Navigation Links
Expert suggests tried-and-true strategies to strengthen your relationship

URBANA What are you doing to keep your relationship alive? A University of Illinois study highlights the importance of five relationship maintenance strategies that couples can use to preserve or improve the quality of an intimate relationship.

"Relationships are like cars in that you have do certain things to keep them running, especially when your goal is to strengthen and preserve your bond with your partner," said Brian Ogolsky, a U of I professor of human and community development.

To determine which factors are the most important in promoting healthy relationships, Ogolsky and colleague Jill R. Bowers conducted a meta-analysis of 35 studies and 12,273 individual reports.

The research showed that openness, positivity, assurances, shared tasks, and a shared social network are strategies that couples can use to make their relationship better, he said.

To "open up" your relationship, the researchers encouraged not only talking about your feelings but getting your partner to talk about what she is feeling as well. Positivity entailed being a "fun" person and acting upbeat and cheerful as you interact with each other.

"It's also important to assure your partner that you're in the relationship for the long haul, to divide household chores and responsibilities equally, and to make an effort to include your partner's friends and family in some of your activities," Ogolsky said.

The study showed that a person who practices one of these five strategies is likely to practice the others as well. And a partner who notices that one of the strategies is being used is apt to be tuned in to their partner's efforts in the other four areas, he said.

"Persons who use any of these maintenance strategies will not only be more satisfied with and committed to their relationship, they are also likely to continue to love and, yes, even like each other throughout its duration," he said.

Although these strategies work, challenges may arise when couples don't see or value each other's efforts in the same way. These approaches had the most influence on the quality of the relationship when persons believed their partner was also performing relationship maintenance, he said.

The study suggests that what you do doesn't matter as much as whether the things you're doing are noticed by your partner. In other words, he said, relationship quality is not only at risk when couples don't employ these strategies, but also when one partner believes the other is not making an effort or doesn't recognize those efforts.

Sometimes a person's thoughts don't transfer into actions, he explained. "Say you've arrived home from work and your intention all day has been to buy some flowers for your partner and surprise her with dinner. Then you get wrapped up in a business phone call and your good intentions fall by the wayside. You may feel as if you've put considerable effort into your relationship, but your partner didn't see it so it does you no good."

The fact that couples get busy, become enmeshed in routines, and take each other for granted is all the more reason to consciously adopt these relationship strategies, he said.

"Even a small attempt at maintenance, such as asking how your partner's day was, sending a humorous text to make him laugh, or picking up the phone and calling your mother- or father-in-law, can have a positive impact on your relationship and make you happier," he added.


Contact: Phyllis Picklesimer
University of Illinois College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences

Related medicine news :

1. Experts Offer Advice After Yankee Pitchers Trampoline Injury
2. NYU Langone experts present research, clinical advances at neurosurgeons meeting
3. Red Tide Likely in New England This Season, Experts Warn
4. No Proof That Gum Disease Causes Heart Disease, Experts Say
5. Leading experts on congenital muscular dystrophy convene at University of Nevada, Reno
6. Glaucoma Need Not Steal Sight, Experts Say
7. Close Laundry Detergent Right After Use, Expert Says
8. Healthy Behaviors Extend Life After Cancer, Experts Say
9. More Babies Today Have Irregular Head Shape: Expert
10. Routine Kidney Disease Screening Not Worthwhile, Experts Say
11. Exercise Twice a Day Vital for Your Dogs Health, Expert Says
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/24/2015)... PLAINSBORO, N.J. (PRWEB) , ... November 24, 2015 ... ... experts will gather to share their knowledge and experiences at a live taping ... during the Ruesch Center for the Cure of Gastrointestinal Cancers 2015 Symposium at ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... November 24, 2015 , ... With Thanksgiving right around the corner, holiday travel ... help protect your family and vehicle. , According to the National Highway Traffic Safety ... Amica is sharing the following safety tips from the NHTSA: , ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... November 24, 2015 , ... Chiropractic student Katie Benson received ... in Overland Park, Kansas. Benson, a fifth-trimester student in the university’s College of ... on October 16. , “Katie is very excited and greatly appreciative to receive ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... MA (PRWEB) , ... November 24, 2015 , ... ... Henry Ford and Detroit Taught Me about Reinvention and Diversity by Nancy M. ... Watching people suffer, with hospitals failing to adequately address the needs of patients and ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... IL (PRWEB) , ... November 24, 2015 , ... All her life, Don Peck’s mother ... Even her obituary said she might have been. After a 25-year search for information, ... voyager with whom she shared a last name. Turns out, it was Don’s father ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/24/2015)... Medical has developed specialty tubing for an inexpensive, portable mini-lab ... Africa and Asia ... diagnosis is important to treat those affected and to effectively ... of a portable mini-lab or "lab on a chip", medically-trained ... and perform rapid testing for HIV. They do this by ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... DIEGO , Nov. 24, 2015   Mast ... company leveraging its molecular adhesion and sealant technology (MAST) ... heart failure and stroke, today announced that the Company,s ... present at the Piper Jaffray 27 th Annual ... Eastern Time at the New York Palace hotel in ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... 2015  Depomed, Inc. (NASDAQ: DEPO ) today announced that ... month of December. Date: Wednesday, December 2, 2015 ... --> Date: Wednesday, December 2, 2015 ... --> Piper Jaffray 27th Annual Healthcare Conference ... Location: New York, New York ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: