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relationship advice

Give and take

Give your partner the green light

Importance of accepting influence in a relatrionship   

According to John Gottman, a man's ability to accept influence by saying yes is one of the most important issues in a relationship.

Marriages where the man says to his partner, "You are right about that" or "Yes, let's do that" are much more likely to succeed.

When a man is not willing to share power and decision making with his wife, Gottman's research shows that there is an eighty percent chance that the marriage will self-destruct.

Watch this video in which relationship expert John Gottman talks about the importance of being willing to be influenced by your partner's views, feelings and needs.


In violent relationships, Gottman says that you find men responding to their wives' requests by saying, "No way," "It's just not going to happen," "You're not going to control me," or simply "Shut up."

  Visualization Exercise
  Spend 5-10 minutes doing this once or twice a day to develop your visualization skills.

1. Create a movie in your mind of you having an animated discussion with your partner filled with all the ways you can say yes.

2. You see yourself and your partner asking each other questions and responding positively and enthusiastically to each other's answers.

3. You make each other laugh and enjoy each other's company the way you did in happier times.

4. Visualize different mental scenes such as the place, the time of day, the temperature, colours and sounds, what you and your partner are wearing, and imagine what you are saying and how you are feeling.

5. Give the movie a structure and allow it to play out in your mind just as you want it to.


Inevitably, when exchanges between people are filled with nos, both partners will be dissatisfied with the relationship.

Watch Owen Williams talk about Three Things That Kill a Relationship.