Good luck, get the love you want. By Harville Hendrix, Hold Me Tight. By Sue Johnson, 7 principles that make marriage work. By John Gottman, 5 Love Languages.
I don't know about you, but I spent much of my life assuming that relationships were something that could only be learned through experience and a lot of trial and error. They didn't seem like anything you could study about. Turns out I was totally wrong. The ability to be a good partner and friend isn't something you were born with, it's a skill that can be learned, and one that we could all review from time to time.
After all, there are many factors that influence how we function in relationships, from past baggage to personal communication styles, and the more you understand, the better prepared you'll be to truly connect with others and present yourself to them. All products that appear on SELF are independently selected by our publishers. However, when you buy something through our retail links, we may earn an affiliate commission. I'm not saying that Bell Hooks' ideas about love can change your life, but I'm not saying that.
He writes: “The word 'love' is most often defined as a noun, but we would all love better if we used it as a verb, which underlines his main argument that society does not provide us with a model for learning to love. It rejects the social emphasis on romantic and sexual love and, instead, challenges readers to recover from cynicism and to embrace love as an act of caring, compassion and strength that can improve all sectors of our lives. You may know the author's viral article, “Women aren't annoying, we're just sick of it”, which delves into the concept of emotional and invisible work. This book delves into the concept and offers guidance on how to overcome the uneven imbalances of emotional work in relationships, which in turn can help you better communicate relationship challenges.
From the hosts of the hit podcast Call Your Girlfriend, Big Friendship explores all the ways in which friendships are formed, challenged and maintained and asks readers to dedicate time and energy to preserving the bonds of friendship in the same way that we would, for example, with a committed romantic partner. It's not an instruction book by any means, but through the authors' own experiences, as well as interviews with friends and experts, there's a lot to learn. This collection of Syed's The Rumpus's Dear Sugar advice column Dear Sugar may not be your typical book about relationships, but Strayed's ideas about readers' problems are full of life lessons that will make you want to improve in all areas, including your relationships. You might know Brown from his viral TED talk, “The Power of Vulnerability”.
If you do, you know that their wisdom about vulnerability goes hand in hand with authentic relationships. Daring Greatly is about all of that and much more, and I recommend it to anyone who is afraid of being hurt, facing rejection, or looking less than perfect has prevented them from forming meaningful bonds. Remember that popular New York Times essay, Fall in Love with Anyone, Do This? You know, the one that explored that study in which participants answered a series of 36 intimate personal questions while maintaining eye contact. Well, the author of that essay used it as a starting point for this autobiography, in which she explores love and intimacy through a mix of science and personal experience.
It may be mostly a cultural critique, but any romantic (or cynical) will walk away with some lessons learned. Although it's much more than just a book about connection and relationships, Pleasure Activism is a must-read for anyone who wants to make a difference in the lives of others. Through his ideas on how to make social justice sustainable through pleasure, Brown also teaches readers how to follow the fundamental advice in Put on your own oxygen mask before helping others. This beautiful book could make you feel better equipped to nurture all your connections, no matter what type of relationship it is.
Say What You Mean is as much about how to listen as it is about communicating. Sofer uses mindfulness and the principles of nonviolent communication to teach readers how to develop healthy and satisfying communication styles, a skill necessary for any relationship. If you're a fan of Dear Polly from The Cut, you already know that Havrilesky has the ability to help others navigate the messy territory of human relationships. How to Be a Person in the World is a collection of completely new Q&A that are not found on the Internet (although it contains some of the column's greatest hits).
Whether you have sex within a committed couple or not, communication is key. Harris, a sex educator and coach, offers simple tips for asking for what you want (and finding out if you don't know it), as well as tips for overcoming shame, insecurity and discomfort. Because, hey, even if you want to be a positive sexual communicator, it's not always the easiest thing in the world. It's not easy to foster deep and supportive friendships that last, especially in an increasingly lonely and disconnected society that is exhausting many of us.
Nelson shares tips on how to make it happen, based on the belief that friendships require dedication, commitment and a lot of vulnerability. SELF does not provide medical advice, diagnoses, or treatments. The information published on this website or by this brand is not intended to be a substitute for medical advice, and you should not take any action before consulting a health professional. According to clinical psychologist Lisa Blum, “Hold Me Tight” is one of the best books I can recommend to couples because it is a powerful antidote to the pain, anguish and hopelessness that many couples feel.
This is one of clinical psychologist Robert Solley's best choices (his other choice is Hold Me Tight). Nonviolent communication teaches readers how to communicate and resolve conflicts in a peaceful and productive way. Inner child exercises can help you nurture and nurture your inner child, offering them the comfort they need. We look at 10 exercises you can try today.
Do you need superpowers for a relationship to work? No, you'll need some basic skills that allow you to interact with your partner in a positive way. The book talks about the right way to communicate, deal with problems and solve them creatively. The book also emphasizes the importance of acceptance skills, which are essential to understanding the strengths and weaknesses of the couple without judging them. .