Relationship Counselling: Nurturing Relationships
I will work with you in relationship counselling to nurture your relationship. Nurturing your relationship also leads to better individual mental health, and vice-versa.
It’s so easy to compare your relationship with others. This may be from what you see in friends’ relationships, or what you read online or see in the media.
Comparisons with others can be helpful when you are valuing the good you see in them. However if you envy what you see in others you may feel disappointed. One of my early boyfriends stressed to me the phrase from Desiderata, “Do not compare yourself with others, or you will become vain and bitter, for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself”. This statement rings true for me in relationships as well, as we all unique. Hence every relationship is going to be different.
There is that old adage, “The grass is greener on the other side”. However it may look that way until you walk over to the other field. The grass is actually greener where it is watered most. To thrive, plants need water, sunshine, and healthy soil. Relationships need nurturing also, including a healthy environment (soil).
Nurturing your relationship
This includes, according to John Gottman*:
- giving appreciation for the kind and supportive things your partner does for you
- admiring your partner’s positive qualities
- turning toward your partner to show that you are on the same team
- giving cognitive space to your partner’s preferences and likes so that you can keep them in your mind
- taking time out to calm yourself down when your nervous system is escalating
- giving attention to really listening to your partner and getting to know their perspective
- sharing your feelings and needs with your partner
- proactively taking responsibility for the small misunderstandings you are party to
- taking time for your own self-care
- playing with your partner to help reduce tension and build positivity
- editing your negative thoughts about your partner
- being curious about your partner’s point of view
- being open to your partner being right, on this occasion
The Gottman Institute
I utilize the Gottman interventions in Relationship Counselling to enhance relationships.
* The Gottman Institute: you can subscribe to the Marriage Minute emails which are full of practical ideas to nurture your relationship: www.gottman.com.