Gwyneth Paltrow has the secret to getting along with your exes

Gwyneth Paltrow has nothing but praise for famous exes like Ben Affleck and Brad Pitt, and she puts it all down to this one thing

Gwyneth Paltrow stays friendly with most of her exes. How?
(Image credit: Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

From interestingly scented candles to launching vibrators in the most unapologetic ways, Gwyneth Paltrow is never one to follow convention.

And one way the Goop leader admirably leads the charge is with remaining good friends with a lot of her exes.

In an Instagram Q&A session with fans, Gwyneth was asked about which of her exes she’s still close with, and how she manages to achieve it – and her surprising solution was something she was once roundly mocked about.

Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin were once mocked for their use of "conscious uncoupling" - but is it the secret to a happy platonic relationship?

(Image credit: Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for J/P Haitian Relief Organization)

She owes it all to “conscious uncoupling” – the term she coined for her divorce from Coldplay rocker Chris Martin.

Answering her fan’s question about if she’s still on good terms with her exes, Gwyneth wrote, "Pretty much. I really believe in conscious uncoupling, when you spend meaningful time with someone, it's nice to have it morph into friendship. I don't want to have bad blood with anyone, ever (if I can help it.)"

While she didn't offer up specific names, it’s not hard to tell which of Gwyneth’s famous exes she’s remained on good terms with.

Ex-husband Chris Martin, with whom she shares children Apple and Moses, is “like a brother” to Gwyneth now, as a result of their conscious uncoupling.

Gwyneth Paltrow's refreshing answer on her attitude towards her exes

(Image credit: Instagram/Gwyneth Paltrow)

Brad Pitt, who she famously dated in the 90s and nearly turned her Oscar winning role down as a result of their breakup, is most probably on the list as in a recent interview with Goop, the former couple reminisced on their relationship and openly talked about the early days of their engagement, with Paltrow revealing her father viewed Pitt as “a son.”

Towards the end of the interview Brad said, “It’s lovely to have you as a friend now…And I do love you.” Gwyneth responded with, “I love you so much."

Gwyneth and Brad dated in the 90s

(Image credit: Ke.Mazur/WireImage)

And Gwyneth was even complimentary of ex Ben Affleck’s marriage to Jennifer Lopez. In another Q&A with fans, she was asked about Bennifer’s shotgun Las Vegas wedding, to which she replied “Love. So romantic. Very happy for them.”

Just what is conscious uncoupling?

It’s a term that Gwyneth popularized with her divorce from Chris Martin, but what’s it all really about?

From a Goop blog, they explain, “In 1976, sociologist Diane Vaughan created her ‘uncoupling theory,’ and in 2009 Katherine Woodward Thomas coined the term conscious uncoupling and began teaching this alternative to divorce to students throughout the world…to us, self-reflection must be the foundation of the process if we are to avoid repeating the same problems in the next relationship.”

Ben and Gwyneth are another pair of Hollywood exes who have remained cordial

(Image credit: Ke.Mazur/WireImage)

“The idea of conscious uncoupling is to gain enough self-awareness that we no longer have to do it anymore because we’ve now found ourselves in a fulfilling, sustainable, long-term relationship.”

“Conscious uncoupling is the ability to understand that every irritation and argument within a relationship was a signal to look inside ourselves and identify a negative internal object that needed healing. Because present events always trigger pain from a past event, it’s never the current situation that needs the real fixing. It’s just the echo of an older emotional injury. If we can remain conscious of this during our uncoupling, we will understand it’s how we relate to ourselves internally as we go through an experience that’s the real issue, not what’s actually happening.”

From this perspective, there are no bad guys, just two people, each playing teacher and student respectively.”

While she might have once been mocked for the term, Gwyneth’s positivity towards her exes might make this mindset worth a deeper look.

Jack Slater
Freelance writer

Jack Slater is not the Last Action Hero, but that's what comes up first when you Google him. Preferring a much more sedentary life, Jack gets his thrills by covering news, entertainment, celebrity, film and culture for woman&home, and other digital publications.

Having written for various print and online publications—ranging from national syndicates to niche magazines—Jack has written about nearly everything there is to write about, covering LGBTQ+ news, celebrity features, TV and film scoops, reviewing the latest theatre shows lighting up London’s West End and the most pressing of SEO based stories.