Intimate romantic relationships form the core of our adult lives, and yet in our modern culture relationships are faced with what can seem like a hydra-like set of challenges like shifting gender roles, unstable economic conditions, longer life spans, and deep focus on fulfillment and happiness — as opposed to the simpler, more practical goals that tended to define traditional relationships.
It is no wonder why so many first marriages fail, and why many of us find ourselves having multiple serious relationships before we are able to get it right (if ever!). Along the way, we are more likely than not to make our way into some sort of couples counseling in order to help sort out old wounds and communication issues, and to learn better ways to give and receive love.
In this episode of Psychology Now, Dr. Keith and Dr. Mark dive into the wide world of couples therapy and relationships, using the Integral lens to locate some of the deeper principles and key insights that leading couples therapists’ employ to help couples develop loving, growth-orientated, grounded relationships. This conversation will not only help you more fully understand what to expect in a couples counseling setting, but will also give you some valuable tools and insights to help deepen and strengthen your own relationship, right now.
Some key topics addressed in this episode include:
- The challenges of modern versus traditional relationships
- Key concepts and insights from research and clinical practice
- Similarities and differences between hetero and same-sex relationships in couples therapy
- Stages common to all relationships
- Traits that seem to be shared by all gifted couples-therapists regardless of system or theoretical orientation.
- Six key practices that you can try right now to enhance your relationship, or that you can integrate into your practice if you are a change worker.
Come listen and join us for Psychology Now – our ongoing inquiry into the nature of self, other, and world.
Anand, Margot. (1989). The Art of Sexual Ecstasy. New York Tarcher/Putnam.
Chapman, G. (2015). The five love languages: The secret to love that lasts (5th ed.). Chicago: Northfield Publishing.
Deida, David. (1995). Intimate Communion. Deerfield Beach: Health Communications, Inc.
Gottman, John, (2015). Principia Amores: the new science of love. New York: Routledge.
Gottman, John, M., Silver, Nan. (1999). The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work. New York: Three Rivers Press.
Dweck, Carol. (2006). Mindset. New York: Ballantine.
Hendrix, H. (2008). Getting the love you want (2nd ed.). New York: Holt Paperback.
Perel, Esther. (2006). Mating in Captivity. New York: Harpers.
Schnarch, David. (1997). Passionate Marriage, Keeping Love and Intimacy Alive in Committed Relationships. New York: Henry Holt and Company.
Tatkin, Stan. (2011). Wire For Love. Norton.
Witt. Keith. (2006). The Gift of Shame: Why we need shame and how to use it to love and grow. Santa Barbara Graduate Institute Publishing/iUniverse.
Witt, Keith (2015). Integral Mindfulness: from clueless to dialed-in. Integral Publishers
Witt, Keith. (2006). Sessions, All Therapy is About Relationships integrating toward unity. Santa Barbara Graduate Institute Publishing/iUniverse.
Witt, Keith. (2005). Waking Up; Psychotherapy as Art, Science, and Sprituality. Santa Barbara Graduate Institute Publishing/iUniverse.
Witt, Keith. (2015). Loving Completely. Audio class available through IntegralLife.com.
Crafted by Dr. Keith Witt and Integral Life, the Loving Completely guided course includes more than 6 hours of audio teachings and practices, each uncovering a wealth of personal and interpersonal dynamics that you may not have even known were there.
INTEGRAL LIFE PRACTICE
This short Loving Completely ILP module will help you and your partner improve your connection on every level: physical, emotional, psychological, and spiritual.
About Keith Witt
Dr. Keith Witt is a Licensed Psychologist, teacher, and author who has lived and worked in Santa Barbara, CA. for over forty years. Dr. Witt is also the founder of The School of Love.
About Mark Forman
Mark Forman, PhD is a licensed clinical psychologist whose text — A Guide to Integral Psychotherapy Complexity, Integration, and Spirituality in Practice – is considered one of the seminal works in the field of Integral Psychotherapy.