They've Been Married for 35 Years—Here's the No. 1 Thing They Never Do to Have a Successful Relationship

The Gottman's number one tip for a successful relationship is to never go to bed angry.

They've Been Married for 35 Years—Here's the No. 1 Thing They Never Do to Have a Successful Relationship

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, we've


More than 40,000 couples are about to start couples therapy.

We have also been married for 35 years. So we know how to build a relationship.

A successful and long-lasting partnership

It doesn't stop us from making mistakes. We get angry, we argue, and we snap at one another. We're human.

We've all learned that we should never fight when we feel emotionally overwhelmed.

What is emotional flood?

When you feel both physically and psychologically overwhelmed, this is called emotional flooding. This is when we feel physically and emotionally overwhelmed.

It's common to see this pattern.

Unhappy relationships


Each person has a built-in meter which measures the amount of negativity or fear that they can handle in a given moment. When the fear and negativity become too overwhelming, our nervous system kicks into high gear. We enter "fight-or-flight" mode.

Here are some signs and symptoms of emotional flooding

You feel your heart racing and out of breath.

You may clench your jaw or muscles.

You can't hear your partner.

Your mind is racing and you find it difficult to concentrate on anything else.

You may want to shout and scream, say something negative, or run away from your partner.

These behaviors can damage your partner's confidence in you as well as the foundations of your marriage. You might stop talking to each other and grow resentful.

How to prevent flooding when fighting

When you are emotionally overwhelmed, it's difficult to control your behavior. You may say things that you didn't intend. You can avoid going too far by being aware of your mental and emotional energy.

We let each other now that we're feeling overwhelmed during an argument: "I need some quiet time."

We then go into separate rooms to do something that will distract or calm us down. It's important to not let our anger fester. We could do a short meditation or yoga session instead, or read an article or play a phone game.

We then continue the conversation when we feel better, at a time that we have agreed on. This exercise helps remind us that the goal of the conversation is not to have one person "win" the argument or have the final word. It's important to overcome challenges as a group.

You can fight with your partner

It is normal to disagree and in some cases it can be healthy. When conflict escalates, couples' ability to correct course and repair their relationship depends on knowing when to step back.

You need to be able to stop a fight in its tracks and offer a peace gift. Remember, successful couples don't fight

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They fight more than other couples


Dr. John Gottman and Dr. Julie Schwartz Gottman

The co-founders are

The Gottman Institute

You can also find out more about the following:

Love Lab

The two psychologists have been married for more than 35 years and are known for their research on relationship stability. They are also co-authors.

The Love Prescription: 7 Days to More Intimacy and Connection

You can also find out more about the following:

10 Principles of Effective Couples Therapy

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