“This was very helpful. Instead of focusing on what might be wrong in our relationship, it highlighted the good things we have been trying to do. So neither of us got defensive and, seeing the good stuff, we relaxed right away. We remembered why it was a good thing that we found each other! ...(Also) by looking at the relative strengths of the good traits in our relationship, we could increase these areas right away --- and maybe when we eventually return to our challenges, we will have a better platform to address them. This approach is solid -- it gets right to the heart of things, it identifies what we are doing right, and it makes us aware of the good things we have going on together and so what we need to focus on ‘to grow stronger, together,’ while handling life’s crap.” Heather and Ed: Portland, Oregon.
“The card sort made sense. It was actually somewhat difficult to get the job done. That was because we had to look at each trait and think about it carefully. And many of the things we were asked to consider weren’t things that we had been paying a lot of attention to! We were too focused on our weaknesses. It gave us a way of instantly seeing how well we are matched in a whole bunch of good ways. There is a ‘WOW’ factor in that! We also got to see how committed we are to each other, and how we try to provide each other a good life -- and why we handle things better than some folks we know. Actually, some family criticism now just rolls off of our backs...” Gerry and Jack: Tucson, Arizona.
“This isn’t some shallow Reader’s Digest or Cosmo survey. And when you surf the Web, there is all this pop-psychology. Most sites just want to hook you into buying their books or taking their courses. Or going to their counseling offices. Instead these Michigan research folks give you a science-based approach. It gets right to the point; no bs or psycho-babble. It provides an awareness in words you can understand and it really helps you feel good about your relationship's true strengths... We still fight, but now we problem solve or get over things more quickly and move on. The bonus self-discovery exercises are actually a lot of fun even while they are enlightening. We both are feeling closer -- my husband doesn't even complain when I turn down the thermostat, because now he cuddles up on the couch and watches TV with me.” Janine: Minnetonka, Minnesota.
© 2013 Relationship Research Institute of Michigan