Look... every couple struggles. You fight too much; you're bored; sex is either okay (or rare); maybe you're even considering divorce. OR... maybe your marriage is actually pretty good, but you want to go deeper. In this podcast, straight-talking marriage therapists Zach Brittle and Laura Heck tackle the most common complaints virtually every marriage experience. Along the way, they reveal the science behind strong relationships and talk about what's really going on for couples. Topics include conflict, communication, compatibility, money, sex, in-laws, infidelity, time-management, future dreams, and more. If you want relief? A deeper connection? A new way forward...? Then you've got to find out what's REALLY going on in your marriage. That's what this podcast is about. You can learn more about Zach and Laura, and their alternatives to traditional therapy at www.forbetter.us.
Zach just finished his taxes, has already spent his refund and is headed on vacation. Laura is working on her taxes... from a few years ago. Together they celebrate some of the milestones of Marriage Therapy Radio. Zach shares about completing his latest project, Marriage Therapy Journal.
Laura kicks us off with a dad joke. She and Zach go on to discuss desire and creating desire in your partner. This leads to the importance of date nights and intentional time set aside for the two of you. They welcome Tyler Turk, CEO of Crated with Love. Tyler shares some compelling research results on the importance of date nights as well as what he has found to be the necessary ingredients of a date night that supports the goal of greater intimacy and connection. Check out Crated with Love.
Zach and Laura discuss their shower and workout schedules. Let's just say, one of them likes to "stew". Zach is in the home stretch of a new project. They go on to discuss the power of a good question in your relationship.
Zach and Laura recount their respective New Year's Eve celebrations. Zach has a couple gripes and Laura isn't quite sure about science. They go on to discuss a powerful practice that could reshape the way you relate with your partner. Putting into practice what there share in this episode would be a wonderful way to kick off the new year in a positive direction. Ladies: Be sure to sign up for Laura's Experiment while you still can.
Laura is dressed like an elf -sorry this is not a visual medium-. Zach took a tumble. Vasectomy gets discussed at length. Laura introduces a cool experiment for wives to help improve their marriage. They go on to discuss death and sex. They really cover a lot on this holiday grab bag.
Laura discloses that she has been feeling a bit down with the holidays and her current move. She and Zach discuss a bit of what might be behind that which leads them to a broader topic of figuring out ways to improve your relationship. It's a bit more organic than some episodes, but you will be left with some great insight into your life and relationships.
What does "Your Face" have to do with a playful disagreement? Zach shares his strategies. He and Laura also talk about their relationships with you, the listeners. They go on to discuss the unique burdens men carry in their relationships.
Laura is jogging from her son's house to school and back twice a day. That's about the same about of jogging Zach has done in the last year. They go on to discuss what happens in a relationship when one partner has carried the primary load of the relationship and what is now required when they want that to change.
Zach just got out of therapy and is having all the feels. Laura's thinking about starting her own therapy as well. They discuss the complexities of having a close friendship as well as a business relationship which leads to the unique issues addressed by couples that work together. The importance of boundaries and roles is advice any couple will find helpful.
Zach and Laura discuss Halloween and the MANY parties that accompany. Zach thinks Laura would be a VSCO girl. Zach relays an eavesdropped conversation of first encounters. They move on to discuss Zach's recent therapeutic training.
Zach & Laura sit down for a conversation with Dr. Robert Navarra. Bob is a Certified Gottman Therapist, Master Trainer, Consultant, Speaker, and Master Addiction Counselor. His research has surfaced new ways to understand the role of relationships in the recovery process.
Zach is back to coaching soccer, but this time for boys. Laura is planning some upcoming trips and is a bit nervous about her largest speaking gig coming up. They go on to discuss the importance of play with your partner.
Zach and Laura quickly catch up on all that has been going on in their lives the last month or so. Laura details upcoming topics. They go on to discuss the importance of predictability in your relationship.
Zach interviews Dr. Claudia Grauf-Grounds, author of We've Had This Fight Before. You may recognize that book title from Zach's previous "review" of the book. He revisits this review and more in this informative episode that will be helpful for anyone who has ever had an argument with your partner.
Laura is away in Europe so we get to hear a replay of a live radio interview with Zach this week. He was a guest on Let's Talk Relationships. They interview him about his book The Relationship Alphabet.
Laura is away in Europe for vacation so while she is away we will be playing a couple of solo shows. This first one is a rebroadcast of The Art of Charm podcast. They interview Laura on the The Four Horsemen: Criticism, Contempt, Defensiveness, and Stonewalling.
Zach shares a bit of his experience helping facilitate The Art and Science of Love workshop for The Gottman Institute. Laura gets Zach to commit to a future webinar. They go on to share the signs that you are flooded when in conflict and what to do about it.
Zach and Laura don't see eye to eye on dog park etiquette. They discuss an outdoor adventure for couples and awkward proposals. They then provide some really great practical advise for how to set aside time each day to connect with your partner.
Laura had to kick her husband out (don't worry it was just out of the studio so she could record.) Zach extols the power of checking off your to do list. Dad joke throw downs are happening on social media. They go on to share the potential benefits of letting your "yes" be "no" and your "no" be "yes". Trust me, it will make sense when you hear it.
Zach and Laura discuss their Memorial Day Weekend getaways. Both got out into nature with their families. They look forward to their workshop in June and throwing some axes. They go on to discuss what it takes to make changes in your relationship.
Zach and Laura discuss what chaffed nipples, stylish hair, and sexy times have in common. They go on to have an in depth interview with sex therapist Tina Schermer Sellers, PhD. This episode is sponsored by Uberlube.
Laura gets a truck. Zach grills Laura on her dog buying process. Zach is growing out his hair and cleaning up his house. They go on to discuss how to manage your social media profiles when there is a breakup.
Zach and Laura discuss their sleep habits. Zach is switching it up and Laura is afraid she is getting older. She shares some interesting beliefs about what getting older allows you to do. Sparked from a listener question, they go on to discuss the, often complex, role of masturbation in your relationship.
Zach tells us about his blanket fort he retreats to from time to time. Laura completed her first half marathon. And they welcome their first guest, Chris Coursey, to the podcast. Chris joins them to discuss his latest book, The 4 Habits of Joy-Filled Marriages. The practical steps can help every marriage. Find out more about Chris at Thrive Today. More information about the book and related resources can be found at happyhappymarriage.org.
Zach's daughter was in a TV show. Laura is training for a half marathon and taking a break from social media with great results. They go on to discuss the one question that could transform your relationship. Laura gives you a challenge to try this question in your relationship and report on how it turns out. Give them a call at 801-810-6197 and report the results.
Zach and Laura are excited to announce their first real sponsor, Ana Luisa. You can find their fine jewelry and get an exclusive discount at https://www.analuisa.com/forbetterus. Be sure to order soon as Mother's Day is coming out on May 12th (You will laugh at that last bit when you listen to the episode). They go on to discuss a recent article Zach wrote for the Gottman Institute about breaking up.
Zach and Laura recount the ways Jimmy John's has saved them from hunger. Laura is heading off road with her new trailer, while Zach is booking last minute 5 star hotels. They go on to discuss the cycle of arguments that happen in our relationship. There are some great tips on identifying what is behind the familiar disagreements and what we can do about it.
Laura's workout's just upped their intensity for a very specific reason. Zach questions whether it is ok for him to compliment a stranger. They go on to discuss the importance of maintaining a connection with your partner when one of you travels.
Laura gets a new backpack which sends Zach immediately into song sending them on a karaoke song one-upping. They go on to discuss how to manage anger and what to do when you or your partner are flooded.
Laura circles back to the principle of rewarding desired behavior, noting that is has caused Zach to be more punctual. Zach is proud of his daughter and emoting more than usual. Laura reflects on an rewarding but exhausting weekend. They go on to discuss some of the struggles and complexities of navigating finances with your partner.
This week Zach is digging out of a snow storm and hoping the kids get back to school soon, while Laura's mom is LOVING here snow days. Laura has to offer an apology to a listener and friend. They go on to discuss the importance of remembering the shared goal of your relationship especially in the midst of tension and conflict. The provide some vital tips to ending the negative cycles and setting you and your partner on a path of loving and being lovable.
A snow day is gave Zach the opportunity to introduce his kids to the wonders of Monty Python. Laura is NOT finding it funny and is more than a little frustrated with someone canceling their plans. They go on to discuss how to manage criticism and defensiveness.
Zach and Laura discuss their preferred work attire when meeting with remote clients. Zach is looking for something to look forward to so Laura invites him and the family to Salt Lake (just don't ask her what to do for fun there after 8pm). They go on to discuss how to navigate the natural misalignment of sexual desire (and arousal) in your relationship. They share some great practical insights into how build anticipation and desire.
Laura is feeling a bit grouchy, but rising to the occasion. Zach shares his secret for loving every Christmas gift he ever receives. They go on to discuss the dilemma when one partner leaning out of the relationship.
Zach and Laura celebrate one years worth of weekly podcasts. Laura can't leave the house as she cares for a new puppy. Zach is sending his daughter off to LA by herself. They go on to share ways you can improve your marriage even without needing your partners involvement. You will find some helpful tips that can transform your relationship.
Zach and Laura is getting excited for the new year and closing in on episode 52, one full year of weekly podcasts. Zach shares a winter dad joke. A Greek myth leads them into a dynamic conversation about couples in deep conflict.
Zach and Laura start the show with a bit of a disagreement about punctuality. Zach shares that his daughter is in a new TV show debuting next year. Laura is training for a 1/2 marathon so Zach teaches her about fartlek. They go on to help a listener struggling with resentment in their relationship.
Zach is podcasting from the kitchen today and it sparks a great conversation about the impact of housework on your relationship. Laura tells us that the benefits go far beyond having a clean house. They go on to respond to a listener question regarding how to navigate differences in energy levels in an aging partner. The principles they share are universal for us all.
Laura tries to figure out what movie she is thinking of. Zach does a half-hearted impersonation of Robin Williams. Zach shows his handy abilities by changing out a faucet. They go on to discuss how to navigate your partners relationships that make you insecure and jealous.
Zach is feeling groggy after sleeping in a bit late. Laura is back from an amazing trip to Iceland, except for the food poisoning. They go on to discuss how to interact with your partner when you don't connect or agree with what they are saying.
Laura got a TON of sleep after a last minute trip to get a passport. Zach's brother is in town. His daughter passed her drivers test, but Laura found out before he did. They go on to discuss the importance of the shared story that is created between a couple, the way a couple communicates their story, and the value to the therapeutic process.
After a couple weeks away Zach and Laura catch up on what's going on. Zach is getting his health on and giving away lbs. Laura becomes the mom she never thought she would become. They go on to discuss the value of marriage retreats and how they can fit into a healthy relationship.
Laura is headed up to Seattle, while Zach leaves for the Jersey Shore. Zach busts out some dad jokes. They go on to discuss the importance of knowing your "why" as you enter into a marriage and how premarital counseling can help bring clarity to that question as you enter this important commitment.
Zach gets to sleep in for the first time this summer. Laura is rocking some new morning routines. After a quick Frozen musical interlude they go on to discuss a listener question. What are we to do with differences in the relationship. Particularly differences that probably are not going to go away. Zach and Laura offer some great insight into how to understand difference and conflict withing your marriage.
Zach is feeling great and loving the sun. Laura shares how she doesn't buy cloths off the rack, but rather off a person. They go on to share 4 markers in a relationship that research has shown that if left unchecked will spell it's demise. You won't want to miss knowing what to look out for, and they also offer great insight into how to help combat these negative patterns.
Laura needs to shower. Zach looks like the uni-bomber. Summer is in full swing with family members and kids headed in different directions. Zach and Laura offer some great insight on how to get on the same page with your partner even when you are coming from different places.
Laura shoots a pilot. Zach continues training for his triathlon. They then discuss the importance of a social network, both for each individual in a marriage and for the marriage as a whole. They share some great insights into the impact the people you surround yourself with have on your relationship.
Laura is headed to Iceland. When Zach's magician changes plans he decides instead to compete in a triathlon. (You read that sentence correctly) Although a triathlon is not a team sport, today Zach and Laura are discussing the concept of being on the same team as your partner.
Laura's love for speedos get her in trouble with the grammar police. Zach's gets called out on church attendance by his pastor. They go on to share great tips for creating the right context for great conversations to happen in your marriage.
Laura is flying solo in this episode. She shares with us how important is it to stretch ourselves by stepping outside our comfort zones. Although we may recognize this to be true personally and professionally, it is also very important relationally. Laura give some great practical examples of how to do this while sharing some of her personal goals and experiences.
Zach is a good son and surprises his mom on her birthday. Laura extols the unintended benefits of anesthesia. They each discuss their love for and struggles with Hamilton which leads them to the difficult topic of betrayal and loss of trust. Sharing examples from their experience as well as their studies, Zach and Laura give insight into tricky dynamics at play in loosing and regaining trust in a relationship.
Spring has arrived for Laura. Zach is still stuck in second winter in Seattle. They discuss Easter traditions and Costco scalloped potatoes. Sparked by a listeners email they revisit the emotional bank account and the importance of knowing the currency your partner needs in to keep a positive balance.
Laura struggles with technology. Zach compares and contrasts Kim Kardashian and Brene Brown. They then present some important research and personal findings regarding the power of increased emotional intelligence on your relationship.
We learn that both Zach and Laura's have some well honed eavesdropping skills. There's some brief talk of bodily function in the first couple minutes, but they quickly move on to share some important thoughts about the impact of money on your relationship.
Laura is loving her single serving guacamole. Zach is craving another nap under his weighted blanket. But more important, Zach and Laura discuss the impact of traditional relationship roles and the need for shared power.
Zach is back from Cabo, Laura shows a lack of interest in deformed digits, and they both share some of the secrets to a happy relationship. They draw on both research and personal experience to provide some actionable tips to improve your marriage.
While Zach lounges in Cabo, Laura introduces the show from snowy Salt Lake City. Even though Laura's mic had issues, she and Zach share some great insight regarding managing the device you are most likely listening to this on. Be sure to check out our sponsor Bagby on Etsy and be sure to use Code MTR55 for a great discount.
Zach and Laura offer their perspective on adding some interest and life back into a relationship that may be stuck in boring town. Laura makes a bold personal commitment and Zach shares some exciting family news. On this Valentine's day share some kind words (and maybe this podcast) with the one you love.
Zach and Laura talk through their favorite resources for couples. They're not what you think. Zach unleashes some pretty sweet "dad-jokes" and Laura tries not to laugh. Be sure to check out some of these resources and let us know what you think.
Zach places a bet that he's getting less. Laura places a bet that she's getting more. They move on to discuss the impact of children on the marriage and how to protect the relationship from the major change they bring.
Zach and Laura explore the subject of marriage therapy itself? What is it? Why does it work? How do you know you've found the right therapist? What can you expect? Zach also gets mad about traffic but Laura doesn't care because she's in a really good mood.
Zach and Laura hit reset on the podcast to celebrate the new year. (Third time’s a charm since they ruined the first two attempts.) They discuss the rituals and intentions that help them and their clients get focused on their relationships. Zach says "umm" a lot and Laura goes out of her way to pull her husband out from under the bus.
Laura takes a 4 hour break from Facebook. Zach reads 3 out of the 12 biographies we was planning to finish this year. After these confessions they discuss key attitudes and skills couples can employ to partner together times of stress.
Zach and Laura reflect on the nature and impact of stress on a marriage. They provide some great insight into how to not let it be a divider but rather a point of connection and strength in your relationship.
Zach and Laura talk about their bodies and what it means to be healthy. They also get into intimacy, which doesn't mean what you think it means.. What it actually means may surprise and inspire you. Is it possible that intimacy is more than just sex? Listen and find out.
Zach and Laura reflect on their weekends. Zach spent it at a marriage seminar with his wife and Laura had a girls weekend away. They let you know what worked and what didn’t and what you can do to get the most from your weekend.
Zach and Laura continue their Connection Series and discuss the power of intentional conversations. They share how leaning into some new scripts can build intimacy and true connection. Laura also goes overboard and pays Zach TWO compliments.
Zach Brittle and Laura heck begin a new series on Connection. In this episode they explore the phenomenon of Roommate Syndrome and how it affects many couples. They show you the signs for how the slide begins and they discuss the power of a McDonald's milkshake.
Zach and Laura discuss the most important skill for any couple and the best time to do it. (Hint: It's any time.) They also reveal the one question every couple needs to learn how to ask and answer on a regular basis. Zach reveals the secret to making him feel like $20.
Laura throws her husband under the bus and Zach talks about how much he hates the words "I'm sorry." They discuss a formula for how to apologize effectively and how both partners have a role. They also discuss why "forgive and forget" is a bad strategy.
Zach teaches Laura all about skydiving and the two most important rules once you leave the plane and gravity takes over. They discuss different ways that couples can de-escalate and repair in the midst of conflict. They test out a new slogan for the podcast.
SPOILER ALERT: You can't. Conflict is inevitable and every couple struggles in their own way. Zach and Laura discuss common problems and ways to navigate through conflict successfully. Laura tells a disgusting story.