Better Relationships

Intentional Relationship Conflict: Wildfires vs. Bonfires

Intentional Relationship Conflict: Wildfires vs. Bonfires
intentional relationship conflict

How is intentional relationship conflict different from conflict in general?

Conflict in intimate relationships is like fire. For some of us it becomes a wildfire, burning out of control, emotionally burning each partner.

For others, it turns into a controlled bonfire that brings us closer together as we talk, laugh, and learn more about one another.… Continue reading Here

5 Steps to the Roach Motel of Relationships & How to Stay Out of It

5 Steps to the Roach Motel of Relationships & How to Stay Out of It

roach motel

Have you ever heard of the Roach Motel?

In Dr. John Gottman’s observational research of heterosexual, gay, and lesbian couples,1 he found that in every interaction couples were either nice, neutral, or nasty toward each other.

It doesn’t take Dr.… Continue reading Here

Reduce the Holiday Stress: Become an Expert on You and Your Partner’s Stress Cycle

Stress

Stress

The holidays make me feel two ways: merry and stressed out.

As my partner sits across from me, we both glance around the near-empty sushi restaurant attempting to hide our annoyance with each other. We have just ordered our food to go and are waiting.… Continue reading Here

Criticism Kills Relationships: Why this Habit is Poisonous

criticism kills relationships

criticism kills relationships

Is it true that criticism kills relationships?

No one wants to stay in a relationship that makes them feel more judged than admired. Yet, it’s too common for couples to see the other person as the problem, leading to constant criticism.Continue reading Here

Ways to Cultivate a Strong Romantic Relationship

romantic relationship

romantic relationship

It’s a misconception that a romantic relationship is healthy and happy because there is a lack of negative or nasty conflict. 

Even if partners aren’t having conflict or partaking in other unhealthy relational habits, they will grow apart simply because they aren’t dedicating the time and effort to remain emotionally connected. Continue reading Here

Defensiveness Doesn’t Protect a Relationship: 4 DIY Remedies

Defensive

Defensive
Being defensive blocks connection, compassion, and isolates you from your partner. Instead of focusing on we-ness, a defensive person focuses on me-ness. Defensiveness is one of the most dangerous signs of toxic fighting because it creates never-ending cycles of negativity.… Continue reading Here

5 Steps to Fighting Better if Your Relationship is Worth Fighting For

5 Steps to Fighting Better if Your Relationship is Worth Fighting For

Fighting in relationships? It’s not ALWAYS bad. Or avoidable. In fact, conflict is inevitable in every relationship.

Psychologist Dan Wile says it best in his book After the Honeymoon: “When choosing a long-term partner, you will inevitably be choosing a particular set of unresolvable problems.”… Continue reading Here

Conflict in Relationships: 3 Steps to Help Your Partner See Your Side

Conflict in Relationships: 3 Steps to Help Your Partner See Your Side

This article was originally published on The Gottman Relationship Blog.

Conflict in relationships isn’t easy: There’s hurt. There’s misunderstanding. And, at the same time, there are parts of us that are screaming to feel validated and understood.

The problem for many of us is we have learned to communicate in a way that actually pushes our partners away from truly understanding us or meeting our needs.… Continue reading Here

2 Hidden Ways We Sabotage Intimacy In a Relationship We Want

Ruined Relationship

Ruined Relationship

 

Do you have a pattern of being attracted to an emotionally unavailable intimate partner who is emotionally protected and difficult to get close with? Or do you have a history of pushing away the sort of person who is available, caring, and easy to get close with?… Continue reading Here