Have you thought about breaking up, but still find yourself holding on to the person you know is special? Are you feeling lost on how to fix recurring issues in your relationship? If you are in a relationship struggling to communicate with one another, couples therapy may help. However, it is important to remember couplers therapy is merely a tool to assist you and your partner in learning to work together better. It is not a solution in itself and it is not a way to avoid conflict and communication with your significant other. Couples therapy requires self-motivated work to repair poor communication patterns. Let’s tackle exactly why you need to put in the effort during couples therapy.
Though couples therapy does put a lot of emphasis on growing as a couple, it is also a personal growth experience for each individual apart of a couple. Humans are habitual creatures that often act in recurring patterns. Regardless of your current partner, the relationship patterns you fall accustomed to can stick with you. Thus, if you find yourself developing negative patterns in your relationships it is important, for your personal well-being, to put in the effort to break these patterns. If not, you’ll likely repeat the same unhealthy patterns in subsequent relationships.
Life Outside of Therapy Sessions
Despite popular misconceptions, therapy sessions will not heal your relationship alone. In fact, a lot of the work in repairing a relationship happens outside of the sessions. Couples counseling provides you and your partner with guidance on how to better communicate and support each other. Having said that, it is outside of therapy sessions that you really get to put that guidance into practice. It is, obviously, easier to communicate when there is a licensed therapist acting as a mediator to make sure both parties are being heard and validated. The real test is how you can take the lessons learned in therapy and apply them to your everyday life. If no effort is made to learn and implement the new, healthy communication habits outside of therapy sessions, the relationship will probably not improve or last.
Both Parties Have to Want It
Each person must have a willingness to own their faults in the relationship. Couples therapy is not about two opponents trying to pin the problems on one another. Rather, couples therapy is about working together as a team to understand each other, become more self-aware, and break negative patterns of interacting. If only one half of the couple puts in effort, it will harm the team’s ability to move forward. You cannot change a person, or force them to put effort in; however, by putting in effort yourself you may influence your partner to try harder.
When To Seek Couples Therapy
It is always better to seek help earlier rather than later. If you, or your partner, are noticing struggles in communication, contact a couples therapist to help guide you to success. Additionally, happy couples can attend therapy too! Building strong communication skills and getting to know each other deeply can benefit any couple. Chriselda Santos, a licensed psychotherapist and certified life coach, specializes in helping couples repair, recover and thrive. She understands the demands of life and the results they can have on our closest relationships. Visit her website for more information or to book an appointment today.