Partners who support each other's ideal selves go on to have a wonderful relationship together. The researchers have dubbed this phenomena as the 'Michelangelo phenomena'.
Just as a sculptor chisels, carves and polishes away flaws in the stone to reveal the ideal form, skillful partners support their loved ones' dreams, aspirations and the traits that they hope to develop.
One can successfully grow his or her ideal selves over a period of time depending on to what extend their partners support them.
Individuals especially likely to grow toward their ideal selves when their partners viewed them in line with this ideal. The process ultimately promoted both relational and personal wellbeing for both partners.
Supporting a partner's image of his ideal self, whether it is a vague yearning or a clearly articulated mental representation, helps the loved one reduce the discrepancy between the actual self and the ideal self.