Whether we are looking forward to it or not, tomorrow is Valentine’s day and for some people, the pressure is really on- to ensure you have a date or to get the right gift or even just to get it right for your long term partner. Either way, Valentines day can be either a dream come true or a strategic and lonely disappointment.
Society really conditions us to believe that, without a date, Valentine’s day is a disaster for us, personally. I like to think that perhaps, being alone on Valentine’s day is better than being with someone who really doesn’t appreciate us!
There are many different theories about love- Psychologist Zick Rubin proposed the idea that romantic love is made up of three elements- attachment, caring and intimacy (Rubin, 1970). Robert Sternberg suggests a triangular theory of love; that there are three components; intimacy, passion and commitment, and that a different combination of all three make up different types of love (Steinberg, 1996). Realistically, most people don’t care how love is made up, just that they are freely experiencing it!
Psychologists have also determined that it takes between 90 seconds and 4 minutes to decide if you fancy someone- so first impressions really do count! And it’s not just verbal first impressions- 55% of our communication is through body language, 38% through tone and speed of your voice, and only 7% is actually through what we say (Aron, 1997). So, when it comes down to it, what we say doesn’t really count, but what our body is saying is incredibly important!
So, I guess from this, we can see that it really is the whole package that counts, and having a level of confidence in yourself, be it mentally or physically, is actually really important to how we come across.
Relationships can be difficult, they are not easy to get right, but when they are right, it is a highly rewarding experience. Perhaps Valentine’s day, for you, highlights differences in your relationship, or the fact that you would like some support in order to become more confident so you can get into a relationship. Whatever the reason, working out your own personal issues can really help with your communication- the more confident you are, the more positive your body language, and as we can see, 55% of communication means you can’t argue with that!
Aron, A. (1997) ‘The Experimental Generation of Interpersonal Closeness: A Procedure and Some Preliminary Findings’, Personality and Social Psychology, vol. 23, no. 4, April, pp. 363-377.
Rubin, Z. (1970) ‘Measurement of Romantic Love:’, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, vol. 16, no. 2, pp. 265-273.
Steinberg, R.J. (1996) ‘A Triangular Theory of Love’, Psychological Review, vol. 93, no. 2, April, pp. 119-135.