Relationships and interpersonal connections are the foundation of our lives. Research has shown that the happiness a person feels is in direct correlation to their most intimate relationships. Being in an intimate relationship is life affirming, yet most of us were never taught how to do it in a conscious, functional way.
the art of love
We all come to relationships with our own core wounds. Your love partner can actually be a mirror and guide you on your path to personal growth. Couples that come to counseling are usually caught in gridlock issues and often blame and shame their partner.
When couples come to therapy the first thing I have them do is take an in depth questionnaire that assesses exactly where their strengths and weaknesses lie. I also have them take an attachment quiz so that we can understand their conditioned relational patterns.
each couple has their own unique issues, however, there are certain goals that we work towards to improve the quality of the relationship:
- Learn what your and your partner’s attachment styles are: this invaluable information will help you understand how you and your partner’s brains are wired for relationships.
- Develop research-based skills that will allow you to communicate in a healthy, functional manner that can strengthen your connection.
- Build a friendship base and couple bubble to create a rich bank account of positive connections so that each partner feels safe and secure.
- Learn how to fight well, de-escalate fights and when fights do happen how to repair the ruptures.
- Understand the importance of respecting each other’s inner world of thoughts and feelings.
- Move from gridlock to healthy dialogue on perpetual issues.
- Teach each partner how to approach each other when one of them has an issue.
- Deal with the dynamics underlying the behavior and conflict, the deeper feelings such as fear or abandonment and lack of trust.
- Learn about The 4 Horsemen (Gottman, 2014). These behaviors, when consistently engaged in, contribute to the demise of the relationship. Couples will learn them and their antidotes.