Source: The Gottman Institute
Repair is less about fixing what is broken but more about getting back on track. Dr. Gottman, renowned psychologist, refers to repair attempts as “the secret weapon” of emotionally intelligent couples, even though many of these couples aren’t aware that they are doing something so powerful. Are you effectively utilizing repair attempts in your relationship? Take this 20 question quiz to see.
6 or Above: This is an area of strength in your relationship. When conflict discussions are at risk of getting out of hand, you are able to put on the brakes and effectively calm each other down.
Below 6: Your relationship could stand some improvement in this area. By learning how to repair your interactions when negativity engulfs you, you can dramatically improve the effectiveness of your problem solving and develop a more positive perspective of each other and your relationship.
What separates stable, emotionally intelligent couples from others is not that their repair attempts are necessarily more skillful or better thought out, but that their repair attempts get through to their partner. Because repair attempts can be difficult to hear if your relationship is engulfed in negativity, the best strategy is to make your attempts more formal and deliberate in order to emphasize them. Talk to your partner this weekend about repair attempts. If you need a place to start, check out the Gottman Repair Checklist below.
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Linda Hoover says
My husband and I took the test and passed. Then, we had a great discussion of the repair list. Great post as always, Danielle!
danielle west says
Yeah, thank you for sharing, Linda! I love assessments that give immediate feedback. It shows you where you excel but it also shows you ways you could improve. It’s great to hear how well your discussion went about the repair list! We always appreciate hearing back from our Intentional Marriages community. Best wishes, Linda!