8 Couples Therapy Exercises All Couples Need To Try

couples therapy exercises

Even if you don’t feel that you currently need to attend couples therapy exercises, certain marriage counseling exercises will benefit almost any relationship. Here are ten of the most useful.

8 Couples Therapy Exercises All Couples Need To Try

Couples Therapy Exercises

1. Compare love languages

You might express your love quite differently from your partner, and as a result, you might miss some important indications of affection. Try making a list of how you show love, and ask your partner to make a separate list. Common examples include cuddling, offering to do chores, holding hands, supporting each other, buying gifts, and offering praise.

Next, compare your lists. Talking about any differences allows everyday acts to take on a pleasant new layer of meaning. In addition, you can discuss whether there are any methods of showing the love that you would like to use more often.

2. Consider negotiable needs

Make a list of ten things you believe you need from a relationship, and then split that list into things you require, things you want but don’t need, and things you could probably let go of. What does this division tell you about potential areas of compromise? Ask your partner to make a list as well. How can you better meet newly uncovered needs?

3. Examine family lessons

When couples go to counseling, many begin to uncover old assumptions based on disparities in upbringing. You can explore this idea at home by writing down things you feel you learned from your parents. For example, consider the type of relationship they modeled for you, what they taught you about gender roles, what happened when there was a crisis, and how family members expressed positive and negative emotions. Compare your family lessons to those your partner has internalized, and discuss how you might see marriage differently due to your upbringing.

4. Look at unspoken communication.

In addition to thinking about love languages, you can spend time thinking about communicating with other strong feelings. Once again, you and your partner should begin by making separate lists that detail how you think you tell each other important facts without speaking.

For example, what do you do to signify irritation or anger? How do you communicate that you want physical intimacy? How does your behavior change when you’re looking for a favor? Going over these lists can help to discourage misunderstandings and encourage you to make your thoughts more explicit.

5. Reminisce about the past

Couples who have been together a long time may particularly enjoy this exercise, which focuses on remembering some of the very best parts of the past if you find yourself forgetting the early days, set aside a romantic evening to talk about how and why you ended up together.

Trade memories of your first dates, your first impressions, and thoughts about significant moments (such as the moment you realized you were right for each other). This process can reconnect you with some of the most important reasons why you fell in love.

6. Assess sexual knowledge

If your sex life has become somewhat lackluster or just interested in spicing things up, you can learn a lot by exercising sexual knowledge. Begin by making a list of the things you think you know about your partner’s sexual preferences, such as their favorite places to be touched, the most effective ways to turn them on, their favorite sexual activities, and some things they might enjoy doing more frequently. On the other side of the paper, write down the same facts about yourself.

Ask your partner to make a separate list of the key things they think they know about your sexual preferences, along with a list of facts about their preferences.

Comparing your answers can reveal false assumptions, give you an interesting perspective on what your partner finds exciting, and trigger fun conversations about new things you’d like to try in the bedroom.

7. Think about what love is

Simple but effective, this exercise involves simply writing down ways to complete the sentence ‘love is…’ (until you run out of ideas). Is there anything on your list that your partner finds confusing, and is there anything on their list that reveals underlying beliefs or desires of which you were previously unaware?

8. Discuss agreements

Write down some of the key agreements you think exist in your relationship, and ask your partner to do the same thing. For example, what counts as infidelity? How quickly must disagreements be resolved? What division of household chores is acceptable? How much time do you need to spend with other family members?

What level of communication is required when you are apart? How often should you spend time alone each week? The differences in your lists can be illuminating, and discussing them can help to prevent future conflict.