Wondering how to help your relationship coaching clients build stronger bonds and achieve deeper intimacy?
When you have the right set of tools, you can empower your coaching clients to transform their relationships beyond what they ever thought possible. That’s why we’ve gathered the 12 best relationship coaching tools to help you show up as a better coach!
What Are Relationship Coaching Tools?
Relationship coaching tools are a type of coaching tool designed to help relationship coaches support their clients as they strengthen the bonds in their relationships.
As a relationship coach, it’s your job to leverage these tools to ensure the best possible outcome for your clients! A solid toolkit is what separates a great coach from a mediocre one.
They should matter just as much (if not more) as the tools you use to run your coaching business!
While you can use existing relationship coaching tools, you can also develop your own. Over time, several coaches develop their own coaching frameworks or models and use them to build unique signature coaching programs.
12 Great Relationship Tools to Use With Your Coaching Clients
With that being said, here are 12 proven relationship coaching tools you can start leveraging with your coaching clients today!
1. Relationship coaching intake forms
Before you hop on your first session with your relationship coaching clients, make sure to send them an intake form and remind them to fill it out.
An intake form will allow you to understand your client’s needs since every relationship is unique!
You’ll also be able to jump into your first coaching session with much more context than you’d have without an intake form. Thanks to that context, you can make the most of your time with your clients.
2. Setting expectations at every session
It’s important to set expectations with your clients at the start of the coaching relationship. Are their desired outcomes realistic with their chosen coaching package? Do they understand your role as a relationship coach?
But you should also take a few minutes to set expectations at the start of every session. For example, a couple may come into a session expecting to overcome a recent instance of infidelity. However, that’s a much larger issue that can take several sessions to process and solve.
3. Development of communication skills
Couples who want to strengthen their relationships must develop several skills while working with you. But communication is one of the most important skills you should help them with.
Healthy communication between people in a relationship will help them:
- Find common ground
- Understand the other person’s perspective
- Get the right point across
- And so much more!
Communication skill development should come before most other skills in relationship coaching. Without communication, moving forward in other aspects of your clients’ relationship will be much harder.
4. Prioritzing “I” statements
When your clients express frustration in a conflict, remind them to use “I” statements instead of “you” statements.
A “you” statement places the blame on the other person, while “I” statements allow the speaker to take ownership of their feelings.
For example, if a client says the following: “You never clean up after yourself!”
Encourage them to say instead: “I feel frustrated and overwhelmed when the house is always messy.”
By using “I” statements, your clients can help their significant other see how their behavior is affecting them personally. It doesn’t shift the blame for the behavior, but it allows the speaker to take responsibility for their own thoughts and feelings.
The situation then becomes a conflict they can resolve together instead of playing the blaming game.
5. A trust-first approach
Like communication, trust is vital in a relationship. Some clients may come to you with an eroded sense of trust in their relationship.
Before you help your clients determine the desired outcome of working with you, consider taking a trust-first approach. Help them define what trust means to them and how they want to be when they interact with each other.
Defining trust in a relationship will help pave the way for honesty and transparency — which can further lead to intimacy.
6. Developing and enforcing boundaries
Every healthy relationship, romantic or otherwise, needs boundaries. Having boundaries in place will help your clients feel safe around each other — it’ll also help to rebuild trust.
You may work with clients who either struggle to enforce their boundaries or have a hard time respecting the boundaries of other people. In both cases, you’ll need to educate and encourage your clients so each of them can know where the lines are.
7. Forget “nice” – be “kind”
There’s a difference between being “nice” and being “kind.” Your clients may not know the difference, which could be causing conflicts in their relationship!
Being “nice” means being agreeable. On the surface, this can help your clients have pleasant conversations.
But avoiding conflict out of fear of not being “nice” won’t help your clients strengthen their relationships. Quite the opposite!
When approached in a healthy way, conflicts can help your coaching clients deepen trust and intimacy with each other.
Acting with kindness means to care (and to show you care). Someone who’s kind won’t be afraid to share their point of view and opinion with their significant other — using “I” statements, of course.
8. Creating a shared vision
What does the future look like? What are we working towards together?
Your clients can flourish together in their relationship by working towards a shared vision. But if their vision of the future differs from one person to the other, they may encounter friction and a lack of connection with each other.
Guide your clients to developing a shared vision of the future together. What are their values? How do they see each other as part of their lives in 1, 2, 5, 10, or 15 years? What are they working towards in unison?
You can mediate this conversation with your clients — alternatively, you can begin to guide them and give them homework for them to complete their vision in between sessions.
9. Assessing core needs
Arguments can frequently occur in a relationship when both parties can’t get their core needs met.
And it’s impossible to come up with suitable solutions and compromises if they don’t know what core needs those solutions need to meet!
For instance, let’s say you have a client who gets annoyed by her partner’s loud music in the evening. The partner gets frustrated when he’s told to turn it down.
What are the core needs in each situation, and how can both core needs be met?
Perhaps one partner absolutely needs an hour of quiet time to wind down before bedtime, while the other needs stimulation from the music. In that case, both parties could agree to a schedule in which the partner puts on headphones starting at 9 PM to let his partner wind down in peace.
This is just one example — the core needs of each person could be completely different. But you’ll need to help your clients assess what their core needs are before they can come up with solutions both of them are happy with.
11. Voxer coaching in between sessions
Are your clients struggling to overcome conflicts in between their sessions? Consider using Voxer coaching in between your regular relationship coaching sessions!
Voxer is a voice chatting app that several coaches use to communicate with their clients in lieu of traditional Zoom sessions. But you can also use Voxer as an additional support channel for those couples that need a helping hand.
If you do want to include Voxer coaching in your relationship coaching packages, make sure to establish clear boundaries on how they can use it. For instance, you can create specific office hours or give a limited number of responses per week.
You should also price your packages accordingly! This type of support is highly valuable and heightens the value of your entire program.
11. Understanding invitations vs. obligations
Your clients may not want to participate in something with their partner if they feel obligated to do so.
Instead of framing tools and activities as obligations, present them as invitations.
But you can go a step further and help your clients do the same in their everyday lives! Help them differentiate between invitations and obligations as well as when to use each.
This will help each person feel less pushed around by their partner.
12. Practicing within coaching sessions
Finally, consider scheduling time directly in your relationship coaching sessions to allow your clients to practice exercises.
The most powerful transformations will occur in between sessions. However, the magic can begin once you create a safe space with your clients and act as a mediator.
With time for practicing, you’ll be able to help your clients improve what’s not working so that they get better results with true conflicts outside of your sessions.
Adopt Relationship Coaching Tools to Facilitate Powerful Transformations
Keep these tools in your belt for your next relationship coaching session!
One of the most underrated tools for a relationship coach is what you use to organize your coaching business. For instance, how can you simplify the way clients book your sessions? How much time do you spend in your inbox?
Paperbell is the crazy-simple way to manage and grow a relationship coaching business. Grab your free account to try it for yourself!