08: Marriage Story (What we learned from watching this movie)

08: Marriage Story (What we learned from watching this movie)

It’s summer holidays and we had a chance to sit down and enjoy a movie on Netflix. Scott flicked on Marriage Story just to watch for 10 minutes to see if it was any good and it wasn’t long before we were both glued to the TV.

The story was powerful and one of the most truthful movies we’ve seen depicting the trials and tribulations of any long-term marriage.

The acting was brilliant and the characters are Charlie (Adam Driver) and Nicole (Scarlett Johansson), parents of a young son and both highly creative people working in theatre together. It was easy to see the similarities of their life and relationship and how that relates to couples in business.

What we learned from this movie are these 4 C’s.


Good communication is so important and learning to communicate is an ongoing learning in a long-term relationship because you change and evolve as people. You need to articulate your wants, needs and desires and these will change over time, which is normal. The biggest challenge we’ve worked through is that we have changed as people, therefore what we wanted / needed in the beginning has changed over time. It’s important to communicate this and not assume you’re the same people and by doing so, you have the joy of growing together.

Be a good listener and learn to listen deeper and ask questions for clarification.

Articulate happiness for the other persons successes, remind them of the things you love about them…always!


Marriage and any long-term relationship will be ‘give and take’. This is not easy to do, especially when we live in a world that can be very self-focused and we’re quick to leave if our needs are not met. Of course, a healthy relationship is a two-way street, and we need to learn to compromise and find that balance of where there is give and take on both sides of the relationship.

Sometimes this might also mean sacrificing your needs for the other, but you do it for the sake of the other person, because you believe in their growth and happiness, which ultimately enriches you and your relationship. This also needs to be reciprocated.


When you’re busy with the demands of work and parenting it’s very easy to lose that connection. You could see in Marriage Story the deep connection they had in the beginning of the relationship and then the rift that happened over time eventually separated them. Connection requires work which means setting aside time to connect that sparks the love in your relationship. As a busy working couple, you can even forget the little things like eye contact and physical touch and if resentment has crept in, it’s even harder to do.


Commitment to the dream, to each other and what you can build together. The characters in the story were good people, going great places and you wonder if only they worked through their issues, could they have overcome and thrived together? We’ve been married nearly 20 years and there has been plenty of moments when we wanted to quit on each other and the business, but staying the course has helped us grow and love each other in deeper ways. Commitment requires holding on to the bigger vision and pushing through the hard times. It’s been our hardest times in marriage and business that we’ve learned from and become stronger.

Marriage Story is a great movie, one that stays with you for a few days as you mull over the powerful story line, acting and emotional scenes. In this podcast episode we delve deeper in the scenes, so there will be spoilers! If you haven’t watched it yet, we suggest you do before listening to this episode.


Full Interview Transcript