Forget Common Interests, Successful Relationships Need Something More

Behold the one big key to lasting relationships.
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Photo: The Everett Collection

Photo: The Everett Collection

Thanks to the cringe-worthy sexts and highly avoidable turn-offs that have become the all too common these days, the greater majority of relationships have the tendency to fail miserably, which, I think we can all agree, pretty unfortunate.

However, the dating apps we know and love basically only use the “Yeah, she’s hot and kind of funny” approach to find us our next other half, which, as it turns out, is the best way set up a doomed relationship—which is probably why Tinder isn’t giving you much more than bitter disappointment.

According to Dr. Peter Pearson, couples psychologist and founder of The Couples Institute, common interests (and a smokin’ bod) aren’t enough for a lasting relationship. Don’t get me wrong – you still need to share the same fiery love for tablescaping or CrossFit, but what you really need are the same core values, which Pearson likes to call the “holy grail” of relationships. The excitement of flipping tires together until you both pass out will fade over time, but your shared values will remain forever.

"People don't really negotiate their values," said Pearson in an interview with TechInsider. Meaning you can compromise on minor things like going clubbing or staying in, but if bae wants to lead a life solely of tranquility doing yoga and eating tofu in Bora Bora, while all you want to do is drive monster trucks and shotgun 5-Hour Energy, it’s not going to work out. You just can’t find a happy medium in that scenario. "It ain't gonna work," he says. "Everything small will grow into huge proportions," Pearson says.

For a real-life example, Pearson elaborated on a couple he worked with at a workshop, who had serious core value differences. One half of the relationship was a wealthy chiropractor, while the other half liked to keep things simple. "He was building this huge house that overlooked a big vista," Pearson said, "and she did not want to waste money on this ostentatious, wasteful shlock. She had so much disdain for his life dream of this house — that's a huge collision of values, and that's not an easy thing to compromise on."

So no, it’s not weird at all to get super personal and ask her invasive questions about her values on a first date, because really, you’re just looking out for yourself.

h/t Thrillist