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Publisher's Summary

Straightforward in its approach, yet profound in its effect, the principles outlined in this book teach partners new and startling strategies for making marriage work. Gottman has scientifically analyzed the habits of married couples and established a method of correcting the behavior that puts thousands of marriages on the rocks. He helps couples to focus on one another and pay attention to the small day-to-day moments that, strung together, make up the heart and soul of any relationship. Gottman has culled seven principles essential to the success of any marriage:

  • Maintain a love map
  • Foster fondness and admiration
  • Turn toward instead of away
  • Accept influence
  • Solve solvable conflicts
  • Cope with conflicts you can't resolve
  • Create shared meaning

Packed with questionnaires and exercises whose effectiveness has been proven in Dr. Gottman's workshops, this is the definitive guide for any couple who wants their relationship to realize its highest potential.

©1999 John Gottam, Ph.D. and Nan Silver (P)2011 Tantor

Critic Reviews

"Gottman comes to this endeavor with the best of qualifications: he's got the spirit of a scientist and the soul of a romantic." ( Newsweek)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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    1 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

DON'T BUY THIS AUDIO BOOK WITHOUT PRINT TOO

This book was written with many tables, surveys, forms etc. They are all read aloud and in a non-logical order so they make no sense at all!

I bought this then had to buy the kindle version just so I could read the tables and use the forms. Ridiculous waste of money.

Content was good but I could have received that through the kindle version in a cheaper, more productive and less infuriating form.

123 of 125 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • A. S.
  • Seattle, WA
  • 08-20-13

Great for someone too busy to read... but

What made the experience of listening to The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work the most enjoyable?

I absolutely loved this book and all the concepts the author presented. I first heard about this professor in the book "Brain Rules," where Dr. Gottman was referenced for his extensive marital research and ability to predict divorce with astounding accuracy. I enjoyed this book very much. I have one comment to add about the audiobook version-- the book is more like a workbook, and the lists in the book can get boring hearing them read to you.

25 of 25 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Highly Recommended, buy the hard copy too.

What made the experience of listening to The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work the most enjoyable?

My husband and I have a 30 yr strong marriage but it's had it's share of troubles. We went to counseling for a year and it was helpful, but I wish I'd had this book many years sooner. This book has been more insightful and helpful than counseling was. I can't wait to see how the next 30 years of marriage turns out.

What about John Allen Nelson’s performance did you like?

The reader does a great job, I felt like I was in a conversation rather than a book. He is easy to listen to and punctuates very well.

12 of 12 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Nield
  • fitzroy north, Australia
  • 09-13-11

Get the book

It doesn't really work as an audio. Lots of exercises that he works through quickly and you need a hard copy to be able to do them. There's not much of his theory, more of his tools. If you are wanting tools its good if you are wanting theory, not so good...

35 of 37 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Thomas
  • Portlaoise, Ireland
  • 12-27-12

Good Book but.................

I think the book is good with lots of practical advice. However one thing that I found annoying was the narration of lists. For example there are numerous self-assessment exercises in the book where you are supposed to choose from different options. For a written book it is easy to scan down and choose the correct option and move on. For an audio book narration of lists of options can put the listener to sleep! Apart from that one annoyance the book has solid information.

19 of 20 people found this review helpful

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Great book, but not for Audible

Would you try another book from John M.; Nan Gottman; Silver and/or John Allen Nelson?

The content was great, but you need the book for the checklists, About half is checklists.

What did you like best about this story?

interesting info with great ideas

Would you be willing to try another one of John Allen Nelson’s performances?

no, he shouldn't read the lists the way he does.

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

hopefulness

Any additional comments?

Need to include a download of the lists. Also when reading the list, do it in such a way that it isn't annoying to listen. It is frustrating to listen to when each item of the list is followed with "........ acceptable, need to work on..., horrible." etc. Instead of reading the lists in a more creative way

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Good Book - Robotic Narrator

This is a good book. I have read it before and have found it very useful, whether you are in a difficult period of your marraige or perfectly happy and want to keep it that way. Gottman describes the concepts he has developed over his years of observation and research, and also gives you practicle tools to both assess the state of your relationship in any one area and also to strengthen it.

My issue was with the narrator. He was so deadpan and monotone. I realise it is a piece of non-fiction but still? I don't want to spend several hours of my time listening to an uninteresting voice. It is a pity because I have heard John Gottman speak and he is very charismatic. I would have much prefered he read his own book.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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shouldn't be an audiobook

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

frustration

Any additional comments?

There wasn't much narrative or discussion here - it was basically a guy reading a workbook aloud, and the content of the workbook was not modified in any way to make it more appropriate to the audio format. Some of the ideas were interesting but they were not really elaborated on.

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Great literature for traditional marriage problems

Would you consider the audio edition of The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work to be better than the print version?

Yes, because I always prefer audiobooks. No need to read full questionaries and exercise lists though. For those you should buy the e-book version.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work?

The four horsemen which can be easily identified to quickly predict if your marriage will fail.

What aspect of John Allen Nelson’s performance would you have changed?

The book is totally ignoring the fact that in some cases the marriage problem relies on psychiatric problems of one or both of the partners and how to work this out. I am convinced that this has been the main reason why I had to drop out of 3 marriages (I must have a crush on depressed girls, but they get uncontrolled).

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

Examples of the four horsemen discussions, and how healthy couples react positively to the same problems.

Any additional comments?

As a compliment for this book, you may need to learn more about the effect of nutrition in you mental health. For me, Nutrient Power was the book that opened my mind.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

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  • randy
  • Renton wa
  • 10-28-16

Great Book and a must read

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

I recommend this book to all couples. It really does a great job of dissecting the nuts and bolts of why marriages break down.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work?

For me the best part is the 4 horseman. That so closely relates to my situation that it resonated with me.

What’s an idea from the book that you will remember?

I will take the love map and advice and constantly update it.

Any additional comments?

I thought this book was spot on when it comes to what makes a wife stay in a marriage. If a man follows this book he is assured his wife will stay content. I did however feel it missed the mark a little for men. The book is spot on for girls but if you don't pay attention to the husbands side you miss something. Men and women communicate and bond differently. For women the love map works perfectly. But for men it does not. What i mean is from the book he said she said we learn men bond with activity and women bond with conversation. This book does not really touch on that fact. It focuses on how to better connect through conversation. That's where a lot of women feel neglected and rightly so. The truth is men bond over an activity not necessarily the conversation. Men attempt to insert there loved ones into their activity cause that's how they feel close and bonded. Its been that way from early development. From the book his needs her needs the author lists a mans top 5 basic emotional needs and recreational activity comes in 2nd which is very high. This book does not go into enough detail about the bonding ways of men and therefore leave a lot of women feeling left behind. Truth is he is trying to bond but he is speaking in his language but you are not hearing him. If women keep this in mind it could easy the pain they feel and help move toward the center. Insert yourself into his favorite activity and start the conversation that makes you feel bonded. For more information read these books.The modern Scholar He said she said His needs her needs

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Glen
  • 02-15-17

Brilliant

Great book to help couples understand the reality of being in a relationship, with plenty of useful Ross for dealing with issues.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Jodie Warrington
  • 12-05-18

Monotone voice and doesn't work in this format

Really good content.
Monotone voice is really dull to listen to.
Questionnaires do not work in this content. Reads quickly through lists and all the options repeated for each option (definitely, sometimes, or not at all...)
I am going to buy a paper copy instead to work through the multiple questionnaires in each chapter.

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  • IrishMick101
  • 10-19-18

Amazing book. Wish I had read before marriage

Wish someone had told me about it in advance. So many complex areas in all marriages and super advice on how to approach them and your spouse to assist in marriage success.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • lisa
  • 03-31-18

Good advice

After this book was cited a few times by a relationship expert in a serious Norwegian newspaper I decided to buy it. Good advice, examples and exercises. Easy to understand for those who've been in a long term relationship. Every married couple should read this book.

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  • gi
  • 02-22-18

Good Guide to Make your marriage work

Would you consider the audio edition of The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work to be better than the print version?

Not really. I really enjoyed the fact that I am listening to it but I think this should still come with a workbook so listener could work on their exercises.

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  • Dan Friend
  • 02-10-17

A wonderful help

This book is the antidote to average therapists. Such brilliant, pragmatic yet principled, humorous advice. I cannot recommend this enough. Having only just begun to follow John Gottman's advice, my partner and I are already better communicators.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • irena
  • 02-09-18

I have this book in hardcover too!

Best relationship book I've come across! makes so much sense. I have this book in hardcover too and I've leant it out to multiple friends

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Annalie
  • 11-06-18

Invaluable Marriage Councelling

This book contains marriage counselling that hits the mark, and if applied, can change the course of troubled marriages. I can appreciate why this book is a classic. About 50% of the book consists of questionnaires, check lists and work sheets, and the book is designed to be used by both partners in a work shop situation. It is not ideally suited as an audio book, and therefore my lower score on this book. I recommend it in hard copy.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Anonymous User
  • 12-15-17

good book

i highly recommend this book for anyone who wantd to work on their relationship . well structured and simple .