When you first start dating someone, it's pretty hard to resist the urge to switch on your 'red flag radar' and search for behaviours and character traits you just won't tolerate.
Obviously this is important - but so are the 'green flags'. When you're so busy focusing on what's not quite right (your date is a mad footy fan and you haaaaate sport) the subtle yet very positive signs can easily slip by unnoticed - and often, they're the ones that really matter.
Here are a few green flags to look out for.
They have a good relationship with their mum and sister
If you want to know how a guy will treat you in a relationship, play close attention to the way he treats his mum.
They don't try and change you
Your partner should love you exactly the way you are.
They send thoughtful texts
It may not seem like much, but sometimes a cute "Good morning" or "Thinking of you" message can go a really long way.
... and do thoughtful things, just because
It doesn't need to be an overly grand gesture like a bouquet of flowers either (although I'll never turn that down!). A few weeks ago I ordered my boyfriend a dessert off UberEats and sent it to his apartment when I knew he'd had a bad day at work.
They'll go out of their way to cheer you up
It could be giving you a massage after a stressful day at work or cooking your favourite meal. Whatever it is, it's a good sign.
They share your biggest values
There's nothing more attractive than a guy who's a feminist, supports gay marriage and whatever other values that are important to you.
You have similar lifestyles
If you're an active chick who loves eating healthy and working out and your partner is a couch potato who eats nothing but fast food? Yeah, that's probably not going to work in the long run. If you two share similar lifestyles, then that's a massive green flag.
They know your dreams and goals
And consider them just as important as their own.
They're kind to people in the service industry
Do you really want to spend your time with someone who's inexplicably rude to the teenager packing your groceries (and probably doing so for minimum wage)? Yeah, didn't think so.
They're committed to helping you become a better person and vice versa
Good couples should push each other to become the best versions of themselves. If your partner is open to bettering themselves and pushing you to become the best person you can be, then they're a keeper.
They're independent and have their own life
We're all guilty of being needy and a little clingy from time to time, but if your partner is constantly seeking your attention and needs to be with you ALL. THE. TIME that isn't a healthy relationship. If your partner has their own life/identity and can understand that just as they need some alone time, their partner does too, you're onto a winner.
They always make you a priority
Your partner should always put you and your needs above anyone else's and you should feel that you can always rely on them to be there for you when you need them.
Emma is just your average book loving, tea drinking, story writing, narcissistic millennial on an eternal quest for the perfect t-shirt. Ever since she picked up her first copy of Dolly when she was twelve, she always knew she wanted to work in magazines. She would describe herself as a bit of a hopeless romantic with an obsession for true crime and horror and a love for red wine, whiskey or a stiff gin and tonic. When she's not binge watching Netflix or buying things she can't afford online, she spends her weekends trawling through bookstores and eating her way through Brisbane.