If you have searched for relationship counselling, marriage counselling, or couples counselling, here are the most important things to look out for.

I have written a few articles about the issues with relationship and marriage counselling, but there can still be benefits to using them if you are an attuned, emotionally intelligent, and self-aware couple.

So, if you decide to get relationship or marriage counselling, here is what to look for to ensure you get a good one.

4 tips for successful relationship counselling or marriage counselling

Someone with a background in emotionally focused therapy, also called EFT

Why is this important?

The most common cycle of conflicts that repeat and express themselves in different forms is attachment-related. Someone who understands attachment theory and how to work with varying attachment styles will help you identify the negative cycle you might be stuck in and break it.

This will reduce conflicts and help you both connect more.

It’s also couples therapy or couples counselling with the highest success rate of 75%.

Here are some questions to ask a potential couples therapist

  • Do you have any training in emotional-focused therapy?
  • What is it about EFT that is so helpful to couples?
  • Can I speak to any of your previous clients about their experience?

Somatic experiencing somatica method or similar training

Therapy is often too focused on our cognitive ability, thoughts and speech and neglects our bodily sensations.

In a simplified version, we have a brain with three essential layers.

Sensations that regulate our bodies include hunger, thirst if we are hot or cold and so on.

Then, we have emotions that motivate and connect us.

Finally, we have cognition or thoughts that are overvalued in our culture.

Talking therapy alone has been shown in many cases to have minor success.  

That does not mean it does not have value, as we use words to understand the world around us. If we can change how we interpret the world with words and our thoughts, we can also have different emotional responses.

However, incorporating the body in somatic therapy opens up a whole new way to express and process our experience.

For me and many others, mindful dance, such as 5th rhythms, has been a fantastic way to open up to being present in our experience and process issues that could not be done through thoughts or conversation alone.

Therefore, I would recommend someone with the theory and knowledge of emotional-focused therapy and some somatic or dance therapy background—or both.

Everything is stored in the body, so we can often access and release things through movement in a way we can’t as well through conversation.

And it’s a direct route that often doesn’t require a logical understanding of the issue.

Here are some questions to ask a potential couples therapist

  • Do you have any training in somatic or dance therapy?
  • What do you find is most helpful for your clients when doing somatic or dance therapy?
  • Can I speak to any of your previous clients about their experience?


All three couples therapists I visited during my marriage did not bring up sex once.

How can anyone provide marriage or couples therapy or counselling and skip the topic of sex?

It seems to mainly come down to therapists being uncomfortable with the topic or simply lacking the knowledge actually to know much about human sexuality.

Sex is a significant part of any relationship and also impacts both your relationship’s intimacy and overall happiness.

I would therefore recommend if you want couples therapy or counselling, then ensure the therapist has a significant amount of knowledge about sexuality and is comfortable discussing this.

Here are some questions to ask a potential couples therapist

  • Do you have any training in human sexuality?
  • What are some of the best books on human sexuality? (check them out and see if your views align with the therapists)
  • Can I speak to any of your previous clients about their experience?

Someone you connect with

Interestingly, one of the most critical factors in deciding the outcome of any therapy is the relationship between the client (I don’t think I like the name) and the therapist.

If there is not a connection and trust between you two , then it’s unlikely the therapist can have any impact.

We are influenced more by people we connect with and trust.

This is why I would avoid a therapist who sits and takes notes rather than being present with you and empathising with your experience.

If they need notes, tell them to record them, and a simple transcribe software can sort them afterwards.

A good couples therapist or counsellor is present and connects.

This is subjective, and only you can say if you connect with the therapist but have a phone call before going and sense if the therapist shows empathy for your situation and seems to be listening and acknowledging your experience. 

I once told a therapist that my son was in hospital with a life-limiting condition, and she said ok and moved on, and I knew instantly she was not the therapist for me.

Good luck finding couples counselling, marriage counsellors or couples therapy.

If you want to learn tools you can use now to decrease conflicts, increase intimacy and have a fantastic sex life, then check out my eBook’s here.

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