Of course you want your partner to change things, or you wouldn’t be looking into marriage therapy, but working on yourself in the presence of your partner is probably the most effective way to have a positive impact on your relationship. Focusing on what your partner needs to change simply doesn’t work. Ultimately, you don’t get what you want. And what is it that you want? Recalling your early expectations, from the beginning of your relationship, will help you visualize what it is you want—your ideal picture of the relationship. How do you behave as a partner in that perfect world? What are your characteristics? Looking now at the present, your real-life situation, what are your actual attitudes and behaviors? What hinders you from being that better person? Where are your weak points? When you’re stressed, do you try to control, nag, or whine? Do you avoid and withdraw? The answers to these questions will help make up your goals in therapy. Don’t worry, a good marriage counselor will make sure that each of you is doing work, not just you!