Hold Me Tight® Couples Workshop

The Hold Me Tight workshop for couples is the streamlined version of Emotionally Focused Therapy.  It is a relationship enhancement and education program based on the book Hold Me Tight: Seven Conversations for a Lifetime of Love by Dr. Sue Johnson.

The workshop is structured to move through the seven conversations necessary for secure attachment.  These conversations are as follows:

  1. Recognizing the Cycle:  The goal is to gain a clear and shared narrative about the essence of the problem that keeps the couple caught in loops of disconnection, pain and loneliness.

  2. Finding the Raw Spot:  At the deepest level, all conflict in a romantic relationship is about the fear of rejection and/or abandonment.  Each person’s vulnerability is often buried within fights.  During this conversation, couples acknowledge their raw spot.

  3. Revisiting a Rocky Moment:  This conversation provides a platform to practice recognizing the negative cycle, seeing the vulnerability underneath, and responding differently to each other.  The goal of this conversation is to provide a platform for safety.

  4. Forgiving Injuries:  This conversation is about revisiting emotional injuries in a safe environment, equipped with a map and support to begin taking the vital steps toward healing and forgiveness.

  5. Bonding through Sex and Touch:  This conversation is about how deeper emotional connection leads to better sex, and how better sex can lead to deeper emotional connection.

  6. Hold Me Tight:  This conversation is the culmination of the weekend.  Couples will learn to be emotionally accessible, responsive, and engaged with each other.

  7. Keeping Your Love Alive:  This conversation is about how to keep the connection alive and vibrant.

The Hold Me Tight workshop is designed to get on a path to secure attachment, which includes:

  • Greater physical and emotional intimacy

  • Reduced conflict and improved conversation, especially about the topic that previously created discord

  • Understanding oneself and one’s partner more accurately

  • Creating deeper and more fulfilling ways of being together

  • Feeling better about yourself and your partner

  • Communicating more effectively

  • Discovering that you are not alone

  • Creating lasting change for you and your partner

  • Healing old injuries

Testimonial from a previous Hold Me Tight participant: This workshop is the best workshop I’ve ever attended.  I’m pregnant with my second child, and I was so worried about how the new baby would change my relationship with my husband.  I was afraid that we wouldn’t be as close.  I feel closer to my husband than I ever have, and I shared things I never thought I’d share.  I also learned about his vulnerabilities.  I am much more secure about handling anything that comes our way.  I know I’ll mark this workshop as the turning point for us.  Thank you, Jennifer.    Hold Me Tight participant

Frequently Asked Questions


1) What is the “Hold Me Tight® Couples Workshop”?

The Hold Me Tight® Couples Workshop is based on Emotionally Focused Therapy. EFT is an empirically validated model for helping couples. It was created and developed by Dr. Sue Johnson, PhD. Research shows that EFT helps 80-90% of couples, a better statistic than any other model.

EFT focuses on strengthening the bond between a couple by helping each member express deeper, often hidden and misunderstood emotions. When a couple is able to turn toward each other from a place of vulnerability and respond to each other’s reach, the bond grows and strengthens. After attending a Hold Me Tight® Workshop, couples report feeling more connected, deeper in love, and better able to communicate, as well as a reduction in conflict.

2) Will attending make things worse?

The short answer is no. I’ve never experienced or heard of a couple attending a Hold Me Tight® Workshop and leaving in worse shape. In fact, many participants express a feeling of greater closeness and connection. We focus on your strengths, and even when we look at the problems, it is within the context of your bond.

3) Will there be child care?

No, and I understand how tricky it can be to find childcare. However, happily married parents create more security for the kids. The decision and commitment to improve your marriage trickles down.

4) Who are you and are you qualified to do this?

I am a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist. I’m also the only certified Emotionally Focused Therapist supervisor in Sacramento. I teach other therapists how to be EFT therapists, put on presentations about EFT for the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists, and facilitate several groups focused on EFT. I’m passionate about helping couples build stronger bonds and happier relationships. I’ve held Hold Me Tight® Workshops in Sacramento, and I’ve assisted in the Bay Area with Sam Jinich and Michelle Gannon. I’d be honored to help you.

5) What is the format of the group? Is there role-play?

The group is mostly educational. There is an opportunity to share, but not a requirement. The focus is on safety, with an effort to cut down on the awkwardness factor. I understand that your relationship is private and sacred, and I treat it as such. After each education section, you’ll go into a separate space with your partner and do a worksheet together.

6) Will I be put on the spot to answer questions, or made to do uncomfortable exercises?

No. It’s not that everything has to be serious, but you won’t be put on the spot.

7) We’ve been to therapy before and it didn’t help. How can we be sure that this won’t be a waste of time and money?

The Hold Me Tight® Workshop is based on Emotionally Focused Therapy. EFT is a research-based model of couples therapy that boasts an excellent outcome for the majority of couples.

I believe this workshop can help you!

In fact, I will give you your money back if you do not receive any value. That’s right: If the workshop doesn’t help you, then I’ll refund your money. However, like everything else, it only works if you do, so I’ll require that you fill out all the worksheets together before I’ll return your payment. Also,

you have 24 hours after the workshop ends to request a refund.

The next workshop is December 2nd & 3rd, 2017

Facilitated by Jennifer Olden, LMFT, certified EFT therapist and supervisor,

Hold Me Tight