Elizabeth Earnshaw

Elizabeth Earnshaw, LMFT, CGT, is a licensed family and marriage therapist, Certified Gottman Therapist, AAMFT Approved Supervisor, and founder of A Better Life Therapy. She’s known for her popular Instagram account @lizlistens, is the author of I Want This to Work, and has been featured in the New York Times, USA Today, The Washington Post, and more. She lives between Philadelphia and New Orleans with her husband and children. For more, visit elizabethearnshaw.com.

Author photo © Veronika Paluch

Listen to Tami Simon's in-depth audio podcast interviews with Elizabeth Earnshaw:
What You Can Do to Make Your Relationship Work »

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What You Can Do to Make Your Relationship Work

Elizabeth Earnshaw works with individuals, couples, and families and is the founder of A Better Life Therapy. She holds a master’s degree in marriage and family therapy, is a licensed marriage and family therapist, and is a certified Gottman Method couples therapist. Elizabeth also trains and supervises new therapists seeking their licenses in the counseling field. With Sounds True, she is the author of I Want This to Work: An Inclusive Guide to Navigating the Most Difficult Relationship Issues We Face in the Modern Age. 

In this podcast, Sounds True founder, Tami Simon, speaks with Elizabeth Earnshaw about what she has discovered to be the building blocks for a successful relationship—and the most common pitfalls that can lead to irreparable damage. They also discuss the unique approach of the Gottman Method and the research behind it; the importance of turning toward your partner (and the dangers of turning away); “bids for connection” as key moments in relationship; the “four horsemen” of unhealthy communication: criticism, defensiveness, stonewalling, and contempt; the three Rs of a healthy relationship: reliability, respect, and responsiveness; interdependence, or how we balance our desires for connection and our desires for autonomy; repairing broken trust; the recent dramatic decline in the divorce rate; the connection between happy relationships and physical health; avoiding the trap of “triangulation”; and more.

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Ep 6: The H-Word

When it comes to the state of our world, the concept of hope can feel elusive. Joanna teaches Jess that the future may be uncertain, but that means that there’s still room for something beautiful to happen. This episode offers insights into embracing uncertainty, cultivating joyousness, and understanding the intricate interplay between hope, courage, and action.

In this episode:

  • “Active hope” is about acting in service of the future we hope for
  • Whenever Jess asks about hope, Joanna talks instead about courage 
  • When hope eludes us, courage and our devotion to life remain steadfast

We recommend starting a podcast club with friends or family to do these practices together. Links and assets to help prompt reflection and build community can be found with every episode on WeAreTheGreatTurning.com.

Ep 5 Bonus: Breathing Through

This bonus episode will support you to take the main insights from Episode 4: There is No Future if We Go Numb and Episode 5: This Pain Is Not for Nothing, deeper into your life. 

Both of these episodes are about the second phase in the Spiral of the Work That Reconnects, Honoring Our Pain for the World. This bonus is a recording of Joanna leading a meditation called Breathing Through, recorded at a retreat in 2006. In it, she’ll guide you to create space to acknowledge and honor the pain for the world that you carry without numbing or getting overwhelmed. All you’ll need for this bonus exercise is a place where you can close your eyes and relax.  

We recommend starting a podcast club with friends or family to do these practices together. Links and assets to help prompt reflection and build community can be found with every episode on WeAreTheGreatTurning.com.

 

Ep 5: This Pain Is Not for Nothing

Now we get to what may be the toughest part of reckoning with our planet’s situation: dealing with numbness, grief, and despair. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the enormity of the many crises around us, and natural to want to numb ourselves to the pain. 

Joanna and Jess speak with great vulnerability and candor about what it takes to navigate our darkest feelings—and the strength and beauty that can be found when we honor our pain. 

Trigger Warning: In this episode, we discuss suicide.

In this episode:

  • When it feels like our pain could swallow us whole, it helps to remember that all feelings come and go
  • Desperation can take us to dark places, but we are more than our despair
  • Numbness—Jess opens up about her familiar tactic for escaping pain
  • Our pain becomes sacred when we allow it to deepen our connection with the world
  • Bonus Exercise: Breathing Through

We recommend starting a podcast club with friends or family to do these practices together. Links and assets to help prompt reflection and build community can be found with every episode on WeAreTheGreatTurning.com.

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