Ten Lessons to Transform Your Marriage

America's Love Lab Experts Share Their Strategies for Strengthening Your Relationship
Narrated by: Susan Denaker
Length: 9 hrs and 15 mins
4 out of 5 stars (322 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

In 1994, Dr. John Gottman and his colleagues at the University of Washington made a startling announcement: Through scientific observation and mathematical analysis, they could predict, with more than 90-percent accuracy, whether a marriage would succeed or fail. The only thing they did not yet know was how to turn a failing marriage into a successful one, so Gottman teamed up with his clinical psychologist wife, Dr. Julie Schwartz Gottman, to develop intervention methods. Now the Gottmans, together with the Love Lab research facility, have put these ideas into practice. In Ten Lessons to Transform Your Marriage, the Gottmans share this vital information so that couples can develop the skills to turn their relationship problems around and create strong, lasting unions.

What emerged from the Gottmans' collaboration and decades of research is a body of advice that's based on two surprisingly simple truths: Happily married couples behave like good friends; and they handle their conflicts in gentle, positive ways. The authors offer an intimate look at 10 couples who have learned to work through potentially destructive problems, extramarital affairs, workaholism, parenthood adjustments, serious illnesses, lack of intimacy, and examine what they've done to improve communication and get their marriages back on track.

Giving an insider's view of the Love Lab, the Gottmans take the listener step-by-step through the couples' conversations, before and after they are counseled. The authors also provide an analysis of the couples' interactions, identifying their core problems and offering suggestions for resolving them. By "listening" to the discussions in this way, you will learn to detect the most common stumbling blocks of a relationship and, most important, how to avoid them.

©2006 John M. Gottman, Julie Schwartz Gottman, and Joan DeClaire (P)2006 Books on Tape
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

A Game Changer

This book changed the way I speak to my wife, particularly when the conversation is argumentative, merely after hearing the first recorded and analyzed conversation in the book. The biggest thing for me was defensiveness and I saw it right away in the dialogue that they present in the book.

They use recorded transcripts of real couples talking (voiced by the narrator) and then analyze the back-and-forth relatively quickly. You can see yourself, if you're like me, in many of the conversations.

It truly helped, but it would be best if the authors were with me as I conversed (argued) with my wife, as I worry that I will fall back into old habits as I often do after reading great advice like this. I need her to read it too.

22 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

One of the basics

A must have book if you are serious about working on your marriage. I have read several books and many refer to the work in this one.

29 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars

Eye opening!

What made the experience of listening to Ten Lessons to Transform Your Marriage the most enjoyable?

The book uses real life scenarios of couples they've had in counseling, which makes the suggestions relative to myself and my own situation. This book opened my eyes and gave me an outside perspective on how I communicate in my marriage, and even in past relationships.

What insight do you think you’ll apply from Ten Lessons to Transform Your Marriage?

Like I said above, this book is an eye opener. I've seen myself in the couples they have in this book, that gives me a new perspective, and will help me focus on getting to the heart of my needs, while allowing me to work on listening to the needs of my partner. Then we can work on fulfilling those needs together.

Any additional comments?

I would recommend this book to anyone who is having communication breakdown in their marriage. There are numerous types of communication breakdown that are reviewed in this book, and they do a great job of doing a "before and after" session of these conversations. I plan on listening again to the book in its entirety, to get into more details.

7 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

Great Book

This book provided me with a lot of insight on ways i could communicate better. I found myself relating to several of the couples and their issues and found the doctors recommended ways to handle situations very useful.

6 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

So much truth in this!

I am listening tonight and plan to get the book tomorrow. I would like to go through the exercises written in the book. My parents did not show us how to resolve any conflict. They avoided it as much as possible. I am afraid that I did not teach my children either.
My oldest daughter just got married three weeks ago. I would like for her to listen to the book. My other daughter is ending her engagement.
This book would be very helpful for both of them. I am finding it very interesting!
Thank you.

8 people found this helpful

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Excellent - insightful!

Eye opening, fundamental to have good clear communication and avoiding conflict and conflict resolution. Become friends again and fall in love.

3 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars

Takes some concentration listening

This book is clearly a work book - in that there are quizzes and lists that you can review. Listening to the conversations between the couples is chronicled by a "plus" or "minus" if they get it right or if they say something that's not particularly helpful. It's a little hard to visualize these in the car. However, there are case examples, and while none of them may be directly what your issue may be, listening to the overview and what people are talking about and how they are talking about it can be good. Even just a few reminders of allowing the other person to finish their thought or sentence, really hearing instead of just listening. While the narration itself is fine, it might have been better if there was a woman voice and a man voice instead of the narrator just deepening her voice when a man is talking. Overall, worth a listen.

2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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10 Lessons to Transform Your RELATIONSHIP

I plan to listen to this book once a month - Great tips and tools not only for transforming a marriage, but for any relationship - from roommate to sister to friend to parent or co-worker. I loved every chapter, appreciate the way the authors used case studies to give concrete examples of the kinds of issues that come up in relationships and how to resolve them, and found incredible takeaway that I can apply in my personal life. The quizzes at the ends of the chapters are also extremely useful.

2 people found this helpful

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Easy to listen to and simple to apply.

First seek to understand, then to be understood. There is a way to improve your relationships and this book gives you the words and techniques. it also manages your expectations very well. Reccommended!

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars

Loved it!

Truly great book packed with excellent, concrete advice. The narrator has good inflection which adds to the great content.

1 person found this helpful