Couples counseling differs from other types of counseling. Individual counseling helps one person improve the way they think, feel and behave. Relationship therapy involves two or more people.
Relationship therapy can benefit friendships, co-workers, and other groups who need to learn better ways of functioning as a unit. Family therapy is like relationship therapy but is geared specifically to improving the cohesiveness of the family.
Couples counseling focuses on two people who are romantically involved. The relationship does not need to be intimate, but it does mean you are committed to your partner. You most likely love this person and can imagine yourself with them for a very long time, perhaps even for the rest of your lives.
All types of counseling involve a counselor, a licensed professional who has spent many hours gaining both experience and education. They do not judge you or the issues you are facing. Their main goal is to help you and your partner learn to be the best couple you can be.
Having a professional on your side is not the only benefit to couples counseling. Below are more reasons for you and your partner to explore couples counseling together to improve your relationship.
Learn the Right Language
You have your own way of communicating. Your partner has a way of communicating. Sometimes you are both on the same page. Sometimes you are not even in the same book.
Communication is one of the most important talents a couple can learn to enhance the relationship. Learning how to correctly use tone, body language and appropriate words will teach you both to show respect every time you communicate.
This can be especially helpful during arguments.
Argue the Right Way
Arguing is normal between couples. It is nearly impossible to avoid an argument because you have two different moods, two different perspectives and two pasts. These help form the way you take in information and how you react to situations.
You will not always agree but you can always work through an argument without wanting to break up at the end of it.
There are specific steps to arguing successfully. Your counselor will work with both of you to ensure you understand these steps. He or she will also teach you how to compromise and negotiate so that you can both be winners after an argument.
Get to Know Each Other
Once you learn how to communicate and resolve issues more successfully, you can get to know one another on a deeper level, sharing more intimacy. You may be thinking you know all there is to know about your partner. However, counselors know how to help you dig deeper.
Surface information like where you grew up, first loves, and favorite items is something you may be well aware of. There are deeper questions, deeper knowledge, that can bring you closer as a couple.
A counselor can help you learn things, such as why they feel the way they do about religion and their true feelings about having kids. They can help you learn each other’s triggers, fears and greatest desires.
Most of all, you will learn how to express yourself so that both of you can become better at recognizing and meeting each other’s needs, emotionally, spiritually, physically and mentally.
Enjoy the Rewards
Couples counseling is a place where you can learn how to set goals and succeed in accomplishing those goals. A therapist can help you set short-term and long-term goals that you and your partner have wanted to reach for a long time.
Too often, couples agree to reach goals, stay on track for a while, slip back into old familiar patterns, that may make us feel like were failing. You are not a failure. In fact, many others are stuck in that same cycle.
Breaking the cycle can be very rewarding. It starts with learning how to work together, reaching small goals and then large goals, and encouraging one another throughout their journey.
Learn to Hurdle
Every couple will face some type of obstacle that challenges the relationship.
Obstacles can be minor, like defining roles, assigning chores, in-law issues and just plain getting on each other’s nerves. Obstacles can also be major, like affairs, financial secrets, and addictions.
With couples counseling, the likelihood of you hurdling these obstacles is much higher than if you tried to work through them on your own. With both minor and major obstacles, you both need to be able to discuss your feelings in a safe, objective environment.
Counselors have activities and advice to help you hurdle all the ups and downs of being a couple.
Focus on the Positive
Without even realizing it or wanting it, you may be focusing only on the negative traits of your partner. They may also be focusing solely on your negative traits. This could be a major reason for why you are struggling in your relationship.
When you focus your attention on negative characteristics, that is all you will notice, this does not have to be the case. Think about all the positive traits your partner had when you first met them. Those traits are likely still there, only you have not been focusing on them.
The more attention you pay to the good qualities, the more your attitude and your outlook will become positive. Your counselor can help both of you find ways to constantly focus on each other’s assets. Whether you write them down or record them on video, accessing these positive traits can help remind you why you fell in love in the first place.
Counseling can help you make efforts to restore that love and excitement you shared in the beginning. A counselor can teach you how to date again, how to be adventurous, how to desire one another.
You both deserve happiness, intimacy, and genuine love. You deserve it and with the help of a counselor, you can choose this positivity again.
Exploring couples counseling together will offer you rewards in your relationship that has the possibility of bringing the two of you closer than ever before.