It is not unusual to feel a little nervous before your first couples counseling or marriage therapy session. Like with any other anxiety-producing event, preparing with special attention to self-care is critical to making the most of your investment in couples therapy.
There are four main elements I focus on in self-care: rest, reflection, action, and eating. I am outlining them below in relation to their impact on couples counseling sessions with specific suggested self-care strategies for each. Try these before your sessions to support the power of your session.
Before any event that might cause you stress, invest in rest and relaxation. Make sure you get the sleep you need, take a nap, or take it easy the day of the event.
Some of my clients find that creating space in their day before coming to therapy to rest and relax can impact their sessions in powerful ways. If you want help relaxing, you might be interested in an acupuncture or massage appointment at North Portland Wellness Center (just a few blocks from my office).
Therapy is usually most effective when clients take time between sessions to consider and reflect on their sessions. Often clients leave session with specific reflection questions or topics.