Sunday, March 11, 2007

Can Couples Recapture the Magic in their Relationship?

If you have been in a committed relationship for any length of time, you have probably faced the loss of enchantment most relationships experience as time marches on. How to return the magic is one of the most common questions presented in marital therapy. What can be done to awaken the marriage, and return the magic?

Whenever I go to the circus I am always impressed with the work of the trapeze artists. Their grace and timing is impeccable. They have learnt how to co-ordinate they’re rhythm with each other, and their beauty as a team is mesmerizing. I would describe the trapeze as a group of people dancing in mid air, with only a safety net to protect them from total disaster.

I see the beauty of the trapeze as a wonderful metaphor for couples who are looking to have an extraordinary relationship. The ease and grace witnessed by the audience does not tell the story about how much they have to practice and work out together to produce such a beautiful drama in the air. The dedication to their work, and the amount of time they practice goes unnoticed once the circus act begins. But we all can understand from the difficulty of the task how hard they have worked to produce the results we see at the circus.

Truth is they have practiced, practiced and then practiced some more. So with a good relationship, time is spent acquiring skills that gives the couple the grace and surrender we all enjoy to behold. Practice is required to create a magical relationship. It never happens effortlessly. In the trapeze act we do not see all the attempts they try to create what is seen during the performance. So to with extraordinary relationships. They happen because the couple has dedication and resolution.

Magical relationships have the timing and grace of the trapeze artist. The timing comes from experience, learning new skills, and putting yourselves in the position where you can be couched by others. People ask therapists all the time, does therapy work for couples? The answer is yes, but it takes commitment, dedication and practice. I have seen many couples transform dysfunction systems into graceful works of art, but only with hard work, practice and powerful communication skills.

Couples therapy is only one of the tools available for couples wishing to return the magic. I have seen spectacular results from marriage encounter weekends, and many churches offer them free of charge. Check with your local minister to find such weekend retreats for couples. I have seen many good seminars and workshops produce transformation in marriages. I have watched couples grow just by going to group sessions for couples. Any arena where you get to practice and learn new skills will improve your relationship, and will assist the couple in recapturing the magic that began the relationship in the first place.

If you want to have a powerful relationship, you will have to work at it. And, this needs to happen not just when you get into trouble. Before the magic wears thin, finding support to produce an extraordinary relationship is available from many sources. If you really want to revitalize your commitment, you can and you will find many sources for support in doing this work.

Perhaps having a wonderful relationship is not important to you. Maybe the trapeze artist is a totally pointless craft. Maybe you prefer to just have an exchange of services in your marriage. If so, let things be. But if you yearn for more, and if you long for the magic to return or increase, you will have to be committed to working hard. You may have to learn new skills and you will definitely have to practice these skills within your relationship if you want it to flourish and grow.