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on November 6, 2003
We've saved thousands of dollars in marital therapy by using this book. The most amazing thing about it is to follow Goulston's suggestion to take the quizzes at the beginning of each section on how to CREATE love (Chemistry, Respect, Enjoyment, Acceptance, Trust, Empathy) and more importantly to then answer them the way you think your partner would answer them. Then exchange what you have written down and marvel at how little you really understand each other and then start to heal when you correct the misunderstandings. It's absolutely magical. Even men will get into it because you get the sense Goulston's a guy's guy, but is so without offending women. Run to buy this one!
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on October 10, 2008
From: [...]
Author & Book Views On A Healthy Life!

Book Review: The 6 Secrets of a Lasting Relationship: How to Fall in Love Again and Stay There (Perigree, 2001) by Mark Goulston, MD with Philip Goldberg

A Classic Feature

Dr. Mark Goulston is a former UCLA professor who helps high performing leaders, senior management and sales people reach their full potential using skills he learned training FBI and police hostage negotiators. He has also written Get Out of Your Own Way: Overcoming Self-Defeating Behavior, Get Out of Your Own Way at Work, and PTSD for Dummies.

The 6 Secrets of a Lasting Relationship has received praise from John Gray, Ph.D. and Harold H. Bloomfield, M.D. The book is based on more than 10,000 hours of couples therapy and has been developed into six secrets for keeping your relationship together:

1. Keep the chemistry burning.
2. Treat your partner with respect--and earn his or her respect.
3. Don't stop thinking about enjoyment.
4. Give one another acceptance despite your flaws.
5. Deserve each other's trust.
6. Always keep in touch with empathy.

"The structure of an intimate relationship rests on six pillars, which are the core of each of the six secrets."

1. C--chemistry (Sex; Romance; Discusses the painful secrets some individuals keep; Tells why we need to feel physically connected. Answers why chemistry waxes, then wanes--explains how to bring this important element back into the relationship.)
2. R--respect (This is where affairs sometimes begin. Warning signs of disrespect highlighted. Tells how to respect yourself and your partner.)
3. E--enjoyment (There is a need for laughter. Defines how baggage hinders enjoyment.)
4. A--acceptance (Teaches how to avoid criticism, contempt, defensiveness, stonewalling--leading predictors in the failure of couples. Elucidates upon what to do if you can't quite accept your partner. Also teaches how to find acceptance.)
5. T--trust (Implies faith and confidence and is required for emotional intimacy. Details how to restore trust.)
6. E--empathy (Attempt to view the situation from your partner's point of view. Learn how to move from debate and animosity to dialogue and understanding. Empathy heals wounds.)

Dr. Goulston writes that breakdowns in a relationship occur when an element of the pillars is shaky--they need regular reinforcement. Stress on the pillars is a result of marriage, child-rearing, financial problems, long-term bond of two single people, or even work. The author believes that you shouldn't feel like a victim, instead take the initiative to create the "love you deserve."

By reading The 6 Secrets of a Lasting Relationship, you should learn how to have:

* Renewed involvement with each other
* Revived enthusiasm four your relationship
* A stronger sense of partnership and commitment
* An atmosphere of healing
* A greater capacity to solve problems effectively
* Deepened intimacy and tenderness
* Enhanced mutual understanding
* Freedom from guilt and blame
* A more durable bond
* A reawakening of love

Using a no-blame, no-fault, no-nonsense approach and couples therapy stories as examples, this book is well written for couples to read and act upon together. Dr. Goulston also includes throughout blocks of Usable Insight and questionnaires as evaluation tools. The 6 Secrets of a Lasting Relationship is a classic which should be read by all couples, especially those who are in a shaky, rocky, or separating marriage and by those who are preparing to enter one. If your relationship is in trouble, find out why. Mark Goulston's 6 Secrets is Usable Insight into the reasons problems begin and will help you overcome existing marital difficulties and even point you to further help if necessary. And, if you're happily married, you, like myself, can gain a better understanding of your spouse and marriage.

5 Stars
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on June 27, 2002
Dr. Goulston's book made so much sense to my husband, felt so right to me, and was extremely doable for both of us. It helped us recognize when and where the great things disappeared from our life and more importantly gave us a way to bring them back. Skeptical as were, this book really can help you to fall back in love again and stay there.
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on February 16, 2001
Dr.Mark Goulston and Philip Goldberg have recaptured the magic of their first book, "Get Out of Your Own Way." The tone and "voice" of " Secrets" presents in aclear and honest manner real life ways to begin to heal and rebuild a wanted relationship.
The scene is set in each chapter with questions designed to force you to not only look in, but look from the inside out. If there was ever a text that so deserves to be read by every intimate couple, this is it.
The examples and testimonials bring the advice to life, and the advice is well thought out and obviously honest and workable. Unlike so many booksthat try to reframe our way of thinking about our relationships, "6 Secrets of a Lasting Relationship" assist you in working with what is already there and perhaps not understood well enough by the reader to move forward. The intimacy of reading and responding to advice is one of the many joys of reading. Surely having a book like this brings us much closer to our own solutions, and more importantly, closer to the one we love.
Read this book with the knowing that the words, advice, stories, and solutions work. Read it as well with hope and faith. There is something here to help anyone who needs it.
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on January 21, 2010
Personally I liked the use of the acronym CREATE to organize the book:(Chemistry,Respect, Enjoyment, Acceptance, Trust and Empathy). If you are having difficulties with anything other than physical abuse or substance abuse then this book gets to the heart of what is most important quickly and the organization allows you to skip to the area which concerns you most (which I did): yes there was a light sales job at the beginning but if you get into the chapters, they are quite meaty with a variety of approaches to dealing with each problem and a good description of the most common array of diifficulties. If one's spouse is resistant to marriage books then you can read it by yourself (like I did) and still find it quite helpful.

The chapters on respect p 95 to 136 and empathy p258 to 288 were exactly what I needed. My marriage has had difficulty for a number of years but I sure would have loved to have found this book earlier. For those whose relationships are doing well this gives you a reminder of what truly matters and help during the trials which may eventually occur. I also recommend Hold Me Tight by Sue Johnson for those who need a bit more perspective on why they get in such crazy fights, but this book finishes the job as far as I am concerned.

I had read a lot of books on marriage and still was having difficulty so I ordered this one along with three others. Thankfully this one (used) arrived first (the others haven't arrived yet). I feel like it alone was worth the cost of all four books: it urges spouses who are getting disrespect (me) to stick up for themselves in a dignified manner while doing what it takes to foster their own self-respect, just what I needed: the examples help one to see how much this can improve the situation while giving perspective as to why we may be stuck. The chapter on empathy showed how to provide empathy when needed but also how to stick up for oneself. I had already taken some measures but this helped me finish the job: it works.

I loved the following passage on p286 to be used after a husband comes home in a foul mood from work and the wife uses empathy to help him get a grip: He should not be given a free pass no matter how compassionate your empathy makes you feel. After you've defused the situation and made him feel understood, look him in the eye and say, "You know, when bad things happen at work, I'd really appreciate it if you don't take it out on me. I'm on your side."

My only complaint is that it lets those who disrespect their spouses off the hook too easily, saying they should just leave if they can't find respect, when in some cases their values seem quite skewed. I think he could have questioned those values more, in such a case I would definitely recommend the book Hold Me Tight by Sue Johnson because it lays out much more clearly what one stands to lose.
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on October 21, 2004
I am a man, and I just never thought I could save a relationship once the honeymoon was over. I didnt know you could get it back, and continue to have passion the rest of your life ! This book has made all of the difference.
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on January 23, 2007
This book can literally save your marriage or committed relationship. Dr. Goulston uses simple, yet clever analogies to help readers understand the true foundation of a solid relationship. His CREATE approach is direct and easy to understand. The advice is wonderful and it's obvious that Dr. Goulston genuinely cares about helping people grow and solidify their intimate relationships. This should be required reading for all couples or anyone contemplating a romantic relationship.
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on August 29, 2003
Goulston (doctor) & Goldberg (writer) are a wonderful team, and they succeed yet again with this book ("Get Out of Your Own Way" ISBN:0399519904 is the other one).
Dr. Goulston gets right to the heart of the matter in discussing how relationships can fall apart. If you are currently in a rocky relationship that you wish to save, or if you're just looking to solidify the foundation of the great relationship you already have, then you should invest the few dollars in this book. It's bound to be one of the best investments you'll ever make in your life.
Just to be totally honest, if your relationship is troubled and you would like to work on it effectively, you should seriously consider seeing an actual counselor. If your partner is hesitant, then this book alone might go a long way towards salvage and reconstruction.
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on April 10, 2010
I have been loooking for a book that I couple use for an enlighted couples class at my church. I read a skim read over 20 books over the last few months without finding a very acceptable book. When I checked out the Six Secrets of a Lasting Relationship from my local lib rary I knew my search was over. It is an excellent book with the six pillars being a clear and concise motivation for not only topics in the class but a direction for life. It is an unbelievably clear book which aids one in their own relationship as a couple to make life better. Highly recommended.
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on February 1, 2001
This a sound and solid book. And as the author suggested, it did get my husband to "buy in" more than any other book I have tried to discuss with him to improve our relationship. Because of this book, my husband and I are talking "with" instead of over or at each other for the first time in years. We're still not out of the woods, but I am hopeful that my husband and I will be able to fall in love again. I'd go and on, but I'm still afraid to jinx a good thing.
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