You can expect exceptional assistance in these ways:
- Assess the impasse occurring in the relationship dynamic and give each partner clear developmental assists to unstick their part of the developmental arrest (gain clarity on how you are contributing to the problem and actions you can unilaterally take to progress your relationship)
- Remember that neither partner is the problem, and hold the humanness of both with dignity and respect while compassionately but directly confronting the strategies and behaviors of each which undermine the couples’ bond (mature relationally and become capable of a collaborative alliance)
- Skillfully hold the paradox of relationship: that the brilliance of the connection will call forth the broken in each partner. This is the grand plan for healing (begin to see your partner as your blueprint for growth, not an enemy)
- Laser perception to spot the “dance of dysregulation” partners are doing with each other, based on their unresolved family of origin issues. Masterfully collaborate with partners to create the steps in the new “dance of delight” (receive clear, step by step coaching tailored to your relationship values)
- Identify and grow the best in both partners, growing what’s good between them in order to leverage the ability to effect change.
- Articulate relationship concepts in order to to bring clarity to formerly mystifying dynamics and to illustrate how to respond instead of react (reduce the suffering in your life and become strategic in your responses so that your relationship needs are met)
Couples Counselling Deliverables
These are the essential relational skills which couples earn in therapy:
- Demonstrate compassionate, active listening with your partner and direct, responsible expression of yourself.
- Learn to listen both to the content of their arguments and to the needs and feelings which are indirectly being expressed in the repetitive patterns. This allows partners to discover their unmet expectations from childhood and to become skillful in responding to those frozen needs in themselves and each other in order to forage a secure bond
- Define clear areas of responsibility and authority, establish and maintain healthy boundaries
- Arrest the compulsion to “maximize” (control, pursue, check, become insecure and jealous) or to “minimize” (stonewall, avoid, become diffuse, restrict information, lie)
- Engage conflict with maturity and equanimity and an intention to maintain connection in the face of frustration. Soften defensive states in both partners for maximum connection.
- Stay within the moment as intimacy deepens rather than bolting or starting a fight to defuse the intensity. Intimacy may be sweet or scary, depending on whether you’re aligned and merging or differing and differentiating. Recognize how you discourage each other from giving positive reinforcement or affection
- Know your polyvagal brain and how it impacts you in a relationship. Maintain your own balance, using your wise mind, in the face of a personal trigger, as well as when your partner capsizes.
- Gain “attune and attach” skills which allow you to be safe harbors within themselves and for each other. Meeting Relational Needs is paramount to thriving, and the elements necessary to feel “felt” are crucial for couples to learn and practice.
- Express yourself clearly and with full-disclosure of feelings, needs and requests. Define your independent thoughts, feelings and desire
- Break the grip of hostile/dependent or passive aggressive dynamics that are choking the flow of energy in your love alliance
- Learn embodied forms of nurturing (such as shared breathing) that will increase oxytocin, lower defenses, increase capacity for relaxed pleasure, strengthen attunement and empathy. Yum!
- Enjoy expressing and experiencing the sensual and erotic in your relationship over the lifespan