Can a person really predict divorce? If so, can I learn how to keep my relationship safe by learning from this? Yes you can!
Believe it not, a pretty famous guy in Seattle has done it. Instead of using anecdotal (personal experiences, word of mouth) ideas of what makes marriage work, this famous researcher decided to study the pretty great relationships and compared this to the ones that are barely holding on.
John Gottman has conducted about 40 years of research on this subject area trying to understand what goes well and what totally bites us the in the butt. A lot of what brings us to the brink of leaving has to do with this research and how Mr. and Mrs. Gottman have worked tirelessly to figure out “why” we tend to grow apart.
The best summary of this research is best described in the Sound Relationship House image. We have learned that marriages that stay together have a pretty solid house where trust (feeling that my partner really has my back and looks after my best interest) and commitment (what I choose to do with my feelings of trust) holds everything together.
So when we look at the rest of the Sound Relationship House, we see that the bottom 3 floors of the house (foundation of your relationship) are really about being a good friend. It incorporates how well I know my partner, updating this information regularly, telling my partner things I love and appreciate, and regularly turning towards my partner’s needs.
The rest of the house will become much easier when the friendship is strong and you both feel that your partner is your best friend even when you disagree. If you feel that your partner becomes another person during conflict, your house is not stable. We tend to drift back to earlier learning experiences during conflict and can start to blow up, become frozen and silent, and other problem strategies. We often have to learn to act out a better strategy until we start to do this often enough that it become routine. Are you ready to schedule a free consult on how you can prevent problems before they start? Just click here to schedule your free phone call with Shawn Davis.