Relationship Institute Australasia

Counselling and
Professional Training

Why train in couples therapy with Relationship Institute Australasia

12 April 2022 / For therapists / Relationship Help / Relationship Institute Australasia / Gottman Marital Therapy

 RIA is Australia’s lead agency that offers Certified Gottman Methods Couple Therapy training for professionals. We have delivered over 90 Gottman Training programs and trained over 1500 professionals in Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong, and the USA. RIA begins and finishes your Gottman professional development journey offering all three levels of Gottman training, professional supervision, and consultation to become a Certified Gottman Therapist.

Currently across the world, there are 26 Master Trainers and Consultants in Gottman Therapy. This group has honed their craft over many years and lead Gottman training across all levels. Fortunately, in Australia RIA has the two Master Trainers and Consultants, John Flanagan and Trish Purnell-Webb.

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Easter 2022 -  By John Flanagan   AMHSW   Certified Gottman Therapist, Master Trainer & Consultant

11 April 2022 / Relationship Help / Relationship Institute Australasia / Gottman Marital Therapy

Is it too early to start hoping that we are finally coming out of two years of mask wearing, lock downs, isolation, limited travel, and holidays? The pandemic came with a high toll for individuals, relationships, families, and communities across this country. All this compounded by recent devastating flooding with many communities declared disaster zones has certainly added to a growing experience of feeling overwhelmed, stressed and anxious, stretching our reserves of resilience. Below we share three sensible and practical activities to use during your Easter break to restore resilience in your relationship when both of you are feeling fatigued or depleted.

Activity 1: Be on each other’s team
The Stress Reducing Conversation is a wonderful way to turn towards your partner ...

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How to choose your Gottman Therapist?  By John Flanagan   AMHSW   Certified Gottman Therapist, Master Trainer & Consultant

28 February 2022 / Relationship Help / Gottman Marital Therapy

Gottman Relationship Therapy has grown in popularity over the last 40 years, internationally and now here in Australia - and there are very good reasons for this.

It is one of, if not the most, research-based methodology for couple’s therapy. It is well credentialed with studies using randomized clinical trials being published in the Journal of Family Therapy and the Journal of Family Psychology endorsing the effectiveness of the Gottman method.

More and more couples are looking towards this approach to help them with their relationship struggles, but how does one know the level of Gottman expertise and training their relationship therapist has?

There is a world of difference between a therapist using some Gottman techniques and having a rudimentary understanding of Gottman theory and practice - compared to specifically being taught through the different levels of Gottman training and the journey in becoming an endorsed Certified Gottman Therapist.

So here are three questions (and their answers) to ask your potential relationship therapist about their expertise in Gottman Therapy.

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Working with Individual Clients presenting with Couple Problems.  By Trish Purnell-Webb -  Clinical Psychologist, Certified Gottman Therapist, Master Trainer & Consultant

3 February 2022 / For therapists / Relationship Help / Relationship Institute Australasia

When couples are dissatisfied in their relationship, couple therapy has become one of the most widely practiced interventions. The effectiveness of couple therapy has been demonstrated by several studies (Shadish Baldwin, 2003). and in systematic reviews. Lebow, Chambers, Christensen, and Johnson (2012) summarized research findings indicating that evidence based couple therapy improves relationship satisfaction for 71% of participating couples at the end of treatment.

While couple therapy has shown to be significantly more effective than individual therapy in addressing relationship distress (Barbato & Avanzo, 2008), many people who seek help for couple-related issues are treated in individual therapy.

There are several reasons for this. For example:
• One partner is reluctant to attend;
• One partner may be reluctant to invite the other partner;
• Therapists might recommend individual treatment if one partner demonstrates clinical issues such as substance abuse, depression, trauma, etc;
• Individual therapy may be the only format of therapy offered by the service provider (organisational EAP programs, or therapist is not trained in couple therapy)

The current research raises three major concerns about treating couple problems in individual therapy (Gurman & Burton,2014): ...

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Begin 2022 with little Decisions - By John Flanagan   AMHSW   Certified Gottman Therapist, Master Trainer & Consultant

4 January 2022 / For therapists / Relationship Help / Relationship Institute Australasia / Gottman Marital Therapy / Art & Science of Love Couples Workshops

The iconic Australian songwriter Paul Kelly wrote,

“Little decisions are the kind I can make,  Big resolutions are so easy to break”.

The waters are yet to calm on the COVID 19 landscape; certainty and predictability still remain fragile commodities. As we enter 2022, it is the little decisions we can make that can provide more stability and direction for our future.

As you know the John Gottman mantra of ‘small things often’ is more important than ever as we contend with looking after our relationships, families, work and ourselves.  Did you know that if the navigation calculations and trajectory were out by only .1 degree for the Apollo mission to the moon, the spacecraft would have missed the moon by 6709 km. Over time, little things become significant. Importantly this is true for both positive and negative acts.

So here are 5 practical ways to create small change across time in your relationship.

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What is TRUST?  By John Flanagan   AMHSW   Certified Gottman Therapist, Master Trainer & Consultant

26 November 2021 /

We all know that trust is a critical ingredient for a successful relationship - but what do we actually know about trust and how is it built.

In his research, Dr John Gottman found that the basis of conflict for new couples - concerned trust: ‘Will you be there for me when I need you?’.

The building of trust is not instantaneous in relationships. It is created slowly over time through small acts of turning towards each other, being there for your partner and expressing compassion and empathy for one another’s feelings.

Interestingly in relationships, many conflicts concern the defining and building of trust. ‘Are you there for me when I call, when I am worried, upset, hurt or angry?’.

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When childhood trauma presents as part of couple distress.  By Trish Purnell-Webb Clinical Psychologist & Certified Gottman Therapist, Master Trainer & Consultant

18 October 2021 / For therapists / Gottman Marital Therapy

When childhood trauma presents as part of couple distress.

Imagine a couple in their late 40’s, they have teenage children. The presenting problem is described as a parenting problem. Helen (not her real name) reports that when the kids are arguing, yelling, playing loud music or rumbling – making thumping noises, Tony (not his real name) “over-reacts”.

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How to guide couples to improve their relationships through Gottman Therapy Level 1 Training

18 October 2021 / For therapists / Relationship Help / Relationship Institute Australasia / Gottman Marital Therapy / Art & Science of Love Couples Workshops / Bringing Baby Home

We know what makes relationships work and what doesn’t.

Let us teach you, as therapists, how to guide couples to improve their relationships through Gottman Therapy Level 1 Training.

The Gottman Therapy has clear and specific goals:
-  increasing connection and friendship,
-  addressing conflict constructively and reducing negative interaction,
-  building a life of shared meaning together.

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Level 1 Clinical Training - Gottman Method Couples Therapy - 18th & 19th November 2021

13 September 2021 / For therapists / Relationship Help / Relationship Institute Australasia / Art & Science of Love Couples Workshops

Level 1 Clinical Training - Gottman Method Couples Therapy provides a comprehensive, research-based, professional development pathway in relationship therapy excellence. There are four brilliant levels of training that include a deep dive into research, theory, assessment, formulation, interventions and skills development. Gottman training is world-renowned and highly valued.

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The Truth about Intimacy - by Trish Purnell-Webb Certified Gottman Therapist, Master Trainer and Consultant

26 July 2021 /

Sex and intimacy are not the same thing. Sometimes sex can be intimate and personal, sometimes it can be impersonal and without intimacy. The truth about intimacy is that is built and maintained by a whole range of activities.

A big part of intimacy is quality time. When we meet someone we are attracted to, we want to spend time with them, we become a bit obsessed with them, we want to know everything we can about them. We want to get to know them on a deeper level than we are interested in with other people we meet. That deeper level is one level of intimacy. Let’s call it the ‘best friend’ level of intimacy. To deepen this we make time to hang out with them, we watch them in shared moments, we learn how they behave in social situations, what they enjoy, what they don’t. We learn about their values, their life experiences, their beliefs, wants, needs and desires. As we learn these things we deepen our intimate knowledge of them. Either we like what we learn or we don’t.

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