So with all the theoretical approaches to therapy, why do I choose the Gottman Method as a primary model? Couples counseling Is NOT the same as individual therapy as the relationship is made up of two people and all the emotional, cultural, educational and spiritual beliefs.
The combining of two lives into a lifelong a partnership is romantic and exciting but the same traits that attracted the two of you, later can seem to irritate you. Add your daily lives of work/career, educational goals, family commitments and couples can become so busy; that they seemingly grow apart-not closer. Longing, disappointment, feelings of neglect start to become more frequent. So how to get back on track?
To start, we have to talk about these areas, and to truly hear the hurt and longing of the each other- not “half-listen” while we are building our rebuttal. The Gottman Method helps to refocus on building healthy friendships and connection.
Drs John and Julie Gottman developed the Gottman Method by combining the knowledge and wisdom of forty-three years of research, studies and clinical practice. Gottman Method Couples Therapy helps couples move past gridlock and into dialogue, increase awareness of your partner, and enhances connection and intimacy. Their research is not only applicable to couples experiencing crises or obstacles within their relationships that brings them into the counseling office, but these interventions and skills can be beneficial to the couple for a lifetime to build friendship, manage conflict and work together to create a shared meaning system that is unique to every couple.
- Build Love Maps:
How well do you know your partner’s inner psychological world, his or her history, worries, stresses, joys, and hopes?
- Share Fondness and Admiration:
The antidote for contempt, this level focuses on the amount of affection and respect within a relationship. (To strengthen fondness and admiration, express appreciation and respect.)
- Turn Towards:
State your needs, be aware of bids for connection and respond to (turn towards) them. The small moments of everyday life are actually the building blocks of relationship.
- The Positive Perspective:
The presence of a positive approach to problem-solving and the success of repair attempts.
- Manage Conflict:
We say “manage” conflict rather than “resolve” conflict, because relationship conflict is natural and has functional, positive aspects. Understand that there is a critical difference in handling perpetual problems and solvable problems.
- Make Life Dreams Come True:
Create an atmosphere that encourages each person to talk honestly about his or her hopes, values, convictions and aspirations.
- Create Shared Meaning:
Understand important visions, narratives, myths, and metaphors about your relationship.
This is the state that occurs when a person knows that his or her partner acts and thinks to maximize that person’s best interests and benefits, not just the partner’s own interests and benefits. In other words, this means, “my partner has my back and is there for me.”
This means believing (and acting on the belief) that your relationship with this person is completely your lifelong journey, for better or for worse (meaning that if it gets worse you will both work to improve it). It implies cherishing your partner’s positive qualities and nurturing gratitude by comparing the partner favorably with real or imagined others, rather than trashing the partner by magnifying negative qualities, and nurturing resentment by comparing unfavorably with real or imagined others.
To download The Gottman Relationship Checkup Handout