Gottman Therapy: How to Help Couples Communicate Better

This approach to couples therapy comes from the work of psychologist John M. Gottman in his private clinical practice. John Gottman and his wife, psychologist Julie Gottman, developed the method by conducting 40 years of research to help understand what it takes for relationships to last. While researching how relationships can be long-lasting, John and Julie Gottman found that nine components come together to build and maintain healthy relationships. As a result, they founded the Gottman Institute for couples therapy, a scientific approach to helping people learn to let go of defenses and work together to better understand each other. Relationships are inherently challenging because we are all unique. Your perspective is different from your partner's. Even if you disagree, you can try to be considerate of each other's feelings. Empathy goes a long way in a relationship. The Gottman Method teaches couples how to show each other that they are invested in the relationship. It shows people how to communicate effectively and show appreciation for the other person. When couples learn the Gottman Method, they decide to understand their partners better and have a long-lasting relationship.

Goals of Gottman Method Couples Therapy

When you enter couples therapy, you want to work on strengthening your relationship with your partner. When you see a therapist who practices Gottman Method couples therapy, they want your relationship to grow stronger, too. The Gottman method has specific goals. The primary goals of the Gottman method are to stop conflict, increase positive communication (in other words, no stonewalling), promote mutual respect, intimacy, and understanding between two partners in an intimate relationship. Another goal is for each partner to feel a sense of empathy towards each other. When you care about your partner's feelings and they feel loved, that relationship becomes stronger. It is very important to show empathy towards your partner. When your partner feels that you truly care about their feelings, they are likely to reciprocate that attention.

How does it work

The Gottman Method is about observing your relationship in real time, and its foundation is loving the other person. It's about positivity and love. Through their research, the Gottmans discovered that negativity has a profound effect on the mind, and they wanted to make sure couples were growing together rather than breaking up. They found that they felt more sincere when they were positive towards each other. The Gottman method helps foster a positive outcome even when there are challenges. Everyone has their individual perspective in a relationship, but it's about coming together, respecting each other's perspectives, and compromising when necessary. You won't agree on everything because that's not possible. But you can take active steps to try to understand how your partner sees things.

What to Expect at Gottman Couples Counseling?

When couples participate in the Gottman method, they begin with the therapist conducting an assessment. It is a joint therapy session in which the therapist has each member of the couple fill out a questionnaire about their relationship. After that, they get feedback on the evaluation. The couple and therapist talk about how often they will meet for therapy and what their goals are. They decide what areas they want to work on, such as conflict management, intimacy, becoming better friends, or repairing past resentments or hurt feelings towards each other. They also focus on preventing recurrence of problems in the relationship.

Who Benefits from the Gottman Method?

The Gottman Method can help couples who want to reconnect with each other when they feel distant. The Gottman method can provide support to couples who have difficulty communicating or experience frequent conflict. Some issues that can be addressed using the Gottman method are divorce or separation, financial problems, communication problems, frequent arguments, and emotionally distant couples.

Couple Counseling

Couples counseling is the perfect place to work on issues in your relationship, learn to defuse conflicting verbal communication, and begin to deeply appreciate each other. Here you can work with an online therapist like Tappy Online Therapy and manage your relationship.