About the Book
Book: Building a Ridiculously Great Marriage
Author: Gil Stieglitz
Genre: Christian Non-fiction
Release Date: November 2019
Building a Ridiculously Great Marriage: Pre-Marital and Marital Habits
It’s no secret that couples in great marriages do different things than couples in bad ones.
But what are those things and how do ordinary folks start doing them? How can couples take a struggling marriage or even one that is “pretty good” to one that is, quite frankly, ridiculously great?
Based on thousands of counseling hours and personal practice, Gil Stieglitz spells out the 15 essential habits found in great marriages that aren’t found in difficult ones. Building a Ridiculously Great Marriage provides the short and dirty version of what it takes to have a marriage that is so great, other couples will stand up and notice—they might even call it “ridiculous.”
This book is a real game-changer for engaged couples just starting out, couples who are struggling, or couples who just want to take their marriage from good to ridiculously great. It is also a terrific resource for pastors, ministry leaders, and counselors who work with couples for pre-marriage and marriage counseling.
Click here for your copy.
About the Author
Dr. Gil Stieglitz is a prolific author, engaging speaker, and insightful pastor who has spent thousands of hours helping, coaching, and strengthening marriages. Gil has written over twenty-five books on marriage, parenting, soul development, and spiritual warfare, including top-seller Becoming a Godly Husband, God’s Radical Plan for Wives, and Marital Intelligence. He speaks to thousands of people each year about the wonders of God’s principles. Gil now serves as Discipleship Pastor at Bayside Church, a dynamic multi-site church near Sacramento, CA. He is on faculty with Principles to Live By, a nonprofit organization that helps people connect to God’s principles in everyday life. He and his wife, Dana, enjoy a ridiculously delightful life in Northern California. For more information, visit ptlb.com.
More from Gil
After thousands of hours counseling couples for marriage and pre-marital issues, I had a few couples who just wanted to know the very basics of what they needed to do differently to have a much better marriage. These concepts, coupled with some pre-marital counseling I was doing at the time, allowed me to develop a quick and dirty list of the top ten habits couples should develop if they really wanted a terrific marriage. I asked them to trust me in what I was telling them, and they did what I requested. The results were amazing.
For the purposes of this book, I have added five more habits great couples do to make the material even more robust and effective, and I included the exercises I used in my counseling sessions for couples to practice and work out. Think of this book as the low down of what makes a marriage “ridiculously great.” This is the kind of marriage that will constantly surprise you with delight, love, growth, energy, longing, and connection. It is beyond the norm—where you feel like you lucked into this great relationship with this amazing person.
If you showed up in my office and asked me to give you the bottom line, these are the things I would tell you to do. Many people know what they are doing is not working, and they just want to know what to do. These fifteen things are what work…no joke.
Author Interview with Author Gil Stieglitz
- If you could invite one person to dinner, who would it be and what would you cook?
At this point in my life, I would probably invite Dr. John Gottman, as so much interesting marriage research is coming through his pen and research group. I would take him out to some Chinese restaurant so that I could just keep asking him questions rather than making him eat my cooking.
- Does writing energize or exhaust you?
Interestingly enough, writing a book energizes me, and I find myself writing when I need to be energized. I don’t like having to go through the twentieth draft and still rewrite it, but the process of putting down practical wisdom and making it available to people is very energizing. Recently, someone was reading my Myers Briggs Temperament type, and it said that I was energized by being alone and writing…and that is exactly right.
- How did writing this book grow you spiritually?
I have always admired listening to and reading books by authentic people who tell about how they overcame obstacles and succeeded by doing this or that, or calling out to God and having Him direct them towards the solution. This book was a challenge to write down exactly what works and what doesn’t in a marriage. It has taken me a long time to study successful couples and incorporate these practices into my marriage, but they work.
- What do you like to do when you are not writing?
I love to read, ride my bicycle, paddle my kayak, go traveling with my wife, see new places, and have deep conversations with friends.
- Share something your readers wouldn’t know about you.
In my early twenties, I learned how to be rejected. I remember dating a young lady for a year and a half. Everyone in school thought we were a couple, and so did I. I asked her to go to the next level of the relationship and start heading towards marriage. I still remember her saying, “Absolutely not!” And then a few weeks later, she asked an old boyfriend of hers to marry her so she could seal the deal that it was a NO to me!
After that, I dated a wonderful young lady and pursued her for six years. I remember when I thought it was time to tell her that I was ready to go the next level, to head toward marriage, and she said she was not interested at all. I asked her why, and she said I dressed funny, was too loud, and loved Jesus too much.
After some time getting over that rejection, I started dating a wonderful young lady who was becoming a psychologist. Our dating life was wonderful, and the relationship was getting serious—very serious. She came to my installation as a pastor of a small little church. At the end of my installation, after she had been introduced as my girlfriend, she waited until everyone left and told me that she needed to tell me three things. One, she thought I would make a great pastor for this church. Two, there was no way that she was ever moving here. Three, there was no way that she was ever marrying me.
I can remember being radically alone in a small town with just the Lord and the congregation—a desert experience. I started dating a young lady who had been chasing me for six years. It was going well, but something wasn’t right. When I asked her about going to the next level, she let me know that she had been chasing me for too long and now knew she didn’t want me.
I assumed the problem was these young ladies and not me.
One day, a flyer come across my desk at the church about a new seminar being held two and a half hours away. It was on marriage and what men needed to know about being married. I was somehow drawn to this day-long lecture, so I drove to the little church and sat in the audience of a hundred people or so. I heard one of the first lectures by Gary Smalley talking about what men needed to know about women. It was all new to me.
I told Gary my story, and lucky for me, he agreed that I needed help. He let me come to all of his seminars for free. I read every book he put out on marriage, and he mentored me through his lectures, tapes, and books. It took God four and a half years to change me, and then He introduced me to the most amazing and wonderful woman who agreed to become my wife. She would not have been interested if not for those years alone in the desert with God and Gary Smalley. We have been married for 31 years and it has been so delightful.
- What books or authors have most influenced your own writing?
Gary Smalley, Howard Hendricks, John Maxwell, Brian Tracy, Jack Canfield, John Gottman, Bruce Wilkerson
- Favorite quote?
“Your love must be real in your home, or don’t export it to others.”
- When did you start writing?
I started writing with the idea of publishing in 1999 when I was no longer producing a new sermon every week for a congregation.
- What is the most difficult part about writing for you?
The tedious rewrites and drafts to get it to sound just right is difficult for me. When I first wrote it, it sounded so good in my head, but then I look at it later, and it sounds so terrible. I need to make it say what I thought it said already.
- How do you do research for your books?
I constantly read books and save articles, stories, studies, and examples. I also speak and counsel others, so I am often being presented with new issues and situations. I also spend a lot of time in the Bible, looking at what God says about relationships and how to improve them. I am always amazed at how all these things come together to help others.
Thank you Gil for you time in letting us get to know you better!
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Spoken from the Heart, December 8
All-of-a-kind Mom, December 9
Mary Hake, December 10
Stories By Gina, December 11
Artistic Nobody, December 12 (Author Interview)
Discipling4Life , December 12
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 13
Texas Book-aholic, December 14
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A Reader’s Brain, December 16
Inklings and notions, December 17
A Diva’s Heart, December 18
Simple Harvest Reads, December 19 (Author Interview)
For Him and My Family, December 19
To celebrate his tour, Gil is giving away the grand prize package of a $100 Amazon Gift Card plus a signed copy of Gil’s book!!
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