5 Scientifically proven tips to find lasting love

While fairytales will have you believe that finding love is down to ‘right place, at right time’ serendipity, this is only part of the bigger picture.

Yes, that brush of the hand, eyes meeting across a crowded room, hailing the same taxi cab, getting caught in the rain type of meeting does — on occasion — happen outside of movie sets, but Hollywood has done a good job at convincing us we’ve gotta leave our love lives up to fate.

Isn’t it empowering to learn you can actually take some control over your love life? Armed with these 5 scientifically proven tips to find lasting love, you can borrow cupid’s bow and speed the process up, if he’s been slacking somewhat in your soul mate mission.

When dating: remain positive and smile often

Following a string of less-than-knock-out dates, it’s easy to become jaded and demotivated. However, experts will attest that positivity is a major driver for emotional attraction; in a study of over 2000 males, those who were provided with a photograph plus an overview of positive personality traits of a potential partner were much more likely to find the match attractive, versus those who saw no, or negative, personality information.

It will also come as little surprise that smiling will make your date warm to you; a 2014 study found that attractiveness increased in correlation to intensity of smile. So, even if you’re not feeling like dragging yourself out for another date, get in the right mindset — you never know where this one may take you!

Photographer: Brooke Womack

Learn to distinguish a good date from a bad one

We’ve all been there: you have a spring in your step on the way home from a date, thinking it’s gone really well, only to get the dreaded text a few days later saying, “It was nice to meet you, but…”

What if you had scientifically-proven ways to deduce whether your date’s as into you, as you are to them?

Touch, it seems, is a universal factor that indicates a successful meeting for both genders. Does she touch your arm mid conversation? Did he go in for a hug, or kiss on the cheek, towards the end of the night? A study in France concluded a light touch on a woman’s arm increased her likelihood of her giving out her phone number when asked. I mean, it’s not as easy as that… but it’s good to know a careful touch can help!

You needn’t go in for a full date of the date smooch, to see if they’re feeling it; be on the look out for minor physical cues too.

You may also be surprised to learn that both men and women are more likely to report a connection if the woman spends time sharing about herself in early dates; so, there’s your green light to ask, and answer, personal questions.

Photographer: Jacqueline Fugatt

Listen, always

Didn’t your mother tell you, there’s a reason you’ve got two ears and one mouth? Well, now there’s proof that speaking half as much as you listen can keep a relationship happy and healthy. All the way from the first date, to first dance and subsequent anniversaries then on, being attentive to your partner’s communication style could be a saving grace.

A 2010 exploration of 373 couples saw that pairs who were able to show they’d really heard their partner’s point of view during times of conflict were less likely to separate later down the line than couples who didn’t.

So what’s makes a good listener? Keep eye contact, to show your dedication to what they are saying. Repeat phrases back to them, to illustrate you’re taking it in (and to make their points more firm in your own memory too).

Photographer: Damaris Laesser

Hold on to those in-jokes

Laughter is a wonderful way to bond two people together; couples who LOL together, stay together.

What’s more, scientists at the University of Texas believe that partners who share inside jokes or idiosyncratic language quirks establish a deeper and more loving connection than those who don’t. That’s not to say you should force secret quips or silly nicknames for each other; let them happen naturally. Doing so will forge a shared sense of identity.

Photographer: Lauren Jackson 

Appreciate your partner

At the end of the day, you really are one of the lucky ones if you find a love that lasts a lifetime. As such, you shouldn’t let a day go by without showing appreciation for your partner.

Saying “I love you” before (rather than after) having sex can have a positive impact on your relationship, and you should always look to make your partner feel wanted and valued;  psychotherapy research finds that 48% of people coming out of failed relationships noted a lack of appreciation as a damaging factor.

Whilst there’s no formula for love, these facts and figures may help you make two become one. Happy romancing!

Need some inspo for that first date? Check out these unconventional ideas that you’ll want to organize right now.

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