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When it comes to romantic attraction men primarily are motivated by good looks and women by earning power. In short, the data from the psychologists' study suggest that what men and women said and did in choosing romantic partners are two different matters.
Whether you're a man or a woman, being attractive is just as good for your romantic prospects and, to a lesser extent, so is being a good earner.
But in reality men and women were equally inspired by physical attraction and equally inspired by earning power or ambition.
"In other words good looks was the primary stimulus of attraction for both men and women, and a person with good earning prospects or ambition tended to be liked as well," said Eli Finkel, assistant professor of psychology at Northwestern.
"Most noteworthy, the earning-power effect as well as the good-looks effect didn't differ for men and women." Participants' preferences based on their live romantic interactions contrasted with the ideal sex-differentiated preferences that they reported 10 days before the speed-dating event.
"We found that the romantic dynamics that occurred at the speed-dating event and during the following 30-day period had little to do with the sex-differentiated preferences stated on the questionnaires," said Finkel.
The speed-dating methodology allowed the Northwestern researchers to move beyond the abstract world of romantic ideals to see how people actually rated a number of flesh-and-blood people regarding physical attractiveness, ambition and earning power.
"If you were to tell me that you prefer physically attractive romantic partners, I would expect to see that you indeed are more attracted to physically attractive partners," said Eastwick.
The discrepancy between what people did and said in this dating situation fits with other research that shows that people often do a poor job explaining why they do things, often referring to accepted cultural theories to explain their own behavior.For example, Sprecher and Hendrick (2004) studied heterosexual couples who were dating, and found that as self-disclosure increased, so did relationship satisfaction.This was supported by another study of dating couples, conducted by Laurenceau et al. They asked participants to write daily diary entries about progress in their relationships and found that self-disclosure and perception of disclosure in a partner led to greater feelings of intimacy in a couple." was published in the February issue of the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. "What Men And Women Say And Do In Choosing Romantic Partners Are Two Different Matters." Science Daily. Researchers put to test the hypothesis that adolescents become less similar to their friends and more similar to romantic partners after they start a new romantic relationship. Men’s and women’s ideas of the perfect mate differ significantly due to evolutionary pressures, according to a cross-cultural study on multiple mate preferences. When it comes to romantic relationships, a research review article suggests humans are wired to break-up and move on.Drawing largely upon the field of evolutionary psychology, they say men and women ...
In turn, the other person starts revealing more intimate information about themselves as well, sharing what really matters to them.