RECOMMENDED BOOKS ON HEALTHY RELATIONSHIPS
No matter what kind of intimate relationship you're working on, a healthy baseline is critical to the long-term well-being of a couple. The books below are my all-time favorite reads to set up and nurture a healthy relationship foundation.
If you ever work with me I promise you'll hear me quote John Gottman. He's arguably the most established researcher in the world of intimate relationships and marriage therapy. He studied couples at their best and worst for nearly forty years in an effort to tabulate the basic behaviors that determine of a couple will stay together. And he cracked the code.
This book outlines the basic practices you need to have in place if you really want to stay together AND it expands the research to look at other relationships (friends, co-workers, family etc) and build strong trustworthy bonds all around you. Order a copy here (you won't regret it).
Even if your relationship isn't steeped in high-conflict odds are good no one taught you how to handle conflict well in intimate relationships. I have yet to hear a negative review from a client (and I recommend this one ALL THE TIME). This book will walk you through how to interrupt the most damaging communication patterns and help you create new healthy patterns even in the most challenging arguments. Order a copy here.
If you're going to stick with someone you're going to fall into communication patterns- some of which will be unheatlhy. This book outlines some of the most common unhealthy communication patterns for couples and helps you shift them with useful reflection questions and applications in each chapter. Read more here.
Most couples struggle with a push-pull dynamic (sometimes called pursuer-distancer) at some point and most of us struggle to understand why. If we want relationships, why do we have trouble committing? And if we know balance is important, why do some of us struggle to give partners ample space?
Reac this book to better understand how life as a young child may inform your relationship patterns today- and what to do with that awareness. Read more here.