Social Science Says Lasting Relationships Come Down To 2 Basic Traits

Social Science Says Lasting Relationships Come Down To 2 Basic Traits
Pinterest

In her article, “Master of Love” author Emily Smith states that of all the couples that get married, only 3 in 10 remain in healthy, happy marriages, as psychologist Ty Tashiro points out in his book “The Science of Happily Ever After.”

Every day in June, the most popular wedding month of the year, about 13,000 American couples will say “I do,” committing to a lifelong relationship that will be full of friendship, joy and love that will carry them forward to their final days on this earth.

THE STUDY OF MARRIAGE


Social scientists first started studying marriages by observing them in action in the 1970’s in response to a crisis: married couples were divorcing at unprecedented rates. Worried about the impact these divorces would have on the children of the broken marriages, psychologists decided to cast their scientific net on couples, bringing them into the lab to observe them and determine what the ingredients of a healthy, lasting relationship were.

With a team of researchers, scientists hooked the couples up to electrodes and asked the couples to speak about their relationship, how they met, a major conflict they were facing together, and a positive memory they had. As they spoke, the electrodes measured the subjects’ blood flow, heart rates and how much they sweat they produced. Then the researchers sent the couples home and followed up with them six years later to see if they were still together.

From the data they gathered, Gottman separated the couples into two major groups: the masters and the disasters. The masters were still happily together after six years. The disasters had either broken up or were chronically unhappy in their marriages.

But what does physiology have to do with anything? The problem was that the disasters showed all the signs of arousal — of being in fight-or-flight mode — in their relationships. Having a conversation sitting next to their spouse was, to their bodies, like facing off with a saber-toothed tiger.

“There’s a habit of mind that the masters have,” Gottman explained in an interview, “which is this: they are scanning their social environment for things they can appreciate and say thank you for. They are building this culture of respect and appreciation very purposefully. Disasters are scanning the social environment for partners’ mistakes.”

THE CLEAR SIGNS


Contempt, they have found, is the number one factor that tears couples apart. People who are focused on criticizing their partners miss a whopping 50% of positive things their partners are doing and can even create negativity when it’s not there!

People who give their partner the cold shoulder — deliberately ignoring the partner or responding minimally — damage the relationship by making their partner feel worthless and invisible, as if they’re not there, not valued. And people who treat their partners with contempt and criticize them do nothing but further the damage.

Kindness (along with emotional stability) is the most important predictor of satisfaction and stability in a relationship. Kindness makes each partner feel cared for, understood and validated—feel loved.

The hardest time to practice kindness is, of course, during a fight—but this is also the most important time to be kind. Letting contempt and aggression spiral out of control during a conflict can inflict irrevocable damage on a relationship.

“Kindness doesn’t mean that we don’t express our anger,” Julie Gottman explained, “but the kindness informs how we choose to express the anger. You can throw spears at your partner. Or you can explain why you’re hurt and angry, and that’s the kinder path.”
When people think about practicing kindness, they often think about small acts of generosity, like buying each other little gifts or giving one another back rubs every now and then. While those are great examples of generosity, kindness can also be built into the very backbone of a relationship through the way partners interact with each other on a day-to-day basis, whether or not there are back rubs and chocolates involved.

Another powerful kindness strategy revolves around shared joy. One of the telltale signs of the disaster couples studied, was their inability to connect over each other’s good news. When one person in the relationship shared the good news of, say, a promotion at work with excitement, the other would respond with wooden disinterest by checking his watch or shutting the conversation down with a comment like, “That’s nice.”

As the normal stresses of a life together pile up—with children, career, friends, in-laws, and other distractions crowding out the time for romance and intimacy—couples may put less effort into their relationship and let the petty grievances they hold against one another tear them apart.

In most marriages, levels of satisfaction drop dramatically within the first few years together. But among couples who not only endure, but live happily together for years and years, the spirit of kindness and generosity guides them forward.

By Derek Lovell

Sources: Collective Evolution, Psychology Today, The Atlantic

Related:
Social Science Says Lasting Relationships Come Down To 2 Basic Traits Social Science Says Lasting Relationships Come Down To 2 Basic Traits Reviewed by Katerina Pap on 10:43 AM Rating: 5

6 comments

  1. have love and respect for each other never try to change your partner respect the person they are and learn to over look the anoying trates. if you love your partner you will learn to love everything about them. Show interest in each other's hobbies and take the time to explain and share yours. My partner lover and friend and I are going on our 28th year in june. we have never tried to change each other just shared in each others past and future.

    ReplyDelete
  2. have love and respect for each other never try to change your partner respect the person they are and learn to over look the anoying trates. if you love your partner you will learn to love everything about them. Show interest in each other's hobbies and take the time to explain and share yours. My partner lover and friend and I are going on our 28th year in june. we have never tried to change each other just shared in each others past and future.

    ReplyDelete
  3. This is Dr. Wakina’s season, the season he restores joy, peace and prosperity to broken relationships/marriages. He is the one and only spiritual healing doctor that has the power to do unimaginable things with his email:- [email protected] With big faith and trust I have on Doctor I got results 7days after some inspirational spell cast that brought my husband back and made him realize his mistake for leaving us because of misunderstanding we usually had because of his affairs with his concubine. He realized after the spell that no woman is prettier than me or any woman that can love, care and satisfy him like I do. He realized he has a beautiful and promising family.
    I was not afraid contacting Dr. Wakina because I know he is one of the genuine spell doctors that can bring back my better half without negative effects. I am exited you read this wonderful testimony from a happy wife and mother. I pray and wish unending joy, peace and prosperity in your relationship/marriage… cheers!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Anyone here that has experience emotional heartbreak will understand how i feel and will understand how i went to any length to get the love of my life back up until i met the great prophet it all felt impossible and i have begin to loose hope on getting Sharon back cause she left and told me she never wanted to see me again in his life and i have been the witch behind his lack of progress and he cant progress in life. but after meeting with the great prophet prince for just 250 usd he gave me my wife back something i never felt was possible anymore and i have become a laughing stock to everyone at home and work even his business associate laughed at me and called me names.now i am smiling as my marriage invitation is given to them to also get help from this good man email at [email protected] and tell him magret link you up and i believe as you do so it will bring an end to all your relationship problem or whatsapp +2348182260982''

    ReplyDelete
  5. I have been rejected by my husband after three(3) years of marriage just because another woman had a spell on him and he left me and the kid to suffer. one day when i was reading through the web, i saw a post on how this spell caster on this address [email protected] , have help a woman to get back her husband and i gave him a reply to his address and he told me that a woman had a spell on my husband and he told me that he will help me and after 2 days that i will have my husband back. i believed him and today i am glad to let you all know that this spell caster have the power to bring lovers back. because i am now happy with my husband. Thanks for Dr,gbojie . His email: [email protected] OR.His WhatsApp Number:+2349066410185

    ReplyDelete
  6. After being in relationship with Wilson for seven years,he broke up with me, I did everything possible to bring him back but all was in vain, I wanted him back so much because of the love I have for him, I begged him with everything, I made promises but he refused. I explained my problem to someone online and she suggested that I should contact a spell caster that could help me cast a spell to bring him back but I am the type that don't believed in spell, I had no choice than to try it, I meant a spell caster called Dr Zuma zuk and I email him, and he told me there was no problem that everything will be okay before three days, that my ex will return to me before three days, he cast the spell and surprisingly in the second day, it was around 4pm. My ex called me, I was so surprised, I answered the call and all he said was that he was so sorry for everything that happened, that he wanted me to return to him, that he loves me so much. I was so happy and went to him, that was how we started living together happily again. Since then, I have made promise that anybody I know that have a relationship problem, I would be of help to such person by referring him or her to the only real and powerful spell caster who helped me with my own problem and who is different from all the fake ones out there. Anybody could need the help of the spell caster, his email: [email protected] or call him +2348164728160 you can email him if you need his assistance in your relationship or anything. CONTACT HIM NOW FOR SOLUTION TO ALL YOUR PROBLEMS

    ReplyDelete

Don't show again. Close

Like us on Facebook?