As the saying goes: One of the best things you can do for others is to work on yourself. This may be particularly true in relationships today. Although self-care existed even in ancient Greece, modern couples exercise self-care in a variety of ways, and new health products and practices are popping up everywhere.
According to 956 people in a relationship where at least one person practiced self-care, taking advantage of at least one of the many self-care options available really helped their relationship, particularly if both partners were willing to give it a try. Read on to see how simultaneous self-care affects a relationship’s health and the likelihood of its success.
Everything from bubble baths to dining out and goal setting can be considered self-care, but we’re defining it as any action or attitude that contributes to personal health and/or well-being. For some respondents, eating healthy foods and eating comfort foods were both recipes for self-care.
Reading was the most common form of self-care for those who were the only ones to practice it in their relationship. This makes sense, as reading is most often a solitary activity. Dining out was also popular for solo self-carers, possibly because couples frequently enjoy meals together without considering it to be self-care.
Men also spent slightly more on self-care than women. One hypothesis for this is the persistent gender wage gap. With more cash on hand, men may have more spending power for self-care and otherwise.
One thing’s for sure: Self-care and satisfaction went hand in hand. And if both partners were willing to participate in the practice, satisfaction improved even more. Sexual satisfaction, relationship satisfaction, and career satisfaction were all likely to increase when both partners practiced self-care. Relationship satisfaction saw a particularly high jump, with 84.2% of self-carers enjoying a satisfying romantic relationship.
Communication also saw a breakdown when only one partner engaged in self-care. Couples who had only one self-care practitioner argued an average of 6.7 times in the past three months – nearly twice as often as those who had both partners practicing self-care. Some relationship experts consider a few types of arguments to be relationship-ending, so you may want to practice self-care and encourage your partner to do the same to better the odds of a successful relationship.
With sexual satisfaction showing such a dramatic increase when both partners practiced self-care, we decided to dig a little deeper. More than three-quarters of respondents were able to achieve orgasm during sex when both partners practiced self-care, compared to just 54% of respondents with only one partner who kept up their self-care practice.
We also took a look at how self-care impacted the relationship if it started in the middle of the romance. The result? More good news: 69% of respondents agreed that their relationship improved after both partners started to practice self-care. Another 60% also became sexually adventurous when both partners began to practice caring for their well-being.
Communication in the bedroom is also incredibly important; psychologists even call it the “bedrock” of an enjoyable sexual experience. Nearly 4 in 5 respondents who practiced self-care were able to take advantage of this sexual communication: They felt more comfortable expressing their sexual needs.
As it turns out, relationships proved to be a great source of education for learning self-care. In fact, 43% of respondents said they learned self-care habits from their significant other. Most often, men borrowed body lotion (61.7%) from their romantic partners. Female respondents, however, were most often used body wash (58.8%) when their partner already had the habit. Putting the two habits together apparently left both participants in cleaner, more moisturized states.
Overall, women were likely to teach the art of self-care. Moreover, men were more likely than women to borrow their partner’s self-care products. Everything from toiletries to candles was up for grabs. Thirty-nine percent of women, however, confessed to stealing their partner’s razor. That said, 68% of respondents encouraged their partners to practice self-care, so a missing razor or candle shouldn’t come as a complete surprise.
The impulse to impress your partner often diminishes as the relationship goes on, leading to what some call “letting yourself go.” Unfortunately, this also comes with letting go of some important self-care practices. Seventeen percent of respondents said they practiced self-care less often once they entered a romantic relationship. Given what we now know about self-care and coupledom, this most likely hurts the health of the relationship.
Relationships do take time to nurture, so time for self-care may naturally diminish. Lack of time was actually the No. 1 reason respondents had a tough time sticking to their self-care routines. Nearly 9% also complained of being too tired. Depending on the particular practice, however, self-care may end up increasing energy levels, so try to make time for it when you can. Ultimately, it took an average of 17 months after the relationship started for people to see their self-care habits slip.
With self-care having such a variety of options, as well as an intense impact on relationship health, it’s probably a good idea to pick up the habit in whatever form suits you best. Maybe that’s weekly bubble baths or making sure to finish that book you started. So long as it’s in the pursuit of well-being, we’re willing to call it self-care.
One of today’s increasingly popular forms of self-care is CBD. Whether ingested, applied topically, or even given to your pet, CBD has exploded on the market due to its abilities to naturally ameliorate everything from physical pain to anxiety. That said, the market explosion has created the need for consumer education, which Remedy Review has fulfilled. Our mission is to advance the well-being of others, so stop by to continue or begin your journey into the wonderful world of self-care.
For this project, we surveyed 956 people in relationships. To qualify for the survey, respondents had to be in a relationship, engaged, or married and had to practice self-care habits. Participants who were single, widowed, divorced, or who didn’t have self-care habits were automatically disqualified. Respondents had to answer questions about their self-care habits and their partner’s self-care habits (if it applied). Respondents ranged in age from 24 to 62 with an average age of 38 and a standard deviation of 9.3. Fifty-four percent of respondents identified as women, and 38% identified as men. For short, open-ended questions, outliers were removed. To ensure that all respondents took our survey seriously, they were required to identify and correctly answer an attention-check question.
These data rely on self-reporting by the respondents and are only exploratory. Issues with self-reported responses include but aren’t limited to exaggeration, selective memory, telescoping, attribution, and bias. We did not have a validated measure of “generation” available to us, so we created one by grouping the ages of our sample size by generation. All values are based on estimation.
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