I was curious about other organizations doing online marriage counseling so I did a search online. Surprisingly, there are number of groups out there. That’s really wonderful, especially during the pandemic. In my couples’ counseling practice I am witnessing quite a few marriages stressing to the max with lock downs. A couple will call and say, “Greg, we can’t make it Sedona, can you recommend marriage counseling near me?” Even though I have fairly big network of colleagues, I don’t always have someone in their area and that’s when I recommend online marriage counseling.
Here at Sedona Sacred Journeys, we have been offering couples retreats for 19 years and online marriage counseling for 12 years. I utilize a variety of my online programs: Spiritual Warrior/Couples Program, Freedom From Codependency and Spiritual Awakening Tutorials. This is in conjunction with weekly calls/zoom. The program is short-term; it can be a month and no more than three months.
I find relationship counseling can have great results when approaching issues from a multi-dimensional learning dynamic. To include: video, podcasts, structured assignments, phone support. We all have different ways of learning and its important to recognize this. And there is also an accountability factor by having to report their weekly assignment to me personally or the private group. Reading other members reports on the same assignment you are doing can be very inspiring and educational. This is powerful aspect I didn’t anticipate.
My approach is very different than most online marriage counseling and mirrors what I do on Couples Retreats here in Sedona. I am more of a teacher than a counselor in that I focus on teaching principles to couples as opposed to drilling into the past. Many couples are exhausted with that approach and the classic therapy session.
1. Low Mood Stop/ Heart-to Heart Go
This principle is straightforward: When one or both of you are in a low mood — Stop! Under no circumstances engage one another. Take a break and wait for the heart-to-heart place to return. It always will. Your wisdom is innate, it’s always inside you. In that place you naturally communicate with kindness, love, understanding and work together. This choice can instantly change your relationship back to those beautiful feelings for each other.
2. Separate Realties
Couples discover in a deeper and more accepting way how their partner is in a separate reality and that’s okay! And also, how this releases you from taking everything so personally.
3. Deep Listening
This is the most popular tutorial online and on retreat. My mission is to make listening and acknowledging your partner organic as opposed to turning into a technique which i see a lot of couples counselor do –that can get old very quickly.
Couples discover how forgiveness is really natural to you when you quiet down and let go of your negative thoughts, forgiveness will flow up without effort
5. Taking Responsibility
Couples discover how they are each responsible for their own feelings. How they are one hundred percent responsible for how they experience their partner. With this powerful insight all “blame” is released!
6. Giving Meaning…
Couples discover when they are “giving meaning” to what their partners are doing or not doing. It’s all happening in their head! They learn how not to take their negative thinking seriously and how when that thinking changes their natural wisdom will flow back up.
We could say these six principles are a schematic. Lean on them and you will see changes very quickly in your marriage. Instead of focusing on specific issues try to see how one of the “principles” might apply. I want to encourage all couples to get a deeper insight about these principles, an AHHAA moment. When you do you will never be the same person. So whether it’s online couples counseling or in person my strongest recommendation is to find a counselor who is not turning the session into a fighting match.
Gregory Drambour is considered one of the top couples counselors in North America. He offers online marriage counseling and couples retreats in Sedona. He is the author of three books on practical spiritualty.
Please check out other Blog Posts on Relationships