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The Surprising Science of Soulmates

https://www.readersdigest.ca/health/relationships/surprising-science-soulmates/

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The Surprising Science of Soulmates
How to navigate the line between love and fantasy. Illustrations by Jori Bolton The soulmate. It's an ancient Greek ideal that survives to this day as a fixture of Harlequin romance novels and movies starring Rachel McAdams. That predestined better half is out there (hopefully with a charming smile and eyes that sparkle like a glass of Moët & Chandon).

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The soulmate

The soulmate

It’s an ancient Greek ideal that a predestined better half is out there. Once found, he or she will bring eternal bliss.

Believing your partner was made just for you can reduce your trouble in a relationship to fate.

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Long-term commitments

The idea of a soulmate might be a detrimental way to look at relationships. 

Those who believe in soulmates tend to be less satisfied when they think of the conflicts in their relationships. In the soulmate frame, conflicts are bad and a sign that they are possibly not the perfect fit.

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Building a strong relationship

Arriving at a strong place of comfort and trust in a relationship takes effort. 

Com­munication, collaboration and constructive conflict resolution build and sustain happy and fulfilling relationships despite not being a perfect fit from the outset. 

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A soulmate is a Hollywood notion

A soulmate is a Hollywood notion

It isn’t the couples who had the most movie-worthy courtships that have long, happy unions. 

The couples who consistently try to see each other’s viewpoints, responsively listen to each other and maintain mutual respect make the real magic happen.

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The three keys to passion

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  • Thrill: Excitement, attraction, adventure.
  • Sensuality: The entire spectrum from kissing goodnight to holding hands, from making tender love to raw passion.

    Set daily relationship intentions

    Most mornings, commit to spending five minutes with your partner. Think of a relationship intention, then share it. "Today, I intend to be careful with my tone of voice when I feel impatient."

    Commit spending two minutes at the end of the day reviewing your progress and ways to improve it.

    Self-understanding

    To make a marriage work, you have to be the right person.

    Rather than looking for the right partner, become aware of your blind spots, growing edges and vulnerabilities. Take r...

    You can’t avoid marital conflict

    Blaming, oversimplifying, and seeing oneself as a victim are all common traits of unhappy couples and failed marriages.

    Conflicts should be approached by looking together at the problem.

    A good marriage takes skill

    Most of us don’t have adequate communication skills going into marriage. It is important to build this skill.