Relationships, we can probably all agree, are a tricky business at the best of times. Getting from a swipe right on Tinder, to making it past the first date and then sailing into ‘official relationship’ territory, well it can all feel a lot like running a gauntlet that you’ve been incredibly poorly prepared for. But if you do manage to make it successfully into coupledom — slaps on backs and clinking glasses from all of us here – the next question you’ll need to ask yourself is this; are they really ‘The One’?
A huge indicator that you’ve found The One? It’s just easy being with this person. You feel at home, totally comfortable, and are able to be yourself. Do you feel calm, at peace, and genuinely happy? That is a great indicator. But, trusting your gut feeling, however, can feel like a leap of faith. So how about a checklist of science-backed indicators instead?
Your Brain Changes
A sure-fire indicator of a relationship being the real deal is that you don’t experience that ‘out of sight, out of mind’ phenomenon when your partner isn’t around. Instead, you’ll tend to think about them a lot – almost all the time, in fact.
Studies show that love and genuine attachment actually alter the biochemical reactions taking place in your brain.
When you think about The One, you’ll get a surge of happiness-boosting neurotransmitter dopamine plus a lighting up of the brain’s reward centers.
Your Pronouns Change
Those who feel deeply connected to their partner are more likely to use plural pronouns such as ‘we’ and ‘us’ rather than the singular ‘I’ or ‘me’.
You’re Willing to Fight
A willingness to fight for the success of your relationship is what really sets The One apart. Even more so than how ‘compatible’ two people might be on paper. A successful relationship does not hinge its posterity on how alike you are, instead it hangs on by the sheer willpower and want to stay in a relationship.
You Happily Sacrifice
If you’ve met The One, you’ll both be cool with making certain sacrifices for each other, even if historically, you’ve always been more about looking out for yourself as number one.
You’re Their #1 Supporter
Supporting each other’s ‘life dreams’, aka your long-term goals and ambitions, is a key component of a healthy and lasting relationship.
Couples who focused on building something together, whether it be a business or working towards a shared goal, tended to stay together the longest.
When you find The One, it should feel very natural to look up to them, admire them, and respect them. In other words, you will become their biggest champion and an ever-reliable source of support and encouragement.
Sex Isn’t Your Only Hobby
Naturally, sex plays a huge part in a healthy relationship, and being physically attracted to your partner as well as enjoying their company is a vital checkpoint.
Sex is great and you should be having lots of it, but it’s important to build a stronger, emotional bond beyond that. If all your plans somehow incorporate time alone where you might be able to have sex then the alarm bells should start ringing. With The One, you need to be able to have fun around each other without the need for sex.