Marriage Counselling Calgary
Counselling is an effective ways to recapture connection in your relationship, finding again the friendship and intimacy you once shared.
Everybody knows that “relationships require a lot of hard work”. Let’s be honest: that’s one of the most overused sayings in regards to relationship advice.
But in spite of that fact, many couples refuse to actually put in that hard work. They invest in their homes, their cars, their vacations and their children, but fail to invest significant time and resources into strengthening their relationship.
That’s where counselling can help: at Living Well,we use one of the top three most recognized forms of therapies to facilitate healing, create understanding and recapture deep friendship and intimacy once shared. While it can’t promise results, our therapists are dedicated to helping you discover what is left in your relationship and how to salvage and rebuild that, if you both choose to.
Which methods do we use? Why are these methods so successful? Read below to find out how we help to strengthen their relationships:
John M. Gottman is a world-famous psychologist. He became well known by being able to predict with over 94% accuracy whether couples would divorce. He was also named one of the 10 most influential therapists of the past quarter century.
The Gottman Method of relationship starts by laying out a few fundamental goals, including:
-Disarming conflict through verbal communication
-Enhancing respect and affection
-Removing barriers which create a feeling of stagnancy in conflicting situations
-Creating a heightened sense of empathy and understanding on all sides of the relationship
In order to do that, Gottman outlines a number of practical procedures, including building “love maps” which express each partner’s worries, stresses, joys, and hopes. Other steps include building a positive perspective to problem solving and creating shared meanings and stories across the relationship.
Our professionally-trained counsellors walk couples through each step in order to meet all the goals outlined above. The end result is a happier, healthier, and more fruitful relationship which is equipped with the tools needed to manage conflicts and enhance trust.
Imago is another popular form of therapy which involves delving deeper into the unconscious thoughts of each partner.
The therapy combines spiritual and behavioral techniques with western psychological methodologies. The ultimate goal is to arm couples with the tools they need to empathize with one another while also building common bonds between them.
One of the key concepts of Imago is developing the Road Map, also known as The Imago. This map is a blueprint of each partner’s journey through life. An important goal of Imago therapy is to make each partner understand – and facilitate – the other’s roadmap.
Emotion Focused therapy
Emotion Focused Therapy, or EFT, is a short-term method which typically involves between 8 and 20 sessions.
EFT is similar to cognitive behavioral therapy in that it treats emotions as the guide to our behavior. By learning how to manage these emotions, we can better control our behavior and lead healthier relationships.
A relationship may have started off on the right foot. But over time, even a healthy relationship can devolve into a clash of negative emotions. When partners constantly experience negative interactions with the other, it makes the healing process extremely difficult.
Thanks to emotionally-focused therapy (often shortened as EFT-C), many couples have been able to recapture the love and understanding in their relationships.
But the main benefit of EFT-C is that it’s the most empirically-validated form of couples therapy. Experts suggest that 70% to 75% of couples are able to move from the “distress” phase to the “recovery” phase during EFT, and that 90% of relationships show “significant improvements”. When compared to other couples therapy methods, EFT also tends to have the lowest chances of relapse.
Not sure if you want to start counselling
An Assessment might be a great place to start. Ask to work with one of our Gottman-based therapists for a 3-Session Assessment. (Gottman Method only)
Counselling may be the best way to save your relationship. However, taking the first step is rarely easy.
That’s why we encourage some couples who are unsure to start with a three session assessment. Over the course of three 90 minute sessions, our professionally-trained therapist will communicate with both partners to determine the best way to approach counselling. Typical assessment sessions include the following:
First session: 90 minute discussion together.
Second session: Two 45 minute discussions with each partner separately.
Third session: 90 minute discussion together where the therapist will talk about the strengths and weaknesses in the relationship. Then, the therapist will advise the couple on the research behind relationships and illustrate what makes relationships work. From this point the couple knows more about their relationship, and the therapist’s approach, and can decide if they want to do the work of counselling together.
Ultimately, this gives the couple a science-based, informed approach to counselling instead of simply an opinion.
Some couples continue with therapy following this assessment, while other couples may walk away with the valuable lessons they need to live a healthy relationship, or may choose to part ways should they decide that there is too much in their way to move forward together. In any event an assessment can lead to a greater informed choice about whether to proceed in investing in the relationship.
Is your partner hesitant to start the counselling process? During the assessment sessions, we can demonstrate the value that can come from couples counselling. If you are interested in a three-session assessment, please mention it on our appointment request form. Additionally all Living Well therapists do offer a free 20 minute consultation to start if you’d like to meet your therapist before getting started.
Sensitive to LGBTQ and Faith-Sensitive Requests
At Living Well, we can happily accommodate couples from all walks of life. Couples can request an LGBTQ-affirming therapist or a therapist sensitive to their faith perspective if needed.