The 6 Things That Make You Compatible – Happy Relationships
In Part 1 and Part 2 of this series on choice, we looked at the decision making process. We learned that having a specific, but not exhaustive, criteria is your best bet at finding a satisfying relationship.
So, what are your criteria?
If you automatically think of physical attributes, like tall, dark and handsome, you’re a little off the mark. That’s okay, it’s entirely natural. Our brains aren’t very good at verbalizing our emotions, particularly when they have to translate a subconscious desire into a conscious reason. So often you don’t even know why you’re attracted to a person. Your brain will tell you it’s because of how they look, but in reality, it’s more likely their behavioural style that attracts you to them.
One of the best sources of research, in terms of which criteria actually matter in a relationship, are online dating websites. eHarmony, RSVP, Oasis and a number of other major dating websites use formulas and algorithms to help ‘match’ people that are, according to their research, romantically compatible. They use around 30 criteria (and up to 500 questions) with some sites even giving you a specific % match.
Obviously every person’s criteria is slightly different. The purpose of this article is not to give you a specific criteria, but rather, help steer you in the right direction. Ask yourself a few of these questions and use them as the basis of a satisficing method of selection. Try to get away from the idea of searching for a 100% match. Instead, look for someone who is a suitable match and work on building a 100% relationship with them. This is how the satisficing method works. When you find a suitable match, stop looking and start working on the relationship.
When selecting your criteria, keep in mind that the person doesn’t necessarily need to be, believe or think the same as you to be compatible. They do need to align with your belief system though. For example, you don’t need to have the same opinion, but you should at least respect each others viewpoints. You don’t need to be interested in the same things, but you overall curiosity about life should be fairly similar.
Intellect – Not just about intelligence. It includes curiosity, humour and artistic passion. Try to find someone who is your ‘equal’. Look for a similar sense of humor and curiosity first and foremost, and build on that.
Emotional Temperament – Look for someone whose self confidence, self esteem and self belief are compatible with your own. Numerous studies have shown warmth to be one of the key components of successful relationships. So, pay attention to the persons kindness and their approach towards themselves and others. Does it align with your approach?
Social Style – How much time would you want to spend with a partner and what would you do during that time? Do you prefer watching movies or bush-walking? Do you enjoy spending time alone? How much time? Will this fit in with their needs? Are you highly sociable or do you prefer quiet catch ups?
Physicality – Not just about physical attraction (although that is still important). It includes energy, sexuality, passion and zest for life. Are you a go-getter? Are you sexually adventurous? Are you passionate about life? How does that fit in with their physicality? What about your energy levels? Will they be able to keep up with you, or slow down if need be?
Communication – How do you go about managing your emotions? Do you like to talk about them a lot or would you rather internalize them? Are you open and honest? Are you expressive with your emotions? Are you direct and to the point, or more subtle in your communication style? Will you be able to find a medium that allows you to build a healthy relationship?
Key Beliefs – These can be categorized into three sections: spirituality, ambition and altruism. Try to find someone who has a similar outlook on what is important in life. Your religious beliefs and values are fairly important, as are your overall ambitions. Do you want to change the world or just yourself? Do you believe that giving to others is an important part of happiness?
That final point, the one about happiness, is actually a key component. We all have different views on what it means to be happy, just as we have different methods for finding happiness. The best thing you could do to help you find the right person, is to first discover what makes you happy. This will help you to use the above criteria a little more effectively, as you will know what really matters to you.
To help you get there, and to continue spreading the HSL love, you can grab a FREE copy of our 17 page eBook The No-Bull Pathway to Happiness below. It goes through the basic science, psychology and philosophy of happiness. It also gives you practical advice on how to implement these ideas to start feeling happier right away.