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Articles on: Relationships

Relationships are the stuff of meaningful life. People need people. Most clients will have one or more relationship issues. Reams of research show us that loneliness, disconnection from family and friends, alienation cause not only mental ill health but physical problems too. So when relationships go wrong it can feel almost like an existential threat. Happiness is so often found within good relationships and when we help our clients connect in healthy ways with the people in their lives we help them thrive and form a base from which they can build ever more meaningful lives.

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    4 Tips to Help the Passive-Aggressive Client

    I’ve occasionally worked with clients who exhibit that peculiar and often confusing blend of domination and aggression couched in supplication and appeasement. Apparent congeniality and agreeability laced with sarcasm and subtle obstructiveness. So, what specific patterns do we see in the passive-aggressive person? And how can we help them?

  • abusive-relationships

    3 Ways to Help Clients Overcome Past Emotionally Abusive Relationships

    Whom we get involved with can have major ripple effects in our lives. The after-effects of an emotionally or physically abusive relationship can include extreme emotional insecurity, chronic fear of abandonment, trust issues, or even symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder. So what principles might we use to help our clients truly move on from past […]

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    Treating the Client Who is Codependent in Their Relationship

    Clients in codependent relationships often don’t seek help for the codependency itself. And, after all, if both are happy to continue as they are, then who are we to disturb their pathology? But if one partner is effectively being pushed into an early grave by the other through drink, drugs, or unhealthy food, then it […]

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    A 12-Point Client Relationship Checklist

    We tend to be happier if we have someone who we love and who, in turn, we feel loves us deeply. So when relationships go wrong, it can sometimes feel overwhelmingly threatening. As the song has it, “Ain’t no sunshine when she’s gone.” Here I want to offer a list of 12 questions that I […]

  • lonely-client

    3 Behavioural Interventions to Help Your Lonely Clients

    Ongoing loneliness tends to produce a sense of lost meaning. We need to feel life is meaningful, and deep relationships are a – perhaps the – vital way many people create and enjoy meaning in their lives. We all have a need for human contact, to give and receive attention. And, like any need, its […]

  • parentified-child

    Helping the Adult Parentified Child

    Having to be mature beyond our years early on isn’t always harmful. Sometimes it may help form wonderfully adjusted, productive, even happy human beings. But what about the disadvantages of an early life with little or no carefree play, overburdened with emotional and practical responsibility?

  • help-client-through-a-divorce

    How to Help Your Client Through a Divorce

    Just like marriage itself, the experience of divorce can be radically different for different people. Some ex-spouses continue to torment or try to control, and financial worries can feel overwhelming. But these three principles will hold good for anyone going through divorce.

  • unk-unkind-critics

    How to Help Your Client Deal with Unkind Critics

    Being on the receiving end of someone’s negative carping is demoralizing and downright depressing. Here I want to address how we can help clients become more resilient in the face of negative criticism.

  • treating-psychological-impotence

    Treating Psychological Impotence

    Here are 5 ways to treat psychological blocks at the root of sexual dysfunction.

  • build-better-boundaries

    How to Build Better Boundaries

    The consequences of never stating needs, ideas, or demands is a life of frustration and learned helplessness. Here are five ways to help your clients be more assertive.