| CHAPTER OVERVIEW
First Steps - Setting the Scene for Getting Closer
Learn about setting realistic expectations for getting closer to your mate, and some simple rules that can help you in getting started.
Have a Reason - Be Intimate on Purpose
Why intimacy can diminish over time, and how to keep it alive; what we mean when we use the word “intimacy” in the first place; the power of “swagger” and choice.
Beware Assumptions!—Knowing Your Definitions and Role Models
What hidden assumptions are you making about relationships and gender roles—and how are they affecting your relationship?
Monogamy, Monogamish, and Nonmonogamy
“Monogamy” refers to more than just sex; learn how partners can feel betrayed by non-sexual things; learn how to set boundaries about what’s okay and what’s not okay between you and your partner.
What’s Better Than Sex?—The Power of Curiosity
The essential power of curiosity in relationships; how to listen actively with your partner (and show it!); the “four buckets” of emotions—and how easy it is to confuse one emotion for another.
Me First, Then You!—Why Self-Care Matters
In order to care for others, you have to put yourself first; creating “sacred space” with your partner; why it’s important to draw boundaries around your relationship.
Identifying Connection: See it! Do it! Learn it! Get the Rewards!
More about how assumptions can harm a relationship; what it is you want to achieve in the relationship; how to come home from work each day.
Who Are You, Anyway? - Alignment
Why it’s so important to have a sense of who you are (internal alignment) and to live authentically (external alignment); watching out for “timelines” that others may seek to impose on your relationship without your consent.
Maintaining the Plateau - Lasting for the Long Haul
Living in “plateau” moments in your relationship; it’s normal for couples to be working on different aspects of their relationship at varying paces all at once.
WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING
| EDITORIAL REVIEWS
| READER REVIEWS
"This book teaches really powerful relationship skills. It just makes sense but is written in a new way. I think everyone should buy this book."
- Reader | Barnes & Noble
"My wife and I participated in the Couples by Intention group and this book is a true representation of our experience. This group strengthened our marriage and the book is a great resource to keep working!"
- Reader | Barnes & Noble
"A must read relationship book!
This is a great book... easy to read and understand but chock full of important relationship lessons! Elliott makes relationships real."
- Joseph | Amazon
"Elliott has created a thoughtful, modern approach to enhancing intimacy within relationships. The case study material helps to show how to move towards intentional commitment to our partners and allows our own explorations deepen, as we are not alone."
- Lindsay B. | Amazon
"Useful and tangible information for couples!
Such a great read! Elliott's humor and wit is throughout this dynamic and effective book. I highly recommend it and use the exercises it includes with the couples that I work with and have seen great benefits from his method of creating and cultivating curiosity in relationships. Thanks for sharing!!"
- Jennifer T. | Amazon
"What a great book.
So much helpful information and so easy to read. This is great for not only romantic relationships by any relationship, friend, co-worker, etc."
- Reader | Barnes & Noble
"This book is a must read - whether you are in a new relationship or in a long-term relationship, it is geared for all ages and stages in a relationship. Elliott helps you navigate the waters, giving you fresh vocabulary to better communicate with your partner. He writes in a very non-threatening tone; it is sprinkled with humor to help with serious and difficult topics. It is a quick read but "exercises" are suggested throughout the book to facilitate greater self-awareness. Most of us have not been given the tools to navigate (effectively communicate with) our most important relationships; however, Couples By Intention provides readers with the insight to connect with those you care about the most."
- Maria | Amazon
"Couples by Intention is an invaluable resource for anyone looking to improve the quality of their relationships with others. The exercises are illuminating and incredibly useful, and Elliott's unique approach and perspective provide a new and invigorating way to develop stronger connections in one's life. I highly recommend this book! "
- Tiane J. | Amazon
"A must read for any relationship!!
Elliott Kronenfeld is a gifted writer and provides such valuable insight into a successful relationship. His book is easy to follow and so helpful. I highly recommend this to anyone in a relationship."
- Melissa R. | Amazon
"Elliott Kronenfeld has created a meaningful way to work with couples. His book is easy to read, easy to incorporate but brings some quick results. I highly recommend this book"
- Reader | Barnes & Noble
"This book was an easy read and was difficult to put down. I highly recommend this book be read by all couples, young or old, married or single, gay or straight, who for some reason or reasons are at odds with each other. Elliot has a way of looking at and understanding the many problems that may exist in almost any relationship. In this book he speaks of several scenarios presented to him by patients and his recommendations for correcting the issues at hand. He has a way of getting them to open up to him, to each other, and occasionally to other couples. His interviewing technique is the best. His solutions are understandable and concise, opening the way for many couples to be able to correct their own misunderstandings themselves, with each other, or with family members."
- Marvin W. | Amazon
"Great concepts and interventions - on how to be helpful to couples!!!
2 key points I loved about Elliott's book:
Intimacy = balancing safety with vulnerability... this is a simple but elegant definition, when I work with my couples this is what I help them strive for...
Monogamy Scales!!! Very clarifying!"
- Reader | Amazon
"A creative, insightful and thoughtful approach to couples therapy.
What I love about Elliot Kronenfeld's, "Couples by Intention" is it deals directly with many current issues couples are facing in today's relationships. Elliot is able to navigate with couples what can be difficult topics for them to talk about such as sex, betrayal,intimacy, monogamy, non-monogamy, or even being monogamish and so much more. Another aspect I loved about this book was the graphs which plot out for couples their differences or similarities. Finally, each reader is asked to keep a journal where many of the difficult issues presented are reflected on and the reader can learn more about themselves and gain clarity on the each topic."
- Peg H.D. | Amazon
"Loved this book. Definitely some wow moments. Though I’ve always kept a personal journal, the use of a journal with this book is worth the effort. I was amazed at how many things I could recognize about myself. My husband will be the next to read this.
I would highly recommend this for any couple & it would definitely be a great bridal shower gift as well.
You can teach an old dog new tricks!"
- Reader | Amazon
JANUARY | 2018
ELLIOTT KRONENFELD UNVEILS SECRETS TO BETTER CONNECTIONS IN
Couples By Intention: Creating And Cultivating Relationships That Matter
REAL-WORLD INSIGHTS FROM 12 WEEKS OF INTENSE COUPLES' THERAPY HIGHLIGHT TOOLS FOR BETTER MARRIAGES AND PARTNERSHIPS
The secret to great a relationship may seem elusive, but not to Elliott Kronenfeld, LICSW, CST. Now he’s revealing how to make marriages and committed partnerships the best and deepest they can be in Couples by Intention: Creating and Cultivating Relationships that Matter. The key being the “intention” with one another rather than responding by default.
The books follow real couples who sought to make their connections better as they engaged in intense group therapy over the course of 12 weeks. Readers get to hear first-hand from participants as they tackled common challenges in relationships, such as how to define monogamy, set boundaries and prioritize intimacy in the face of multiple responsibilities. The discussions recorded within the book reveal personal insights into how to stay interested in partners during the good times, how to communicate in stressful seasons and how to keep love alive amidst the normalcy of everyday life.
"So many couples face issues that inhibit their future happiness, but don’t know how to improve their situations,” explained Kronenfeld. “Great relationships don’t come easily, but this solution-focused book shares the tools needed to be a successful couple in a reality-based format that readers can relate to. My hope is that listening in on these universal conversations will help couples everywhere understand how they can grow in meaningful ways to create strong relationships that last.”
In addition to the group’s reflections, the book also includes exercises to challenge readers and create dialogue between partners. While not designed to replace therapy, the exercises arm readers with some of the same skills Kronenfeld’s clients develop – skills that will open up new possibilities for both established couples as well as singles looking to enter a committed relationship.