The Relationship Enhancement® Model


The Relationship Enhancement® (RE) Model is both a psychoeducational program and a brief therapy model that employs an innovative skills-training methodology for empowering even the most distressed couples and families to resolve current and future problems on their own. Following the principles of an educational model rooted in learning theory, it accomplishes its goals by teaching a set of practical skills that enables couples and families to uncover and communicate their deepest feelings, concerns and desires, and to create solutions to problems at their deepest levels. An additional strength of RE therapy is that it equalizes power within relationships, both between genders and across generations.

The Ten RE Skills Taught Are:

Empathic Skill: will teach you how to listen to and empathize with your partner in a manner that leaves him or her feeling understood, deepens his or her self-understanding, and encourages further self-exploration and self-disclosure; it also will enable you to connect more deeply with your partner’s experience in a manner that increases receptivity to and acceptance of the his or her point of view; finally, it will foster a deepened sense of intimacy, compassion and emotional bonding in your relationship.

Expressive Skill: will teach you how to promote a spirit of cooperation and to express yourselves openly, honestly and clearly, but in a manner designed to minimize defensiveness on the part of your partner and to maximize his or her receptivity to hearing your point of view and to resolving an issue constructively.

Discussion/Negotiation Skill: will teach you how to dialogue with one another in a manner that fosters emotional safety, promotes deepened understanding and acceptance of one another’s point of view, and helps build a commitment to finding an appropriate solution to a problem when that is called for.

Problem/Conflict Resolution Skill: will teach you how to devise creative solutions that genuinely address both of your concerns and meet both of your desires, and that are sufficiently detailed to help ensure implementation.

Facilitation (or Coaching) Skill: will teach you how to keep your dialogues on track when either of you fails to be skillful, and to do so in a manner that minimizes the risk of disrupting your dialogue.

Conflict Management Skill: will teach you how to better regulate your emotions and to manage difficult conflict situations more effectively and in a manner that preserves emotional safety and respect for your relationship.

Self-Change Skill: will teach the person who is agreeing to make a change in behavior do so more quickly and reliably.

Helping-Others Change Skill: will teach the person who has requested and is hoping for a change in a partner’s behavior to be patient and constructively supportive of that person’s change efforts.

Generalization Skill: will teach you how to consolidate and integrate your use of the RE skills into your daily lives and how to use these skills unilaterally to improve communication in virtually any relationship.

Maintenance Skill: will increase the likelihood that you will continue to use the RE skills on a long-term basis.