John Grey, PhD, is a couples coach and author. For over 25 years, he has specialized in conducting intensive marriage retreats, or couples retreats. Having worked with thousands of clients, John is an internationally recognized couples retreat coach and pioneer in the field.
John’s methodology for helping couples is uniquely informed by research in relationship satisfaction, neuroscience, and attachment theory. He regularly trains therapists and counselors in this new, highly effective, scientific-based approach to couples therapy.
John started his career as a research psychologist at Stanford, eventually starting a private practice and teaching workshops and training programs. Two and a half decades ago, he began working with couples using an intensive retreat format. Over this time period, John has also authored three books for couples and an interactive relationship self-help system.
Dr. John Grey’s Early Training & Work
John received his Doctorate in Psychology in 1975 from Stanford University, where he taught psychology and cofounded Stanford’s preeminent research center CCRMA, hailed in the book This is Your Brain on Music. Under the support of major grants from the National Science Foundation, Department of Psychobiology, John’s research on how the brain processes music has been published in scientific and professional journals, and cited in dozens of university textbooks and thousands of research papers.
John’s ground-breaking findings also helped shape the development of digital music technologies we now take for granted, from which Stanford received a historically large royalty income. Major music technology companies were founded on John’s work. His part in the evolution of digital music is described in the new book The Sound of Innovation: Stanford and the Computer Music Revolution.
Since 1980, John has been in private practice working with couples in the San Francisco Bay Area. He conducted his first couples retreat in Berkeley in 1990. For the last 20 years he has been leading his couples retreats in beautiful Sonoma County. Over the past few decades, he has presented workshops at venues such as Esalen Institute, University of California Berkeley, Stanford University, and the Scripps Institute. He was also on Dr. John Gray’s — author of the bestselling Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus — personal referral list of couples counselors.
John has extensive training in cognitive and behavioral psychology, aimed at short term, goal-directed coaching to achieve practical results. He worked with John Grinder (Tony Robbins’ teacher), developer of Neurolinguistic Programming (NLP), and led major communication and effectiveness training programs for counselors, therapists, and medical and other helping professionals. As a recognized NLP Trainer in the 1980’s, John was active in the fields of personal, professional and relationship coaching at their very beginnings.
For over a decade, John studied personality theory with Helen Palmer — author of The Enneagram in Love and Work — focusing on how to resolve relationship problems and conflicts caused by partners’ differences in personality. As a certified Somatic Experiencing Practitioner, John has also been trained in the body-based trauma healing methodology of Peter Levine — author of Waking the Tiger.
Dr. John Grey as Couples Retreat Coach
John has been a couples retreat coach for over 25 years and is a pioneer in the field of intensive marriage retreats. He developed his retreat program because he continually found severe limits in traditional marriage counseling’s weekly hour-long sessions. But beyond the power of the retreat format is John’s unique and integrated approach to his work with couples. His coaching methodology is fresh and distinctly different than traditional couples therapy or marriage counseling, regardless of format. Read more →
John offers practical, proven skills to couples to transform their marriages. He gives partners the tools to take home and stay on track. As a couples retreat coach, his broad background in neurobiology and attachment theory has enabled him to offer uniquely powerful tools to help couples overcome reactive patterns. He regularly helps couples on the brink of divorce to renew connection and build secure relationships that thrive in shared happiness and intimacy.
In the arena of attachment theory and neurobiology research as applied to couples therapy, Dr. John Grey provides you with an integration of today’s major clinical approaches. He has advanced training in the attachment-based Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) methodology of Sue Johnson — author of Hold Me Tight. He has also been trained in the Neuro-Affective Relational Model (NARM), the work of Larry Heller — author of Healing Developmental Trauma.
John also has extensive training and is certified in the Psychobiological Approach to Couple Therapy (PACT), which was founded by Stan Tatkin, PsyD — author of Wired for Love, Your Brain on Love, and Love and War in Intimate Relationships. The PACT methodology draws from more than 30 years of cutting-edge research in the three key areas of neuroscience, attachment theory and human arousal.
Dr. John Grey as Trainer of Couples Therapists
John is a nationally recognized expert in the Psychobiological Approach to Couple Therapy (PACT). He is a Founding Core Faculty Member of the PACT Institute, at which he also helped develop its curriculum and training program for couples therapists and marriage counselors.
Here’s what PACT founder Stan Tatkin says about John: “With decades of experience behind him, John is a highly intelligent, creative force in the arena of science and relationships. His work is inventive and inspiring.”
John has trained marriage and family therapists, social workers, psychologists, psychiatrists, marriage counselors and psychotherapists in the highly effective PACT approach to couples therapy. PACT-trained therapists help couples understand their individual attachment styles and to moment-to-moment shifts in arousal states to build secure-functioning relationships built on compassion, love and understanding.
Dr. John Grey the Author
As an strong advocate of self-help, John has written three books on the topic of intimacy and relationship that give people practical tools to maximize shared happiness and minimize reactive patterns and distress.
John’s latest book is Five-Minute Relationship Repair. Noting the powerful tools it offers, Jack Canfield — author of the bestselling Chicken Soup for the Soul book series — said the book: “presents a step-by-step process for using any relationship conflict as a doorway to deeper intimacy and expanded awareness…. everything you need to create a secure, lasting bond with your partner.”
John’s earlier books are Relationship Tools for Positive Change and Becoming Soulmates.
He also wrote The Joy of Relationship Cards, which is an interactive self-help system consisting of a deck of cards plus a book. Praising this system, Dr. John Gray — author of the bestseller Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus — said, “This deck of remarkable cards is a powerful tool that can expand your joy and happiness in relating…. This tool can help you improve communication, deal with issues, explore dreams, and reawaken vitality of connection.”
Additionally, John put these cards online in the form of an innovative and entertaining online self-help system, also referred to as the Soulmate Oracle. Over the last two decades this has been featured and freely used by hundreds of thousands of people on such major web portals as iVillage and Astrology.com.
John’s work has been cited on national television series like Berman & Berman and in magazines such as Men’s Health. His work will soon be featured in an upcoming motion picture showing the journey of a celebrity couple and the positive impact he had on their marriage.
Browse publications by Dr. John Grey:
- Five-Minute Relationship Repair
- Relationship Tools for Positive Change
- Relationship Advisor
- Relationship Help Cards
- The Heart Also Opens