Ep.10 of The #staymarried Podcast: The 5 Problem Solving Methods

5 Methods of Problem Solving Tall - Episode 10 of The #staymarried Podcast, a series based on The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work by Dr. John GottmanWelcome to Episode 10 of The Seven Do’s and Four Don’ts for a Long and Happy Marriage. THIS Episode is the reason we’ve asked you to listen to all of the episodes in order. I’ll list them again at the bottom of this blog post if you need to catch up, because the things we teach you today will be really difficult to do if you haven’t yet gotten a grasp on The Four Don’ts and the first Four Do’s.

Today, in Episode 10, we’ll cover Principle #5: Solve Your Solvable Problems. We will even share with you real time a problem we’ve been having and work through a solution together using the 5 methods we’ve learned from The Gottman Institute. If you’ve ever disagreed about anything in your marriage, you’re really going to like this one…

If you’re enjoying the podcast and have found the #staymarried blog helpful in the past, we’ve created some ways that you can partner with us to help us continue to provide these free resources for couples who need them. Check out our Partner Page for some ideas. THANK YOU to those of you that already have!

As always, this series is based on the New York Time’s Bestseller The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work because those researchers are smart and they know what they are talking about. If you don’t already have this book, you can get it here.
Ok, go ahead and have a listen… 

Seriously, why do we do this to ourselves? It’s not my favorite to discuss conflict, but conflict is a normal part of marriage and we really hope this episode helps. As promised, here is a graphic that you can refer to help you remember the 5 methods it takes to solve your solvable problems. (Hint: PIN THIS so you can come back to it later)


5 Methods of Problem Solving Tall - Episode 10 of The #staymarried Podcast, a series based on The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work by Dr. John Gottman

These are the five questions from The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work that we used toward the end of our problem solving session. Use any or all of these to help you navigate your own solvable problem.

  1. What do we agree about?
  2. What are our common feelings or the most important feelings here?
  3. What common goals can we have here?
  4. How can we understand this situation, this issue?
  5. How do we think these goals should be accomplished?

5 Methods of Problem Solving Tall - Episode 10 of The #staymarried Podcast, a series based on The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work by Dr. John GottmanWant to read more about some of the topics we discussed? Here are a few blog posts you may like:

♥ Soften Your Startup
♥ Repair Attempts
♥ Why Yelling Doesn’t Work

If you’ve missed an episode, catch up here…

♥ Ep. 1 – Intro to The #staymarried Podcast and The Gottman Institute
♥ Ep. 2 – Do #1 – Exploring Love Maps
♥ Ep. 3 – Do #2 – Nurture Fondness and Admiration
♥ Ep. 4 – Don’t #1 – Criticism is a Relationship Killer
♥ Ep. 5 – Don’t #2 – Contempt is Sulfuric Acid for Love
♥ Ep. 6 – Do #3 – Finding Romance in the Little Things
♥ Ep. 7 – Do #4 – Accepting Each Other’s Influence
♥ Ep. 8 – Don’t #3 – Defensiveness Will Drive You Apart
♥ Ep. 9 – Don’t #4 – Stonewalling Sets You Up for Failure

 The #staymarried blog was created to offer hope, stories, and resources for couples who want to stay married.

If you found this post helpful, we would be honored if you would share it. Our big dream is to see more and more people living in happy and healthy marriages!

Tony and Michelle Peterson #staymarriedIf you’re NEW HERE, check out our About Page and read a little more about my own background on our first post. You can also find us on the socials: PinterestTwitterFacebook, and Instagram. I’d love to connect on any of your favorite platforms.

Thank you for reading, sharing, and being a part of this #staymarried community!

~ Michelle

3 thoughts on “Ep.10 of The #staymarried Podcast: The 5 Problem Solving Methods

  1. Please don’t stop making podcasts!! I look forward to listening to these so much, and have found each episode to be helpful and inspiring. My husband has also joined me with listening to a few, and depending on future topics I can see us continuing to listen to these together 🙂 Some ideas for future topics: tips for keeping the flame alive/keeping passion in a marriage, “baby-proofing” your marriage (I’d LOVE to hear more on this as we may be heading into this phase of our lives within a year or two!), affair proofing a marriage (I feel like I’ve seen something on this…hope it’s a real thing!), tips for dealing with things like difficult in-laws or other family issues as a couple…that’s all I can think of for now. Thanks for all you do!

  2. Gottman’s problem-solving steps are useful. However, in martial conflict, “surface” problems (e.g. dirty dishes in the sink) that lead to arguments often reflect a deeper, underlying problem in the relationship. Surface conflicts often reflect insecurity in the relational bond. If this is the case, attempting to resolve surface conflict will fail to meaningfully improve the relationship. A better approach is to change the discussion from the surface conflict (e.g. dirty dishes) to a discussion of one’s interpretation of the dirty dishes, e.g. feeling disrespected. Discussing the real, underlying issue will result in real conflict resolution and a strengthening of the marital bond.

    Dr. Ken Newberger
    Ph.D., Conflict Analysis and Resolution
    Southwest Florida (Naples – Fort Myers)

  3. This is good. I also like what Linda Mintle PHdsaid in her book about problem solving. She said that couples needs a compatible style of dealing with their differences.

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