Emotions keep us away from the truth, making everything see better (or worse) that they really are.

The difference is that alpha males express hyper masculinity and therefore block out all emotions at an extreme level keeping everything in their lives in line with their values and beliefs.

7. Highly strategic

All successful, long lasting alpha men are incredibly strategic. They know how to plan for the future to insure that they come out on top.

In the next 2 steps I will discuss the 2 strategies that alpha males tend to use the most because it fits their personality the best.

Both of these strategies come from Robert Greene’s famous masterpiece: The 48 Laws of Power

They are not necessarily moral, but it’s what real leaders use to reach the top.

8. Always saying less than necessary

Robert Greene writes:

Powerful people impress and intimidate by saying less. The more you say, the more likely you are to say something foolish.

People only rely on alpha males because of their intellect and capacity for rational thought, so the last thing alpha’s want is to appear foolish and lose all their power. 

He always says less than necessary.

The alpha male keeps everything to himself while making everyone else show their cards. This makes all his enemies feel insecure.

No one knows what to expect from the alpha male.

(And by the way, in the dating world, this mystery factor can be seen as seductive.)

The alpha male incorporates this strategy into his character which gives him the ability to give others validation because he’s not stuck talking about himself all day long.

And because everyone is dying to feel appreciated, validated, and accepted, he has the opportunity to completely control anyone he wants…

How does that work?!

He starts by giving unconditional love and validation for everything his victims do even if they mess up or sound ridiculous.

He creates trust, making them expose their deep emotions to him while relying on him for validation.

But that’s exactly when he takes away his unconditional love. He begins to train his victims the same way a dog owner would train his dog.

From now on If his victim complies, he gives them validation. If they don’t, he punishes them. Making them feel rejected. 

At this point, they cannot escape his control, they are entangled in his web. They are too addicted to the feeling of his validation that they continue to serve him.

None of this would have been possible if the alpha male couldn’t stop talking about himself or the things he does.

The alpha male understands that power comes to those that talk less and do more. 

9. Conceal their intentions

As all strategies go, not all alpha males incorporate them in their character to form a strong personality.

Some alpha male rule because they bully their followers. This is not true power and eventually they get overthrown in a coup.

In this post we are discussing the authentic alpha male character traits, not bogus egotistical alpha males.

In The 48 Laws of Power, Robert Greene explains the power of concealing intention perfectly:

Keep people off-balance and in the dark by never revealing the purpose behind your actions. If they have no clue what you are up to, they cannot prepare a defense. Guide them far enough down the wrong path, envelop them in enough smoke, and by the time they realize your intentions, it will be too late.

This takes our last point a step further. The alpha male not only limits his words, but when he does talk he leads everyone in the opposite direction gaining more power, unlike beta males.

When beta males are looking for revenge they explode in anger, lose all self control and stop thinking rationally.

They get into fights that make everyone suffer including themselves while making even more enemies.

The alpha male conceals his intention. He seduces his enemies, acts as if nothing happened while planning effective revenge on his enemies. 

He never lets his emotions take control of him, rather he “sweet talks” them, apologizing, allowing them to lower their guard. 

Always leading his enemies to a place where he can crush them at the right moment. 

Is this ruthless?

Yes, but that’s what it takes to attain power:

On average 10 percent of all CEOs are ruthless psychopaths, which is in line with the 15% found in prisons!

Being a CEO doesn’t make you a ruthless psychopath, but sometimes you need to be a ruthless psychopath to become a CEO. [3, 4, 5, 6]

As venture capitalist Bryan Stolle explains:

Psychopaths are so prevalent as CEOs because “it’s an irrational act to start a company.” You have to be uncompromising in your vision, which requires a hearty dose of both ego and persistence, and you have to be willing to sacrifice almost everything for success.

10. Stand up for their values

Not all alpha male are superheros, some alpha males are gang leaders, but what they all have in common is this character trait of standing up for their values.

It doesn’t matter if his values are moral, amoral, or even cruel. The alpha male will do everything to stand up for his values.

In other words, alpha males are supremely assertive to the point that they are willing to get physically violent.

Their goal isn’t to pick a fight or get some attention because they have no reason to do that anyways.

Their goal is always to defend their values, not their self worth.

11. Empathy

Frans de Waal, one of the pioneering researchers on the concept of being alpha, discovered that alpha chimpanzees have very high levels of empathy.

He makes it very clear that long lasting alpha males show massive amounts of compassion and love to their community.

People make the mistake of thinking that being alpha means you’ve got more testosterone than most people making you more dominant and aggressive.

Now while that’s partially true, being empathic can solidify the position that he gained with aggressive behavior. 

That’s why the brain chemical “oxytocin” plays a big role. [7, 8]

Oxytocin is known as the love hormone that promotes feeling of love and bounding between people.

His high levels of oxytocin makes the alpha male feel high levels of empathy which allows him to connect to the joys and frustrations of his community.

This makes him beloved which solidifies his position as the alpha male.

12. Alpha body language

This is the part that everyone loves to talk about. “How can I have alpha male body language?”

And I’m happy to give you the answer you are looking for, just don’t expect this to be simple… 

Body language is not just how you hold your hands or play with your hair, it’s your entire body, hence the name “body language.”

Alpha males have mastered the skill of manipulating their entire body to exude confident, alpha male body  language

And while I know there are a million videos on YouTube on this, I am getting this information from a retired FBI special agent, Joe Navarro.

Joe Navarro wrote many books, my favorite one being The Dictionary of Body Language. Feel free to check it out for yourself, but for now let’s dig in!

The head

Alpha males will wear hats that let everyone know “I am the leader, I run this place.”

And they always keep their hair clean because as anthropologist David Givens puts it, hair serves as an unofficial resume. Clean hair = self-respect.

Alpha males never play with their hair as it is a pacifying behavior and everyone subconsciously understands that they are feeling insecure.

That includes hair flipping, pulling, stroking or plucking.

Alpha males will interlace their fingers behind their head with their elbows up. This is commonly known as hooding because it’s exactly what cobra’s do.

alpha male character trait body language

It makes them look bigger and displays confidence, the trait that alpha males have.

And of course, they always have little or no tension on their forehead. Everything is calm, no sweating or vein throbbing.

The eyes

It’s the eyes of every man that either make him alpha or not. It involuntarily expresses what’s really going on inside us: confidence or fear.

The first thing you’ll see in every alpha male is pupil dilation because alpha males have a deep sense of calmness their pupils dilate to take in as much light as possible.

They also blink less as it’s a sign of feeling undisturbed and calm. 

And generally speaking all 6 muscles around their eyes are relaxed. There is no quivering, fluttering or intense wrinkling.

Lastly alpha males look at people directly in the eyes. They gaze at people showing that they feel comfortable with them.

They don’t look around the room in a disheveled manner or stare out into the distance because those are all signs of fear.

The mouth

Alpha males will take deep breaths, talk slowly in a deep voice, and will often delay answering a question for a few seconds to show authority. 

And just like the eyes, all the 6 muscles of the mouth stay completely calm, never biting, plucking, or compressing their lips.

In addition, they never stutter, freeze, hold their breaths or let their voices rise up in pitch. Those are all signs of insecurity.

Shoulders, arms and hands

Alpha males keep both of their shoulders up and open at the same height. They never shrug or rug their shoulders as it’s an expression of feeling worried.

You’ll commonly see people hugging themselves with their arms and playing with their watch, smartphone, or anything that they can get their hands on because it’s a form of self-comforting. 

But alpha males don’t do any of this because their level of self-acceptance makes them feel comfortable in all situations. 

Chest and legs

People under anxiety will have shallow, quick breaths and will commonly massage their chest area, specifically the collarbone and diaphragm area. 

Alpha males never do this. They keep their chest back, take deep breaths and let their legs take up space.

They may subconsciously spread their legs over a desk or chair displaying dominance. The opposite of the fetal position. [9]

13. Self-reliant

Alpha males are the most self-reliant beings you’ll find on planet earth. But not the way that you are thinking.

Alpha males constantly get help from other people, but then how are they self-reliant?

They rely on their own abilities to appeal to people’s self interest. That is the ultimate self-reliance.

They get outside help by appealing to people’s self interest, never accepting the free lunch. 

This makes them never needy in life or relationships. They can make you want to serve them by pressing on the need that we talked about earlier: validation.

Alpha males will give you validation (your ultimate desire/ interest) only when you follow their orders and fulfill their desires.

With time you scumble to their seduction and become a slave, following their every order desperately hoping to receive some validation.

This seductive version of self-reliance gives alpha males unlimited power.

14. Exceedingly honest

This characteristic is not found in all alpha males, but is certainly very common which makes people think that to be alpha you need to be brutally honest with everyone. [10, 11]

Although that’s not true, but because it’s commonly seen in alpha males, we’ll discuss it:

Many alpha males will say the truth of the situation without caring about upsetting anyone. 

They don’t care about impressing or pleasing anyone, although this makes for rough relationships…

If you ever talk to an alpha male you might start thinking that the only thing that’s going on in their heads is:

I solemnly, sincerely and truly declare and affirm that I will tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.

15. They do what needs to be done

Years ago I came across the YouTube Channel of Joseph Rodrigues that now has 150,000 subscribers where he discusses legendary self-improvement books.

After being blown away by the quality of his content I decided to invest in his step by step personal development and entrepreneurship training.

From his courses I learned the character trait of doing what needs to be done and dropping everything else.

He calls it the delegate, eliminate, or automate principle. 

With time I saw the necessity of mastering this skill and noticed that only the top alpha males execute this perfectly.

What does this all mean?

The alpha male understands his boundaries, what he’s capable of and what he’s not. 

This is how he decides what he’s going to get done and what he will:

  1. Delegate to someone else,
  2. Eliminate: he realizes that it’s not important anymore and drops it, or 
  3. Automate: gets a computer to finish the work for him.

He is constantly looking through his “to-do list” to find what he can delegate, eliminate and automate.

This allows him to have massive leverage over his time, energy and resources, squeezing every last drop of potential he has in his work day.

(By the way, if you make the decision to invest in Joseph Rodrigues’s course, get his bundle deal, you’ll end up paying less than 5 dollars per hour of content!)

16. They do what they want

I talk about this in my post: becoming the alpha male and this trait is part of the brutally honest character trait.

Alpha males would never change the course of their lives just to make their parents, friends, or uncle happy. 

They do  exactly what they want in life.

And surprisingly enough, they end up having the most adventurous, exciting life.

17. Raffish

OK, that might be a word that you haven’t heard before, but according to Learners Dictionary being Raffish means:

not [being] completely acceptable or respectable, but interesting and attractive

This makes every alpha male supremely attractive to women because he doesn’t care about pleasing them, but can still be interesting and attractive.

He is the ultimate pickup artist. Women chase after him and will even fight other women off for the chance of sleeping with him.

It’s the character trait of being very attractive exactly because he doesn’t care about being attractive.

It’s like the principle of least interest: the person or group that has the least amount of interest in continuing a relationship has the most power over it.

18. Lives in the moment 

We must’ve repeated that the alpha male is calm at least 10 times already! But for a good reason:

The alpha male lives in the moment. He practices mindfulness without knowing it.

He can live with his thoughts without needing distraction because he loves himself to such a high degree.

The two actually go together: he loves himself, therefore he lives in the moment. He lives in the moment, therefore he loves himself.

And as a by-product of exuding such self-sufficiency and self-love in every single moment, people are irresistibly seduced by him.

Robert Greene in the The Art of Seduction describes this exact seductive nature as being coquettish:

Coquettes seem totally self-sufficient: they do not need you, they seem to say, and their narcissism proves devilishly attractive…

The great film director Andrew Warhol and Napoleon Bonaparte’s wife Josephine are perfect examples of this.


There are actually many more character traits that I left out because being alpha is not just about the 19 points I made here. It’s a whole new paradigm.

There are thousands of beliefs and character traits that make up an alpha male. 

I’ve given you the keys, but you must take it upon yourself to research the rest.

In fact I encourage you to do exactly that because on the journey of learning about alpha males you might even become one yourself!

Your friend,

Colt Smith

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About the author 

Coach Colt here, the founder of Dating Armory, your go-to source for no-nonsense, practical relationship advice. I'm a bisexual male in a same-sex open relationship and a researcher in sex, love, and relationships with 7+ years of experience. I specialize in helping both men and women navigate the crazy world of dating.

Don't miss my other guides packed with practical dating advice (no bullshit repeated Platitudes) and tons of real life examples:

56+ Affirmations To Attract Women: Manifest Love

The Blueprint: 29+ Steps to be the Bad Boy

13 Proven Steps To Develop More Confidence With Women

17 Exclusive Steps to Be More Masculine