“I’m very picky with whom I give my energy to. I prefer to reserve my time, intensity and spirit exclusively to those who reflect sincerity.” Dau Voire

Love is not only something we all want, it is something we all need. Whether you’d like to admit it or not, we are all needy. The Gottman Institute had done over four decades of research with couples. They have developed the sound relationship house. This is the heart and soul of the relationship. The foundation is trust and commitment. There are seven parts to the house; each level builds a fundamental need to the relationship.
  1. Build Love Maps. This is the road map of your partner’s inner world. This involves the couple knowing one another and periodically making updates. This is also the foundation of the house.
  2. Share Fondness and Admiration. This is the second story of the house. This is when you need to catch your partner doing something right and let them know. Brag about your partner’s strengths to your friends and family. This involves changing the habit of criticizing your partner and start complimenting your partner.
  3. Turn Towards. Also known as bids for emotional connection. This is the third story of the house. Couples are always making bids towards one another to connect. This is the process of knowing how your partner connects with you and expresses emotional needs. It’s important that you turn towards these bids. 
  4. The Positive Perspective. The first three stories are what build the fourth story. This determines many things in the relationship, including positive problem solving. Learning to have a dialogue about your problems. If the first three levels aren’t working, then there is the presence of the negative sentiment override in the relationship. This is a chip on the shoulder. To change this state you need to rebuild the friendship.
  5. Manage Conflict. Couples need to identify the core issues and what is repeating negative cycles in their relationship. It’s important for couples to know what triggers escalation in their relationship. It’s also important to know each person’s story in what triggers escalation. 
  6. Make Life’s Dreams Come True. This is the level where’s it’s important that one’s partner realizes the importance of their partner’s life’s dreams. This also includes play, fun and being adventurous together. This is the basis of unlocking gridlock in the relationship. 
  7. Create Shared Meaning. We are at the attic of the house. This is where people intentionally create shared meaning or they don’t. This is a sense of shared meaning in their relationship. A relationship is about building a life together and that life is full of meaning. 
Couples therapy is about prioritizing your relationship. The Gottman Method is a well researched method that includes an assessment phase. I have completed Levels 1, 2, and 3 in The Gottman Method and have just started the certification track. For more help, please call me at (650) 892-0357.

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