Are you dating someone and finding yourself wondering, “Where is this going? For most of us, commitment involves some sort of obligation or promise to the other person.
Your "alternatives" refer to the other people you could potentially become involved with if your current relationship ended.Lastly, your "investments" are the things you put into a relationship, like time, effort, money, property, or emotional energy.Researchers have refined and tweaked this definition of commitment since the 1980s, and it has become one of the single most-studied aspects of romantic relationships.More importantly for us, this flurry of empirical inquiry means we know a lot about the interaction between commitment and a person’s future decision to stay or break up.Essentially, it works like this: Commitment’s Predictive Powers Your commitment score is not a perfect crystal ball, but it is a good place to start if you want to predict your relationship’s future.
Commitment is one of the best markers of who will break up and who will stay together in the future, anywhere from three months to a year or two later.
It is also a great way to assess your relationship because unlike other factors, such as how often you fight or how much support you get from your social circle, commitment’s powers appear to work equally for men and women.
Also, the relationship between commitment and your future status is also generally immune to your ethnicity, sexual orientation, or how long you’ve been with your partner.
This means that you can measure your commitment at any point in the dating or relationship process and learn something useful about the future. In one study that followed more than 1,700 people for five months, commitment scores collected at the start of the study explained 22% of the difference between the people who stayed together and the people who broke up after the five months.
In normal-speak, this number means there is a moderate connection between commitment and staying together in the future.
While a lot of other factors contribute to keeping a couple together, we can confidently say that people’s current commitment to their relationship is an important piece of their future decision to stay with their partner or move on.