By Encompass Outreach Group
When couples need relationship help, the most common reaction is to seek out a marriage counselor. Marriage counselors have become the go-to source for dealing with issues within a marriage, but there is another alternative for couples looking to get relationship help: marriage coaching. We’re here to discuss what marriage coaching is and explain how it differs from marriage counseling.
Marriage Coaching. With marriage coaching, a trained relationship coach works with a couple to develop relationship and communication skills that help them deal with present situations as well as focus on the future, not solving past issues. The coach becomes a partner with the couple, giving them the tools they need and actively helping them create plans, strategies, and goals with actionable steps, for their relationship. A marriage coach is an expert on the process that can help you and your partner, who are the experts of your own relationship. The coach is not someone who has all of the answers for you but is someone who gives you the necessary tools and training to fix the issues in your relationship. Marriage coaching sessions are also flexible and can be held online, in an office, or anywhere convenient for you and your coach.
Marriage Counseling. Marriage counseling has a more medical feel due to the client-counselor relationship where the counselor feels like an expert and the only one who has the answers. Counseling provides specialized help that addresses more serious issues, like past trauma, mental health issues, and other personality issues/behaviors that are beyond coaching. Generally, a marriage counselor focuses on things that happened in the past and tries to solve why those things happened and how they led to this point. Usually, there is a set schedule and couples must go into the counselor’s office because of confidentiality.
There is some overlap between coaching and counseling, so most professionals recommend trying coaching first and, if coaching doesn’t work, your coach will refer you to a counselor for more specialized help.
Encompass Connection Center helps couples learn how to resolve conflict and create fulfilling, productive relationships. We offer a free relationship assessment to determine your relationship’s strengths and potential threats. For more help, look into our RINGS Experience, which is an in-depth education and coaching model that includes relationship skills coaching to help build real intimacy and growth skills.
5/20/2021 03:04:19 pm
As a relationship coach with Encompass, I have personally seen many couples improve and/or save their marriages through marriage coaching. It just seems that in too many situations, no one bothers to train couples on how to communicate before they get married. Everyone is just focused on the wedding itself. Then they run into problems that require good relationship skills to work through, skills that they unfortunately don't possess. The great thing about relationship skills is they can transform no matter what the marital situation might be. They take bad to good, good to better and better to best. So it is never too late to start. Well worth the effort and investment!
12/20/2021 10:41:57 am
My friend mentioned that he's been having a hard time communicating with his wife. It makes sense that marriage coaching might be worth looking into for him! That seems like a great way to help train their communication skills together.
12/20/2021 01:42:34 pm
Braden, yes, communication is a major part of the relationship skills coaching we offer. See https://www.encompasscc.org/RINGS for the 8 hour VIRTUAL course that is combined with LIVE coaching to reinforce. Thanks for your comment!
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Lavern & Ronda Nissley are co-directors of Encompass. Married since 1978, both enjoy coffee, riding their tandem bicycle and working together to build strong relationships.