This week we learned all about marriage and how we can help our marriages succeed. One of my favourite tools we learned about this week are love maps.
Dear married friends and family members,
You need to get on this! Love maps are amazing! These should be mandatory for all married couples, or even engaged couples. Love maps allow you to dig deep and learn not only about your partner but about yourself as well.
With love: Your favourite single friend or family member
So you are probably wondering what a love map is. It is a series of questions that both of your answer. After you answer them, you are to score them to see how well you did (though there are no correct or wrong answers). Once you have your score you are able to see the areas in which you need to improve on. The more you know about each other the more you are able to weather the storms of marriage.
As I was reading about love maps, I could not understand why people don’t do this. Love mapping has opened up my eyes, to this new wonderful thing that not only allows you to reconnect with your spouse, but also allows you to learn new things about them, yourself and your relationship. Just as Dr. Gottman said “From knowledge springs not only love but the fortitude to weather marital storms. Couples who have detailed love maps of each other’s world are fare better prepared to cope with stressful events and conflict.” (Gottman, 1999 p.54)
With love maps you must stay on top of them in order for them to work. Putting aside set time every few months I think would be ideal for these. I think that if a couple were able to do a love map every 4-6, just to make sure that their relationship is on track would be great. I understand for some that is would be a challenge but making sure you put forth a good effort into the maps will make sure that you are prepared for the storms that are to come.
Love mapping is something that both people need to be willing to do and be willing to be open and honest about. I think that if you are able to be honest while answering the questions then you will be able to get the most out of the love maps.
I know that when I get married, and even before then I will speak to my spouse and implement the love maps into your lives. I think I would make love mapping a great date night; I could see my husband and I ordering in our favourite food and just spend some time eating and answering our questions. I feel that having the love maps in a relationship is a great tool to help not only whether the storms that come, but also to also make sure that we are growing together on the same page.
Here are some examples of Love Map questions:
- What is one of my greatest fears or disaster scenarios?
- What is my favorite way to spend an evening?
- What is one of my favorite ways to be soothed?
- What is my favorite getaway place?
- What are some of the important events coming up in my life? How do I feel about them?
- What are some of my favourite ways to work out?
G. (2016). The Sound Relationship House: Build Love Maps – The Gottman Institute. Retrieved October 26, 2016, from https://www.gottman.com/blog/the-sound-relationship-house-build-love-maps/
Gottman, J. M., & Silver, N. (1999). The seven principles for making marriage work. New York: Crown.