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If You're Not Doing This, Your Relationship Probably Won't Last

Love is a puzzle, and these pieces are necessary.

If you are unhappy in your relationship, maybe these four important pieces are missing—from the beginning. Relationship expert and author James Michael Sama explains that the building blocks of any relationship must include the following, and that if one part is missing, your relationship likely won’t last for the long haul. 

“One of the reasons I am so fascinated by relationships is because of how intricate they are, yet how simple they can also be,” James says. “I find myself wondering why something so positive can become so complicated. Shouldn't we be able to just choose someone we enjoy being around, are attracted to, and get through the days together? Unfortunately, there's much more to it than that.”

So what’s the formula?

1.  Initial attraction.

James says this part is absolutely essential. Without a physical spark, it’s unlikely you will be attracted to the person at all, and it can’t be forced. Of course, people change physically over time, but attraction is inexplicable and if it’s there it’s there.

2.  Chemistry.

Without it, you will drift apart or it will take really, really hard work to stay together. It’s not just physical attraction either, it’s having an emotional and intellectual connection too. Put simply, it’s the twinkle in their eye when they look at you.

3.  Shared values.

Do you both want kids? How do you want to raise them? How much do you care about religion? It’s not about the wedding, it’s about talking about all the stuff that comes after and agreeing on major points. That way, you’ll grow together.

4.  Timing.

James says right person, wrong time, can actually be true. 

“It doesn’t matter how perfect you are for someone, how much work you have done on yourself, or how much you love him or her – none of it matters if they are not ready for you,” he says.

If both people in the relationship are in the same place and ready for commitment, it’s a solid starting point.

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