Instructables

Making Marriage Last

Step 4: The First Four Minutes

Picture of The First Four Minutes
A man named Leonard Zunin wrote a book called Contact: The First Four Minutes. The main idea is that when couples are together after waking at the beginning of the day or after coming home from work at the end of the day, what happens during the first four minutes sets the tone for the rest of the day or the evening. 

A young mother may be up to her earlobes in frustration after a hard day with the kids during which the sink overflowed and ruined someting. She cannot wait to vent to an adult, which will be her husband. Meanwhile, he has had a hard day and simply wants to unwind from the day's pressures. They need to make their first four minutes together a caring time. If they dump the day's garbage on each other during that first four minutes, the rest of the evening will be filled with withdrawal and cold silence at best, or heated arguing at the worst. 

A friend told me his wife often dumped on him the moment he came home. It was setting a bad and unhappy tone in their marriage. I told him about Zunin's book and gave him my copy. When I saw him again a couple of months later he told me that book had made a very beneficial improvement in their marriage. 

The green wedge super-imposed over the watch face represents four minutes. That is only 240 seconds.
 
Remove these adsRemove these ads by Signing Up