Would you like your relationship to be more satisfying, respectful and loving? 

Do you want to feel more cared for, listened to and understood?

It is possible even if you’ve tried and failed many times before. 

Difficult to believe. I can understand that. 

But possible? Yes, absolutely. There are many who have already succeeded.

Hello there,

Relationships can be really tough at times. I get that. It’s true that many, many couples will spend huge amounts of money on counselling, therapy and workshops in an endeavour to make their relationship special again.


A few (a very few) will succeed totally.


A few more will struggle along in unspoken sadness, neither experiencing the joy and delight of total success, nor the demoralizing impact of failure.

Most will fail. Frustratingly and repeatedly.

Perhaps you have already experienced one of these failures, after all, most of us have.


Maybe you know what it’s like to put a huge amount of effort into doing the right thing, trying to avoid an argument, trying to see your partner’s point of view, trying not to lose your cool, only to end up feeling frustrated and angry, again and again and again!


You do your very best, trying desperately to conjure up that sense of harmony and fulfillment that you used to feel in your relationship, but you end up in the same sad, hurtful, distressed, emotional space regardless

Maybe you have suffered this sense of hopelessness and despair more than once. Maybe you feel that no matter how hard you try, you will never get it right, never say the right thing, never achieve that harmonious connection that you yearn for.

Does any of this sound familiar?

Don’t feel bad - you’re not alone, and it’s not your fault.

The reason for your frustration is not a lack of willpower, it’s not gullibility, and it’s not a moral failing on your part.

The reason why you can’t seem to achieve that easy, loving, relaxed kind of relationship is really quite simple, and even easy to change. (and believe me, yes it is possible to change). 

What has held you back is simply that you, like most of us, will have learned to respond to upsetting events and emotional situations in your relationship in ways which are often unhelpful and sometimes downright disastrous.

Also, some of how you do respond may well at times trigger your partner’s “own stuff” which then means you are then dealing with a dimension that has very little to do with the original issue.

This is what causes some couples to say “we seemed to start out arguing about (ABC for example) but after a while, we are just arguing, seemingly about everything”.

But please, please do not blame yourself or those you grew up with. You, like all of us, have simply been doing the best you can with the skills and experience that you have available to you at this time.

What you have not had is the right opportunity, the right situation, the right skills, the right experiences, the right strategies and the right environment to make it possible.

When you start to get these things “right” then change starts to happen. 

Change comes about when certain things come together in the right way, with the right strategies and the right guide to lead the way.

Think about that.

Let it soak in.

What that means is that despite your best, most heartfelt efforts and good intentions, you may not have been getting the results that you could have, the results that you should have, or the results that you deserve. Once you get a handle on that it can all be very different.

Now, Why Would You Listen to Me?

That’s a good question to be asking right now. After all, I could just be another source of confusing information. But I’m not. 

My name is Hal Kennedy and I have spent more than 30 years working as a counsellor, therapist, educator, facilitator and mediator.


  1. I am a Member of New Zealand Association of Counsellors
  2. The New Zealand Arbitrators and Mediators Institute
  3. A Clinical Supervisor
  4. An accredited Family Dispute Resolution Mediator

An accredited Family Court Counsellor

  1. An accredited Preparation For Mediation Provider 

For those 30 plus years

I have been training, coaching, supporting, encouraging and at times almost willing couples and individuals to do their relationships better.


And I will state categorically that with the right tools and the right guide
 to keep you on track, you too can experience the level of caring,
 compassion and fulfilment that you yearn for in your relationship. 

It really is simple. 

But maybe not obvious.

The truth is, every great accomplishment involves doing “something” effectively and if we don’t instinctively know how to do that something effectively, then we need to learn how. Sometimes that’s not obvious to us.


Sometimes we think others were just born with the ability to magically have a great relationship... 

Most of us weren’t. At one time, virtually every couple started right where you are right now. There’s no reason holding you back from the same kind of success that some others already enjoy. And there’s even better news: you can enjoy that success faster, better, and easier than those who came before you.  


Because we now have; 


For some people all they need to do is to realise what it is that they could be doing differently that would make their relationships special again and they can then go ahead and put it into practice. 

However, for a lot of people that doesn’t happen as easily as that. They can get caught up in their own “stuff” which means that even when they know what to do in any given moment their emotions overwhelm them and cause them to act in sometimes very unhelpful ways. So, for these people longer more intense coaching and support is usually needed. 

Heart warming progress in relationship enhancement can happen when a couple truly set aside time and resources so that they can focus on their relationship and spend time learning and practising how to make their relationship special again.

The Relationship Retreat scenario is ideally suited for this purpose. 1, 2 or three day retreat style programmes allow the time to focus on and understand how couple relationship issues are resolved.

Currently the programmes are being offered at...

Westwood House

in Greytown, Wairarapa

 Te Whau Lodge

on Waiheke Island 

But time and money are not always available to everyone. So, to this end I offer a range of opportunities for couples to access the insights and understandings that can make their relationship special again.

Couples can access the expertise they need through 75 minute in person, face to face sessions with me.

Or similarly they can access me via Skype.

They can give their relationship an indepth and immediate boost through The Sapphire Relationship Programme. (more info)

They can dramatically enhance their relationship and themselves as individuals by embarking on the journey that is The Emerald Relationship Programme. (more info)

I am also (time permitting) willing to respond to a limited number of email queries.

This range of programmes and retreats provides an opportunity for couples to quickly and easily, access the help and support that they need to make their relationship function effectively, respectfully and again.

Some couples will prefer to have several in person, face to face or Skype sessions.

For other couples the deep seated insights and understandings that can more quickly be achieved from attending the longer retreats are what they are seeking.

While other couples will avail themselves of 2 or 3 Skype or face to face sessions and then decide to go deeper and do more intensive work through one of the longer retreat programmes.

This is also an ideal way for couples to get a “feel” for the way I work and the effectiveness of that work.

Maybe you've tried to make your relationship better before, but it has just never worked out. If so you are probably fairly sceptical about some kind of programme or counselling or coaching being the answer to the hurt, frustration and disappointment that you may have experienced.

But these programmes are different because they involve a level of active coaching and support that virtually ensures success, right down to detailed coaching in the moment while you are conversing with your partner, such as;

"try doing it this way instead of the way you would usually do it" or

"try saying this, instead of rolling your eyes like you were going to do" or

" acknowledge what your partner has said before you respond with your point of view"

When you involve yourself in working with Hal, you will:

Discover what you must do before you even think about trying to explain why you did what your partner is complaining about.

Understand exactly how to stay cool, calm and collected even in the most difficult conversations, even when you feel you are being criticised or verbally attacked, it’s not as tough as you think (and it’s probably different than you think, too)!

Learn the secret to getting your own way and having your partner feel good about it too. (and when you both feel good, your relationship will feel good too).

Identify how to feel safe, secure, loved and valued in your relationship. (this is a very different approach to that usually suggested, which sometimes only makes things worse).

These are the same strategies, (which so few couples know about that I call them secrets, but they're not) that I’ve used over the past thirty years, to enable an almost endless stream of couples to bring the love, the joy and the intimacy back into their relationships. And I know those relationship strategies will work for you too!

Here’s what other people have said about the these Relationship Programmes

Thank you Hal - We laugh often as we pull out wee sayings and strategies from our sessions with you, and we chat about you often.

Sam Silby.

Things are going really well with us and many of the communication tools you taught us are second nature now. So a huge thanks to you Hal.

Jenny McFadden

I really don’t think we’d be at this place in our lives and so excited about the future now. So glad that we decided that counselling was worth a shot!


Hal is a relaxed and easy going counsellor. He taught us useful, practical techniques to resolve issues. After three sessions Kate and I got engaged to be married! Thanks Hal.

Warren Saky

Just think what it would be like to feel so delighted, excited and thankful, that you might be prompted to write your own note of appreciation? Imagine that sensation! Imagine how you would feel about your relationship.

As a result of working with Hal you will learn

The oh so simple way to build empathy and develop trust in any given situation.

The reason why you should never try to explain why you did something before you do this!

The strange truth about how not getting defensive, directly increases your ability to feel secure and stay safe, and you will learn how to do it easily!

The ability to stay cool, calm and connected without getting involved in a pointless argument

My proven 3 step strategy to resolve a potentially difficult situation and avoid being drawn into an argument – it’s as simple as 123!

The counter intuitive secrets about fulfilling relationships that just seem too good to be true – But they’re not!

And I’ll even show you how to get more of the love you want in less time than you could ever have imagined – not only is it possible, it’s easier to do it this way!

And that is only the beginning...

As you experience Hal's skilful and perceptive support, what once appeared dark and mysterious will become clear and easy!


You see these Relationship Programmes are not a set piece of information about relationships that we work through one step after another. They are personalised programmes specifically tailored to the particular needs of you and your partner. They are an in depth, ongoing, exploration of the dynamics of your own particular relationship, which is then followed by consistent, intensive coaching to make the changes that you both would like to achieve and experience in your relationship.


Uncovering the dynamics of your relationship, (i.e. what’s working, what’s not)? is achieved in a very low key conversational manner.


Here are some of the questions that we might address as we explore your relationship dynamics:


How is your communication – is it respectful, caring, supportive, or is it at times, abrupt, critical, disrespectful or controlling?


Are you both happy with the level of intimacy in your relationship? Would either of you like something to be different? 


How much empathy does there seem to be? Would you like to build that quality and experience greater levels of empathy? 


It’s important to be able to take care of your personal needs, can you both do that in a way that also takes care of your relationship? 


How well do you both do when trying to manage your anger? Is one of you concerned about your own or your partner's anger? Do you know how to stay calm in the face of provocative, angry behaviour? 


Sex – are you both OK with your sexual relationship? Would you like it to be different in some way? 


Do you feel respected? Does your partner know how you feel? Can you tell them? Do they listen? 


Parenting – are you both on the same page? Could this be improved in some way? 


Inlaws – how hard/easy are they to be around? 


Are your individual personality styles able to flourish within the relationship? Or does one of you feel overly ignored or constrained?

As we unravel these questions and you

start to realise what’s really going on in the relationship, you will start to

notice a difference, an easing of tension, a lightness in the way you interact

with each other, a joyfulness in the conversation.  Hal

is determined to make these relationship skills and the joy, the love and the

delight that follows their application available to as many couples as

possible. One couple at a time 

Sapphire and Emerald Relationship


These relationship strengthening programmes are designed specifically to coach and support couples to fully understand each other’s needs and desires and enable them to truly be there for each other no matter what the situation.

The Sapphire Relationship Programme


  • Two nights luxury accommodation.

One full day (7 plus hours) of in person therapy, counselling and coaching. (This is to you personally, as a couple, in private, just the two of you working with me on your own).

  • Three follow up personal support sessions (via skype) spread over the following three months.

  • And access to me via phone conversations at any time over the next twelve months.

The Sapphire Relationship Programme is a highly intensive one day experience based entirely on your current relationship situation. It is ideal for those who have limited time availability and who want to quickly make significant improvements in their relationship. 

Usually held in a retreat setting with accommodation provided for 2 nights, the Sapphire Programme is a day long event that commences around 9 am and runs as long as it takes. That maybe 5 pm, 7 pm or 9 pm that evening 

This is a therapeutic programme which draws its content and focus from your needs, aspirations and current relationship situation.

I will work with you as a couple, however there may also be times where I will ask to work with one or both of you individually.

This process raises awareness of unhelpful relationship dynamics and aids the adaptation and integration of more helpful relationship behavioural patterns.


The Emerald Relationship Programme


  • Four nights luxury accommodation 

  • Three full days of rest, relaxation, sightseeing and exploring, interspersed with 12 hours of in person therapy, counselling, coaching and education.

  • Four follow up personal support sessions (via Skype) spread over the following 4 months.

  • And, access to me via phone conversations at any time over the next twelve months.

The Emerald Relationship Programme is an indepth, three day immersive experience suitable for those who have the time and are seeking a retreat type experience within which to enhance their relationship.

Usually including four nights accommodation at the venue, it allows couples time to effectively anchor new learnings and behavioural changes within a theoretical framework which of itself, encourages a more fuller acceptance and adaptation of new ways of relating with each other. 

It is widely accepted that a relaxing environment away from the habitual patterns of daily life enhances our ability to be open to new ideas and new ways of doing things.

The Emerald Programme has a similar therapeutic focus to the Sapphire Programme however its longer time frame allows for the inclusion of an educative, theoretical aspect that adds to the couple’s skills and expertise as they work toward making their relationship more loving, caring and fulfilling. 

And the three days and four nights away from the rush and tumble of normal daily life are a refreshing reminder of how our life and relationships can be.


P.S. Just think. One year from today.

The real question is…where will you be?    


Will you have arrived at the first anniversary of the best, most fantastic year of your relationship, feeling delighted, excited and filled with joy.

Or will you have arrived at the end of another year of frustration, hurt and disappointment, still trying to manage this relationship that is sort of ok but could be so much more. 

By undertaking to work with Hal you will be taking a major step toward a different future, where your relationship is the source of joy, delight and promise for the future.  

Maybe your hesitation is about having sufficient funds available at the present time?  

For those for whom this is so, then a payment plan may be the way to make it possible to experience the relationship that you yearn for and deserve.


if you know in your heart that you need to do something to make your

relationship delightful again, then access Hal’s 30 plus years of accumulated

expertise in whatever way suits best and avail yourselves of the opportunity to

start improving your relationship now. “For the

sake of your relationship and your future together, please do take action and

many blessings to you both.Kind regards Hal”