I was recently listening to a TED talk about a 75-year study by the Harvard psychology department, exploring the question of what brings the greatest happiness and satisfaction over a lifetime. The study followed a group of undergraduate men, as well as a group of Boston area men who didn’t attend college.
At the start of the study in the 1940s, 75% of the participants said getting rich was very important, and some 50% said they wanted to be famous—a result similar to Millennials who were asked the same question today.
But over the course of the study, following up with the same participants every two years or so, what became clear was that the real key to life-long happiness and satisfaction, were close relationships, particularly the kind of reciprocal relationships that the participants knew they could lean into during life’s most challenging times.
In other words, what proved to be most important for happiness and satisfaction for both the financially successful participants, as well as the less financially successful participants in the study, were family, close friends, and particularly, long-term relationships (LTR).
Perhaps the conclusions of the study seem obvious. All humans share a need for connection, safety, love, touch and intimacy; however, relationship dynamics have changed dramatically over the past few generations. Families are scattered across the globe. Friendship and even communities seem to come and go. Many of the old assumptions about love itself have gone out the window in the modern world, and successful relationship doesn’t fall so clearly under the “live happily ever after with one partner for the rest of our lives” model anymore. And finding satisfying love is more challenging, complex, and volatile than ever.
As an intimacy coach, empowering men and women to create more love in the world is my life’s purpose, and though I don’t claim to have all the answers, I’ve spent a lot of time asking questions that have led me to present my new webinar:
You will learn:
- A new perspective that illuminates the complexities of the modern relationship dynamic
- The 6 cornerstones of a successful relationship
- How to navigate a world of differing needs, wants and desires
Do you want to know more about how to have a loving, long-term partnership?