John Gottman popular psychologist and Social Scientist has worked with couples for over 40 years and based on his research he identifed communication styles that predict the end of a marriage relationship Termed the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse and outlined in this blog last week, we need to watch out for the following 4 toxic signs of communication – Criticism, Contempt, Defensiveness and Stonewalling:
- 96% of the time, the way a conversation starts in the first 3 minutes, will dictate how it finishes
- Contempt is the single biggest predictor of divorce
- 5:1 Magic Ratio – positive to negative interactions
- Good listening comes from good speaking
The four marriage killers:
- Criticism: harsh comments, Attacking your partners personality or character; Put downs; Blaming; These examples make it personal rather then the issue
- Contempt: eye rolling, sighing, dismissiveness – what would you know; Intention to insult your partner; Name calling; Sarcasm; Negative body language – saying you are listening but pulling faces, looking in the other direction
- Defensiveness: Yes, but… You think you’ve been harshly done by… Places problem with partner; Yes but…. Obstructs communication – nothing gets resolved
- Stone Walling: 70% of men do this. Man cave. Don’t face the issue; Removal of self emotionally; Shutting down
Now what: Daily Debrief
- CONVERSATION #1 – DAILY DOWNLOAD
- A) Speaker *Talk about a stress outside of your relationship
- B) Listener: *Side with your partner and validate
- NO FIXING ALLOWED!
- SIDE WITH YOUR PARTNER NOT WITH THE ENEMY!.
Homework 2: Affirmation
- Concentrate on 5 to 1 Positive to Negative.
- Say positive, encouraging things to each other daily.
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