You’ve heard of red flags. They’re those unmistakable warning signs you can’t help but notice about a person that make you want to stay far, far away from them.
But that’s not where we’re focusing on today.
Let’s head down a positive route instead and talk about ‘green flags’ or signs that let you know someone is a genuinely decent person.
Take a look at the green flags that people shared on AskReddit. Hopefully you’ve come across at least a few of these in your life!
1. Some good points
“For me, I would say:
Is kind to strangers, for no reason, without saying anything about it afterwards.
If they’ve done a good job at something, are quick to point out how they were able to do it because of other factors/people (share the admiration).
Admit to things they’re not proud of, and talk about how they’ve learned from those things (re-addressing past mistakes, re-affirming the need to improve).
Stand up for people when they’re not around to stand up for themselves.”
2. That’s important
“How they treat people that can’t do anything for them.”
“Another huge green-flag : revising your thinking and habits based on new information or experience.”
4. The power play
“This one should be way higher.
People like to give the ‘how they treat customer service’ answer, but customer service is still capable of doing something for you or withholding something you need- sometimes very important things. There is still plenty of selfish/pragmatic interest to be decent or kind to customer service.
How someone treats someone without power over them/can’t do anything for them (employees, lower ranked team mates, children/dependents, the customer service rep who admit they can’t help you) or strangers is my #1 go-to green flag.
I got married based on this value. 0 regrets, best decision I ever made. My husband is unmatched and is fully a blessing on my life.”
5. I was wrong
“They readily admit when they’re wrong & apologize with no reservations when they screw up.”
6. Time to STFU
“Also, knowing when you could have gaps in knowledge and qualifying your statements.
In engineering we were taught that if you’re not an expert on the subject, you stfu.
If you build bridges, then yeah weigh in on the integrity of that bridge.
But if you build bridges and someone wants your take on AIDS relief efforts, then you stfu.”
In everyday practice, this translates to ‘don’t pretend to know what you clearly don’t know.'”
7. Good driving buddies
“People that thank you for driving and offer petrol money.
I usually refuse it, but I’ve found this to be a very good way of telling who is just taking advantage of you for rides and who is a genuine friend.”
“Met this one guy who always offered to do favors for people.
He didn’t even think twice. “Can I bring those bags for you?” “Would you like me to go outside and get that item?” “Are you hungry? I was about to order some food.”
He is the most trustworthy person I’ve met to date.”
9. Just because
“If they randomly make the world a slightly better place for no other reason than because they feel they should.
There’s a guy in my neighborhood who brings a trash bag and grabby-stick-thingy on his morning walk. Dude keeps the streets clean just because.
Saw a kid of maybe 10 or 12 at the supermarket playing with his fidget spinner who saw a cup-o-soup had fallen off the display. He put it back in place.
You can leave a light footprint, and that’s great, but if you can actually leave the world slightly better than you found it in your wake, man that’s a good sign.”
10. This is how you do it
“When you do something wrong they explain how to do it right instead of getting mad at you for doing it wrong.”
11. Nice for nothing
“They don’t bring up nice things they did for you and hope you’ll pay them back somehow.
Example: If I bought someone a drink and told them not to worry about it.
Then every time we went somewhere I would say, “Hey, Kitty, remember when I bought you a drink, you owe me a drink!”
Instead, I wouldn’t expect someone to pay me back for a favor I did them to be nice.”
12. Not bragging
“They do something admirable and you only hear about it inadvertently or from someone else.”
13. Own it
“Not making excuses is also a good sign of not being a shitty person.
If everything someone does something wrong, is someone else’s fault, it is a good indicator that they are unwilling to accept responsibility for their own actions.
This is, in my experience, the same kind of person who subtly or not so subtly bring up things they’re proud of doing.
All the time.”
14. Actively listening
“Hey, how’s (that thing you told them about last time you saw them) going?”
They were actually actively listening, and cared to remember.”
“Bonus points if they also make room for people just outside the group to join in.
This is especially noteworthy in a cocktail party type of events where I don’t know that many people.
I’m not very good in inserting myself smoothly into conversation groups so it’s really great when people make room to include others. Some people do this very naturally.”
Ahhhhh… that felt good! Finally some great stuff to read that makes us smile.
Have any green flags you look for?
Let us know in the comments!