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If You're Not Doing This, Your Relationship Won't Last, Study Says

Research indicates that doing this simple thing with your partner is the key to a lasting relationship.

There are countless factors that contribute to the success of a relationship: attraction, shared interests, and enjoying one another's company, just to name a few. However, a new study suggests there's one major component of long-term relationships that can significantly predict their success—and one that many people are likely to overlook. According to the research, having relationship rituals that you and your partner do together is strongly correlated with your relationship standing the test of time. Read on to find out what rituals help, and if you're worried about your significant other, know that If Your Partner Is Doing This, They're About to Break Up With You.

The new study, published in the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, reveals that engaging in certain rituals as a couple, like celebrating holidays, date nights, or other special occasions together, is a strong predictor of relationships lasting in the long term.

"Rituals have the power to bond individuals and give us a preview into family life and couple life," Chris Maniotes, the study's lead author, said in a statement.

To determine what factors contributed to relationship longevity, the study reviewed interviews with 24 straight couples—48 individuals in total—in the American Southwest. The couples had been together for an average of 2.5 years and participants were 23 years old, on average.

The study's authors found that sharing rituals together typically increased a couple's commitment to one another. Notably, engaging in these rituals together shed light on individuals' satisfaction—or lack thereof—in their relationships. That's what made them such a strong determinant of relationship success.

"Rituals seem to really play a role in pausing and slowing down individuals, helping them take a better look at their relationship. They help them see, 'This is who we are as a couple; this is who we are as a family,'" said Maniotes.

Read on to discover more science-backed ways to keep your relationship on steady footing. And if you're worried about red flags, know that Your Relationship Is Doomed If Your Partner Does This, Experts Say.

Practice mindfulness.

couple doing yoga at dawn on a beach

If you're eager to keep your relationship rock solid, a little mindfulness can help. A recent study published in the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships reveals that, among 847 unmarried heterosexual couples, those who practiced mindful behavior in the form of non-reactivity, acting with awareness, and non-judgment, had lower levels of stress and higher levels of sexual satisfaction.

Don't rush into marriage.

older white women couple walking and smiling outside

While the thrill of a new romance may make tying the knot early on in a relationship seem appealing, if you want your relationship to last, you're better off waiting. According to a 2014 study published in the SSRN, couples who dated for at least three years prior to tying the knot were 39 percent less likely to get divorced than those who got engaged less than a year after they started dating. And if you want to avoid making another major relationship mistake, 40 Percent of People Wish They Hadn't Shared This With Their Partner.

Don't splurge on a wedding.

man bored about doing paperwork with his wife

The splashier the wedding, the less likely your relationship is to stand the test of time. According to the same SSRN study, couples who paid $1,000 or less on their wedding were 53 percent less likely to divorce, while those who spent $20,000 or more on their nuptials were 46 percent more likely to call it quits. And if you want relationship tips delivered directly to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.

Cook for your partner.

middle aged couple cooking

The way to a person's heart really is through their stomach, after all. According to a survey from Superdrug, 58 percent of respondents said that they found themselves turned on by their partner doing chores, with 62 percent of those polled calling cooking the most attractive task for their partner to tackle.

Demonstrate your commitment.

couple spending time together hugging on a park date outside

You may know that you're committed to your partner, but if you're not explicitly expressing it, you could be in trouble. A July 2020 meta-analysis published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences reveals that people who believed their partners were committed to keeping their relationship afloat were most likely to say that their union was strong—in fact, it was the single strongest determinant of a solid partnership, more so than sexual frequency, passion, affection, support, or even trust.

Sarah Crow
Sarah Crow is a senior editor at Eat This, Not That!, where she focuses on celebrity news and health coverage. Read more
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