Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work / Edition 1

Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work / Edition 1

4.0 133
by John M. Gottman

ISBN-10: 0752837265

ISBN-13: 2900752837269

Pub. Date: 11/02/2004

Publisher: Gardners Books Limited

John Gottman has revolutionized the study of marriage by using rigorous scientific procedures to observe the habits of married couples in unprecedented detail over many years. Here is the culmination of his life's work: the seven principles that guide couples on the path toward a harmonious and long-lasting relationship. Packed with practical questionnaires and…  See more details below


John Gottman has revolutionized the study of marriage by using rigorous scientific procedures to observe the habits of married couples in unprecedented detail over many years. Here is the culmination of his life's work: the seven principles that guide couples on the path toward a harmonious and long-lasting relationship. Packed with practical questionnaires and exercises, The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work is the definitive guide for anyone who wants their relationship to attain its highest potential.

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Gardners Books Limited
Publication date:
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Table of Contents

1.Inside the Seattle Love Lab: The Truth about Happy Marriages1
2.How I Predict Divorce25
3.Principle 1: Enhance Your Love Maps47
4.Principle 2: Nurture Your Fondness and Admiration61
5.Principle 3: Turn toward Each Other Instead of Away79
6.Principle 4: Let Your Partner Influence You99
7.The Two Kinds of Marital Conflict129
8.Principle 5: Solve Your Solvable Problems157
9.Coping with Typical Solvable Problems187
10.Principle 6: Overcome Gridlock217
11.Principle 7: Create Shared Meaning243
Afterword: What Now?259

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The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 133 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
A few years ago, my marriage was going down the drain. I had no idea what was going on or what I could do about it. I felt helpless, hopeless and unhappy. Until then, I was very skeptical about these types of books so I never read them. But became so desperate that I opened this book in a store like a drowning person reaching for a straw. That was the beginning of the end. This book forced me to see my marriage from a completely objective point of view and helped me realize how I was part of the problem. Bad habits die hard but I kept making an effort to change. After a month or two, my spouse noticed this change and became curious about the book as well. We became even more interested in these things and read another book called 'The Ever-Transcending Spirit' by Toru Sato (I'd highly recommend this fabulous book too if you are ready to take one more positive step in your relationships). Now we appreciate each other. Now we talk about meaningful and interesting things in life. Even though this may sound very cheesy, in many ways we could say that our marriage is in a renaissance period. We still have a long way to go but there already is a newfound calmness in our lives that was never there before.
Colleen33 More than 1 year ago
Harmonious Relationships John M. Gottman has great suggestions that have supported my relationship with my husband. Of the “seven principles”, my favorite is “Turn toward Each Other Instead of Away”. I found the questionnaires inspiring and with Gottman’s discoveries, I can see that my husband and I have strength in our marriage and our “emotional bank account” is full. I enjoyed Gottman’s observations on couples he worked with and his tenacity to discover principles that can help couples experience harmonious relationships. Another relationship book that I highly recommend is Ariel & Shya Kane’s “How to Have A Match Made in Heaven”. Like Gottman, the Kanes write about sessions they have with their clients – with a BONUS – links to companion videos & audios of the Kanes working with their clients. So you get to “see” what you just “read”! I have discovered a sense of ease with all my relating since reading this book. It’s an amazing book. I applaud both Gottman and the Kanes for writing successful books that support relationship.
LCilmi More than 1 year ago
I so enjoyed reading John Gottman's "The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work".  I was half way through the book when I realized it's already working! I had been behaving in a more sweet and tender way with my husband since I'd started reading it.  We already have a lovely relationship but throughout "7 Principles" I noticed my thoughts and actions were even more gentle and held even greater fondness for my husband and for our relationship.  Gottman takes readers through the early moments in a marriage, reviving the feelings of falling in love and recharging the magic of wedding celebrations.  On this journey I got to recall the admiration, respect and fun of being partners in my marriage. I highly recommend this book to those in great relationships, less than great relationships and of course, troubled relationships.  "7 Principles" can give you great comfort and joy.  Gottman has created a simple roadmap that leads to a great marriage.  Well worth the trip. Those who enjoy this book will also enjoy Ariel and Shya Kane's latest book: How to Have A Match Made in Heaven.  It's terrific.  I know I'm interested in having the best possible marriage and the Kanes illustrate how easy it can be to have such a relationship.  In reading the touching true stories and accompanying videos, I got to see how potentially relationship injuring behaviors can dissolve just by observing them non-judgmentally.  Yep, I said it: issues just dissolve. Just by seeing it. I know.... that simple. These two books Gottman's The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work and the Kanes': How to Have a Match Made in Heaven can rock your world in a fantastic way!  Buy them, read them, have sweet relationships.
CCinME More than 1 year ago
This book should be standard reading for couples. It is clear, concise and makes total sense. This book is for anyone wishing to improve their relationship, get back on track or learn how to not make the same mistakes over and over. When reading this book, I had many moments of "I knew that!" but had somehow forgotten over the many years of being married.
Guest More than 1 year ago
When I was first introduced to this book, I was a bit skeptical since I have heard different perspectives on marriage counseling. After I started reading this book, I found myself identifying with the information that Gottman was telling me. I believe that this book is more personal and gives a person a sense of taking control of his/her own relationship. There are practical strategies that take time to work through, but are definitely worth your time. One of the best aspects about this book is that it isn't preaching or using "Christian" based lessons. I am not saying that it isn't spiritual, I am saying that Gottman has a way of presenting the facts that he found without slighting your religious beliefs. I would recommend this book for any couple who is in a serious relationship because this book only for married couples.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is probably the best book on marriage on the market. Gottman thinks outside the box, making understanding how to have a good marriage both practical and possible. Men, especially, need to read this book. I also recommend "When God Stopped Keeping Score" for anyone who feels bound by their anger, guilt, hurt or pain. I thought that the book was just about forgiveness, I soon learned, it was about so much more than that. It was about how you should deal with friends, family and yourself and more importantly, how to keep these relationships strong when things go wrong. Having read it, I feel like a better person. Maybe because this book spoke to me and not down to me. I have read a lot of books that was written like I didn't know anything. What the author of "When God Stopped Keeping Score" does is talk to you like a friend. I needed that. You will understand why when you read it. It is on sale here on
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am a soon-to-be-married and I really like it. It gave a lot of examples of happily married people and not so happy that gives you an idea of what to do or if your marriage is directing to divorce. A lot of exercises that you have to do with your spouse to improve your marriage. Excellent information and easy to read.
Jmatheny More than 1 year ago
Janelle Matheny The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work By John M. Gottman, Ph.D. and Nan Silver The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work is one of the most insightful books I’ve read in a long time. Not only does John Gottman establish credibility in the first five pages, but he is full of valid information and leads you to believe that he really does know what he’s talking about. I’m sure you’re asking yourself right now, “What is the point of this book?” or, “what is the book even about?” To put it quite simply, this book is a very good guide to making your marriage work and how to have successful relationships in your intrapersonal life. In the first chapter of the book, Dr. Gottman explains how he can usually tell if a marriage will last in the first three minutes he meets with the couple. He reveals the truth behind all happy relationships and marriages and that is happiness. If a couple has had a good friendship and great mutual sense of respect for each other before they had romantic feelings for each other, according to Dr. Gottman, the relationship will last and it can be salvageable if at any time in the future it is suffering. It was very interesting to read this book because he had some very valid points that really made me stop and think about my relationships in my life currently. Not only does he explain in every chapter the tips and tricks to making relationships work, but he also has activities and short quizzes throughout the book to help you understand what happened in the previous chapter and to make sure you’re on the right path to a successful relationship.The 7 principles for making a marriage work was a book I could not put down. I found that in every chapter, while he was explaining each principle that he really understood and he’s an educated man that knows what he’s talking about. It was such an intriguing book and I highly suggest you read this with your loved one and help improve the way you communicate and love each other.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I finally admitted that we needed help in our relationship, I bought this book with a little reservation.... I'm sorry I waited so long. If you practice what's in this book, I'm sure that you can make it. Everything can be related to in an easy understandable manner. If your willing, this book will definately help!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book has lots of excellent and interesting advice about how to keep a relationship together. It is written in a way that everyone can understand and is full of practical suggestions. If you are in a relationship and want to figure out some ways to keep two souls dancing together to the wide variety of tunes life throws at us, read this book. Chances are, you will learn numerous things that are very helpful. If you want to go one step further and develop a deeper understanding of your relationship and what it means, you should read, 'The Ever-Transcending Spirit' by Toru Sato. It is simply the best book I have ever read on this topic! Meanwhile, enjoy the dance.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book was really amazing, and even though I am not in a relationship now, most of the principles apply to relationships in general, whether they be familial or otherwise. Gottman bases his advice on sound scientific evidence and removes personal, religious, and social biases. I highly reccomend this book to anyone who is looking to improve relationships in their lives.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Thank you 'Seven Principles' for starting to put my marriage back on solid ground. The book that completed the difficult task and ensures our longivity for now on is 'Loving Vows: Inspiring Promises For Building and Renewing Your Marriage' by Barbara Eklof. It took our wedding vows to a higher level by showing us how to KEEP each one during the day-to-day reality of marriage. Now, thanks to these two great books, we're discussing a second honeymoon instead of a divorce.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Dr Gottman does a great job of outlining some of the common problems that plague relationships. I have started using this book as a tool in helping couples get stated on the path of healing.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Dr. Gottman is THE most prolific and authoritative researcher on marriage in the field. He doesn't write about his personal ideas but bases his writings on sound, exceptionally-crafted research. What he says is vital to your relationship. Paul Coleman, author of 'The Complete Idiot's Guide to Intimacy'
Guest More than 1 year ago
I was a bit skeptical that this book would help me out in any way. What I found was that this was an amazing book that gave me a lot of insight on marriage that your friends and family don't tell you because they don't want to 'air their dirty laundry'. This book keeps it real based on extensive research of real-life couples who experience the same problems that almost all married couples do.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I think this book can help strenghten the friendship of a married couple.It mainly concentrates on communication between man and woman and provides guidelines for working with the partner from an optimistic point of view. I strongly recommend it!!
travel-her More than 1 year ago
This book is a "must read" for anyone in a committed relationship. Helpful, informative, and if so motivated, effective!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is really a treasure trove of all the important data on marriage, and spells out what to do,and why, to make marriage great. I recommend it highly, and have used some of the data in it for my own book.
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PAGirlAL More than 1 year ago
My husband and I had a great time reading this book and doing the exercises.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
excellent work, backed with decades of research
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