Self-knowledge can be a sweetheart of a Valentine's Day gift

January 26, 2006

The ideal Valentine's Day present for people seeking their sweethearts might be a package of self-knowledge.

Getting that information isn't that difficult. One way to obtain it is in the pages of "Finding Your Perfect Match." Authored by relationship expert and University of Washington sociology professor Pepper Schwartz, the new book helps people draw their romantic personality profile and understand what characteristics are important to them in the partner for whom they are searching.

"This book starts after you discover that chemical attraction with someone. The chemistry will be maintained or destroyed by other things," said Schwartz. "I look at those elements that are needed to support a day-to-day relationship and help people understand what else is there besides the chemistry."

"Finding someone to love is work. You have to be out there looking, just like finding a job. There are lots people out there who you could marry. But with the information in this book you have a better chance of finding your soul mate," she said.

The book is based on social science research and the Duet® Total Compatibility System that Schwartz developed in conjunction with PerfectMatch.com, a pioneer online dating site.

The heart of Schwartz's book is a series of quizzes that provide readers with the details about the emotional characteristics of their personalities and their lifestyle priorities. They help people learn what kind of person will be compatible in emotionally solid relationships.

The self-scored quizzes look at individual romantic impulsivity, personal energy, outlook, predictability, flexibility, decision-making style, emotionality and self-nurturing, or how you communicate your emotional needs.

As important as these characteristics are, Schwartz said people who are thinking about living with or marrying someone also should be in agreement on important lifestyle choices. People need to be able to discuss their expectations and feelings about money, sex, children, core values and their social world because these issues can affect a relationship. No matter how compatible a couple may seem be in personality traits, people also have to be comfortable with their partner's basic values, hopes and dreams.

"This book is meant to be a practical way to get insight into your personality because it is hard to get any kind of objective look at yourself. It is all about knowing yourself so you are able to find someone who is great for you," said Schwartz. "I am trying to show you who you are, what is important to you and who you might want. It is a way of knowing what to look for in another person that would make you happy." "Finding Your Perfect Match" is published by Perigee Books, part of the Penguin Group.
-end-
For more information, contact Schwartz at (206) 543-4036 or couples@u.washington.edu.

For a review copy of the book, contact Kristina Anderson at the Penguin Group at (212) 366-2007 or kristina.anderson@us.penguingroup.com

University of Washington

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