By On July 19th, 2006

Gary Smalley: Keys to Marital Success

Married couples can get into ruts in their relationship, unhealthy cycles of behavior that if left unchecked can damage the relationship permanently. The key, according to Gary Smalley, director of the Smalley Relationship Center, is identifying what couples are doing to perpetuate the cycle of unhealthy behavior. According to some of the research done by the Smalley Group, each individual in the marriage relationship has their own unique “fear or anger buttons;” These buttons or triggers could be “feeling inadequate, belittled, controlled, abandoned, rejected, and disconnected…” According to Smalley, learning your spouse’s particular triggers or buttons can end the cycle of unhealthy marital behavior. Here is an excerpt of the article:

I got a chance to chat by phone with this author of 19 books, including the Angel Award winning “The Language of Love,” and I discovered that the founder and chairman of the board for the Smalley Relationship Center was just as approachable over the phone as he would be if he were standing in my own living room. Having seen the divorce rate skyrocket, I was curious what this seasoned expert with 30-plus years of marital counseling experience had to say on the topic of spousal conflict and resolution. I was especially intrigued when I learned that separated couples that come to the counseling team at the Smalley Relationship Center can expect a 90 percent success rate of staying together. So, what’s the secret?

One of the things I noticed that Smalley encourages couples to do is to get involved in a group, perhaps a church group with a focus on married life or a group of friends. Additionally, when a marriage relationship is struggling, it’s a good idea to seek out a professional counselor, in particular one that keeps Christ as a central theme during your sessions. Click here for information on Christian marital counseling.

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