Our 4 Key Relationship Factors

Our 4 Key Relationship Factors

We’ve discussed the strategy behind our psychology assessment, now, we have all four relationship factors broken down to help you understand our test even better! This way, you feel knowledgeable about our test kit and go into it fully prepared, no surprises.

Remember, these four relationship factors have been tested in correlation to marital satisfaction and long term relationship success. This part of our compatibility test is a questionnaire built to help you and your partner better understand your psychological compatibility.

1. Social Behavior

The social interaction pattern assesses whether you seek out togetherness or prefer solitude, whether you prefer to be in the background or foreground of social interaction. In essence, are you most comfortable among people, or do you prefer your own company?


Researchers have found a strong and positive correlation between satisfaction with couples’ social life and self-reported relationship satisfaction. Whether you fall in the “more outgoing,” social category, the “more internally oriented” category—or somewhere in between—has a large influence on your relationships and overall lifestyle.

Differences in this area can be great, causing clashes between couples about how much time to spend on their own, by themselves, and socially with others. Disagreement about how often and with whom the partners should or should not socialize can lead to recurring conflicts, jealousy, resentment, pent-up frustration, and feelings of abandonment, rejection and injustice.

A sample question to be found on my compatibility instrument: You are away on a 3-day business trip. You look forward to calling your partner each day to check in and say hello.

2. Dominant Behavior

The Dominant interaction pattern consists of holding strong opinions, lower tolerance for differences in opinion, as well as lower tolerance for goal differences and need for control. The dominant personality tends to be direct and decisive; he or she would prefer to lead than follow, and tend towards leadership and tend to have high self-confidence and are risk takers and problem solvers, which enables others to look to them for decisions and direction.

The dominant personality craves to be in control of a situation, and appreciates receiving verbal recognition from others as well as rewards. When working out an issue with a dominant personality it helps to be direct, to the point, and brief. Focus on tangible points and talk about “what” instead of “how”. Make suggestions on how to achieve a desired goal instead of talking about why it won’t work.

A sample question to be found on my compatibility instrument: Over lunch you take the opportunity to address some things in your partner’s life that you believe he/she should handle better.

3. Submissive Behavior

The submissive interaction pattern consists of a tendency to compromise, agreeableness, positive attitude, selflessness and acceptance. High scorers tend to be soft-hearted, sentimental and kindly in relationships with others. They are reluctant to assert themselves, however, and avoid taking initiative or assuming a leadership role.  They are inclined to be somewhat dependent on others, preferring to let them take the lead and give direction. They present a gentler interaction style that often provokes warmth and over-protection from others.

These two factors, dominant and submissive, opposite sides of the same coin, assess whether you prefer to lead or follow. Do you lean more toward being the influencer or the influenced? Typically, those with a more dominant interaction pattern fit best with the people having a more submissive interaction pattern. Indeed, on the dominant/submissive issue, dissimilarity is a clear strength.

A sample question to be found on my compatibility instrument: You and your partner have taken a long weekend together at a nearby resort. When you arrive both of you agree that the accommodations aren’t suitable. You turn to your partner hoping that he/she will step up and deal with the management in an effort to upgrade.

4. Intimate Behavior

Interacting intimately is the extent of your preference for expressions of affection and whether you are prone to be open and revealing or more inclined to guarding your privacy. The need for intimacy is the desire to experience warm, close, and communicative exchanges with another person.

The Intimacy factor examines how much personal information you desire to share with your loved one and how comfortable and desirous you are with conventional forms of affection.

In essence, are you prone to spilling the beans to your partner, or are you the tight-lipped type? Are you given to touching and providing other forms of affection?

Intimacy is basically about the extent you desire to be emotionally close to your partner, and how it is expressed by letting your guard down, and letting him or her know how you really feel. Intimacy is also about being able to accept and share in your partner’s feelings, about being there when he/she wants to let you in.

Intimacy often doesn’t need words, but being able to put feelings and experiences into words makes intimacy more likely to occur. Intimacy involves being able to share the whole range of feelings and experiences we have as human beings – pain and sadness, as well as happiness and love.

A sample question to be found on my compatibility instrument: You come home feeling very down after an evaluation at work. You flop down next to your partner on the couch and immediately tell him/her what happened and how you feel about it.

Why is Compatibility Important?

A score of 100% is perfect on a compatibility instrument, but perfection is not necessary, nor common. A score of 75% provides a great deal of confidence that the relationship will be mutually fulfilling. The results of a compatibility test are not intended to be the sole basis for the decisions you make about pursuing a relationship, but if seriously considered, it can be very helpful.

Currently there is a debate in the field over the best formula for compatibility: some say the best couples are very similar to one another across many characteristics (the similarity hypothesis). In other words, “birds of a feather flock together.” Others argue that the best couples have differences across their characteristics (the complementarity hypothesis).

In other words, “opposites attract.”

As noted earlier, your profile will address both issues.

  • On Social and Intimacy factors, similarity is important. You are not likely to relate to or be at ease with someone who is very different from you. Very outgoing persons seldom feel comfortable with reserved loners, and affectionate persons often become frustrated and resentful of a partner who is self-contained and distant.
  • On the dominant/submissive issue, dissimilarity is a clear strength. A number of studies have demonstrated that complementarity holds for the dominant/submissive factor. People who are generally dominant tend to get along better with people who are more submissive; they are more likely to provide the accommodation aspect so necessary in relationships.

Compatibility and understanding are crucial for a couple to survive the daily commodities of life. Some couples spend their entire relationship trying to change their spouse into a character they would be happier with, only to discover at the end that people don’t change; in fact, they tend to dig in and get resistant as well as resentful when they get the message that they are not good enough as they are.

In essence, incompatibility remains the strongest factor contributing to breakup.

Psychologists have discovered that incompatible relationships are high risk. In addition to all the other stresses of modern life, these relationships require a great deal of maintenance and most of us don’t put that kind of energy into our home-life.

If you’re ready to take on the adventure, order a kit here. Have any questions about our processes? Ask them in the comments below!

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