It therefore makes sense that your core values should be well aligned with those of your partner if the two of you wish to have a peaceful, harmonious relationship. After all, what good is it if you both like the same types of movies and music, but you can’t agree on how you’re going to manage your finances? Or you're both passionate about taking backpacking trips to Europe, but you have a firm belief in marriage and commitment, and he doesn't. That’s why having common values is so important. Even if you and he have identical interests, if you're not well-aligned on the broader, big picture matters, then you're not going to have a successful long-term relationship!
When you date someone whose core values closely match your own, the two of you will tend to view life through a similar lens. When this happens, the whole dating process becomes so much easier because you and your partner’s lives will be in sync. Your relationship will flow easily and effortlessly. There will be less conflict and tension and more peace and harmony between you and him.
In order to have a healthy, lasting relationship, it’s important to identify your core values and determine which ones your partner must share with you. Keep in mind that not all core values have to be shared. For example, some people require that their partner share their religion, whereas others don’t care what their partner’s religion is.
It’s entirely up to you to decide what values you and your partner must share. However, if your goal is to have a successful long-term relationship or marriage, then I strongly recommend that you and your partner have similar values regarding money, marriage, commitment, and family since those are some of the most common issues that tear couples apart.
Moreover, it’s important that you stick to your core values and not abandon or compromise them when searching for a mate. The moment you compromise your values, you set the stage for a troubled relationship. Believe me, I speak from experience! Every time I dated someone whose core values differed radically from mine, I always regretted it. Once the novelty of our relationship wore off, we’d come to realize that we had almost nothing in common and things would just fizzle out.
Now, while having shared values is extremely important, it doesn’t mean that having shared interests is unimportant. In fact, you and your partner SHOULD share at least a few common interests and hobbies together. Problems arise, though, when you start rejecting potentially suitable partners just because they don’t share ALL OR MOST of your interests.
Whenever you date, it’s a good idea to be flexible and open-minded about your partner’s interests and hobbies even if you don’t have the same ones as he (as long as his interests and hobbies aren’t dangerous and don’t make you feel uncomfortable). Dating someone whose interests differ slightly from yours can broaden your horizons and introduce you to new experiences you’ve never had before. It’s a great way for couples to learn, grow, and bond.
For example, my husband enjoys classical music which isn’t exactly one of my favorite genres of music to listen to. However, on one of our dates, we went to a Boston Pops concert at Symphony Hall and I was pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoyed it. After that experience, I developed a greater appreciation for classical music.
As a general rule, no matter how many common interests and values you and your partner have, both of you should always be open to sharing new experiences together. In doing so, you learn, grow, and evolve together as a couple, making your relationship better and stronger.