Couples Therapy & Maintaining Healthy Relationships
All relationships, whether business, or personal, are essentially a series of “trades” or interactions. The trade, or interaction, is what you put into the relationship and what you receive from the relationship. Healthy or “good relationships” are where both parties find worthwhile benefits and where “the total trade” is considered worthwhile. There may be aspects of the relationship that each person can find frustrating, but the benefits of the whole relationship or “total trade “outweigh any individual differences.
The importance of focusing on the future, not the past
Often in some traditional couples and relationship work, the focus can be on past events with a great deal of analysis on “why things went wrong?” My view is that although some exploration can be useful, the main emphasis in any client session is to consider what needs to happen in the future to make a relationship stronger and more productive.
Working with couples
There are many reasons why couples experience problems. It may be that communication has broken down, and there can of course be a multitude of different reasons for this. Couples may wish to see me when trust may seem to have been misplaced, and arguments seem to become more frequent, conflicts seem repetitive. When no amount of discussion and analysis seems to work, it’s a good idea to seek help to gain a new and more useful perspective.
Establishing what’s important to make the relationship work
Before agreeing to see couples I require both individuals to complete a set of client notes detailing what they want from a session. Often completing these notes is the start of clarifying how to move forward and build a healthier relationship in a more realistic and emotionally healthy manner. All client sessions are recorded and each client is encouraged to listen back to the audio recordings to gain new insights.
Common issues dealt with in couple’s sessions
Resolving historical conflicts
Overcoming power struggles
Building better rapport for healthier interactions
Improving the overall quality of the relationship
Resolving anger issues
Resolving jealousy issues