19 Must-Have GREEN FLAGS
in a Relationship

Must-Have Green Flags In A Relationship

Red flags here, red flags there. It’s always about the negativity, no? Seems like this topic gets more buzz on social media—it’s usually the reds over the greens. These red flags are what people rant about on their alt accounts on Twitter whenever they encounter a bad experience with the person they’re seeing.

Damn, maybe that was too personal. *bombastic side eye*

Doesn’t matter if you’re a guy or a girl, or a fish or a squirrel. This article speaks to all living beings.

As humans, our brains naturally tend to focus more on the wrongs (or what went wrong) than on the good things in life. But if you disagree… you do you.

Some of these green flags are usually considered the bare minimum, which is why it’s not given too much attention. But for a change, we should totally give the green flags the appreciation they deserve. Appreciating these things can help strengthen relationships too.

To make sure everything’s clear on your end, let’s talk definitions first.

Red flags in relationships serve as an early warning sign of a problematic partner that might potentially lead to an unhealthy relationship in the long run. On the other hand, a green flag is obviously all about the good stuff—it shows that the person you’re with is likely to handle relationships in a safe, healthy, and mature way that will make the relationship last not just long, but worth it.

We’re all for the fun dating experiences, but we can all agree that we don’t want to spend the rest of our lives with a partner that is full of toxic traits, right? It’s better to know if they’re a good companion in the long run.

19 green flags? That’s a lot.

19 green flags may seem a lot, but I feel the need to share even the simplest form of green flags that are way underappreciated. The little things matter too. Wink.

Let’s start with the most common green flags.

1. They want to talk about it when things get difficult.

When things hit a rough patch, it’s a green flag when they talk, not walk. No silent treatment or ghosting.

Challenges are part of the relationship package you signed up for, and so they should be discussed when they come your way. It’s an even greener flag if they insist on talking about it, not just because you’ve cornered them into it. Not talking about it and bottling up feelings is a sign that a person doesn’t really value the relationship’s well-being. They don’t take the necessary steps to address the difficulties, not really caring about what happens to the relationship next.

2. They mean their apologies.

You see, saying a simple sorry isn’t always enough. Some partners just say it to end the other’s nonstop mumbling and complaining in times of argument. It sucks to hear an apology that feels forced; it’s not a good sign at all when they just say sorry and they’re not even listening to what you have to say. Some might think that saying a simple sorry is the easy way to “fix” the problem, but in fact they just make it worse by being dismissive or by saying the wrong things when apologizing.

  • I’m sorry you’re offended.
  • I’m sorry that it came to this.
  • I only did it because *insert bs reason* my bad.
  • Fine! Ok sorry.

Like, man. Those aren’t even apologies. These lines are faker than my counterfeit designer-brand bags. No one deserves to hear these lines. “I’m sorry you’re offended.” is at the same level of absurdity as “I’m sorry that you’re overreacting.”

It’s definitely a green flag when they’d rather win you and the relationship than win the argument. Addressing the problems and talking about them is the bare minimum, but being able to stay unbiased, being genuinely willing to hear your side, and saying an authentic apology is the chef’s kiss in every couple’s disagreement.

Ego? It takes a back seat. When one truly means their apology, they will take action about it too, not just say the words their partner wants to hear. That’s borderline manipulation if they say sorry and don’t change their ways even a bit. The one that will treat you right takes accountability, showing that they really listen to what you’re saying, respect you, and care for your emotional and mental well-being.

Here are examples of how to correctly apologize:

  • I totally hear you and realize that what I’ve done was wrong. I’m sorry I hurt you. I’ll do better.
  • I’m really sorry, I should have considered your feelings first. I wish I could take it back.

I’m sorry I hurt you > I’m sorry you’re offended.

This might seem small to some, but trust me, it matters. The words chosen, the tone, and the structuring of the sentence matter because it all stems back to how they treat you.

3. They share the same values and life principles.

Let’s say you’re someone who passionately cares about human rights—politics and controversial topics are big deals for you. It’s not really ideal to have a partner who doesn’t care about these things, especially when they just tell you to stop caring too much about it. That’s one waving red flag to.

And if you’re a very optimistic and spiritual person, would you want to be with someone who’s a consistent Debbie Downer?

Exactly. You know the answer. Their negative energy will be all over the place, and it could possibly influence your optimistic thinking.

While some believe in the concept of opposites attracting, a relationship is so much better when you as a couple are like two peas in a pod. You don’t disagree about a lot of things, which brings peace to the relationship. Plus, you’d have so much to talk about. You relate to each other so much that it strengthens your emotional connection.

But if you don’t share the same opinions and values, that’s fine too, as long as you guys can compromise and find a middle ground—a mutual respect for your differences. We all have preferences after all, so it’s totally up to you if you can make a relationship work with someone who doesn’t have the same values as you.

4. They have healthy priorities in life.

It’s reassuring to have a significant other who prioritizes the things that help them become stable in different aspects of their well-being: financially, emotionally, physically, and mentally. They aren’t caught up in unnecessary busyness or distractions; rather, they focus on the things that matter for them to become the best version of themselves.

It’s a green flag when a partner doesn’t have unhealthy addictive habits, actually knows what they should do, and has great work ethics and self-discipline.

It can consume a lot of your energy if you’re seeing someone who easily gives in on their desirable activities and does not prioritize the important things in life. It’s not that you shouldn’t have fun; it’s just setting your priorities right.

5. They empathize.

Green flags wave so high when they empathize not only with you but with everyone else too. Narcissism is automatically canceled out; empathizers aren’t selfish.

What pure bliss it is to have someone in your life who feels so deeply for you.

Two words: they care.

6. They are self-aware.

Being self-aware means constantly learning and evolving as a person. It involves a drive to understand oneself better and consistently reflecting on thoughts, feelings, and actions. Folks who are self-aware crave hearing constructive criticism without belittling themselves when corrected. It’s important not to be too hard on yourself when people point out your mistakes.

Self-aware people have the goal of establishing great relationships with other people too. When they are on good terms with the people around them and they know exactly how to handle negative people, that’s another green flag checked off the list. You don’t want to be with someone who has beef with everybody; it’s not good for your peace of mind either.

They’re selective about the company they keep, they don’t want to be around people who bring them negative influence.

7. Their words match their actions.

A partner whose words consistently align with their actions is not only a keeper; it also shows they’re responsible. It’s a sign of honesty and reliability. This fosters trust and a sense of security in the relationship. You won’t find yourself questioning their words or feeling disappointed by unmet expectations.

When they say they want to achieve something meaningful, they take the steps, no matter how small it may seem. When they’re truly sorry, it should show through their actions.

A significant other who just talks and talks but does not take action is unreliable. It’s hard to trust a partner when they say they will change but never make the effort to do it.

8. They have the perfect balance of being affectionate and independent.

In simpler terms, they’re all about being sweet and intimate, yet they respect your space and personal boundaries. It’s like having the best of both worlds. When we’re talking about affection, it’s not just physical intimacy we crave but also emotional connection.

However, it’s honestly an unhealthy sign if your partner always clings to you, relying on you in all sorts of ways. You know those “I can’t live without you” lines? If they’re lowkey serious about saying these things, it’s something to watch out for. Now, don’t get me wrong, we definitely want them to shower us with affection, but we also want them to maintain a bit of their own independence. The two are complete opposites; therefore, a perfect balance between them is the key.

One symptom of a dependent partner is when they don’t give you space. They always want to be with you, like they have nothing else productive to do. Romantic relationships aren’t everything, there’s so much more to life. Also, you can’t be the only person in their life, it’s not your job to satisfy them all the time or act as their 24/7 therapist. We enter a relationship because we want companionship, not a one-way ticket to becoming an impromptu therapist.

It’s healthy if both of you in the relationship appreciate your moments of solitude.

9. You have the same plans for your future as a couple.

Before making a lifelong commitment, it is essential to talk about the life-changing decisions in your life as a couple.

Do you want to have kids? In what city or country do you want to live? What are your relationships and boundaries when it comes to your in-laws? Are you fine with having busy careers, or do you want a career that works for both of you and can make you guys travel and spend so much time together?

If you think that the relationship is going somewhere, you have to check if your visions of the future align, and if they don’t, the relationship is waving a red flag. It’s no one’s fault; in this case, it’s just not meant to be.

10. They fully support you.

It’s a huge green flag when your partner doesn’t hold you back from pursuing your dreams or making important decisions, even if it means making big sacrifices or facing the possibility of a breakup. They’re there to stand by your side, cheering you on every step of the way.

And you know what’s remarkable? They don’t keep score. The support they give isn’t a negotiation, not a tit-for-tat, but a natural extension of their love and care.

Now, onto the not-so-common, underappreciated green flags.

11. They don’t tolerate your bad behavior.

In some cases, when they have a partner who corrects their bad behavior, it might trigger feelings of defensiveness or superiority, which can stem from insecurity or the typical ego reasons. Some people might see this as nit-picking and end up using it as a reason to fight.

It’s a green flag when your partner has this behavior because it means that they have their morals intact. It’s way better to look at this as an opportunity to grow as a person instead of making it an unnecessary fight.

12. They’re a good listener.

Remember that particular time when you were sharing about your problems and then the person you were talking to just said that they had the same or worse experience? Or that time when you were sharing something worth celebrating and they just really had to get their way, steal your thunder, and make it all about themselves?

Take a look at this very familiar situations.

Situation 1

You: So what really happened was *insert bad experience*, and it made me feel so down. Honestly, I don’t know what to do anymore.
Someone: Ohhh that happened to me too, and it’s even worse!

Situation 2

You: The professor just announced that I’m one of the top students in my class! All my hard work finally paid off, and I did not expect this since the recent exam was the hardest one I’ve ever taken!
Someone: Omg same! The principal even reached out to me before lunch and told me that I should prepare my speech as the Summa Cum Laude.
You: (thinking: pop off, I guess?)

For sure you’ve experienced this with someone. It’s really frustrating to have that kind of person in your life.

The right person possesses this green flag. They’re invested in what you have to say. When it’s your turn to share, they listen. And when you’re celebrating your wins, they celebrate you, not celebrate themselves.

Stealing someone’s spotlight is so narcissistic.

13. They do not love-bomb.

Love bombing happens when a partner showers you with over-the-top gifts, attention, and compliments—basically, overdoing the five love languages. It’s when they make you the center of their world. 

This can happen at any stage of the relationship, but it mostly occurs in the honeymoon phase of a new relationship.

Examples of love bombing:

  1. So what if I went to the club with this girl? The expensive gifts I gave you—isn’t it enough? You’re too paranoid. Why don’t you trust me?
  2. Let me spoil you.
  3. It’s so crazy that we’re perfect for each other.
  4. When we’re not together, always tell me where you are, who you are with, when you’ll be home, what you’re doing, or anything really. Just keep me updated, you know how I care so much about you.
  5. You’re the only one I want in this world.

Some people cannot differentiate between what’s considered love bombing and what’s not. Hell, some aren’t even aware of the term and just enjoy it when their partners love bomb them. It is easy to fall for this trick, especially if they always give you everything you want. Love bombing is one of the biggest red flags out there that’s dressed like a green flag. It’s important to watch out for this.

14. They are great in bed.

Note: This one might not be for everyone. Not all people in relationships are automatically into sex or prioritize sexual intimacy. People have different views on sex and how important it is in a relationship.

When I say great in bed, I’m not just talking about the performance, but also being totally comfortable with them in bed.

If your partner excels in that department while also making you totally comfortable, THAT’S THE STUFF.

Maybe this is everyone’s favorite green flag. Lol totally kidding of course.

15. They share the same interests and passions.

Note: I’m not speaking for everyone when I say it’s better to have a partner who shares the same interests and passions. Some people like their partner to be the opposite of them.

You don’t need to think exactly alike, but sharing the same interests and passions is sure to be a great relationship starter. You’re more likely to have something meaningful and fun for both of you. It can create a sense of teamwork in the relationship.

This isn’t just about hobbies and talents—it extends to intellectual pursuits, career aspirations, travel, and even food and music preferences.

Whether you both like attending sports events, have a shared passion for music, love puzzle-solving, are obsessed with dogs, or both like to game and stream like Kyedae and Tenz, having a companion to share these experiences with just levels up the relationship.

In some relationships, especially new ones, people struggle with partners who have nothing to talk about besides asking “how was your day?”. It might be a deal-breaker for most people. That is why it’s better—not mandatory—to have something else to do and talk about aside from the how’s your day typa questions. It’s more fun if you’re on the same intellectual level and have deep conversations.

GF just…never has anything to talk about
by u/TestingThisOut11 in relationships

While sharing interests and passions gives your bond a boost, this isn’t the only recipe for relationship success. Not having the same interests doesn’t mean you’re not meant to be. It’s just a small green flag that basically says you have something meaningful to do together or talk about in the long run of your relationship.

16. They’re fun to be with.

The word fun is totally subjective. We all have our own definition of what’s fun. If your idea of fun involves quiet moments or cozy library reading dates, that’s perfectly fine too.

But have you encountered a time in your life where you had someone who literally made your stomach hurt from laughing?

Oh, those are top-tier moments.

I mean, you don’t really have to look for a comedian, but life’s so much better when you’re with someone who can turn a boring and ordinary day into a fun one just by being humorous and spontaneous. In fact, I’ve heard so many stories about unplanned trips turning out to be the best trips of their lives. I’ve had my fair share of experience with that myself.

Even when you don’t have the same interests, this partner just knows how to make people’s days better. It’s not as big a deal as the other green flags, but it’s still a great one to have in an ideal partner.

17. They bring out the best in you.

It’s totally a green flag whenever you’re with this person and you feel like the best version of yourself. You don’t have to pretend and switch your personality just to satisfy them. With this person, you feel so accepted. We don’t wanna be stuck with someone who puts us down and doesn’t value our existence, which is why it’s important to look out for this in a (potential) partner.

The best thing? Their positive energy is so contagious that it makes you feel the most motivated to do well in life. Not that you should depend on someone else’s validation to make life worth living, but having people around you that value and appreciate you can boost your self-esteem.

18. They tell you things that make you feel things.

They tell things… like what?

What I mean is, they say the little things that matter, such as:

  • subtle compliments – makes your heart flutter and boost your self-esteem.
  • whispered I love yous – the whispered ones just hit different. Damn it.
  • thank you – even a small thank you can make your heart happy and make you feel appreciated.
  • leaving you random notes – ex. when they surprise you with a short love letter on a post-it note

Course I’d save the best for last.

19. They look good.

It’s a huge green flag when they physically look good.

Nope, it’s not what you think. It’s not about objective beauty standards or how attractive their faces look.

When the person you’re seeing is confident, most likely they’re not the overly jealous type, not insecure, and not too paranoid about everything that you do. They’re so confident that you can feel it yourself, and it’s a major turn on. Confidence is attractive.

Standards In Modern Dating

So, have you seen those TikTok videos where people spill the beans on the kind of green flags they’re into? It’s almost unreal that there are people who set the bar so low when it comes to green flags. Although, some of them are obviously satirical, it still sounds ridiculous.

According to some TikTok users, it’s certified green flag when the person they’re seeing:

  • is a Spotify user
  • loads the dishes in the dishwashers
  • has more than 4 Instagram posts
  • asks for a fit-check
  • types in lowercase
  • loves looking at the stars and sunsets
  • is a mama’s boy

bare minimum 🤤🤤🤤 #girls #relatable #boys #greenflags #dating #teenager

♬ original sound – spencer barbosa🧚🏻

What are your thoughts on this?

Green Flags: It Takes Two To Tango

Overall, green flags are subject to one’s preferences when it comes to relationships. Just like those oddly specific green flags shared by some TikTok users, they are free to have their own definition of their non-negotiables, no matter how unusual it may seem. Some of the green flags I discussed are considered the bare minimum, it now all comes down to how one views them and how important it is to them.

Green flags are merely signals that tell you that this person could be a compatible match for you, it doesn’t necessarily mean they’re literally bad people if they don’t possess all of these green flags. Green flags are like the “Go” signal at traffic lights; it’s like saying “This is a good match for you; you can GO for it”. While red flags represent “Hold up, wait…”—it’s like a warning signal that says that the relationship might not be ideal to pursue.

Now, let’s be clear—these green flags aren’t just meant to be a checklist for your (potential long-term) partner. They’re equally valuable when applied to your own reflections. Relationships definitely cannot be carried by one person, it’s a two-way street. Because what if you’re actually the one who’s a walking red flag?

Hi, it’s me. I’m the problem, it’s me.

The information provided in this article is intended for informational purposes only and should not be considered a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment in any way. Additionally, if you and your partner are facing challenges that require specialized guidance, such as relationship issues or the need for couples therapy, it’s important to seek the assistance of qualified professionals.

You acknowledge and agree that King Kat shall not be liable for any claim, loss, or damage resulting from the use of, or reliance on, any information in the article.


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