Whenever someone is upset or sad, our natural response may be to try and cheer that person up. But that can be problematic in a romantic relationship. The tricky part with empathy is that it isn’t about trying to lift your partner’s, or anyone’s, spirits. It’s about validating the emotions that they feel, and understanding … More Don’t Try to Cheer Your Partner Up ~ Gottman Marriage Minute
One of my most memorable clients to work with! Not all situations work out as well as this one has, results vary from couple to couple, depending upon many factors. Clue ~ client learned to understand and love self first! (Confidentiality restricts any names or descriptions to give away this couple.) “I was so happy … More Taking a Break from Marriage?
Dr. John Gottman has an interesting bit of advice for couples. He says, “Don’t leave home without a kiss that lasts six seconds.” Kissing does wonders for you; it releases oxytocin, which makes you feel a sense of comfort and bonding, and dopamine, which activates your brain’s reward center. Those butterflies in your stomach? They come from epinephrine and … More The magic of the six-second kiss ~ Gottman Marriage Minute
We’ve discovered four harmful behaviors that predict divorce with over 90% accuracy. The worst of these behaviors—and the biggest predictor of divorce—is contempt. Contempt arises from a sense of superiority over your partner. It’s a form of disrespect. Unlike criticism, which is usually about something they did, contempt is an attack on their personality. Contempt shows up as sarcasm, … More Fondness and admiration will overcome contempt ~ Gottman Marriage Minute
In the Sound Relationship House, you’ll notice that the very first level is “Build Love Maps.” This means intimately knowing your partner’s world. The interesting thing about Love Maps is that it’s more about friendship than romance. You and your partner, at the most basic level, should be great friends who know each other well. If you feel … More How well do you know your partner? ~ Gottman Marriage Minute
There’s no such thing as a “perfect” marriage or a “perfect” partner. Even Drs. John and Julie Gottman, widely considered the world’s foremost experts on marriage, have to work on their relationship just like the rest of us. Dr. Julie Gottman recently told a story about how she and her husband have to follow their own advice. “If I was really … More The Experts are Just Like Us ~ Gottman Marriage Minute
We’ve all done it. You’re enjoying dinner with your partner and you get a text message. You check it, and before you know it, you’re engrossed in your phone while your partner eats in silence, waiting for your attention. Or, at night, your partner scrolls through their Facebook feed while you’re trying to vent about your hard … More Less Screen Time, More Face to Face ~ Gottman Marriage Minute