ROMANCE: A study completed in the USA in the 1990s concluded that two people fall in love by asking and answering 36 increasingly personal questions and then staring into each other’s eyes for four minutes.
ROMANCE: A study completed in the USA in the 1990s concluded that two people fall in love by asking and answering 36 increasingly personal questions and then staring into each other’s eyes for four minutes. Olena Kyrian

36 questions to make your love stronger

WOULD you like to make your romance, love affair or marriage bullet proof?

You can, thanks to American doctor Arthur Aron.

Dr Aron, 70, is a professor of psychology at the State University of New York at Stony Brook.

He is best known for his work on intimacy in interpersonal relationships, and development of the self-expansion model of motivation in close relationships.

Dr Aron invented a game called The Sharing Game, which is an activity that helps you to get to know another person better and at a deeper level.

From the list of questions, select two and ask them of your colleague or partner. They then ask you the same two questions.

The list was then expanded to 36 questions, and a study concluded that two people fall in love by asking and answering 36 increasingly personal questions and then staring into each other's eyes for four minutes.

Of course, physical attraction and wanting to fall in love are also important factors on this.

The experiment worked for strangers who met in the laboratory of Dr. Arons, more than 20 years ago.

So, instead of renting a DVD, watching the game or wait until next February for some quality time as a couple, send the kids to their grandparents, have a simple meal, share a glass of wine and get into it.

Listen carefully and try not to interrupt so that they range deeply across their thoughts. Listen for emotions, reflections and revelations that you have not previously heard them talk about.

Take a break after each set, and let us know how it went in the comments section below.

After the last question, stare at each other's eyes in silence for four minutes.

The questions

Set I

1. Given the choice of anyone in the world, whom would you want as a dinner guest?

2. Would you like to be famous? In what way?

3. Before making a telephone call, do you ever rehearse what you are going to say? Why?

4. What would constitute a "perfect" day for you?

5. When did you last sing to yourself? To someone else?

6. If you were able to live to the age of 90 and retain either the mind or body of a 30-year-old for the last 60 years of your life, which would you want?

7. Do you have a secret hunch about how you will die?

8. Name three things you and your partner appear to have in common.

9. For what in your life do you feel most grateful?

10. If you could change anything about the way you were raised, what would it be?

11. Take four minutes and tell your partner your life story in as much detail as possible.

12. If you could wake up tomorrow having gained any one quality or ability, what would it be?

Set II

13. If a crystal ball could tell you the truth about yourself, your life, the future or anything else, what would you want to know?

14. Is there something that you've dreamed of doing for a long time? Why haven't you done it?

15. What is the greatest accomplishment of your life?

16. What do you value most in a friendship?

17. What is your most treasured memory?

18. What is your most terrible memory?

19. If you knew that in one year you would die suddenly, would you change anything about the way you are now living? Why?

20. What does friendship mean to you?

21. What roles do love and affection play in your life?

22. Alternate sharing something you consider a positive characteristic of your partner. Share a total of five items.

23. How close and warm is your family? Do you feel your childhood was happier than most other people's?

24. How do you feel about your relationship with your mother?

Set III

25. Make three true "we" statements each. For instance, "We are both in this room feeling ... "

26. Complete this sentence: "I wish I had someone with whom I could share ... "

27. If you were going to become a close friend with your partner, please share what would be important for him or her to know.

28. Tell your partner what you like about them; be very honest this time, saying things that you might not say to someone you've just met.

29. Share with your partner an embarrassing moment in your life.

30. When did you last cry in front of another person? By yourself?

31. Tell your partner something that you like about them already.

32. What, if anything, is too serious to be joked about?

33. If you were to die this evening with no opportunity to communicate with anyone, what would you most regret not having told someone? Why haven't you told them yet?

34. Your house, containing everything you own, catches fire. After saving your loved ones and pets, you have time to safely make a final dash to save any one item. What would it be? Why?

35. Of all the people in your family, whose death would you find most disturbing? Why?

36. Share a personal problem and ask your partner's advice on how he or she might handle it. Also, ask your partner to reflect back to you how you seem to be feeling about the problem you have chosen.



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