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More on the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse | The Gottman Institute 

We wrote a summary of the four horsemen to predict divorce and an earlier post. We’d like to keep expanding on this important topic of communication patterns in relationships.

The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse are:

  1. Criticism: An example of a critical statement is, “You’re so selfish”
  2. Defensiveness: When you’re feeling defensive, you might say, “Its not my fault we’re always late”
  3. Contempt: When we call someone names or holding contempt for them, you might say, “What an idiot”
  4. Stonewalling: All genders can stonewall which is ignoring someone’s attempt to communicate with you. They might say, “Forget it…”

These negative behaviors will lead to the end of your relationships. If the behavior isn’t changed, John Gottman’s prediction of relationship failure is 90% accurate.

You might not know how to control these negative behaviors, and you might not even know you’re exhibiting them. 

So how can you eliminate these behaviors?

  1. Criticism: talk about your feelings using “I” statements. 
  2. Contempt: treat one another with respect and build a culture of appreciation within the relationship
  3. Defensiveness: Accept responsibility, even if it’s only for part of the conflict. 
  4. Stonewalling: Take a break for at least 20 minutes, calm down, and return to the conversation. 

Watch the video here,

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