Fight Right: How Successful Couples Turn Conflict Into Connection (Hardcover)
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Conflict is the top reason couples seek help—but it's also an opportunity for greater intimacy, deeper connection, and lasting love according to this essential guide from the world’s leading relationship scientists and authors of The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work and Eight Dates.
“An indispensable resource that couples will use over and over again.”—Lori Gottlieb, New York Times bestselling author of Maybe You Should Talk to Someone
How we fight predicts the future of our relationships. Most of us blunder into conflict without knowing what we are really fighting about and then quickly become overwhelmed by physiological responses we can’t control and emotions we don’t anticipate. The truth is the happiest and most successful couples fight—all the time. Conflict is human, and necessary.
Through decades of research, Drs. John and Julie Gottman, founders of the world-famous Love Lab, have identified the five common mistakes we make when we are at odds. In Fight Right, we learn the five secrets that help us to get back on track and harness conflict to build stronger, healthier relationships. With kindness, clarity, and a deep understanding of the struggles couples are going through, the Gottmans show us that we each have a unique conflict culture, borne of how we were raised and how we experienced past relationships, and they take us through all the possible combinations, from Avoiders, to Validators, to Volatiles, and how they can best work together.
Fight Right is an essential resource that will help couples escape the win-or-lose mentality in favor of a collaborative approach: calming down, staying connected, and really understanding, so that our fights can bring us closer.
John Gottman, PhD, is world-renowned for his work on marital stability and divorce prediction. Dr. Gottman has conducted over fifty years of breakthrough research with thousands of couples. He is the cofounder of The Gottman Institute and Affective Software, Inc., as well as the author of over 200 published academic articles and author or coauthor of more than forty books, including the New York Times bestsellers The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work and The Love Prescription and the national bestseller Eight Dates.
“Couples need skills to fight better, and Fight Right is the book that all couples will want to read. Dr. John and Julie Gottman have crafted a masterful guide about the importance of fighting and the skills needed to grow from having necessary disputes. The Gottmans have spent years studying and teaching couples, and in Fight Right, they are teaching couples how to do it right.”—Nedra Glover Tawwab, New York Times bestselling author of Set Boundaries, Find Peace
“In a relationship, your goal is to help your partner find their purpose. John and Julie Gottman, with their decades of experience working intimately with couples, know that the road to finding your purpose and fulfilling your dreams is often through conflict. If we don’t learn how to do conflict well, we’re going to be stuck, disconnected, and unfulfilled. Couples today really need clear, compassionate, and science-based guidance in this arena, and as the world’s leading love experts, the Gottmans are the trusted voice to guide them.”—Jay Shetty, author of the #1 New York Times bestseller Think Like a Monk
“So many couples out there are stuck in gridlock, and although they want to move forward, they don't know how. For the first time, John and Julie Gottman bring their decades of research to the hot topic of what we’re fighting about, and how we can fight better. Crucially, this book begins by helping people understand their conflict style and where it comes from and addresses how we deal with our emotions and how that shapes our conflicts. I don’t know of another resource out there like this one, with so much landmark science, vivid storytelling, and clear tools in every chapter. This book is a gift to its readers.”—Susan David, PhD, bestselling author of Emotional Agility
“A profound new take on conflict from the world’s leading relationship experts, Fight Right is poised to be the kind of classic that 7 Principles has become. This book is for all couples, from those who are in crisis to those who may think they have a perfect relationship. We can all benefit from this simple and love-changing understanding of how we fight and how we can fight for connection and not separation. How couples fight affects their family, our community, and the world, and learning how to bridge our differences is one of the essential skills we need now more than ever. A brilliant paradigm shift on conflict, with clear guidance for how to repair ruptures right.”—Daniel Siegel, MD, author of New York Times bestsellers Aware, The Whole Brain Child, and No Drama Discipline