In the past three months, I’ve had two couples that I’m working with say that they’d like to start a book club with their spouse as part of their connecting routine.
When we get married, the fact that we will stay married to the same person forever isn’t realistic. The reality is that we are always growing, always changing so we will either grow together or grow apart. When these couples were open to the book club idea in their home, I got excited for them! They’ll be growing together and learning how to be better spouses to each other in the process.
I’ve always been a reader. As a kid, I read the pickle jar if it was out. My husband on the other hand is not. I think he started reading a book about six years ago. He’s still on page 8. That’s ok. That’s not how he gets his information. So naturally when I suggested this idea to him, he shut it down real quick. But when I asked if he’d consider listening to the audio version while I read the hard copy, now I was speaking his language. So if you’re in the same boat and really want this to be a thing- maybe suggest an alternative like that.
Here are five books you can use in your marital book club or for your own personal self-improvement.
1. Attached by Amir Levine and Rachel S.F. Heller
If you caught Episode 44 of the podcast or if you’ve heard anything about attachment styles at all, you know that your attachment style and the way it shows up in your relationship is literally everything. This book and the workbook companion helps you figure out what your style is, how to break it down and create a secure style so that you can create and keep a healthy marriage.
2. Love & Respect by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs
This is another great one with a workbook companion. A man needs respect more than anything while a woman needs to be loved and cherished. If a woman isn’t loved, she can’t respect her man. If a man isn’t respected, he can’t love and cherish her. So, what do you do? How do you get out of the “crazy cycle”? That’s what this book is all about.
3. The Zimzum of Love: A New Way of Understanding Marriage by Rob and Kristen Bell
I absolutely love this book! It’s a short read, easy to understand and they use stick figures to explain their teachings. Yes, please! This book talks all about the energy between you and your partner. What’s happening when you’re in each other’s space? How do you create a loving, positive environment between the two of you?
4. The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work by Dr. John Gottman
I am in the middle of getting Gottman certified. These are two certifications I am adding to my coaching repertoire from the marriage guru himself. The knowledge he has is absolutely incredible and though I love any and all books he has put on shelves, this one is fantastic at breaking down marriage rules, expectations and teaching what’s healthy and what’s not. You absolutely cannot go wrong with any information from Dr. Gottman.
5. The Path Between Us by Suzanne Stabile
It’s no secret, I love the enneagram and any other personality test that gives insight to who we are and how we move in the world. At the same time, understanding your partner and how they move in the world is equally as important when you’re in a long term, committed relationship. Understanding your and your partner’s enneagram numbers, as well as how you each move and flow together in health and conflict makes or breaks your marriage. This book is fantastic at breaking it down!
These are all books I’ve read cover to cover and are all a great start to bettering your marriage. If you have a fantastic marriage already, awesome! I promise, you’ll still gain a lot if you read any of these.