& What to Expect When We Work Together

Why not apply what science has discovered about making relationships happy – and making relationships last?  The Gottman Method is based on 40 years of scientific research – and we know what works! I help all sorts of couples across all seasons of life.  A big secret is that your negative emotions like defensiveness and criticism are more damaging to your relationship than you might realize. And your positive feelings of love and respect don’t outweigh them.  So we begin immediately to heal the painful negativity and switch on emotions that restore love. We will focus on developing deeper connections, so that you can maintain fondness and admiration, turn toward each other to get your needs met (especially when you have blown it – because everyone does!), manage conflict, and help you build your dreams.  

I am a “therapeutic coach.” While I practice as a licensed mental health counselor, the work I do with couples is not “the same old couples counseling.”  We will go way beyond improving communication to create new, deeper connections that meet the actual needs at the heart of the relationship. I will educate committed partners in the early stages of a relationship as well as restore healthy functioning to distressed couples, whether stuck in chronic conflict, coping with infidelity, or engaging in other destructive patterns. All therapy is based on each couple’s unique patterns of interacting and unique needs.

For distressed couples,  we will work in an intensive format in 2-hour blocks.  These 2 hour blocks can be scheduled a few days or weeks apart or they can occur over the course of two to four days for couples in crisis or who are visiting from a distance.  After this initial phase, your painful patterns are replaced with the positive connections you desire. You will want to continue with regular sessions for support and practice, since we know that trying to do it on your own will put you back into painful cycles until you are up and running.  

What to Expect

1) You will participate in a thorough assessment of the relationship based on questionnaires and an oral history interview.

2) You will each establish your own connection with me as we explore your personal history and your perspective on the marriage.

3) You will learn the research-derived components of healthy relationships

4) We will rebuild the fondness and respect that first brought you together through healthier connecting patterns

5) You will develop trust by repairing  attacks and other regrettable incidents

6) I will give you direct coaching in new skills to communicate and stay connected

7) I will give direct therapeutic interventions to each individual in the context of couple sessions or privately, to remove barriers and heal wounds

8) I will give you opportunities to practice loving intimate connecting

Therapy focuses on delivering deeper insight – not only into why you created the relationship dynamics – but how to change them quickly.  

How It Works

The Gottman Method is built on research showing that negativity makes a big impact on the brain, and that unless couples take steps to counteract instances of negativity, they grow apart emotionally. We identify and address the states of mind and behaviors shown to underlie intimacy and we help you maintain a positive orientation to each other that can sustain you in upsetting circumstances.

What to Look for in a Gottman Method Couples Therapist

All Gottman practitioners are licensed psychotherapists with a Master’s degree or doctorate who have undergone special training in the Gottman Method. While many therapists are familiar with and apply findings and principles from the relationship research of John Gottman, as a Certified Gottman Method Therapist, I  have undergone four specific levels of training in the Gottman approach and have learned an array of strategies and interventions for identifying problems and helping couples. In addition, I have undergone specialized training in relationship-assessment techniques, working with couples recovering from addiction, working with past trauma histories, depression, anxiety and other mental health struggles.  

What Is A Therapeutic Coach?

I have over 10 years of practice with couples as well as individuals and have developed the flexibility to bring you all the skills of a therapist along with the ability to confront issues and challenge you for needed changes.  I believe in a holistic approach and will listen with care and team with you to make the changes you desire for each facet of your situation. Please let me know if you have any other questions by commenting here on the blog, sending me an email or giving me a call.  I look forward to hearing from you!

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