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Couple Counseling Can Transform Your Relationship

MaryEllen Goggin's picture
Couple Counseling Can Transform Your Relationship

Couple Counseling can be wildly successful given the right ingredients: readiness, right timing, and resonance with a highly skilled therapist. The bottom-line: putting laser focus on your relationship works if you’re both committed and want to be together. Couple counseling is done via telephone, email, Skype, or in-person. Weekly sessions and private retreats are most common.

Why do committed couples need counseling? Isn't love enough to weather life’s ups and downs? The short answer: sometimes for a lucky few. For many, they entered a relationship without much knowledge or many tools. What they knew was what they internalized growing up with their parents.

Even people who try their best and truly love their partner get stuck - bogged down in old baggage, beliefs and rules. Walls get built, negative emotion flies, and destructive patterns develop and become habit. All this becomes impossible (and even dangerous) to untangle without an objective person’s clear vision and help. Communication, ease, and comfort stop. It's no wonder high divorce rates exist and relationship satisfaction is rare.

Often well-intentioned couples want to improve their relationship. They don't know how to go about it or use an unhelpful approach like expecting one partner to do all the changing or setting unrealistic expectations. Couples hold onto negative emotions like blame, shame and resentment while expecting to make their relationship better. It’s not easy to release negative emotions. {Have you ever still felt really angry despite your wish to let it go?}

Couples get stuck in negative patterns that are difficult to identify and can feel impossible to break {Have you ever sworn you'd never say some button-pushing, snide remark only to find the words escaping your lips seemingly against your will? And then find you're both back at it, acting out the same bad drama you promised to stop.} 

Repeat these patterns enough times and any relationship will erode causing feelings of hopelessness and despair.

What's great about the transformational approach to couple counseling?

This approach was formulated based on 40 years of therapy experience. The principles, strategies, and techniques are laid out in our book, Relationship Transformation: Have Your Cake and Eat It Too. The work is a deep dive - forward moving, and results driven. Couples don’t have to get bogged down in the past, diverted by he-said/she-said blame games, or delayed by analysis paralysis. The work cuts a wide swath through stuckness, bad feeling, frustration and despair. It gets to the heart of the problem and brings new insights about the couple's patterns of relationship.

Getting down to specifics

Relationship counseling can help you make positive changes in your relationship - even if you're in crisis or have consulted with a divorce lawyer. Here's a guide to what couples can accomplish in counseling:

·      Release the negative feelings at the root of the problem.

·      Talk about your relationship needs and wants.

·      Learn how to deal with emotionally charged issues in a way that works for you.

·      Identify patterns that logjam your relationship and create a plan to get avoid getting stuck.

·      Rediscover the person you fell in love with

·       Uncover the positive feelings buried by emotional barriers, unresolved issues, anxiety, fear and negativity.

·      Learn to set healthy boundaries, make requests, and new ways to communicate.

·      Create a new vision for your relationship as it moves forward.

·      Make a specific agreement to support your new vision.

Our Beliefs

·      All couples can benefit from relationship counseling.

·      Intensive private couples retreats have a better track record than weekly couple counseling.

·      Individualized and experiential education is best.

·      Everyone can build a robust, happy relationship that lasts {caveat: a couple must want to stay together}.

·      Transformation happens in a warm, supportive space where couples feel safe to voice their deepest needs, wants and fears.

·      Couples benefit from incisive inquiry + deep listening.

·      We all need knowledge, tools and resources to create and maintain our relationship {no matter how intelligent or evolved we think we are}.

·      Everyone wants to feel loved, be seen and heard.

·      Love is the most profound experience of our lifetime and maintaining a lasting relationship is the most difficult.

·      Couples who devote their time and resources to give love and attention to their relationship have more satisfying + lasting relationships.


Couples Counseling Arizona's picture


It always great to dwell on the good memories and to be reminded why we loved and chose our partners. Thanks for sharing this article.

Mary Ellen Goggin's picture

Couples Counseling Can Transform Your Relationship

Thank you for your comment. Couples often lose sight of their partner's best qualities when mired in a negative cycle. Once we help them get through the negative emotions, they start to see their partner in a new light or remember what brought them together in the first place. This reawakening to each other is a sweet moment.

Culinary schools's picture

Culinary schools

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