Secret to success is who you marry, study finds

Do you ever wonder what former US President Barrack Obama, music icon Beyonce Knowles and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg have in common?

Secret to success is who you marry, study finds

Aside from being incredibly successful, these world influencers have supportive spouses who helped shaped who they are. Indeed, a study published by Carnegie Mellon University revealed that supportive relationships have links with willingness to pursue rewarding challenges.

To arrive at this conclusion, researchers looked into 163 married couples and their relationships. One member of each couple were given an option: either compete for a prize by giving a speech or just solve a puzzle.

Individuals with more supportive spouses were significantly more likely to choose the more challenging task, which is to compete for the prize. Meanwhile, individuals with spouses who discouraged them or expressed a lack of confidence chose to solve the simple puzzle.

Based on the results of the study, they found that individuals with supportive spouses were more likely to accept challenges and experienced more happiness, personal growth, psychological being, as well as better relationship functioning months later.

Brooke Feeney, a professor of psychology in CMU's Dietrich College of Humanities and Social Sciences and lead author of the study said: ”We found support for the idea that the choices people make at these specific decision points, such as pursuing a work opportunity...matter a lot for their long-term well-being.”

So how exactly can you help your partner become the next Obama, Zuckerberg or Knowles?

That dream may seem far-fetched but you can encourage your partner to embrace opportunities by reassuring them as well as expressing enthusiasm and talking about the potential benefits of the opportunity.

"Significant others can help you thrive through embracing life opportunities," Feeney explained.

"Or they can hinder your ability to thrive by making it less likely that you'll pursue opportunities for growth.”

-- Mini, The Summit Express

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