Sorry for the weird post title, but the origins of this piece are from last year, so perhaps you saw it when it was published.
But even if you did, this is pretty good stuff, and it's worth a re-visit. The Atlantic magazine piece "Masters of Love," reveals findings from The Gottman Institute on what goes into making great relationships that last. You can read the specifics in the original piece, but the team measured heart rate, blood pressure, sweat, etc, to figure out who was experiencing physical stress when surrounded by their partner.
The results yield two key things that we can all pay attention to, both centering on how we respond to our partner's efforts to connect and communicate, from everything from small observations to sharing of important news.
The first Gottman calls "bids" or a request for a response. It's a simple reaching out "hey - did you see that?" that seeks a connection from the other. In short - your spouse or partner does this all the time. If you want your relationship to last, make sure you respond.
The second is how a couple expresses kindness, especially during high-value moments (fights, or the sharing of good news). Those relationship that express "active constructive responding allows the partner to savor her joy and gives the couple an opportunity to bond over the good news."
There's more to them both, of course, so head over to the Atlantic's site to soak up the data, and behave accordingly.
Master of Love [TheAtlantic.com]