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Are You a Master or a Disaster in Your Relationship?
Author: Gayla Wick
Are You a Master or a Disaster in Your Relationship?

From the desk of Denver Love Coach, Gayla Wick

Are You a Master or a Disaster in Your Relationship?

Lack of these 2 things may have killed your last relationship

We all learned a ton about love and marriage from our parents even if we didn’t know it at the time. Children internalize all sorts of messages from their environment including the good, the bad and the ugly.

Lauren is a smart, funny and highly capable young woman so perhaps I should’ve been shocked by what she told me. Sadly, I wasn’t even surprised – saddened, but not shocked at all. She’s struggling with intimate relationships because of the message she heard loudly and clearly from her parent’s dysfunctional relationship. She said, “I’m surprised my first word wasn’t stupid.” Lauren’s earliest memory - her father yelling at her mother, “You are so stupid.” If you have any doubt about the impact of your childhood influence on your love life today read on for what recent research has to say about what it really takes for a happy love relationship to flourish.

Are You a Master or a Disaster in Your Relationship comes from a research study conducted by John Gottman and his colleague Robert Levenson at the University of Washington. They brought newlyweds into their “Love Lab” and watched them interact with each other. They soon discovered the couples fit into two groups – the masters and the disasters. Electrodes measured heart rates, blood flow and sweat production. These studies revealed very different states of physiology for each couple when interacting with each other.

The disasters appeared calm on the outside, but on the inside their results showed high levels of stress putting them into a flight-fight state of mind ready to pounce at any moment.

The masters were calm inside and out as they reacted to their partners. So how did this affect their love relationships?

There were two stand-out characteristics these relationship masters had in common:

Kindness: According to Gottman, after six years the masters were still happily together while the disasters were either divorced or “chronically unhappy in their marriages.” One major difference: kindness toward one another. When couples feel calm and emotionally connected to each other their manner of communication does not devolve into harmful dialog even when fighting. Kindness is linked to overall relationship happiness and satisfaction. In other words if you know your partner is going to treat you with kindness your body will not be in the fight or flight mode ready for battle. So even when you’re frustrated or angry take a minute or two and respond only whenever you can respectfully do so. Words have power – they can heal and they can wound.

Kindness isn’t weakness – it’s strength of character.

Generosity: The second stand-out characteristic for the happy masters was generosity in their intentions for each other. Be generous with your praise and affection. Be generous with your time and really listen when they’re talking (at least most of the time). Don’t assume the worst about anything your partner does that affects you – assume the best. If you can’t give your husband or partner the benefit of the doubt ask yourself what’s really going on? Maybe he was distracted and just forgot to put the toilet seat down. This little mishap isn’t his sinister plot to make you crazy. Responding with kindness and generosity of spirit is something we all need to master. Isn’t this how we all want to be treated?

Until Next Time Remember: Kindness and generosity are vital for long-term love relationship happiness and satisfaction.



Gayla Wick, Denver Love Coach and author of The Art of Attracting Authentic Love (A Transformational Four-Step Process) shows women how to go from frustrated and disappointed to attracting an authentic love match with confidence and clarity. Connect with her and get her free Top Ten Reasons Women are Still Single at













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