Couples Counseling Articles

Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy

Communication, Creativity and Contradictions

Reading any news headline makes me think deeply about the source of turmoil.

We can pretend things will get back to normal soon.

We can tell ourselves that our lives and the world are not forever changed. 

We can continue the exhausting human habit of resisting pain and bracing ourselves for (mostly) imaginary disaster.

We can even continue to relate to each other as before; tiptoeing around the under-currents of anger and tension. 

We have a choice; we can hold back or we can speak up. 

What keeps us from speaking up at home AND in the world, I believe, is fear. 

It also prevents us from loving well.

The moment we recognize our emotions as the organizing principle of truth and we’re willing to speak them out loud…..

We’re inclined to take more risks and make a ruckus.

That’s when our relationships are transformed.

Spoiler alert – speaking our emotions is not the same as venting, blaming, criticizing or acting out.

Rather, it’s a courageous and messy process brimming with creativity, communication and contradiction. 

One way or another, it seems we’re all headed in the direction of more truth-telling.

Either we embrace the shift or we keep doing things the old way.

Isn’t it good to know we have a choice?

Love, Loneliness and Connection

My attorney married his college sweetheart after she finished medical school.

They were married only a short time, which he describes as the loneliest three years of his life.

To this day, he has never remarried.

In 2018, loneliness emerged as a silent epidemic in North America.

In today’s almost-post-quarantine-world, we have a national health crisis on our hands.

Oddly, loneliness is not defined by our surroundings nor does it have a direct relationship to distance or geography.

We can feel lonely and emotionally alone even in beautiful space with people we love.

It’s an internal sense or comfort level and is distinct from solitude.

Solitude is an opportunity for rest and rejuvenation. It’s voluntary and tends to enhance our personal growth, creativity and well-being. It brings up emotions…but in a good way.

Loneliness feels heavy and is burdened with shame. Stigma surrounds it and creates an unconscious desire to escape. The brain says, “Anywhere but here.”

In research circles, there is an evolution in thinking about loneliness and its link to depression, anxiety and addiction.

Meanwhile, most people have become experts at suppressing loneliness with magical thinking and….let’s admit it….our over use of electronic devices.

When that doesn’t work, we withdraw, stay busy or self-medicate with something or someone.

As unrelenting as the state of loneliness may seem, it is reversible.

First, we can lift the burden of shame by recognizing and acknowledging that we all need human connection as much as we need food and water.

Then we can de-stigmatize loneliness by talking about our experiences and understanding it for what it is:

a near-universal human condition we can do something about.

3 Steps To Turning Your Relationship Right Side Up – Again

04-19-15articleAll long-term relationships have challenges and every now and then things can approach a tipping point. That’s a red flag – it’s time to reflect, take action and turn things right side up again.

People rarely want to leave their relationship. Most people want to figure things out. They want to make things better.

People ask; Is this possible? Can this / will this work? And mostly, the answer is YES!

When you’re looking for professional help it’s important to be an informed consumer. Approach the decision together; thoughtfully and collaboratively.

Here are three simple steps to guide you through the process of making a choice that is good for you AND good for your relationship:

Continue Reading 3 Steps To Turning Your Relationship Right Side Up – Again

We Would Love To Have Your Feedback

flowersA friend popped by my office recently to say hello and drop off a bouquet of flowers – for no particular reason! She stayed only a minute reminding me that every act and every word hold the seed of possibility to change a person’s whole life – for better or worse.

The way we cultivate our relationships determines the life we get to live. Relationships give us direct and immediate feedback of who we are and how we show up in the world. Connection is the key for a great outcome.

Continue Reading We Would Love To Have Your Feedback

Love Power and Science

I believe in Love.Love Power and Science

I believe in its power and I believe Love is a source for all-good.

I believe in Loves’ ability to heal.

It confuses and appears dangerous at times, yet it is vital to our physical and emotional well-being.

Everyone needs it, wants it, longs for it and will do just about anything to get it.

Isn’t it odd then, that in this millennium, an age of non-stop social interaction, nuclear fission and living in space stations…..the world knows precious little about Love?

Continue Reading Love Power and Science