Could Couples Therapy Worksheets Make a Difference? You Might be Surprised…
No matter how great your relationship is, you will experience highs and lows in your relationship and periods of closeness and distance with your partner. At face value, periods of distance are nothing to be worried about and are a totally natural part of any relationship. But if it seems like your relationship is characterized by more distance than closeness, and if you generally feel unhappy in your relationship, it might be necessary to take some action to help you and your partner feel closer and improve your relationship. Improving your relationship can sometimes feel like an abstract concept, especially if you don’t have the resources (read: money and/or time) to seek professional help. But don’t fear, there are lots of free and easily accessible sources that you and your partner can use to help get your relationship back on track.
One of the easiest and most straightforward methods is to work through Couples Therapy Worksheets together. Couples therapy worksheets are widely available (for FREE) online and cover pretty much any relationship struggle you can think of. These worksheets can be a super effective tool for any couple as long as both people put in the effort and are honest during the approach. The worksheets often prompt uncomfortable topics, so it can be important to set aside time specifically dedicated to workshopping these worksheets. Having time dedicated to this activity will ensure that both partners can be honest and feel like they are in a safe space to be vulnerable and share their feelings, goals and plans for the future. Below are a few therapy worksheet resources that are available online that can help couples navigate various relationship obstacles:
Relationship Evaluation Checklist
If you are new to relationship worksheets and/or just working on your relationship in general, it can be helpful to start out with a relationship evaluation checklist so that you understand the current state of your relationship. This type of worksheet asks you to simply answer yes or no to a variety of questions, including things like “can you be yourself in the relationship”, “does the other person in the relationship understand you” and “can you both accept changes in roles and feelings”. You and your partner should both fill out the checklist, then compare your answers. If you find that you and your partner both feel misunderstood, or that one person does not feel heard, you can move forward as a team to try and address these problems. This type of worksheet can be a great relationship diagnostic test in cases where you feel like something is wrong, but can’t exactly put your finger on what the problem is.
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At the end of the day, a lot of relationship problems (and even most interpersonal problems with family, friends or at work) are due to problems with communication. If you find that communication is a problem after filling out a relationship evaluation checklist, or you happen to know that it’s a problem without the checklist, you should consider looking at communication worksheets to learn effective communication skills and tips. Worksheets like Assertive Communication provide traits of assertive communication (like eye contact, confident body language and listening to others without interruption), tips (respect yourself, plan what you are going to say) and examples of what assertive communication looks like. Worksheets like this often provide hypothetical scenarios, then allow you to respond using assertive communication as practice before using this type of communication in real life, with a partner. It’s important to note that assertive here does not mean aggressive, but it does mean clearly stating your feelings and needs in addition to actively listening to what your partner says. Using these types of worksheets can help you become a more effective communicator, and help you avoid miscommunication and the resulting conflicts in the future.
Setting boundaries is an important part of any relationship, but can honestly be very difficult if you aren’t used to having these types of conversations, or do not even know where to begin. Using a Boundary Worksheet helps provide a framework for approaching the topics of boundaries in your relationship, so that you and your partner can have a meaningful conversation about your needs and comfort levels. In order to effectively set boundaries, you have to feel comfortable saying no to things so that you can respect yourself and what you are comfortable with. Doing this can be hard for a lot of people, so boundary worksheets often provide creative ways to say “no”, like “i am not comfortable with this”, “I’m drawing the line at”, “this is not acceptable” to help you articulate your boundaries. These worksheets can also help you work through different hypothetical scenarios and practice using this type of language before trying it out in real life. Settling boundaries using this kind of worksheet will help you feel more comfortable in your relationship, and will increase trust in your partner when they respect these boundaries.
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Conflict Resolutions Worksheets
Conflict resolution is an important life skill that does not come easily to everyone and can require some hard work to cultivate. On top of being difficult in general, conflict resolution in the context of relationships can also be a bit trickier than conflict resolution at the office for example, where you can leave work at the end of the day and put the conflict out of your mind. Navigating intimate interpersonal conflict with your partner is a huge problem for many relationships, which is why Relationship Conflict Resolution worksheets exist. Unlike many other worksheets, conflict resolution worksheets tend to provide a list of appropriate conflict resolution skills rather than proving a list of questions for you and your partner to answer individually and compare. This is because all conflicts are unique and often can’t be characterized or worked through with a few questions. But regardless of what the conflict is, there are appropriate ways to approach differing opinions. Using these worksheets can help you and your partner communicate effectively even if you disagree by focusing on the problem, not who is at fault, using “I” statements and working towards a resolution.
## Worksheets About Types of Abuse
While conflict is common in any relationship, it’s important to understand the difference between conflict and abuse. Forms of physical and emotional abuse can occur in romantic relationships and it’s important to understand what constitutes these types of abuse and to be able to recognize abuse in your own relationship. There are worksheets available that can teach you about abuse in relationships. These types of worksheets are normally used by professionals to help clients recognize these patterns of behavior in their own relationship, but they can also be used by individuals without the help of a professional. Worksheets about abuse explain what different kinds of abuse are and what it can look like in a romantic relationship. This type of worksheet should be used privately, because it is often not helpful to point out abusive behavior to the abuser. If you find yourself in this type of relationship, you should turn to a professional or a trusted friend for help. While this can be a hard realization to discover on your own, it is also empowering to have this type of information and to be able to justify your need to leave a relationship.
Couples worksheets are not only great for troubleshooting problems in your relationship, they can also help couples negotiate what the future of their relationship will look like. Planning worksheets are a great tool to use when you are considering transitioning to a long term relationship or when you are already in a long term relationship. Relationship and Marital Planning worksheets not only help you set goals for yourself about your career, personal growth and family, but also help you learn about your partner’s goals and evaluate if your plans for the future are compatible. It’s important to understand if you and your partner are on the same page about your values, the possibility of children and your work and personal goals so that you can work toward that future together. Filling out a couples planning worksheet can help you see if you are on the same page, and/or what you are willing to sacrifice in order to have a shared future.
## Intimacy Worksheets
Whether you’re in a new relationship, or have been together for a long period of time, it can be difficult to talk about intimacy with your partner. Talking about pleasure and your preferences can feel intimidating or awkward, but it’s important to have these conversations so that both partners are satisfied in the relationship. Formally working through an intimacy worksheet can help take some of the awkwardness out of the situation by prompting questions about intimacy and sex. Questions on these worksheets range from things related to emotional intimacy like “how do you express love to your partner” to sexual intimacy, like “ what is your favorite sexual memory with your partner and why” to questions about connectedness, like “what does your partner do to make you feel safe”. Exploring these questions through intimacy worksheets will help you understand both yourself and your partner more.
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My Partner’s Qualities Worksheet
Couples Therapy worksheets can also help you recognize the things that you love in your partner. While all couples have things that they could improve upon, it's important not to overlook the great attributes that your partner has. Relationship improvement can often feel emotionally draining, so taking time to fill out affirming worksheets like worksheets about your partner’s good qualities can help keep the conversation positive, and remind you both why you are trying to improve your relationship in the first place. If you spend a lot of time with someone/live together you may fall out of the habit of complimenting the little things you like about them which may lead your partner to feel overlooked or undervalued. Filling out this type of worksheet will not only remind you of the reasons you love your partner, but it will help them feel supported and appreciated by you.
Self Visualization Worksheets
As important as it is to work on your relationship as a couple, it is also important to make sure that you are being the best version of yourself regardless of your relationship. Focusing on self improvement and meeting your goals will not only improve your self-esteem and long-term goals, but it can also help your relationship. Afterall, no one wants to be with an unmotivated person who is not trying to improve themselves in any way. Continued dedication to self improvement is sexy, and will inspire improvement in your partner and your relationship. Self Actualization worksheets can help you map out your personal, professional and social goals. Sometimes putting things down in a concrete way can really motivate you to take steps to achieve these goals! Even though these worksheets are meant to be filled out individually, you and your partner can fill them out at the same time and share the results. Even if the goals are personal, it can be helpful to understand what your partner’s goals are and help them/motivate them to achieve these goals.
If you and your partner are open to using couples therapy worksheets to help you make a difference in your relationship, you should try out Relish, a relationship coaching app that helps couples work towards their relationship goals with personalized coaching and a custom plan. Relish uses a ton of interactive quizzes to help you understand what’s going on in your relationship, in addition to interactive lessons that can help you work through your issues as a couple.
Our app integrates the types of quizzes we have talked about above, and gives you access to a trained relationship coach that can help you assess these quizzes, process the information and move forward with solid steps to improve your relationship. Click here to get started for free!