We’ve all heard that relationships require work, but have you ever found yourself wondering just where to focus your energy and attention? Thankfully, research has shown that there are a set of essential skills that couples can use to strengthen their connection. Couples therapy can help partners learn key communication strategies to develop understanding, increase connection, and foster intimacy. Exploring your core relationship values can help you identify ways to be the partner you truly want to be as you seek to create a more fulfilling relationship.
My work with couples is based heavily on two research-based models.
Drs. John and Julie Gottman have researched couples and families, using a variety of methods and settings to explore the most critical skills that successful couples use to stay connected, as compared to distressed couples who wind up in cycles of negativity and disconnection.
The work of Dr. Susan Johnson focuses on how couples can use effective communication to access and express their emotions while maintaining and strengthening deeper connection with their partners.
Here, Dr. Heard discusses how couple therapy can help to improve relationships by allowing each individual to understand entrenched interaction patterns and work towards change and connection.
Some of my work with couples and individuals focuses on sexual health and satisfaction. I highly recommend the following work for couples dealing with challenges in their physical intimacy and sexual relationship.
Dr. Barry McCarthy: books include: Rekindling Desire , Sexual Awareness: Your guide to healthy couple sexuality, Finding your couple sexual style: Sharing desire, pleasure and satisfaction..
Here is a link to an article he wrote for Psychology Today:
Esther Perel is a Belgian psychotherapist and leading expert in understanding marriage, relationships, and sexuality. She has written two books that help to capture what many couples experience in the challenge of "modern" relationships: Mating in Captivity: Unlocking Erotic Intelligence, and The State of Affairs: Rethinking Infidelity. Her website provides resources for couples and professionals, and she has numerous trainings and workshops available.
Podcast: Where Should We Begin?