The difference is in whether or not your spouse is supportive, with the study finding that people with supportive spouses are “more likely to give themselves the chance to succeed.”
Essentially, people with supportive spouses are more likely to take on challenges, which means they are more likely to reap the benefits of those challenges.
“We found support for the idea that the choices people make at these specific decision points, such as pursuing a work opportunity…matter a lot for their long-term well-being,” Brooke Feeney, lead author of the study and professor of psychology at Carnegie Mellon, said in a statement.
The study went on to suggest that there are ways to help push your spouse to success as well, such as expressing excitement for new opportunities or having frank discussions about the possible benefits of new moves or challenges. That support structure can make all the difference.
“Significant others can help you thrive through embracing life opportunities,” Feeney explained. “Or they can hinder your ability to thrive by making it less likely that you’ll pursue opportunities for growth.”