Do you want to know what causes people to divorce?
1) misguided intentions
2) communicating from a low mood
3) believing that what you THINK about your partner is a FACT.
This may sound strange at first but allow me to explain.
Having worked in the field of marital counseling since 1980, I’m still amazed at the patterns I see over and over again, especially since they are so easily avoided once people realize what they’re doing to hurt themselves, their relationship, and the other person. Couples do not argue over different opinions, as it may seem, because in the right frame of mind different opinions are interesting. They argue over thinking the other has betrayed them by expressing a different opinion; as though they were out to personally hurt them. Why, you might ask? Because people believe what they think, no matter how misguided, and the things we can think in a low mood would flip your wig if you wore one.
Have you ever had the experience of someone trying to talk you out of your thoughts or feelings? I hear it often in my work with couples; “You shouldn’t feel that way.” What they really mean is, “That is not what I meant, but I sure can see how you’d feel like that if you think I meant it in the way you are taking it.” The first response, “You shouldn’t feel that way” sounds and feels like betrayal, as though the other person is on an opposing team. The second response, “That is not what I meant” feels like validation, as though your partner really gets you. I don’t mean this to sound like a technique because it’s much more than that – it’s based on understanding how the mind works in both the worst and the best situations. Once you understand that, you are back in the driver’s seat with the key to his or her heart securely planted in the ignition.
A note from a client:” I am extremely grateful to you for the insights I have gained. The idea of stepping back from ego and focusing, instead, on the sacredness of our relationship feels natural to me, almost intuitive. It resonates with the deepest part of me in a way I cannot quantify. Much like dominoes, I sense this new regard for our relationship will inspire me to move outside of ego so I can deep listen, with curiosity and acceptance rather than agenda and bias, and this deep listening will allow me to rediscover Mike, myself, and the gift that is our relationship. I cannot fully express my gratitude for your part in this process.”
Are you curious as to why some relationships work and others don’t?
As a therapist, sitting opposite hundreds of couples over the past 32 years, my vantage point has enabled me to realize a simple fact. The relationships that work are those where each individual has the partner’s best interest at heart. In those relationships that don’t work, individuals only have their own best interest at heart, not concerned about stepping over their partner to get their own needs met. It may sound self-serving to meet your own needs, but in fact, when you turn off your partner, you’re essentially turning away your best friend in the world so it’s actually self-destructive.
Another mine field is when you expect a particular behavior or outcome; you’ll inevitably be disappointed because everyone thinks differently. When you don’t expect anything in particular, and you are open to enjoy whatever you get, your experience becomes completely different. People seem to fall into two categories: they are full of judgments or they are nonjudgmental and benign. When you see the value of non-judgment and how much good it can bring your way, it is much easier to avoid judgmental thoughts. This is the natural outcome from understanding the nature of thought.
We assist couples in developing more harmonious,productive relationships, regardless of what stage of a relationship you are in. Premarital counseling can prevent future problems. Counseling in the early stages, can set the tone right from the beginning, creating a shared vision for a high level relationship; one that is capable of withstanding the test of time.
Many people accept a certain level of mental and emotional distress in their relationships. People think fighting is natural and some even think it is healthy. This is misguided. We now understand how the mind works to bring us a particular perspective on our experiences in life. These discoveries have paved the way to understand how to bring out the best in ourselves and our partners. Within a short period of time you will find yourselves more able to access and sustain your innate health and wisdom.
We offer a variety of ways to mend relationships and tailor a program specific to your needs. Whether in weekly sessions or Intensive four day sessions we will maximize our time together.
If your time permits, the most cost affective approach is couple retreats which help couples raise their overall levels of consciousness, where they automatically make better choices, to a degree that far outweighs the amount of progress that can be achieved in weekly hour-long sessions. Couples have found that they are easily able to sustain the positive changes they have made.
The most efficient way to reverse relationship problems is through a 2-4 Day Retreat. Feel free to call for more information and to determine the best program for you:
860 561 1919