The media has been abuzz lately over a scientific study involving a 36 question “sharing game” for couples. Some have touted the “game” as a way to trigger a love connection between two people in a very short amount of time. But, is that really possible? Can 36 questions help couples spark true love? With so many people thinking about Valentine’s Day and love, I needed to check this out.
It turns out the actual focus of the study, conducted by social psychologist Arthur Aron and published in Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, was on building interpersonal closeness. The study premise was that by answering a set of questions scientifically designed for sharing specific details about each other, a couple could very quickly create a sense of “closeness” even if they had just met for the first time. An application to speed dating, blind dates, and first-time, face-to-face encounters with an on-line dating match quickly came to mind. So, could you get someone to fall for you just by asking and answering a set of specific questions? I was intrigued, but not yet convinced.
How About Those 36 Questions?
The 36 questions study participants were required to ask each other were interesting, to say the least. They ran the gamut…
From the innocent:
#4 What would constitute a “perfect” day for you?
To the creepy:
#7 Do you have a secret hunch about how you will die?
To the insightful:
#10 If you could change anything about the way you were raised, what would it be?
To even the uncomfortable:
#30 When did you last cry in front of another person? By yourself?
While sharing answers to these questions may reveal a lot about another person that would normally take a much longer time to uncover, feeling “close” to someone could hardly be called a declaration of love.
Getting Close Doesn’t Equate to Love
In fact, the actual study results never talk about love and even state that the “closeness” experienced is just “similar” to the kind of real closeness that develops naturally in relationships over a period of time. In other words, what is experienced in the study only mimics a feeling of emotional chemistry between two people. While we know two people can experience physical chemistry almost instantaneously, emotional chemistry – the kind that produces loyalty and commitment – still takes time.
And yet, there does seem to be something to this sharing of personal information. It turns out that couples who meet on-line and marry, do so after a shorter courtship – 18 months on average – as compared to 36 months for couples who marry after meeting and dating through more traditional means. It seems that the sharing of “vital stats,” answering the lengthy dating-site questionnaires, and social media correspondence prior to meeting face-to-face creates connections that in turn, cut short the getting to know each other period of courtship. So, could there really be something to a set of revealing questions and the initiating of love?
Sadly, I’m not sure we can make that connection. Because, while the on-line daters who marry may have shorter courtships, the number of couples who meet on-line and go on to get married is actually quite low, statistically. It appears there is no substitute for face-to-face courtship.
How to Really Build Emotional Connection in a Relationship
So what is the take away here? Can playing a game of 36 questions really help you make a love connection with someone? I think the answer is ‘NO!’ But the study does tell us that communication and sharing, verbally, our thoughts, fears, desires, and dreams at a deep level can help us connect sooner in a relationship – or it could quickly send the other person running!
When it comes to romantic relationships, here is my advice on sharing and building an emotional love connection:
- Sharing at a deeper level builds emotional chemistry and helps to bond two people together. So, share, yes, but not too much too quickly. It should be like pealing an onion, slowly, over time.
- Get a guy to share beyond the basic facts and stats. The goal is to get him talking about his feelings, dreams, and desires. So, start with something easy for him. For example: If you met on-line, and he stated that his hobby was sailing, then ask questions to dig deeper. Ask him things like how old he was when he learned, who taught him, and what was it that drew him to sailing. Trust me, you’ll learn a lot more about him than just a sailing lesson.
- When it comes to your past and any emotional wounds or tragedies, be careful what and how much you share. If you reveal the fact that you still haven’t gotten over the loss of your cat (who died two years ago), you could make a guy nervous. He might fear how you’d react if the two of you dated and it didn’t work out. Visions of “Fatal Attraction” pop in his head.
- Actions speak louder than words. Regardless of what a guy says, it’s what he does that really counts. The guy who will walk your dog in the rain because you have a cold is the real Keeper!
- In time, don’t be afraid to ask the tough questions. You want to make sure your core values align with those of your prospective mate. You don’t want to wait until you’re engaged to find out that he doesn’t really like kids and having children is a top priority for you!
In the end, good communication and emotional chemistry are essential to a healthy relationship. And, if the spark is there between two people (physical chemistry), sharing at a deeper level could very well help to ignite the flames and get the love fire burning. But real love takes time and no set of questions can make two people fall in love, no matter how revealing the questions and answers happen to be.
Ten key Dos and Don’ts of dating during the holidays from IsHeaKeeper.com
The holidays can be a great time to be single and part of the dating scene – spending quality time with friends, getting oohs and aahs over your favorite party dress, and even the prospect of sharing family traditions for the first time with someone special. But knowing how to survive the dating scene during the holidays can be tough.
With all the cheer can come a lot of stress and angst if you’re single and unattached or newly dating and trying to figure out how to best navigate all the demands and expectations of the season, like:
- What to say to your nosy aunt who is always asking personal questions about your love life, or lack thereof?
- Should you buy him a gift or not, and if so, what kind?
- How to handle meeting family for the first time?
- Are the holidays for couples, and if so, am I expected to bring a date?
- Is it unreasonable to expect him to finally pop the question?
- Why is he suddenly making himself scarce now that the holidays are almost here?
I feel your pain! And please know that a lot of other gals and guys do too. With roughly 40% of the adult workforce declaring themselves as “single,” you have a lot of company.
10 DOs and DON’Ts to Survive the Dating Scene During the Holidays
So to help relieve some of the pressure, I’ve put together ten key Dos and Don’ts of dating during the holidays that address the top issues I hear from singles about this time of year. Checkout my list in the feature article I did for DigitalRomance here.
Most importantly, stay focused on the true meaning of the holiday season and don’t put undue pressure on yourself or your relationship. Remember to live smart and remain savvy in love.
P.S. Now is the time to jumpstart your love life in 2015, so treat yourself to an early Christmas present by purchasing a copy of my book Is He a Keeper: Savvy Gal Secrets to Spotting Mr. Wrong and Hooking Mr. Right on Amazon. Don’t have a Kindle? No problem! Amazon has free apps that let you read it on an iPad, Nook, or even on your computer.
Also, if you have any burning questions you would like me to address, as always you can send me a message here.
With so much attention on the Ray Rice sexual assault scandal dominating the news and social media almost daily, it’s a good time to talk about the facts surrounding domestic violence and what you need to learn about how to spot a potential abuser.
The statistics on domestic violence are both staggering and frightening. According to the American Psychological Association:
- 1 in 3 women has experienced physical violence and/or stalking.
- On average, every day, more than 3 women are murdered by a husband or boyfriend.
- 1 in 5 high school students has been physically and/or sexually abused.
And according to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCADV), boys who grow up seeing domestic violence are twice as likely to become abusers.
How to Spot a Potential Abuser
An abusive relationship doesn’t necessarily start with physical abuse. It’s more often the result of escalating behavior that can start with verbal or emotional abuse, such as name-calling, verbal threats, or put-downs designed to control a woman and strip her of self-esteem. Then, when a woman stays or fails to recognize the warning signs, her abuser’s actions often escalate to physical violence over time. And the longer a woman remains in an abusive relationship, the greater the risk of fatal injury. But, what may come as a surprise is the fact that women are at greatest risk of a fatal injury when they finally decide to try to leave their abuser.
While an abuser may not start out being physically violent, there are always warning signs to look for. The sooner you can spot the signs of a potential abuser, the more likely you can avoid physical abuse and the threat of fatal injury.
Here are 7 warning signs to look for, but you can get a more comprehensive list in my book Is He a Keeper?: Savvy Gal Secrets to Spotting Mr. Wrong and Hooking Mr. Right available on Amazon.
- He hits, pushes, slaps or throws something at you.
- He is verbally abusive – calls you names, puts you down or threatens you.
- He tries to keep tabs on your activities.
- He exhibits extreme mood swings or has almost two personalities.
- You are afraid of him or what he might do.
- He makes unwarranted accusations—accusing you of flirting or being unfaithful.
- He controls what you do and who you see.
What Women Need to Understand and Remember
- Real love doesn’t hurt. Men don’t abuse out of love. They abuse out of anger and a need to dominate or control.
- You are not to blame for your man’s violent behavior. There are no excuses for getting physical with a woman.
- If it happens once, it will happen again. No matter how remorseful he appears or how vehemently he promises to never do it again, if you stay there will be a next time.
- The longer you stay, the greater the risk of bodily injury and even death. So before you leave a potentially violent abuser it is wise to seek help and have a plan. Below are resources you can contact to get help with your situation.
(NCADV) National Coalition Against Domestic Violence
National Domestic Violence Hotline (800-799-7233)
I just did a guest blog post for DigitalRomance.com. The post is called “Five Red Flags that Scream, ‘Don’t Date This Guy!'”
In this digital age of online dating, I find it even more critical for women to quickly vet those guys who can seem so wonderful in print, but aren’t mate material in “real life.” For many guys, dating has become a game and women are their unsuspecting pawns. The sooner you can spot the warning signs the better.
The recent blog post by Joshua Pompay for Huffington Post really brings my point home. In it, he describes himself as a serial dater and a “god amongst men” for his ability to get so many women to go out with him. His self-described bad-boy behavior exemplifies the kind of guy I’m describing in my article. Go check out my article with the link below and let me know if these sound like any guys you’ve dated!
I’m excited to announce the release of my new book, Is He a Keeper: Savvy Gal Secrets to Spotting Mr. Wrong and Hooking Mr. Right, now available on Amazon Kindle. I wrote this book to help the many women struggling to find the right man. Every day, I hear the same frustrations expressed over and over again: Why is it hard to meet any decent men? How can I be sure I’ve found the right guy? Why do I seem to attract one loser after another, never dating anyone worth hanging onto? Why am I in a relationship with an obvious “Mr. Wrong” but I can’t bring myself to break it off?
If any of this resonates with you, then my new book can give you the help you need. Unlike the many books focused on how to “get” a man, this book goes to the heart of the real issue: how to know if you’re wasting your time on a definite Mr. Wrong or you’ve found true love with a guy worth keeping. It offers honest answers to all the questions above and presents real solutions for overcoming your disappointing dating history and finding the kind of love you truly deserve. Along with your book purchase, you’ll also get FREE access to two great bonuses that will give you additional tools for building healthy, lasting love relationships.
Buy it NOW and start changing your love life TODAY!
Create the YOU that will Attract Mr. Right into Your Life
To find love, focus first on becoming all that you are capable of being. We are all authors of our own destiny, a destiny of our own scripting.
I love this: “The most creative act you will ever undertake is the act of creating yourself.”—Deepak Chopra
In this fast-paced world, it is so easy to get caught up in what I call the “doing” of being. I’m just as guilty of this as the next gal. We – women especially – make the mistake of focusing all our attention on the things we must be doing in our lives, which in turn get translated as our “being”:
- Being a good friend
- Being on-time
- Being a good employee or student
- Being a loving, supportive girlfriend
- Being a good daughter or mother
We often forget that the real “being” of who we truly are must come from the inside. As Deepak says, we must undertake the act of creating ourselves each and every day of our lives. And this must come from a clearer realization of who we want to be. We must create in our minds first, then manifest that vision into reality through intentional doing – not reactionary doing. (We’ll still have to “do” all those other things but now they’ll be performed within the framework of that bigger picture – the real YOU!)
So, how does all this relate to finding love with Mr. Right?
When we better understand who we are and the unique person we want to become, we’ll also have a clearer understanding of the kind of man we want to share our lives with. With the vision of the life we want to create and live, we can better recognize those compatible qualities we seek in a mate. We’ll also be able to spot more quickly those Mr. Wrongs who just don’t match up to the life we are scripting for ourselves.
How to Attract Love and Find Mr. Right
And here is the really magical part of all this: By focusing on the act of creating yourself, you will be creating the very energy needed to attract keeper men who actually possess those qualities matching your vision – for like attracts like. It is the powerful law of attraction. You become a magnet attracting men with similar values and interests. They may not appear today or tomorrow, but they will come! I know this for sure because it worked for me.
If your current relationship is leaving you feeling less than fulfilled, then take the free quiz on the Home page and learn the three steps you can take now to get out of your rut.
You should also read my book: Is He a Keeper?: Savvy Gal Secrets to Spotting Mr. Wrong and Hooking Mr. Right.