My parents were married for 52 years. My maternal grandparents 66 years. That’s a combined 118 years of marriage! They never spent a day in the office of a couples counselor. So why do I think couples counseling is an absolute MUST for most relationships?
Do you believe in soulmates? Chances are you do.
Last year, a survey conducted in the U.S. by Wakefield Research found that 76% of Americans believe in a soulmate. Rates were even higher for millennials (86%). So what is a soulmate?
I lead a group for couples on how to bring intention into their relationship. This is a fascinating group and
I learn so much from sitting with these couples as we tackle the many inputs into relationships that often
trip us up. One recent topic was conflict. How do we have manage conflict in our relationship with
intention? Does it matter if the conflict is between both partners or experienced by one partner from an
outside source? As you can imagine, this was a lively discussion!
We work hard to get the job. We interview as best we can. We get the job. But, how often do we really get a good job description. I am talking about the job of partner, spouse, boyfriend, girlfriend, significant other, husband, wife. More people sit in my office and say things like “S/he is just never happy…no matter what I do!” or “S/he keeps pushing me away and I don’t know why!”
Yesterday I put my own advice into action. I invited a colleague to join me to walk the labyrinth. Really, this is something I should be doing more of as it is an amazing path to mindfulness. When I work folks, we often include some form of meditation, mindfulness or centering to help manage anxiety, fear, stress, discord and just general feeling blah. There are many people who love meditation and find it to be an important part of their mental health. There are just as many who, try as they might, can seem to quiet their minds and bodies to be still. I am one of the latter. Quiet still meditation is hard for me – I can do it from time to time but it seems to take a great effort to get there. I do it whenever I can. However, when time is precious or being still just seems in possible, I try a moving meditation – like walking a labyrinth.
When I work with couples, one of the earliest things we do is look at how we communicate. We begin with the basics of starting to look at our words and tone so that we can hear and understand each other. As we get deeper into our process we begin to look at something far more challenging, and potentially more destructive than our words. We begin to look at our assumptions.