Welcome to the third post in our series, Therapist Resource Roundup. Each quarter, we share a list of resources focused on a different theme our therapists often work through with clients. Every roundup will feature books, articles, videos, and podcasts that our therapists recommend for the topic at hand. These resources can help set you on a positive path, whether in a crisis or seeking to supplement your work in therapy.

Being in a relationship is a lot of work. The myth is that if the relationship is “right,” it should come easily or naturally. Yet, relationship health takes dedication, work, and practice like any other worthwhile endeavor. And while relationships do not come with instruction manuals, you don’t have to go through a relationship blindly.

We’ve narrowed down some of the best therapist-approved books, podcasts, newsletters, and retreats to help you and your partner strengthen your relationship. The resource list below includes everything from tips on spicing up the passion in your relationship to a dedicated workshop just for you and your partner. Check out the resources below that will inspire you and your partner to keep growing together.

Book: Wired for Love: How Understanding Your Partner’s Brain and Attachment Style Can Help You Defuse Conflict and Build a Secure Relationship by Dr. Stan Tatkin

This resource is most helpful for couples who…

  • Struggle with communication around emotionally-charged issues
  • Have a hard time feeling emotionally connected
  • Want to understand how they get triggered and stuck in patterns of disconnection

Top takeaways from therapist H.M. Humphrey…

“Wired For Love” is an easy read full of helpful information about attachment patterns — all based on research! The author uses helpful metaphors to explain how some people are avoidant, others are anxious in relationships, and others feel generally secure with each other. He explores how these tendencies can lead to unproductive patterns that push partners apart, creating an experience of disappointment, loneliness, and disconnection. He also explores how we can get unstuck from those patterns and reconnect with our partner. This book is a great read to learn more about your partner, yourself, and your relationship.

Newsletter: Marriage Minute by The Gottman Institute

This resource is most helpful for…

This newsletter is helpful to both married and unmarried couples. Marriage Minute is ideal for couples looking for regular, reputable, and easily digestible tips to enhance their relationship health.

Top takeaways from therapist Kelsee White

Marriage Minute is an e-mail-based subscription relationship tool presented by The Gottman Institute (TGI). TGI is a web-based platform that shares the ground-breaking research of relationship experts Drs. John and Julie Gottman. The subscription includes twice-weekly emails with articles, relationship tips, strategies, and activities. Marriage Minute is a free resource that helps you and your partner learn meaningful ways to connect, communicate, manage conflict, and beyond. This resource is excellent for busy couples who may not have enough time to delve into a good book or regularly listen to a podcast. You will get digestible information you and your partner can discuss and try to implement into your daily lives. It’s a quick read you can enjoy over coffee or on your lunch break when you scroll your email.

Podcast: Small Things Often by The Gottman Institute

This resource is most helpful for…

This podcast is fantastic for couples who want to reconnect. The Small Things Often podcast has short episodes with valuable tips. 

Top takeaways from therapist Danae Kauffman

The Small Things Often podcast is 5 minutes or less and offers insights into specific areas of relationships like expectations, needs, culture, and more. The podcast uses brief, potent relationship wisdom that encourages couples to make small changes often. Whether you have 5 or 20 minutes, this podcast can enrich your relationship.

Book: Eight Dates: Essential Conversations for a Lifetime by Drs. John and Julie Gottman

This resource is most helpful for…

Couples looking to enhance their relationship together through a fun format 

Top takeaways from therapist Dr. George Bitar…

This book provides a practical way to connect with your partner around specific topics: trust and commitment, money, conflict, sex and intimacy, spirituality, fun and adventure, and family. This book allows couples to practice some of the core Gottman tools within a “date night” framework. Each person should read the chapter and questions before the designated date night. Then when the couple comes together during date night, they can deepen the conversation through their responses.  

Retreat Experience: The Art and Science of Love 2-Day Couples Workshop

This resource is most helpful for…

This workshop is designed for any couple in a committed relationship. If you have a strong relationship, this workshop will provide you and your partner with insights and tools to foster further closeness, friendship, and trust. If your relationship is distressed, this two-day workshop will give you a greater understanding of your relationship and a road map for repair.

Top takeaways from therapist and workshop presenter Dr. Faith Drew…

While I am biased, this workshop is terrific. My husband George and I use our real-life scenarios to illustrate normal relationship dynamics. We share the possibilities of repairing relationship injuries together using research by Drs. John and Julie Gottman. This workshop invites couples from all over the world to work on their relationship. There is something special about connecting with others working towards a similar goal. Many couples have said that they like the workshop not only for the practical skills they can immediately use in their relationship but also to be among a diverse group of couples who may experience similar pitfalls or scenarios. 

The Art and Science of Love workshop has shown results similar to 6 months of marital therapy. Plus, 94% of attendees reported positive results after attending this weekend workshop.

Podcast: Where Should We Begin by Esther Perel

This resource is most helpful for…

Couples who are interested in relationship stories and enjoy listening to couples who experience similar challenges

Top takeaways from therapist Ali Flowers…

Esther Perel often has an interesting take for each couple, looking below the surface of the issue to find the deeper meaning. This podcast can give much hope to couples who are struggling — it’s a reminder that they are not alone. There’s a wide variety of diversity on this podcast that can speak to so many others. As you listen, you get a front row seat to how Esther works intimately with a couple. Perel unfolds each couple’s unique story, searching for understanding and clarity within their relationship. Listening and identifying with these stories can help couples feel less stuck and more hopeful.  

Game: Where Should We Begin – A Game of Stories by Esther Perel

This resource is most helpful for…

Couples looking to reconnect and learn something new about each other.

Top takeaways from therapist Ali Flowers…

Where Should We Begin (the game) allows couples to share insights about themselves that are rarely shared. The game encourages storytelling to give their partner a richer understanding of their experience. Some cards ask for a short answer to a question, while other “storytelling” cards ask to share an experience or memory. The questions are engaging and thought-provoking — an excellent start or end to any date night.

Looking for more resources? Find a therapist.

Your relationship might be the most important investment you make. The health of your relationship requires consistent attention, connection, and improvement. While relationships don’t come with instructions, many tools can help guide you and your partner. As therapists, we work with our clients to understand their history and what has influenced their beliefs and behaviors in their relationships. We can help you chart a course that will feel honest and enjoyable so you both can relish a long-lasting and meaningful relationship. 

Contact us to schedule an in-person session at our Charlotte, NC or Carefree, AZ office. Or log in virtually if you live in AZ, NC, SC, or TX.