roamnceI’ve long preached about the need to do something for your mate on Valentine’s Day. Considering that you probably don’t buy your parents a Valentine’s card, it’s the day of the year when you celebrate your sweetie and what they mean to you. I’m reading a brand new research book called The Normal Bar, subtitled The surprising secrets of happy couples and what they reveal about creating a new normal in your relationship. It’s a book that recently polled 10,000 people around the world about their relationships. The Normal Bar data suggests that romantic expression is far more important than you may realize. The data suggests that a lack of romance is viewed as toxic (surprisingly more by men than women) and over the long term will harm your relationship. This may not seem like news (we all want to feel more connected) but the stats that offer amounts and specific suggestions for improvement is news.

It turns out that North Americans are crappy about romantic gestures. We need to take a page out of the French and Italian playbook where couples in those countries consistently feel like they are getting romantic gifts and gestures.