For good and for bad today we know that love isn’t only pure chemistry or luck. Neither there is only a unique half orange for each person. Today, as unromantic as it sounds, there is a science of love. In this book, I draw from the most advanced research on adult attachment and extensive trainings on the most effective couples counseling strategies to help you in the journey of finding and keeping healthier and happier relationships. Some of the theories are:
Imago Theory– Harville Hendrix, Ph.D. (Getting the Love You Want), looks for ways that your current difficulties might relate to what you learned about relationships during your childhood and early adulthood and how partners can help each other to complete those “unfunished businesses,” so they can then relate from their adult selves while completimg and healing each others’ childhoods.
Emotionally Focused Therapy– Sue Jonhson, PhD. (Hold Me Tight), or EFT draws on attachment theory, which asserts that humans are hardwired for strong emotional bonds with others. According to EFT, couples have relationship problems when they’ve “experienced emotional disconnection with their partner at key moments, which then leads to struggles” with negative cycles of criticism and anger (among other emotions and reactions). Therefore, the aim of EFT is to help couples overcome these negative cycles, re-establish their connection, and strengthen their emotional bond.
Relational Life Therapy – Terry Real (Relational Institute), teach the principles of Relational processes in order to help people address relational and psychological health in three critical relationship areas: parenting, coupling, and workforce effectiveness. This model teaches clients healthy relating, helping them perform the modest miracle of personal transformation on a permanent process level.
EMDR-Attachment Focused – Laurel Parnell, Ph.D (Healing Relational Trauma), offers a way to embrace two often separate worlds of knowing: the science of early attachment relationships and the practice of healing within an EMDR framework. Eye-movement desensitization and reprocessing which is more widely known as EMDR, is a powerful tool for catalyzing integration for individuals who have experienced non-secure attachment and developmental trauma. This approach heals the attachment wounds and the damage sustained from neglect or poor parenting in early childhood. For developmental trauma to happen, not catastrophic events have to happen. It happens because life happens. No family can attend to all members needs, so think of it as a lack of vitamins. Many people think that because they weren’t physically being hit or abandoned at an orphanage door, they shouldn’t have any problems. The reality is that most people experience some sort of trauma because life is like that. That is why experts in the field are trying to coin the term “ordinary trauma.” Read more on ordinary trauma.
Healing childhood wounds is key for enjoying fulfilling relationships as an adult.
The Developmental Needs Meeting Strategy– Shirley Jean Schmidt, MA, LPC, (an Ego State Therapy for Healing Adults with Childhood Trauma & Attachment Wounds), The DNMS is a comprehensive, strengths-based, client-centered, ego-state therapy for healing adults with trauma and attachment wounds. It’s informed by developmental psychology, self-reparenting therapy, attachment theory, EMDR therapy, and an understanding of mirror neurons. The DNMS evolved out of an EMDR practice. Clients with unmet attachment needs often experience inner chaos when forming, maintaining, or ending close relationships. Rejection can feel like life-threatening abandonment. Intimacy can feel intrusive and engulfing. Repairing core attachment wounds can be quite challenging but possible.
PAIRS – Dr. Lori Gordon (Practical Application of Intimate Relationship Skills), it is a program that provides a comprehensive system to enhance self-knowledge and to develop the ability to sustain pleasurable intimate relationships. It teaches useful behavioral techniques such as 1) emotional literacy; 2) communication skills and conflict resolution and 3) conjoint partner skills for building and enhancing intimacy.
DARe, Diane Poole Heller, PhD. (Somatic Experiencing-based attachment repair program), groundbreaking approach that integrates interpersonal neurobiology and adult attachment theory. It provides the keys to the mystery of healthy relationships by teaching you how to compassionately free yourself from the patterns of early attachment wounds that influence your adult relationships negatively.
These approaches don’t only teach techniques, they use strategies for overcoming the fight/flight response in relationships and for rewiring the brain towards a more secure attachment. Therefore, recondition the brain for greater empathy and more intimacy. The newest Neuroscience of Attachment and brain development is drastically influencing our understanding of how to bring about healing and influence our relationships toward more fulfillment.
The main work when it comes to relationships is about us. Yes the other person has a big percentage of what is going on, but if you direct your energy and effort towards yourself first you will gain the most from this book and life. In this book you will gain self-awareness, and learn the patch towards emotional balance, so you can develop a fulfilling lasting love life. You will for sure understand and hopefully change your role and style in intimate relationships and finally clarify what you really need from your partner, and how to get it and give it to each other.
And remember that the way you deal with life overall can improve by working on your attachment. How does this happen? The view of adult attachment theory is one of the latest measures used to determine the level of psychological distress people experience during stressful circumstances. Research shows how secure attachment serves as an inner resource in times of stress and how insecure attachment can be a risk factor that increases vulnerability and distress. Data has been found which reflects the ways adult attachment styles affect one’s coping and emotional reactions when faced with the terror of personal death, military and war-related stressors, interpersonal losses, personal failure, parenthood related stressors, and chronic pain. (Shaver, & Mikulincer, 2012)
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