The trend these days might be to stay single and try to play the field, but is it really that fulfilling?
While being single might have its advantages, being in a committed relationship offers much more.
My fiancé and I have been together for over six years now, and those years have been the best of my life. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not always been sunshine and rainbows. Every couple has their fair share of lover’s quarrels, but a little spat is just that. At the end of the day, you still have someone who loves you and whom you love with your whole heart.
You have a partner, a confidant and a best friend. You have someone who knows you better than anyone else, sometimes even better than you know yourself. You have someone to lean on, and as Bill Withers knows, we all need that.
I could go on forever about all of the wonderful things that come with falling in love, but as it turns out there are actual benefits of being in a relationship. More than the lovey-dovey “you have a friend in me” mumbo-jumbo, being in a committed relationship actually has proven benefits – like from studies and stuff. And if you ask me, they’re way better than chocolate and roses.
9 Biggest Benefits of Being In a Relationship
Do you often find yourself yearning for a fulfilling relationship where you each support each other deeply and care for each other infinitely? You’re not alone. Emotional security is desired by many of us. It’s due to the fact that this bond brings us great comfort.
For example, a 2005 study found that men who described their relationships as secure were able to overcome anger more easily than subjects without security.
2. Shared Memories
Ever feel like when you do things on your own, they seem bland? Well, when you’re in a relationship, the most mundane things become memorable just by being with your significant other.
Sharing memories with your partner is one of the best parts of being in a relationship. When you’re out with friends or going through some hard times, there’s no remedy like remembering all of the moments you’ve experienced together.
In fact, new research shows that long-term couples can even develop interconnected memories.
The British Psychological Society, which conducted the study, found that couples who shared stories together, rather than individually, led to collaborative remembering of events. Not only that, but people painted the situation in a different way for their partner, including new information. This means your partner really is your other half!
3. Reduced Stress
One of the biggest hurdles for couples is the stress that a new relationship brings. On the other hand, when you’re in a committed relationship for a long time, stress levels can be significantly reduced.
Benjamin Karney, Ph.D., a professor of social psychology at UCLA, likes to think of stress as a sort of test for relationships. According to him, passing this test “may well have lasting positive benefits for couples in terms of increased self-efficacy, trust and confidence that the relationship can weather new challenges in the future.”
When couples are satisfied with their relationship, in turn, they are in a better position to provide support and care for each other.
Did you know that being in a healthy, committed relationship can extend your lifespan?
In a study published PLoS Medicine, Brigham Young University professors Julianne Holt-Lunstad and Timothy Smith found that having adequate social connections can increase our longevity by 50 percent.
Let’s put it in perspective: Having little social interaction is harmful, but just how harmful? The study found that being isolated from others is:
- Equivalent to alcoholism in severity
- Equivalent to smoking 15 cigarettes a day
- More harmful to your body than lack of exercise
- Twice as harmful as being obese
Need we say more? You need your partner, and they need you. You’ll both be around for a long time to enjoy each other’s company.
5. Improved Health
Ever notice that you start picking up habits that your partner does, and they do the same? This can be a great thing, especially if you choose a conscientious significant other.
If your partner’s health choices are poor, however, don’t fret. You can still be a positive role model. With time, they’ll pick up on your good habits.
6. Reduced Risk of STDs
When you commit yourself to one partner, you reduce the risk of contracting a sexually transmitted disease. This should be a no-brainer, but it’s definitely a plus, especially if you’ve both been tested and cleared.
7. Be Yourself
One of the best advantages of being in a relationship is that you can be yourself around your partner. All of the awkward first dates and what-ifs are out of the question now. You can be as goofy as you like.
Amy Brunell, a psychology professor at Ohio State University Newark, says, “If you’re true to yourself, it is easier to act in ways that build intimacy in relationships, and that’s going to make your relationship more fulfilling.”
Do we even have to say it? Just being in a relationship makes people happy. Whenever you look at the face of the person you love deeply and passionately, certain areas of the brain are stimulated. There have been numerous studies on this.
One such study by PBS found that people are happier when they’re with others, rather than being alone. Also, this happiness is contagious and lasting.
9. Spending the Rest of Your Lives Together
Should you ever decide to get engaged to your one and only, you should prepare yourself for a lifetime of great memories and moments. There’s no better feeling than waking up every morning next to the one you love, and that’s a fact.
You’ve read nine reasons how a relationship can benefit you, so get out t