The moment you let go and express your undying love is the moment you take a risk, hoping the chance you have taken on love is enough to form a long-lasting bond with your partner.

But if you have been basing the happiness of your relationship on your personality or even your partner's, research on romance suggests you should place your efforts elsewhere.

A study has revealed the most powerful predictors of relationship quality are the characteristics of the relationship itself — the life dynamic you build with your person.

Authors of the study, titled "What predicts how happy people are with their romantic relationships?", which was released on Monday, explain the most important predictors of whether a relationship will succeed have a foundation in both the union and the people in it.


Researchers used artificial intelligence to analyse 11,196 couples gathered from 43 previous relationship studies.

The 10 most predictive signs are divided into five factors to do with the relationship itself and five character factors of the lovers.

But it's a bit more complicated than checking off boxes in a list. The interactions between the two, researchers found, are more important than the isolated factors alone.

The study, which was published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (PNAS), identified five individual variables that explained differences in relationship satisfaction — life satisfaction, negative affect, depression, attachment avoidance and attachment anxiety.

While the five relationship-based variables identified are — perceived partner commitment, appreciation, sexual satisfaction, perceived partner satisfaction and conflict.

According to Inverse, at the outset of relationships, relationship-related characteristics are likely to account for about 45 per cent of the differences in relationship satisfaction.

Your own personality can account for 19 per cent of differences.

These factors are not created equal, and some have significantly more influence on a relationship's ability to thrive or not, the study showed.


But leading author and the director of the Relationships Decision Lab at Western University's Relationship Decisions Lab in Ontario, Canada, said the study makes one thing clear.

"Really, it suggests that the person we choose is not nearly as important as the relationship we build," she told Inverse.

"The dynamic that you build with someone — the shared norms, the in-jokes, the shared experiences — is so much more than the separate individuals who make up that relationship.

"It really seems that having a great relationship is less about finding the perfect partner or changing your current partner, and more about building that relationship itself — setting up the conditions that will allow the relationship to flourish."

However, the study clarified that "none of these variables could predict whose relationship quality would increase versus decrease over time".

So while a couple may check all the right factor boxes at the beginning of a relationship, time is a far stronger indicator than any amount of initial, AI-predicted compatibility.