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273 of 280 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Relationship Foundation, Improvement, and Rescue
This book deserves many more than five stars. It is as close as you can get to having a hands-on guide to improving your relationships as you can get without having a trained counselor present.
It's too bad that most people will take on this book because they have a bad or failing relationship. It would be much better to start with this approach in the...
Published on June 21, 2000 by Donald Mitchell

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73 of 83 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Problem of Nonparticipating Spouse
Early in the book, Dr. McGraw demands that you improve yourself if you want to improve your relationship. His ideas for self improvement are good. However, later in the book, Dr. McGraw assumes that your spouse can be persuaded to join you in participating in Dr. McGraw's relationship improvement steps. Unfortunately, some spouses have no interest in participating in...
Published on April 25, 2000 by tryingspouse


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273 of 280 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Relationship Foundation, Improvement, and Rescue, June 21, 2000
By 
Donald Mitchell "Jesus Loves You!" (Thanks for Providing My Reviews over 124,000 Helpful Votes Globally) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)   
This book deserves many more than five stars. It is as close as you can get to having a hands-on guide to improving your relationships as you can get without having a trained counselor present.
It's too bad that most people will take on this book because they have a bad or failing relationship. It would be much better to start with this approach in the beginning. I hope marriage advisors, parents, living together couples, and engaged people will become familiar with this book and recommend it to others.
The book is extremely direct. The author makes it clear that you have to first change yourself before you can change you relationship.
The book is extremely well structured for easy use both as a book and as a workbook. It is divided into seven steps (define and diagnose where the relationship is now; get rid of your wrong thinking about relationships; find out what you are doing to hurt the relationships; internalize the values needed to build and maintain strong relationships; the necessary format for a strong relationship; and how to reconnect and manage the relationship).
Each section is filled with diagnostic questions for you and your partner to use, as well as directions for implementing what you learn.
The process involved is a good one. It begins with identifying stalled thinking, works on stallbusting that thinking, and then builds new habits that will work better.
The steps are extensive, but you can take them in bite-sized amounts. Before you are done, you will be sharing what you have done with your partner. I have to believe that anyone who was told that their partner had been working on these questions and exercises would be very impressed by the commitment to the relationship that this effort represented. It can help overcome a lot of thoughtlessness that may have preceded that sharing.
If your relationship is on the rocks, that idea of reconnecting can be scary. I was impressed to see that the book provides a 14 day program to help you with exercises that help reconnect you emotionally, intellectually, and spiritually. Most counselors would probably not give you this much guidance.
One of the finest things in life is to have a great relationship with other people. This book gives you the necessary background to move in that direction. The rest is up to you, as the author says. Give it a shot! You have a lot to gain!
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146 of 148 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gets Serious, May 27, 2000
As a practicing psychologist, I have seen a number of self-help books that have "useless" written from the get-go. Phil MacGraw's "Relationship Rescue" is NOT one of those useless, quick fix manuals. People who are familiar with Neuro Linguistic Programming will see his models instantly. As other reviewers have mentioned, the emphasis here is that each partner sees how they individually are "at cause" for relationship problems through a series of short and direct questions (i.e. "What did you do today that contributed to or contaminated your relationship?"). This program is not a quick fix, though, and couples may even need to go through the questions more than once. Of most use are the dyads that MacGraw gives couples as "homework" to cover all aspects of what makes a relationship work. And, make no mistake, MacGraw is also quite blunt in his assessment of how men and women view relationships differently, and how often those views are just an excuse for not doing the work. Just as there are different people, there is probably no one book to help people recover from relationship shock, but this is an easy-to-use readable manual that will help the vast majority of people who are ready to end a relationship but do not want to do that until every stone has been turned. Guaranteed to help.
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406 of 434 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars TO HEAL YOU MUST ACT....PICK UP AND READ THIS BOOK!, February 14, 2000
Relationship Rescue is an incredible opportunity for anyone who wants to have a healing in themselves and their relationship! The kicker is that you have to take ACTION to heal and not just sit there counting your woes. Phil takes you step by step through a series of tests and strategies to uncover and clarify your specific areas of difficulty so that you then can focus and address each. This book is not only for the lazy procrastinator nor just for the chronic complaining wimps...this book is for everyone who wants to be the best they can be for themselves and for their loved ones because all realtionships start with YOU first! Infact, you could spend 20 years in therapy costing you thousands of dollars or spend a lifetime masking your problems with anti-depressants and not even begin to scrape the surface of all the personal growth that you will get out of this one book. I wouldn't be surprised if all the medical insurance companies in this nation got wise and bought and sent a copy of this book to each and every policy holder they had because this book would save them millions in wasteful therapy and anti-depressants because it is just that good! Kudos to Phil for helping us without costing us our life savings over our whole lifetime! Also recommended: Life Strategies,The Seat of Our Soul, Dating for Dummies
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168 of 177 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Doctor Phil tells it like it is - and like it could be!, August 5, 2000
As usual, Phil McGraw is steps ahead of the rest of us in sorting out what is *really* going on in relationships. Refreshingly, he begins the book by questioning the therapeutic standards too often given to the thousands of couples in trouble. "The divorce rate in America refuses to drop below fifty percent, and twenty percent of us will divorce not once but twice in our lifetime. Clearly, pleasant and generic instructions on how to communicate better or theoretical musings that give you great insights about relationships just weren't going to cut it fifteen years ago and won't cut it now. " Obviously (to paraphrase him), couples therapy as we have known it isn't working.
You can watch him often on Oprah, but this book is the next best thing to either watching him there, or having him as your personal therapist.
This book is primarily for relationships 'on the rocks' - the first steps are set up to evaluate and understand what your relationship is, how it got this way (no surprise, it didn't fall apart on its own, or because of your partner). The Seven Steps are not simple or simplistic, but provide structure for thought and more. This book is not about what's wrong with your partner and how to fix him or her. It is about the person reading the book -- you!
This would be a great book for new couples to read together (and for this price, why not order one for you and one for your loved one, and read them first in private, then together), not just before they are in crisis, but before they decide to marry. When the relationship is still strong, new, fresh, it is more likely that both people will be willing to talk openly about what they expect and want, and to be able to use the truly helpful instructions on how to stay together.
For those in a troubled relationship, you might want to read this yourself first, and work on your own issues. Dr. Phil has a directness that can be intimidating to some - but for some of us, we need that extra push. This book is on my must have list for newlyweds as well as those in trouble.
Highly recommended for those who truly want that special relationship to work!
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146 of 154 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Second Opinion...., August 18, 2000
As usual, Phil McGraw is steps ahead of the rest of us in sorting out what is *really* going on in relationships.
Refreshingly, he begins the book by questioning the therapeutic standards too often given to the thousands of couples in trouble. "The divorce rate in America refuses to drop below fifty percent, and twenty percent of us will divorce not once but twice in our lifetime. Clearly, pleasant and generic instructions on how to communicate better or theoretical musings that give you great insights about relationships just weren't going to cut it fifteen years ago and won't cut it now. " Obviously (to paraphrase him), couples therapy as we have known it isn't working.
You can watch him often on Oprah, but this book is the next best thing to either watching him there, or having him as your personal therapist.
This book is primarily for relationships 'on the rocks' - the first steps are set up to evaluate and understand what your relationship is, how it got this way (no surprise, it didn't fall apart on its own, or because of your partner). The Seven Steps are not simple or simplistic, but provide structure for thought and more. This book is not about what's wrong with your partner and how to fix him or her. It is about the person reading the book -- you!
This would be a great book for new couples to read together (and for this price, why not order one for you and one for your loved one, and read them first in private, then together), not just before they are in crisis, but before they decide to marry. When the relationship is still strong, new, fresh, it is more likely that both people will be willing to talk openly about what they expect and want, and to be able to use the truly helpful instructions on how to stay together.
For those in a troubled relationship, you might want to read this yourself first, and work on your own issues. Dr. Phil has a directness that can be intimidating to some - but for some of us, we need that extra push. This book is on my must have list for newlyweds as well as those in trouble.
Highly recommended for those who truly want that relationship to work!
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113 of 118 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Creating, Improving, and Rescuing Your Relationships, February 13, 2001
By 
Donald Mitchell "Jesus Loves You!" (Thanks for Providing My Reviews over 124,000 Helpful Votes Globally) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)   
Relationship Rescue is my pick as the top book of 2000.
This book deserves many more than five stars. It is as close as you can get to having a hands-on guide to improving your relationships as you can get without having a trained counselor present.
It's too bad that most people will take on this book because they have a bad or failing relationship. It would be much better to start with this approach in the beginning. I hope marriage advisors, parents, living together couples, and engaged people will become familiar with this book and recommend it to others.
The book is extremely direct. The author makes it clear that you have to first change yourself before you can change you relationship.
The book is extremely well structured for easy use both as a book and as a workbook. It is divided into seven steps (define and diagnose where the relationship is now; get rid of your wrong thinking about relationships; find out what you are doing to hurt the relationships; internalize the values needed to build and maintain strong relationships; the necessary format for a strong relationship; and how to reconnect and manage the relationship).
Each section is filled with diagnostic questions for you and your partner to use, as well as directions for implementing what you learn.
The process involved is a good one. It begins with identifying stalled thinking, works on stallbusting that thinking, and then builds new habits that will work better.
The steps are extensive, but you can take them in bite-sized amounts. Before you are done, you will be sharing what you have done with your partner. I have to believe that anyone who was told that their partner had been working on these questions and exercises would be very impressed by the commitment to the relationship that this effort represented. It can help overcome a lot of thoughtlessness that may have preceded that sharing.
If your relationship is on the rocks, that idea of reconnecting can be scary. I was impressed to see that the book provides a 14 day program to help you with exercises that help reconnect you emotionally, intellectually, and spiritually. Most counselors would probably not give you this much guidance.
You can improve the benefits you will find here by also using the excellent workbook that is sold separately. It contains many more questions and a convenient place to write them down. You can read my review of that as well, if you like.
One of the finest things in life is to have a great relationship with other people. This book gives you the necessary background to move in that direction. The rest is up to you, as the author says. Give it a shot! You have a great quality of life to win!
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80 of 82 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Some Of The Best Advice If You're In a Problem Relationship, June 4, 2000
Everyone with a relationship problem can benefit from the concrete, authoritative help offered by this brand new 272 page book. Dr. McGraw offers 7 specific tips for getting relationships back on track. He gives you the 10 most popular relationship myths, along with the appropriate action steps to get you and your partner on the right track. His advice is straight forward, no beating about the bush to make you feel better. His "Relationship Health Profile" contains 62 true or false questions, covering every aspect of a relationship, and provides a score so you can quickly and honestly see the health of your relationship. He offers a 10 part "Relationship Behavior Profile," (for you and for your partner) to help you find out why you feel the way you do about your partner. Throughout the book, Phil stresses that "fixing a relationship means a lot more than fixing your partner!" You'll learn that each person must own up to his or her part of the problem, and that we teach our partners how to treat us - or how to continue treating us - by the way we respond. I found the book to contain sound advice, and there are somethings you won't want to hear about yourself. A Must Read for anyone with a relationship problem. For $ 16.06 you can only benefit !
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113 of 119 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Tells it like it is, February 24, 2000
This book is a little difficult to get into as he is pretty tough to begin with. He really cuts the "c___" and tells it like it is. NO mollycoddling. But, it is worth it if you can get through the first couple of chapters. If you can't, this won't work for you anyway. Instead of worrying about the why's and whine's he goes to the solutions that he thinks will work. It is not an easy fix type of book at all, but if you have a relationship that needs work and you are willing to work at, this is a great help.
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112 of 119 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars For everyone in any relationship, March 10, 2000
By A Customer
This book helps everyone understand HIMSELF or HERSELF in a relationship. It is STRAIGHT forward and uncomplicated. What you must be is open to doing the Profiles, honestly. Answer the questions honestly and be open to change. You only cheat yourself if you aren't honest. Dr. Phil has given everyone a chance to open our minds, hearts and ourself...to ourselves. This book is excellent.
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59 of 61 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Book - Terrific Author!, April 11, 2001
By 
Sandra D. Peters "Seagull Books" (Prince Edward Island, Canada) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
During my years as a counsellor, I have discovered first hand the overwhelming number of relationships in dire trouble. Couples often stay in an unhappy and unhealthy relationship for a multitude of reasons; some will improve with counselling, a greater number will end up in divorce court. I agree with the author, a considerable number of couples continue to seek counselling and remain there year after year with no significant results. If that is the case, it is time for a change.
Relationship Rescue is an excellent self-help book for those whose relationships are not quite as harmonious and blissful as they once were, as well as for those seeking insight in keeping the relationship in balance. What I like most about the book is the author's straight-forward, realistic approach. He is a true professional in his field and his expertise shows among the pages of this book. If you are looking for sympathy and a shoulder to cry on, you might not appreciate McGraw's somewhat blunt, direct manner; however, the process of "therapy and change" generally is not an easy one. Self-help means being prepared to make those changes and finding the commitment to work through the process; there is no such thing as a lasting, quick-fix solution. No book will guarantee solving whatever problems exist in a relationship, but for those truly committed to self-improvement, the price of this excellent book is worth every penny in return for the author's sound and realistic strategic approach.
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