Local experts share the latest information and resources on all things mental health.
Posted: July 22, 2015 by firstname.lastname@example.org
So you made the decision and commitment to go to couples therapy. You've done the work, improved communication, and you've met all sorts of relationship goals. Now the daunting question: How can we maintain all of this progress outside the therapist office?
Many couples fear they will forget everything they've learned, and fall back into those unsustainable patterns. I have been asked several times, “How can we maintain this connection with each other?” Many leave my office with the intention of continuing to commit one hour a week together to discuss any hurts, misfires, and successes, but let’s face it: it’s hard to commit to one hour a week when life gets in the way. So to help you out, here are 5 easy ways to make sure you stay focused, have fun, and stay connected during your one hour check-ins:
Perhaps it’s early Sunday morning over pancakes, or during the week after the kids go to bed. Choose a time you both agree on and keep it consistent. Perhaps just keeping it the same time you met with your therapist will do the trick!
Try a new wine, exotic cheese or recipe that you’ve never had before. Make it more about the experience of being together. Also, chocolate is an aphrodisiac… just saying...
By having an agenda, you’ll be able to stay on track as a couple, and make sure that you haven’t missed anything that may have come up for you during the week. Here is one I often suggest:
Maybe you found yourself daydreaming at work about a recent trip you went on, and remembered a funny memory or time that you cherished. When life gets busy, we often forget about experiences we’ve shared or circumstances which make us feel connected with our partner. Having reminders of why you love each other make it easier to want to remain connected.
Okay, you made it! Hug each other! Hugs release endorphins, and create a more secure stronger bond with our partner. Always start and end on a good note if you can! This will make you want to keep up this tradition.
Pretty soon you won’t feel like you will ‘need’ to have this time set aside, because appreciations, love, and open dialogue will be flowing in the moment!
Tags: relationship and family
Love Lessons: A Guide to Dating Someone Who is Codependent
Shame, Guilt, Humiliation, and Embarrassment
Why Do People Have Open Relationships?