Sigma Male – Meaning, Origin and Usage

Do you know a man who is on the top of his game? Perhaps you have come across a guy at work who is great at his job but bad at being social?

Do you consider yourself an Alpha male but view those with similar traits as lesser? If so, the term sigma male is an apt moniker.

This post unpacks the meaning and origin of this expression.

Meaning

A “sigma male” is a man who is dominant and has power, but tends to keep to himself, be considered a “loner”. Such a man is also self-reliant and is also highly independent. He may have a close group of friends, but often does not allow many people to get close to him. He prefers working on his own, but everything he does has some sort of influence because of the power he holds.

A “sigma male” is can easily be understood as an Alpha male who also happens to be an introvert. They have the same success and influence, but just prefer to be on their own, for any number of reasons. They are not the type to boast about their power or influence, but everyone knows that they have it.

Those that consider themselves alpha males will refer to other men as “sigma male” in an attempt to make them feel bad about themselves. More information can be found in the video (here).

Example Usage

“You can tell Greg is a sigma male. He kind of keeps to himself, but whenever he speaks, everyone listens.”

“I don’t know why Abe is so quiet all of the time. He’s our boss and should be telling us what to do. He must be a sigma male.”

“Jasper is such a sigma male. I’ve only ever seen him hang out with the same two or three people.”

“Andy graduated as valedictorian from Harvard. But he never really talks about that, or talks to anyone for that matter. He’s a sigma male.”

Origin

The term is often attributed Theodore Robert Beale, also known as Vox Day. He was well known as an activist and writer. His first recorded use of the phrase was in January of 2010, when he where he uploaded the definition in one of his blogs. One example he refer to was Clint Eastwood’s movie personas as common cases of sigma males. Author John Alexander used the phrase as the title of a book he released in 2014. On January 25 of 2021, a Twitter user under the name Lily Simpson brought attention to the phrase by posting a thread of tweets that showed images with captions reading “sigma male”. Her tweets were shared repeatedly across Twitter.

The term is also part of the socio sexual hierarchy of relationships, which was also created by Theodore Beale. This is a system for describing how men and boys can be organized into different archetypes, including sigma male and alpha male. “Sigma male” has gained a lot of attention in recent years, and has become incredibly popular on the Internet.

Phrases Similar to Sigma Male

  • Lone wolf
  • Introvert
  • Powerful

Phrases Opposite to Sigma Male

  • Alpha male
  • Extroverted
  • Outspoken
  • Assertive

What is the Correct Saying?

  • “Sigma male” is itself the correct saying.

Ways People May Incorrectly Say Sigma Male

“Sigma male” refers to men who are powerful but tend to stick to themselves and do not subscribe to typical societal expectations. Referring to any kind of man who is assertive, outspoken, or popular as a sigma male would be incorrect. Some ways that “sigma male” is used incorrectly are:

  • Gary is always so loud and boisterous. He’s definitely a sigma male.
  • Adam likes to make sure everyone knows how strong he is. What a sigma male.
  • Jack is so popular, I see him with someone new every day. He’s a sigma male.

Acceptable Ways to Phrase Sigma Male

  • Kevin never talks to anyone. He must be a sigma male.
  • Alvin’s the CEO, but no one knows. He never tells anyone. He’s a sigma male.
  • Robert is such a sigma male. He only has two friends, but I’ve never heard him speak.

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