Healthy Relationships and Personal Growth
The MAP 2-hour consult for couples provides a safe space to explore relationship concerns without the pressure to commit to ongoing weekly therapy as partners. I have found in my years of working with couples that sometimes a psychoeducational consultation is exactly what is needed.
Improving Communication With a Partner
“Communication issues” is the top reason couples seek help in my practice. Through my training and extensive experience, communication can be greatly improved once we know where the issue(s) stems from. What gets complicated, is that each partner has their own subjective experience. If that experience is not understood and respected, difficulties arise. I provide my clients with a much needed safe space and the tailored guidance to address these issues with the goal of creating a different experience in the therapy room and the awareness and know-how to carry it into home life once our session is completed. So often, partners do not dedicate the time necessary to cultivate meaningful change. The MAP 2-hour consultation provides a blueprint for what this work can look like so you leave with a better sense for how to improve the feeling of being understood and listened to in your relationship.
The Right Support Matters
Communication involves an understanding of the issues and a sense of what the problem is from the other person’s perspective. It requires listening but also the ability to calm yourself so that important messages can be received. In my session, we review this together and have the opportunity to practice several activities designed to strengthen each partner’s ability to improve this necessary area. If partners have never been in therapy before, we may spend some time talking about family-of-origin and helping each person to gain a deeper understanding of each other and how each individual came to be the person they are today. We will review concepts of compromise, how to self-soothe, how to soothe and comfort each other in ways that really work, and we will also cover how to reduce stress and improve connection using a unique tool that you can practice each week at home. This therapy consult provides you with a comforting and encouraging space to learn and grow and gain tools that you can use in life and in your most valued relationships.
Enhancing Intimacy in Relationships
Often, we are faced with what seems like an endless stream of responsibilities and obligations that it can feel like there is just not enough time to cultivate a strong sense of intimacy—with our partner or with others. It’s easy to try and go it alone, to withstand the pressures and struggles without a sense of closeness or support–but doing so is usually not sustainable for very long. According to therapist/ author Patricia Love, intimacy is a curious phenomenon in that most couples profess to want more of it, but few people can define what it is. She defines intimacy as communicating on a personal level. Intimacy helps us to feel connected and understood. We must be careful not to confuse significant knowledge with a strong sense of intimacy. It’s possible to know a lot about your partner and lack a sense of intimacy. Rather, intimacy involves more of a meaningful sharing and responsiveness between partners.
This powerful experience in relationship has the capacity to make us feel valued, cared for, and loved. As a therapist who helps people to enhance the quality of their relationships, I have seen many people improve their ability to experience greater intimacy in their lives through consistent effort and increased self-awareness. To start, it is helpful to create your own definition so you can begin to build awareness of your own needs when it comes to intimacy. In the MAP 2-hour consult, you can expect that you will improve your intimacy by learning to:
- Give each other your full attention
- Listen carefully for meaning
- Validate each other’s reality
The second point is key here because so often we can become easily caught up in content and fail to truly understand the meaning of what is being shared. Our tailored 2-hour session will help you get to the essence and meaning – so you can experience each other with a new perspective. To begin your personal development journey, here are a few key questions to consider when thinking about improving intimacy in your life:
- What’s important about intimacy to me?
- How comfortable am I in communicating my emotional wants and dislikes?
- How do I tend to handle conflict in my relationships?
- What’s one area I’d like to improve when it comes to my emotional responsiveness in relationships?
- When do I feel most connected or fulfilled in my significant relationship(s)? Was there a particular situation that brought that feeling out this week? What contributed to my feelings of intimacy at that time?
Intimacy, along with trust, desire, communication, and affection create a strong foundation for high quality relationships to flourish. The best part is– is that all of these areas can be further developed and improved!
Coping with Major Life Transitions
Major life transitions can be super stressful. When we are struggling or feeling overwhelmed or going through a tough time, we are not at our best. Our fuse is short, we lack patience, and we might struggle to get the needed response and support from our partner. This can change with the help of an experienced and licensed therapist who knows how to help you make the shifts that create the desired result. We collaborate to help you experience relief so that you can stay strong and adaptable in your relationship and deepen the skills needed to move through the tough times. Perhaps you recently became parents, or maybe you decided to move in together, maybe you are going through changes in life that have greatly influenced how you experience the relationship as a whole; whatever you are going through that has caused tension or discomfort can be explored in the MAP for couples. I look forward to the opportunity to help you feel closer and more connected in your relationship!