What Motivates You In Love?

I was listening to sports radio during my drive in the other day and the discussion was on maintaining motivation.  I am truly fascinated by sports (some would say fanatical) because the idea of someone dedicating their whole lives to perfecting a talent is amazing to me.  It takes a special kind of person to sacrifice the way athletes do. Yes, there are big pay offs, but there are also tremendous sacrifices made along the way.  And in order to justify the sacrifices, you not only need dedication to your craft, but you also need an ability to stay intensely motivated.

 Or you’ll simply fall flat.

I Need You To See Me

My toddlers are quickly becoming kids and will be starting Kindergarten this Fall. It’s truly hard for me to believe that they’ve grown so quickly and to realize the little people that they’re becoming in the world.

Their independence is fierce and their desire to figure things out on their own is becoming more and more hardwired.  I often find myself sitting on the sidelines, waiting for them to ask for help versus jumping in and doing like I did in those early years.

Peak to Peak Principle

Picture yourself standing on one peak and being able to easily see the other peak in the distance. Now begin making your way from one peak to the other.  As you dip into the valley, you begin to lose sight of the peak you’re heading towards.  As you descend, the fog thickens, the trees become taller and denser. You try your best, but despite all you’re looking up, you can hardly see the peak you’re walking to any longer.  You begin to feel defeated and slow your pace, wondering if you’re even going the right direction.  You begin to doubt yourself and even wander off course.  Eventually you decide to just sit and wait for the rescue party, because it’s not worth trying on your own.  You’ve completely lost perspective of where you needed to be headed.


If Something Is No Longer Serving You In Love......Why Do You Keep Doing It?

Love is a crazy thing. I’ve been doing this work for over a decade and I’m still fascinated, intrigued and inspired by it.  At times love can feel so simple and clear while the next it feels confusing and scary.  Love pushes us to be honest, to be vulnerable, to be intimate, to forgive and to self-reflect.  And friends, that’s not always the easiest thing.


One of the more intriguing things in love is this habit you get into of continuing a pattern or behavior, long after it’s served it’s purpose.  Couples share with me all the time in my Sacramento therapy office about so desperately wanting things to be different, to change, to grow, but are so unsure or defeated of how to get it to change.

Does Anger Make You Dependent On Others?

Anger is truly a dynamic feeling. It’s one of those feelings that you’re regularly denying exists, stuffing it down til it boils over or struggling to let go.


What’s so fascinating about anger is the longer you hold onto it, the more dependent you become on the other person, and not in a good way.


Let me expand on this for a second. 

Mud On The Tires

I grew up in a small farming town in California and my Dad used to always say “Never trust a farmer with clean boots”.  His theory was real work means we’re gettin’ a little muddy.


With that being said, it isn’t surprising that I married a hard working boy from Northern Idaho or that country music makes me nostalgic for home.  Or that the site of muddy boots always makes me smile.  

I Want The Kind Of Relationship That Makes My Kids Want To Fall In Love.

After hearing a friend talk the other day about the ups and downs of relationships and how having kids intensifies both the good and bad in our love relationships, I started thinking about my own marriage and what I want my kids to see and experience since they’re truly tiny observers of my husband and I’s relationship.


We all know that children are sponges and soak up what we say and do, even when we’re not meaning for them to be lurking in the corners of the room.  As parents, we have a great responsibility to be models to our kids for what love should look like.  We also carry the responsibility of finding a way to interact in a healthy and respectful manner even if you’ve decided to part ways.

Let It Be About Each Other.

Valentines is fast approaching and I feel like it’s one of our most controversial holidays….well besides whether the day after Super Bowl should be a National Holiday, but that’s a debate for another blog post.


Celebrating Valentine’s Day feels like it has become polarizing because of this expectation for it to be a big to-do with grand gestures while potentially neglecting the importance of small but consistent acts of love throughout the year.

How To Rock Couples Therapy

So in an effort to help, I’ve put together a list on the best ways to rock couple’s therapy and make some real change happen in love.

If you’re thinking about couple’s therapy in Sacramento and are ready to make some real changes in your relationship, here are some tools to use to get the most out of it.

1.    Be Up For The Challenge- some couples come in really skeptical and reluctant.  And I get that, it’s really overwhelming to reach out for support and allow a stranger (aka therapist) into your relationship.  Coming into therapy with an open mind and willingness to dig in and do the work is going to make it a really successful experience.

What’s Your Relationship Word?

In doing this exercise, I realized that my professional words for 2016 are the same as my personal.  Because in my marriage, I want to practice abundance.  I want to find the good, even when I’m in a sour mood. I want to slow down and show gratitude.  I want to focus on abundance because I want to be intentional about creating a large amount of love and joy around me.

The Biggest Secret To Success in Love

Because when I learned this one, it absolutely changed the way that I looked at, experienced and showed up in love. 

It’s the power of being a great apologizer and a great forgiver.  Now by no means am I saying this is something I excel at in every given moment in my relationship. But it created an incredible shift for me once I realized how valuable these two traits were.

At Least I Can Say That I've Tried

The thing that grips me with “Hello” is the intensity of not just her words, but the pain you can feel in her voice.  The longing.  The regret.


At least I can say that I’ve tried….to tell you I’m sorry for breaking your heart.


Because loss and regret are like that.  It leaves us so wanting.  It makes us want to at least say we tried.  Even if trying means we can’t erase the pain.


I know Adele’s song speaks to so much loss, but I really feel that the emotion she shares can also help in healing the love we still share with someone.

Buckling Up In Love: Are You Practicing Good Seat Belt Safety?

I mean an unfastened seat belt does nothing for you.  And lord knows, racing to buckle up mid-crash doesn’t do anything to minimize the injury. 


So with that logic, I have to ask if you’re practicing seat belt safety in love? Are you putting on the seat belt mid-crash or did you secure your belt well before you started the journey?

Gratitude Changes Everything....But Can It Help You Get Unstuck In Love?

In my teen years,  I so wanted my mom to respond to any crappy situation I was describing with “oh my, that’s bad, really bad.  And it’s always going to be bad. Nothing will ever change it from being so bad”.

Taken or Taking....Can We Change The Tides in Love?

But I want to flip the coin here, so stick with me for a second.  Now one of the things I’m always curious about when I’m working with couples is how they’re showing up in love. When I say “showing up”, I mean how are you behaving, acting, talking, etc? What are the ways that you create disconnection or trample connection between the two of you?  Are you sharing or withholding? Are you reaching out or shutting down?  How are you showing up?

Life Would Be Better If... We Were All A Bit More Like Charlie Brown

I never asked her why she liked Charlie Brown so much, but knowing the woman that she was, I like to think it was because Charlie Brown never gives up hope, no matter if things didn’t go his way.  That pretty much describes my Gram. She lived by the motto, “make each day count” and it was reflected in how she loved, forgave and cared for others

It Takes Work

Because as nutty as this may sound, I have couples come into my office once a week and get very aggravated after 3-4 sessions that nothing drastic has changed.  We’ll start to explore their weekly homework, how much they’re putting the tools learned in session into daily action and what they’re doing each week to prioritize their relationship outside of therapy and I swear to you, this is when my office starts to feel like the principal’s office.  They start to squirm, avoid eye contact and mumble under their breath.  They begin to realize that maybe they’re not holding up their end of the bargain.

Yellow Light… Speed Up or Slow Down?

And after many, many years of marriage it’s a debate I don’t see being resolved any time soon.  So last weekend when this “debate” came up again, aka, my seat belt locked up on me as my husband brought the car to a screeching halt, I realized that this yellow light is pretty similar to what I see every day in my Sacramento therapy office.

Do You Know Your Relationship? 10 Relationship Truths.

So in honor of these past eleven years, here are the things I know to be true about relationships.  My relationship truths!

1.      They are insanely hard – well no shit!  I mean we hear this one every day, but what does it really mean.  Well it means they are insanely hard.  Our love relationships are the most unique relationships we have.  And for that reason, we don’t get to practice the skills we need to be successful in love at any given moment because most of the rest of the world doesn’t require us to be as vulnerable as we need to be in love.