Nothing good comes easy in life, we all know that. Relationships are no exceptions. And just like any other art, investing in your relationship will make you mature together with your spouse as you’d learn new ways to communicate, explore and spice up your relationship, and reading some best relationship books will sure spur you into a better living.
Books are not just for nerds, they are a great avenue to get any type of knowledge. No matter what you’re looking for, the answer is probably in between pages of a book that you must have overlooked.
Most times, people don’t know what to read, or even when they do, they don’t know that for every area of life there’s a well of knowledge from seasoned authors and experts in between the pages of a book.
Just like areas like health, beauty, fashion, and even lifestyle where books are a surplus, relationships are no exceptions either.
There is a vast array of best relationship books to choose from, soak yourself in, and learn from that no problem would be left unsolved.
Over the years, as a single dating and non-dating woman to now as a happily married woman, I’ve read my own share of the best relationship books that have impacted me in more ways than one. And today, I’ll be sharing some of these books that I love so much so that you can have as much impact as I’ve had from them. Let’s go!
10 Best Relationship Books That Every Couple Should Read
1. “I Love You But I Don’t Trust You: The Complete Guide To Restoring Trust In Your Relationship” – By Mira Kirshenbaum
The world is a place filled with imperfect people – people we love, will too often hurt us and disappoint us and betray us, which will set up a chain reaction that too often destroys our relationships.
However, this book is one example of effective relationship books that shows you what you need to do to restore the lost trust in your relationship, no matter how it became damaged.
Here, you will comprehend the stages by which trust strengthens when the rebuilding process is allowed to take place, learn how couples can avoid the mistakes that prevent healing, and discover how to feel secure with each other again.
In other words, it will help you calm your natural crazy-person reactions to betrayal, and it will help you learn to trust again, whether the new trust is with the original person or someone else.
Her commitment to transparency and honesty is undeniable, as she shares details of her own relationship troubles and carefully advises which sticky situations are potentially toxic to relationships, and which are surprisingly easy to recover from.
2. “Crucial Conversations: Tools For Talking When The Stakes Are High” – By Stephen R. Covey, Kerry Patterson, Joseph Grenny
This is one of the best relationship books and self help books on relationships and communication, as crucial conversations lie all around us – all the time; from performance appraisals at work, up to discussing problems over intimacy.
The real issue about having these crucial conversations is not what we are discussing but how we are going to discuss.
Hence, this book focuses on techniques on how to hold such conversations in a positive space when surrounded by highly charged emotions.
Their findings are based on 25 years of research with 20,000 people, and with their models of essentially seven steps, the void created by the failure to communicate appropriately is eliminated.
These steps include; starting up a discussion with the heart (that is, with empathy and positive intent), talking openly and honestly, or staying in dialogue, making it and keeping it safe, avoiding any emotional hookup, or getting hooked by emotions, agreeing on a mutual purpose, and as you go on, separating facts from stories and agreeing on a clear action plan.
And with a conscious decision to put all these to practice, you could achieve your desire for a relationship, where mutual understanding is key.
3. “How To Make Love All The Time” – By Dr. Barbara De Angelis
This book is great for couples who want to reclaim intimacy and for singles who want to attract the love of their life.
Here, the renowned relationship and self-improvement expert Barbara DE Angelis teaches you the secret ingredients for building a successful and exciting relationship.
You will discover how to rekindle and keep the passion alive even as your years together rolls by, the real reasons love stops working and how to prevent it, communication secrets for getting through to your mate, how to make love, how to stay in love and a lot more.
Her message in all its form is geared towards keeping the appreciation alive always. And if for any reason it seems to lapse, look for the good things in each other again and amplify that “good”.
The fact is, if you acted like you did when you were first in love, you would always feel like you were in love. So, don’t lose sight of the goodness in them and how it affects you.
4. “Getting The Love You Want”- By Harville Hendrix, Ph.D. And Helen LaKelly Hunt, Ph.D.
This is one of the best relationship books when it comes to understanding behavior, as Dr. Harville Hendrix and Dr. Helen LaKelly Hunt provide us with practical, meaningful, and insightful guidance towards understanding people, relationships, behaviors, and perspectives.
They remain faithful in helping couples untangle the deep and confusing mysteries of love and connection and help them harvest the joy and healing power present in healthy, mutual intimate relationships, even as they explore the concept of a “conscious marriage” and “unconscious marriage”.
Dr. Hendrix says one’s upbringing as a child and unmet childhood needs are carried over into one’s selection of partner and one’s conflict tendency (basically subconscious recreating the unresolved situations from our childhood).
“Getting the love you want” also introduced you to “Imago Relationship Therapy”, which includes making a true, lifelong commitment, lovingly treating each other, learning how to communicate constructively, and basically eliminating negativity from your relationship.
And with this program, you will be able to create a loving, supportive, and revitalized partnership with your lover.
5. “Mating In Captivity: Unlocking Erot*c Intelligence” – By Esther Perel
This is another example of the best relationship books for couples, as Perel offers a bold, provocative new take on intimacy and lovemaking.
She invites us to explore the complicated union of monogamy and desire, as she proposes an unlikely ruse – not more gooey closeness but a little more distance.
She claims that too much togetherness dilutes the curiosity needed in a relationship. And that if we must maintain desire with one partner over time we must be able to bring a sense of unknown into a familiar space. So if you want something edgy, romantic, and groundbreaking, read this book.
6. “The Seven Principles For Making Marriage Work” – By John Gottman
John Gottman have taken years of research and evidence of exactly what makes relationships succeed and compiled it into easy to follow steps.
He revolutionized the study of marriage through his scientific procedures, which look at the detailed habits of married couples over many years.
He says communication patterns are possible predictors of whether a couple will stay together or break-up, and while patterns such as
- “criticism (fault finding)”
- “contempt (use of disrespectful words and body language)”
- “defensiveness (unwillingness to take responsibility for one’s part of the conflict)”
- “stonewalling (withdrawal from the relationship to avoid conflict),
are common patterns for unhealthy relationships, healthy relationships don’t use them nearly as often and do more to repair them when they are used.
And to get better, Gottman sums up his work with “seven principles” that can help guide couples through life-long relationships. They include;
- “learning to enhance the love map of your partner” (that is getting to know their philosophy, likes\dislikes, and dreams and getting in touch with their world),
- “nurturing fondness and admiration for each other” by focusing on your positive characteristics and expressing affection, appreciation, compliment, and respect,
- “turning towards each other instead of turning away from each other” ( and you can start by noticing small bids for attention or connection and responding positively),
- “allowing influence from your partner” which can also be done by allowing their words carry the day sometimes because it’s absolutely impossible for you to be correct all the time,
- “solving the solvable problems” which may just need you to talk about it, and act on the result,
- “overcoming gridlock over unsolvable ones”,
- and lastly, “creating shared meaning” by creating a culture for the both of you and your children (if any).
This culture can be in form of creating rituals for yourselves, celebrating special holidays, creating duties, obligations, and practices within your family unit.
So do well to grab these wonderful examples from one of the best relationship books for couples you can ever find, and enjoy your relationship.
7. “Deal Breakers: When To Work On A Relationship And When To Walk Away”- By Dr. Bethany Marshall
This is one of the best relationship books for guys as it focuses on emotionally unhealthy men who often have women question themselves in their relationships – “is it me or is it him?” “Am I making a too big deal out of this?” “I try to tell him how I feel, but he says I’m overreacting or need or it’s all my fault”, and for ladies who find themselves engulfed with such men.
Dr. Marshall reminds her female readers that romantic relationships are similar to business relationships, in that they are deals, and if not agreed to, means the deal is off, hence the term “Deal Breaker”.
In a relationship, a Deal Breaker is one characterized by unchanging flaws, emotional stances, or patterns of behavior that significantly damages the quality of a relationship.
It helps you to understand where the relationship has gone wrong, what needs to be done to make it better, and/or getting out of the “relationship purgatory” – a place where the present is unfulfilling and the future is the only thing you can hope for.
And once this is done (you’ve learned to identify the Deal Breakers in your relationship), you can empower yourself to action and then change and improve your life.
8. “Conflict-Free Living: How To Build Healthy Relationships For Life” –By Joyce Meyer
This book is one of the best relationship books that will help you discover how every area of your life can be set free from strife, and to learn how to pursue health, happiness, and tranquility, as Joyce Meyer describes the destructive effects that conflict and dissension can have on our lives – bitterness, anger, fear, hate, rebellion, unrest and negativity, and as she shows us how to recognize and confront it once and for all.
She uses personal anecdotes and instruction inspired by the Bible to clearly demonstrate how people can have healthy and happy relationship, and suggest ideas on how to open dialogue with those we need to speak to, how to learn to keep our mouth shut and throw off the reckless desire of being right or to always have our way, and how to avoid the gossip and judgement of others, or to know how to catch such bad behaviour in ourselves and apply immediate corrective measures so it won’t happen again.
The author also offers a helpful lesson on choosing to think positively and by following these teachings, you can make a conscious decision today to keep conflict out of your life, out of your thoughts, words, attitudes, and out of your relationship.
9. “The Art Of Loving” – By Erich Fromm
The renowned philosopher Erich Fromm has helped millions of people achieve rich, productive lives by developing their hidden potentials for love.
In this book, while rejecting the idea of love as a spontaneous feeling or a mysterious sensation that cannot be analyzed and explained, Fromm presents love as an art – a skill to be honed the way artist apprentice themselves to the work on the way to mastery, demanding of its practitioner both knowledge and effort.
He tries to convince his reader that all his attempts for love are bound to fail unless he tries most actively to develop his total personality to the capacity of loving his neighbor with “true humility”, courage, faith, and discipline.
And that with constant practice and concentration, our love will produce love in the loved person. So while you think of what best relationship books can help you understand the Art of loving, be sure to get this one.
10. “Kiss That Frog: 12 Great Ways To Turn Negatives Into Positives In Your Life And Work” – By Brian Tracy
Once upon a time, a princess kissed a frog, it turned into the prince of her dreams, and they lived happily ever after.
The moral lesson is that many people have frogs (forces) in their lives that keep them from reaching their potentials.
These may be negative people, situations, thoughts, poor attitudes, or negative emotions. But just like the princess kissed that frog and turned it into a prince, you can address, or confront, or deal with these obstacles and begin living a better life with the following prescribed approach.
They include; engaging yourself in positive self-talk, practicing positive visualization or creating pictures of successes, surrounding yourself with positive-minded people, keeping your mind healthy by consuming positive mental food – like reading inspiring and motivating books, and a whole lot of others.
However, the sad fact remains that, if you don’t deliberately and consciously talk yourself into positivity, or see your goals as already accomplished, or feed your mind with information and ideas that are uplifting and that make you feel happy, and more confident about yourself and the world, your self-esteem can be damaged, thereby empowering that frog (challenge), so why not brace up and create the world that you desire? After all, you have unlimited potentials – one that you can’t exhaust if you lived a thousand years.
A Quick Recap On Best Relationship Books
It is well-known that books are places filled with experiences and pearls of wisdom, and anyone who desires great knowledge would not only come knocking but also ready and willing to incline to the sayings.
So enjoy! However, do not forget to hint to me in the comment section below about the author’s idea that worked best for you. Also, we’ll be glad to hear you share with us some best selling relationship books you’ve ever read. Thank you.
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