13 experts share the best relationship books worth your time.
Check out the list below!
The most recommended relationship books are:
- The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman
- The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work by John Gottman, Nan Silver
- His Needs Her Needs by Willard F Harley
Jordan Madison, LGMFT
Licensed Graduate Marriage and Family Therapist, FIT Counseling LLC
The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work – John Gottman, Nan Silver
A great book, especially for the couples that want empirically based help and proof that they will be successful.
John Gottman has spent years researching what brings couples to separate and created this as a guide to make sure that doesn’t happen.
I love the book because it includes activities for the couple to try, as well as data from his research.
I would first suggest taking the 5 Love Languages Quiz first, and then reading the book once you have your results.
The book goes in depth into each love language, and helps you understand how you not only receive love from others, but how you give it as well.
It is extremely helpful for couples who have different love languages, thus allowing them to understand ways to show their partner they are loved in ways that will be more receptive.
Mating in Captivity: Unlocking Erotic Intelligence – Esther Perel
This is a great book for couples looking to regain that spark and sexual chemistry in their relationship or ways to keep it alive.
The author is a world-renowned couple and family therapist, with decades of experience. The book packs in case studies to give examples and have a relatable tone for couples to feel open and secure in discussing their sexual intimacy.
Licensed Clinical Psychologist and Marriage Counselor
This is an excellent book explaining how both men and women tend to have specific needs in a relationship for them to feel loved, respected, and satisfied.
It helps partners identify and express what their top needs are so they can develop a more fulfilling relationship, which naturally affair proofs the relationship.
The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work – John Gottman, Nan Silver
This is an excellent book demonstrating habits of really healthy couples. It also explains patterns couples have that can predict divorce.
It’s a helpful resource to educate couples on what to avoid in their relationship and what to do proactively to make things better.
Jonny Roman, M.A.
Certified Life and Relationship Coach, Sustainable Transformation Coaching
Conscious Loving: The Journey to Co-Commitment – Gay Hendricks, Kathlyn Hendricks
This is by far my favorite relationship book of all time. I recommend this book to every client I work with who wants to improve their relationship. Gay and Kathlyn Hendricks absolutely nailed it.
By helping us understand co-dependency and how it affects our relationships, its symptoms and how to resolve them, it has been my relationship bible for years.
The way they present their material is done with real care, compassion, and wisdom, and gives tremendous insights not just with our relationship with our significant other, but more importantly, our relationship with ourselves.
This book is chock full of great wisdom. It uses dialogue from real life couples therapy scenarios to demonstrate the key points made in the book.
Pransky teaches us how to understand our feelings, and how by inadvertently interacting with our significant other without understanding them, we can damage our relationships.
Once we understand our feelings and how they operate, we can learn to more effectively navigate or avoid fighting, disagreements, and other hurts, and move towards compassion, understanding, and deep love.
Relationship Breakthrough: How to Create Outstanding Relationship In Every Area of Your Life – Cloe Madanes
Cloe Madanes and Tony Robbins are masters at their craft and brilliant in the area of intimate relationships.
They use Human Needs Psychology to help us understand the core of what makes us, as humans, do what we do.
This in turn helps shape our understanding of how we, and our partners, show up in relationships. I use the principles and learnings found in this book every day because they are so useful and create real results.
Kenzie A. Bond
Ladies if you have ever wanted to get inside a man’s head (and heart!) here is your chance!
Comedian and actor Steve Harvey is pulling no punches in this down to earth, tell all guide to how men think and why they act the way they do.
Instead of providing you with gimmicks or “tricks” on how to get a man, Steve gets real about the way men see life, love, and relationships – and how you can utilize this knowledge to make your relationship one filled with love, understanding, and mutual respect.
The Path to Love: Spiritual Strategies for Healing – Deepak Chopra M.D.
Instead of focusing on how to get a date or a commitment, Deepak Chopra brings us back to ourselves, where we must find love first.
Do not doubt, however, that this IS a book about relationships – as it delves into topics such as sexuality, attachment, vulnerability, and openness with self and others. After reading The Path to Love you will be ready to accept love into your life, rather than looking at it as something to achieve.
If you have ever found yourself in a “situtationship” then this is the book for you!
Mr Unavailable and the Fallback Girl is the guide to understanding emotionally unavailable men and the women that love them, and how to put an end to this cycle in your life once and for all.
After reading Mr. Unavailable and the Fallback Girl you will feel empowered to accept no less than what you deserve in any relationship!
Kim Leatherdale, LPC, ATR-BC, DCC, NCC
Author | Speaker | Couples Coach | Relationship Counselor
Unfortunately, not all relationships are great, but sometimes it is difficult to know when to cut your losses.
Kirshenbaum uses easy but thoughtful questions to explore your relationship and help you determine if it’s right for you and worth working on, or if it is time to set both of you free.
This book shows couples the ways their partner expresses and needs to be given love.
What most people don’t understand is that not everyone recognizes the same acts of love or needs the same ones; this one teaches couples how to ‘fill each other’s love tank.’
How Can I Forgive You?: The Courage to Forgive, the Freedom Not To – Janis Abrahms Spring
In this radical book on dealing with a breach in trust, Dr. Spring gives readers the chance to forgive if they can but move on with life when not able to forgive.
The book outlines clear steps for making peace internally as well as with others.
Author | Marriage Therapist
Blindsided By His Betrayal – Dr. Caroline Madden
Blindsided By His Betrayal was specifically written for wives whose husbands have cheated.
Complex emotions are set-off when a woman discovers her partner’s infidelity. This book first reassures the reader that her emotions-erratic and unpredictable as they may be-are normal.
It helps her understand what she is going through and provides concrete steps to get her sanity back so that she can make rational decisions about what to do.
Literary Agent | Publicity Manager, The Blythe Daniel Agency
Listen, Learn, Love – Susie Miller
This book is great for relationships that are professional and also personal.
The author is known as a relationship coach and she leads others closer to each other in her professional work.
Each chapter is short and gives very practical advice on how to listen better, learn more about the other person, and love without the limits we can put on relationships. This book is easy to follow and implement and has a lot of great endorsers behind it.
Mended: Restoring the Hearts of Mothers and Daughters – Blythe Daniel, Dr. Helen McIntosh
This book is a resource to help moms and daughters. It takes work to create a healthy relationship between a mom and a daughter and this book shows how you can do this and the positive results from it.
It gives conversation starters, insights to understand each other and what you can do when you’re uncertain of how to interact with your mom or daughter. The book has practical applications of doing things differently for your own family line.
Dr. McIntosh is a licensed professional counselor and has a doctorate in Counseling Psychology.
Alongside: A Practical Guide for Loving Your Neighbor in their Time of Trial – Sarah Beckman
This book is for relationships with others. It is a fantastic, practical tool for how to love others in times and in ways they need it most.
The chapters all give applicable “to dos” of what others really want (and don’t need) from those in their circles. It can help strengthen your relationship with neighbors, friends, and those you want to walk more closely with in life.
The author has put together all in one place the ways that you can improve relationships with others by understanding and helping them when they need it most.
Health and Wellness Expert, Maple Holistics
This book by Gary Chapman is one of the most popular ones on relationships, with millions of copies sold.
It discusses 5 ways, or love languages, through which couples can communicate- acts of service (devotion), quality time, receiving gifts, physical touch and words of affirmation.
Chapman explains that every individual has a love language which they prioritize as #1 and another that they hold dear as #2 and that understanding the preferred love languages of each partner is a crucial part of making a relationship as healthy as possible.
The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work – John Gottman, Nan Silver
The necessity of this book by John Gottman is all in the title.
Gottman details his tips for having a good and lasting relationship. He discusses some common myths about marriages while also giving advice in areas such as how to encourage admiration amongst partners, how to focus on each other more, and how to address conflicts and solve them.
TEDx Speaker | Founder, The Success Corps
One of the best book on personal development and reflection around. It provides a solid base for thinking about life and self without giving ready-made recipes and how-tos, I recommend it for everyone!
The Love Dare – Alex Kendrick, Stephen Kendrick
Absolutely loved this book based off the Christian movie, Fireproof.
It is a 40-day journey to relearn your spouse, fall back in love with them, and strengthen the marriage. It is based on Christian principles and values from the Bible.
This book was used in our home group study in order to learn how to love our spouse how they want to be loved not how we want to love them.
This book is one of the greatest relationship books ever written. Loving your spouse according to their love language is a selfless act and requires a commitment to the person and to the relationship. This book shows you how.
This book explains how to communicate in a way that reduces the possibility that the person you’re talking to will get defensive.
This style of communication takes responsibility for one’s own feelings and thoughts in interaction and explains how to convey that to the other party respectfully. I think it is a must-read for anyone who gets in needless arguments with their loved ones.
5 Rules for Drama-Free Living – Elaine Bentley Baughn
Coming from a therapist with over 25 years in the field who wrote it because “I couldn’t be everyone’s therapist”, here’s a book that might help you spend less time in therapy.
Both simple and deep, it teaches mindfulness and brain science in one small package.
This easy-to-read guide teaches practical skills that work to reduce the reactivity that arises in everyone at times.
Blogger, Life Love Blog
The book that I consider to be the Best Relationship Book is 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love that Lasts by Dr. Gary Chapman.
In order for a relationship to flourish, the couple must learn what actions they can take to speak to the heart of their partner. The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love that Lasts teaches couples to do that very thing.
Based on his many years of working with couples, Dr. Chapman identifies in his book the five primary love languages people use to interpret love.
The five love languages include:
- Words of Affirmation: Spoken and/or written words of love
- Quality Time: Quality time focused on the other partner
- Receiving Gifts: Meaningful gifts
- Acts of Service: Serving your partner
- Physical Touch: Touch that communicates love
The 5 Love Languages teaches couples how to identify each other’s primary love language and what actionable steps they can take to make each other feel more love and security in the relationship.
Through the focused efforts of each partner speaking the love language of the other, the relationship is allowed to grow and create a happy and lasting union.
In summary, Dr. Chapman’s book and the five love languages are all about learning to speak love in a manner that is meaningful to your partner.
Health and Wellness Expert, Glacier Wellness
The Art of Loving – Erich Fromm
Few authors can articulate love as elegantly and poignantly quite like Erich Fromm.
In fact, I would go as far as to say that his The Art of Loving is an essential component in maintaining a strong and healthy relationship.
Fromm artfully defines love and the necessary steps required to achieve a loving healthy relationship by turning to his celebrated experience as a psychoanalyst.
The Art of Loving goes even further and addresses several types of love, including erotic, fraternal, spiritual, and romantic. However, it’s important to note that The Art of Loving is not just some self-help book on relationships; Fromm’s quintessential piece is a must-read for anyone looking to develop their emotions and tap into a more meaningful existence.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can these books help me fix a troubled relationship?
These books can help you identify and address the challenges in your relationship and give you the tools and techniques to improve communication, resolve conflict and build a stronger bond. However, it is important to remember that no book can guarantee success in a troubled relationship. If you are experiencing significant problems in your relationship, seeking professional counseling or therapy may be helpful.
How do I choose the best relationship book for me?
Choosing the best relationship book for you can seem daunting, given the many options. Start by figuring out your specific relationship problems or goals. Then look for books that focus on those areas, and read reviews and recommendations from others who have found the book helpful. Also, pay attention to the author’s background and expertise and the writing style and format that appeals to you. Remember, the most important thing is to find a book that resonates with you and motivates you to read it and apply its principles.
Can relationship books help me find the right partner?
Relationship books cannot guarantee you will find the right partner, but they can help you prepare for and improve your relationships. Through insights into communication, emotional intelligence, self-awareness, and other important relationship skills, relationship books can help you become a better partner and attract healthy relationships. In addition, many relationship books offer advice on dating and identifying red flags in potential partners, which can be helpful in finding the right match for you.
Are relationship books suitable for people who are in long-distance relationships?
Yes, relationship books can be very beneficial for people who are in long-distance relationships. Many of the principles and techniques for improving relationships apply to long-distance relationships. They can help you maintain intimacy and connection even when you are apart. In addition, many relationship books offer specific advice for maintaining long-distance relationships, such as effective communication strategies and staying connected.
Can relationship books help me with self-improvement?
Yes, relationship books can be a valuable resource for self-improvement. Many relationship books focus on personal growth and self-awareness and offer strategies for improving communication, emotional intelligence, and other important skills essential for healthy relationships. By improving yourself, you can become a better partner, friend, and family member and attract more positive and fulfilling relationships.
Are relationship books only for people with relationship problems?
Relationship books are not just for people with relationship problems. They can be valuable to anyone who wants to improve their relationships, whether struggling with specific relationship issues or simply wanting to deepen their connections with others. By offering insight, advice, and strategies for strengthening relationships, relationship books can benefit people at all stages of their relationships, from those just starting out to those in long-term relationships.
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