John Gottman is the nation’s leading relationship researcher, spending the past 40 years intimately studying couples, their interactions and the long term success of their relationships. The great thing about this type of science is we can use it to guide beahviors and replicate the results of the studies.
The ratio of 5:1 was identified spontaneously through Gottman’s research and it can help you improve your own relationship quite easily. This may seem a little daunting at first.....and it can be quite daunting.
Do you notice a significant number of negative interactions in your relationship? Then I urge you to play this little game right away.
This is a competition with yourself. Don't focus on what your partner does or doesn't do. I know they all need to change. You've got enough to keep up with yourself though, I promise you! So, if you're up for it, this is how you play:
When you say something mean to your partner, say 5 nice things [one negative=5 positives]. If you leave your socks on the floor, do 5 tasks that your partner usually does. Some suggestions for positive actions are listed below.
Once you know, you can't un-know.
Notice when the negative interactions happen. It doesn't matter if they deserved it. It doesn't matter if they did something to you first. If you recognize there is a repair to be made for each of your negative interactions, you'll be less prone to act or speak without thinking.
Play of the Day: Use the magic ratio for one day. This one 'play' is a game changer! Let's talk about the differences it makes for you. Come on over to the forum and chat it up.
If you want more, sign up for free updates and my favorite relationship tips. You can find more articles about compassion over here. If you need more personal coaching, I've got packages for you here. You can always email me, ask a question and I'll answer it on the forum.
Suggestions for positive interactions:
1. Do a load of laundry if you're not the one who usually does it.
2. Tell your partner something you're proud of about them.
3. Vacuum the carpet if you're not the one who usually does it.
4. Walk by your partner and give them a quick hug around the shoulders.
5. Pick up your partner's favorite candy bar and bring it home.
6. Take the kids to the park if you're not the primary caregiver.
7. Clean the toilet if you're not the one that usually does it.
8. Bring your partner a cup of coffee/beer/glass of wine.
9. Text your partner just to say I love you.
10. Plan a dinner or movie date and let your partner know.
11. Tell your partner something you appreciate about them.
12. Have sex when your partner wants to.
13. Make your partner's favorite dish.
14. Bring your partner a flower out of the garden (or the neighbor's).
15. Tell your partner what made you fall in love with them.
16. Compliment one of your partner's special abilities.
17. Tell 5 of your friends something you think is special about your partner.
18. Write a sweet or funny note to your partner and hide it somewhere they will find it.
19. If you have children, tell them something you like about your partner.
20. Give your partner a 6 second kiss.
21. Hold your partner's hand while they are talking to you.
22. Stop your partner and look into their eyes for 5 seconds.
23. Stop what you're doing and just listen to your partner attentively.
24. Give your partner oral sex.
25. Take your partner's car to be detailed.
26. Ask your partner to take a walk with you after dinner.
27. Offer to help with the dishes if you don't usually do them.
28. Ask your partner an intimacy building question and then shut up.
29. Plant a tree in your partner's honor.
30. Ask your partner if there's anything you can do for them.
31. Weed the garden if you don't usually do it.
32. Watch your spouse's favorite TV show with them.
33. Give your spouse a shoulder/foot/hand massage.
34. When you or your spouse come home, go right away to your partner and give them a hug and a kiss.
35. Do a radio dedication during a time your partner will be listening.
36. Gas your partner's car up.
37. Buy them an Amazon (or other store) gift card.
Enjoy being positive with each other!