Although there are no hard and fast rules to love and no scientific formula to getting it right, there is evidence to demonstrate there are a number of attributes that can increase your chances to secure a long term happy relationship.
It sounds obvious, but open and honest reciprocal communication within a relationship strengthens the bond you share with your partner, not only providing a sense of security and support but also provides a sense of belonging. However, what is the best form of communication is heavily debated in the literature and is often dependent on many variables. To demonstrate, your personality type can impact how you communicate: whether you are strong silent type or you wear your heart on your sleeve, it’s important to discover the type of communication style that you both value and works within your relationship, from the onset. Another example could be time, if two people in a relationship both work sixty hour weeks, it’s imperative that they discuss what will work best for them as a couple and dedicate time to this.
No-one is perfect, and part of being in a truly loving partnership is accepting your spouse’s flaws and understanding how they only make that person all the more beautiful. Nevertheless, it is only natural that partners are going to have varying attitudes, beliefs and opinions regarding a great many different areas of life, and it is therefore crucial to the health of the relationship that each party understands the other’s stance and accommodates it as best they can. For example, numerous studies have shown ‘big spenders’ tend to attract more thrifty people, and vice versa, but that the happiest couples of all tend to be comprised of people who spend in a similar manner. It is important not to avoid the issues at hand, but to instead communicate and solve problems caused by your differences together, as a team.
It’s no surprise that the most successful relationships are the most egalitarian. Whilst it’s important that couples share chores and the admin of day-to-day life, the most satisfied and happy couples are those who play to their strengths and have clearly-defined responsibilities which complement their partner’s. When you know what you have to do and what roles are yours within the relationship, you tend to be more content – as does your partner.
A plethora of studies have shown that having sex at least once a week is conducive to a much happier love life with your spouse. In fact, boosting the frequency you have sex from once a month to at least once a week actually increases happiness levels as much as an extra $50k in your salary would! Intimacy is an inherently long-term endeavour: it grows over time as you and your partner get to know every nuance and foible of each other, and love one another all the more for them. Having sex is the ultimate physical display of love and affection for your partner, and it is of the utmost importance to both partners’ happiness to feel loved and wanted in this way.
- Long-term goals
This is the biggest potential obstacle of all in the search for happiness within a couple. Do both of you want to start a family, or does only one of you? To what extent should you be seeking to balance your career trajectory with your free time – and, by extension, the time you spend with each other? The happiest couples are inevitably those who overcome these obstacles. If both partners just so happened to hold similar long-term goals anyway, they may simply never have to face these problems. However, you can’t always know someone’s true aspirations until the relationship has already become long-term – and it is at this point that friction can occur.
If you are single, one solution is to use a matchmaking service. At The Vida Consultancy, we vet every one of our members fully, getting to understand in depth their hopes and dreams, before setting them up with people who hold similar values. Being paired with such a complementary match helps you both avoid such potentially massive clashes down the line. To this end, using a matchmaking service sets you well on the road towards being part of a truly happy, satisfied, loving couple.