Wondering what the secret is to a long and happy marriage?

BY: lifestyle.com.au

With love and relationships a totally different ball game to that of the 50s and 60s, what does it take for your marriage to succeed in the current day?

UCLA's Family Studies Center researched 1,500 couples who had been together for five or more years, and that recognised a close bond with their partner.

Six common characters were revealed between the couples:

1. A physical attraction

There's no denying that a physical attraction between partners is important for the relationship to go the distance. While the initial lust or love-at-first-sight may wear off, there still needs to be favourable physical traits in one another that you still deem attractive.

It's also important to note how emotionally stable your partner is. That will weigh in with how you view your partner, both mentally and physically.

2. Truly choosing the relationship as opposed to just being there out of fear of being alone or obligation

Is your partner a bit clingy? Do you feel like you have to stay to prop him/her up? Can your partner stand on their own feet?

3. Sharing the same or similar interests, beliefs, values and goals

Divorce attorney Belinda Rachman suggests that sharing fundamental values is essential. "While opposites attract, you'll drive each other crazy if a 'saver' marries a 'spender', or a free spirit marries an authoritarian type," notes Belinda.

4. Ability to express anger clearly and directly with open communication

Belinda goes on to say that expressing anger in a healthy way is so important, however there are a few telltale signs to watch for. Look for "sulking if he doesn’t get his way, and/or not taking your opinion seriously."

5. Being able to laugh, have fun together and take pleasure in activities

While a few differing interests is normal, if you take absolutely no pleasure in any of your partner's interests, then you're most likely to head in separate directions. Ensure that there is something fun that you can both take pleasure in.

6. Supporting one another in their work goals, interests and activities

It's important to note that even great relationships may lose their spark over time, and by acknowledging the six key traits to making a relationship work, you can head through the stormy weather together.