If you are making the investment of time and money to work on your marriage, you’ll want to make sure that you follow these marriage counseling tips so that you get the best return on your investment. Expecting just to show up and have the therapist wave a magic wand and fix everything is wishful thinking. However, there are some tangible things you can do to make your experience as successful as possible.
Marriage Counseling Tips to Make Your Couples Therapy More Successful
1) Be “all in”- While marriage counseling does take work, the biggest impediment to success is lack of commitment. Couples that are willing to do whatever it takes to succeed are already on the road to success. Once you are “all in”, you just need to do the work. In fact, the couples who don’t succeed are the ones who aren’t committed.
The ones that are committed experience fabulous results.
If you aren’t quite there yet, don’t worry.
While it’s ideal for commitment to come first, some couples need to see a reason to commit after all the pain.
We help couples understand the underlying issues and why they are experiencing their unique conflict. This helps them recommit.
Trust the Process
2) Keep an open mind- If you knew how to solve your marriage conflict on your own, you wouldn’t be seeking help. Come in to therapy with an open mind, that the therapist might know a little more than you about how relationships work, assuming they are an experienced and trained professional. While you need not accept whatever they say with blind faith, you’ll be more successful if you are open to their ideas and give them a shot.
3) Follow the therapist’s directions- Whether or not you like the process, humor the therapist and follow the protocol. As mentioned above, if they are an expert in working with couples, they have a method to their madness. Follow the exercises regardless whether or not you think they will actually work. Give it a shot. If they don’t work, you don’t need to continue but give it some time.
Do Try This at Home
4) Do the homework- The most impactful way to achieve long-term results is to practice at home. After our retreats, we give our couples daily and weekly recommendations. The ones that put them into place are usually the most successful. Accountability is what will prove ultimately successful.
5) Don’t threaten divorce- While you’re in therapy, don’t threaten divorce. It’s the best way to trigger your partner, put them on the defensive, and sabotage the progress you have made. Focus on being present and working on the relationship, with no looming threats.
6) Make a 3 month commitment- Even with a 2 day marriage retreat, you won’t be totally out of the woods. That’s why we include 8 follow up sessions so that you can implement what you have learned and continue the process towards success. Setbacks are to be expected but if you are committed to doing the work, you will be able to get through the rough patches in ways that you haven’t previously.