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I am a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and have been practicing for over 16 years. I am specialized in couples therapy and work with individuals as well. When I work with clients I teach them necessary skills to improve not only their relationships but themselves as well. My hope is for my clients to make changes that will make them healthier individuals which will then make their relationships healthier and happier. If you're interested in obtaining information, setting up an appointment, or learning more about my practice please visit my website at you can also go to my page on psychology today at

Friday, June 25, 2021

Feeling Lonely in Your Relationship?

A lot of couples feel lonely in their relationship. This is confusing for some because they are living in the same house together, but yet still feel lonely. This is usually because of a lack of Emotional Attunement.

Emotional Attunement is understanding and engaging with your partners emotional state. This creates a deep connection. The lack of Emotional Attunement often leaves a couple feeling lonely, resentful, and ultimately unloved.

A good place to start when working on building Emotional Attunement is with yourself. When I work with couples, I always do a level of individual work. I have them focus on themselves more than their partner.  Some of my reasons for this is that; we can't change or fix our partner, I like for each to be accountable for themselves and I believe it's crucial and helpful in a relationship for you to have an understanding of yourself and your feelings and be able to express them. Once you have a better understanding of yourself, you increase your emotional intelligence making it easier to be understanding of others. This is very important to create a healthy dynamic in the couple system.  

How to work on Emotional Attunement; 
  • Work on a better understanding of yourself by examining your thoughts and feelings and not stuffing, or avoiding them. Instead, don't avoid the trigger and let it happen, let yourself feel the emotion, and work on how to cope. 
  • Meditate. Learn how to be in a moment, one thing at a time. 
  • Ask your partner open ended questions so there is more depth to your conversations. 
  • When you are conversing with your partner, look at each other in the eyes, and don't be engaging in anything else in that moment. 
  • I always tell couples, "give simple messages to one another." Long messages lose your partner, is overwhelming and are more difficult to respond to because usually it turns into being about more than one topic. 
  • Be kind to one another. 
  • Listen with an open heart and an open mind. 
  • Take your time to express your feelings to your partner. 
  • When your partner is expressing their feelings to you, listen actively.  
  • Don't take things personally because it's not about you.  
  • Seek therapy
I hope this is helpful and something you can work on practicing.

A healthier you is a healthier relationship!

Wednesday, November 11, 2020

Importance of Finding Your Place of Peace

It's been a minute since I have posted 😏 sorry about that.  Since this has been a difficult year for so many I want to take some time to focus on just that.  Who would have ever thought we would experience a global pandemic? When this happened, it created much fear, stress, and anxiety for so many.  People were not working, their daily routine was out of longer existent.  With loss of routine, panic ensued into many, they felt not only scared but lost, feeling like they are not going to be able to create a new way, as they were yearning for things to go back to "normal."  A combination of loss of structure and feeling of panic and just wanting things to go back to how there were, seemed to be very hindering for people to move forward.  They needed to shift their thinking, stop focusing on what was and instead focus on what needed to be done. Therefore, I spent a lot of time working with clients to create a new daily structure for themselves.  That seemed to alleviate a lot stress and dissipated the panic for so many.  We seem to forget that we are much more resilient then we give ourselves credit for. We are able to adjust and adapt to things.  I think what happens is sometimes people have a difficult time accepting things in their lives and instead try to fight it.  When we fight versus accept, that brings on stress and anxiety amongst other negative thoughts and feelings.  The fight and the lack of acceptance is not going to bring back what was, it will not change things, the only thing it will do is make it more difficult for you.  When we come to a place of acceptance, especially for the things that are out of our control, we can come to a place of peace.  "Place of peace" is a phrase I have made up and use quite often in my own life and when working with clients.  

Place of peace, for my explanation of it, is a place you feel peaceful, turned off, and within your place of peace is when you give to yourself  (another phrase I have made up through my many years of practicing therapy) meaning, take a mental break, turn off from everything, a time to feel clam, positive, to recharge your battery.  We are in charge of creating our place of peace.    

Do you have a place of peace?  I have a few places of peace.  My main place of peace is nature, when I go for a hike, I connect with nature, it makes me feel at peace within myself and my life.  And, get this......there is actually something called Attention Restoration Theory (ART).  What is that you may be thinking.  Attention Restoration Theory is "spending time in nature, by watching a sunset, gazing at the ocean or mountains, sitting in a park, escaping to the countryside, or a nature retreat, or even just spending a few minutes to stare out the window, provides us with the opportunity to rest, reflect, and restore our very selves." Exposure to nature is said to also restore our concentration, reduce stress, bring on a sense of calm, and decrease anxiety.  You should consider bringing nature into your personal space(s) as well, such as, have plants in your office or in your house, maybe a little waterfall, or even an oil defuser where you can defuse oils such as pine.

Meditation is another place of peace for me, a way of giving to myself.  I like the app Calm.  I like a guided meditation or what I like to call an informal way of meditating.  An informal meditation is not a guided meditation but instead, you're just focusing on your surroundings.  For example, when I hike I turn off the rest of my life (you learn how to do this through meditation) and I just focus on the sounds of the birds, the squirrel jumping from tree to tree, a deer eating off a tree branch, the gravel under my feet.  It soothes me, it recharges me and it allows me to give to myself.  I am now to a place in my life where I WANT to take those hikes because I find how healthy they are for me mentally and physically.  It makes me a better person, more patient and less stressed.  

With that said, this is part of what I call, "Giving to Yourself."  When we give to ourselves we are healthier beings.  We feel better, function better, act better.  This is so important in relation to relationships.  When you give to yourself and find your place(s) of peace, you become different....calm, more positive, happier, more in control of yourself, rational.  


If you don't have a place of peace, it means you are likely NOT giving to yourself.  When you give to yourself, you become a healthier and happier individual and that creates healthier and happier relationships. 

Thursday, December 5, 2019

It's the Holiday Season

This Holiday Season, work on not letting yourself get overwhelmed. Make sure you are taking time for yourself, care of yourself and your relationship.

A good way to take a break from the chaos and preparation for the holiday, is to take some time for your relationship and start a tradition together!

Some Holiday tradition ideas:

  • Bake cookies together
  • Watch a Holiday movie with some hot coco
  • Volunteer or buy gifts for an organization or people in need... Do a good deed 
  • Make an ornament together
  • Set a relationship goal for the New Year
  • Bring some treats, food, or toys for the animals in your local shelter
  • Make a gift for each other
  • Make a card for each other 
  • Give a sexy stocking stuffer
  • Decorate together 
  • Make a special meal together
  • Go look at Christmas lights 
  • Sit with each other and reflect on the highlights of the year
Have a Wonderful Holiday Season All!

Thursday, November 21, 2019

Unhealthy Relationships versus Healthy Relationships

In UNHEALTHY relationships couples:
  • Avoid conflict 
  • Do not discuss issues 
  • Do not express feelings in a healthy way
  • Are defensive 
  • Yell and curse at each other
  • Put their partner down, say hurtful things 
  • Are not accountable for themselves, their own behaviors, their actions or their wrongs
  • Do not look for a solution
  • Do not compromise 
In HEALTHY relationship couples:
  • Talk about conflict
  • Discuss issues 
  • Express feelings and listen to their partners feelings
  • Do not take things personally therefore, do not become so defensive
  • Do not yell nor curse at each other, instead they speak gently to each other 
  • Do not put their partner down and do not say hurtful things to one another
  • Are accountable for themselves, their behaviors, their actions and their wrongs 
  • Look for solutions
  • Compromise 
This is not All of, but some of what creates a healthy relationship versus an unhealthy relationship.  Hopefully it provides some insight into yourself and your relationship.  

When in a relationship, both partners should be loving, caring, thoughtful, helpful, supportive and let us not forget RESPECTFUL.  

Friday, April 5, 2019

A healthy YOU is required for a healthy relationship

I believe that when we take care of ourselves, our relationships are better, healthier.  When I work with a couple I always do a level of individual work, making sure that they are being accountable for themselves, and making sure they are taking care of themselves, mentally, physically and emotionally.  

What does it mean to take care of yourself mentally, physically and emotionally? Mental is the way we process things and emotional is the way we express things and I believe physical speaks for itself. I look at all three as going together hand and hand.  If we take care of ourselves physically i.e., exercise, eat healthy, get enough sleep, spend time with friends, do something we enjoy, we are going to benefit mentally and emotionally.  Mental and emotional care should also consist of, decluttering our minds by writing or journaling, meditation, talking to someone in our support system, reading, or relaxing.  

Hoping you can see how they all intertwine and how it is important to give to yourself.  Listen to yourself and learn what you need and when you need it.  If we do this we can improve our happiness which will improve the happiness in our relationship(s).  

Always put you first and care for you, if you don't, how do you expect to care or be good for anyone else?

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Anita's Quick Tip for Conflict Resolution

When you and your partner have a disagreement, stick to topic.  Couples often start with one issue and then branch out into many other issues.  This is not only overwhelming, but makes it very difficult to resolve anything.  This month, work on being aware of staying on one issue at a time!

My Thought:
Work together in this, and if one of you slips up, the other should give a gentle reminder of what you’re working on.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Embracing Our Differences:
As a couple, of course we are going to have differences.  We are different people from different places and different families.  Some differences may not change and may always be there.  Unfortunately, couples allow their differences to cause conflict or even end their relationship.

I am here to encourage you to stop fighting about your differences and instead learn how to embrace them. 

Firstly, I think it’s important for you to explore with yourself why those differences are such an issue for you.  The impact of that difference is most likely more about you than your partner.  Why is it affecting you?  Does it have to do with wanting to be right (my way is better)?  Wanting control?  What’s going on with you that it is creating such a reaction?  I always think it’s important to explore and question yourself, you may learn something new and helpful about you.  If you have difficulty doing this on your own, you should consider seeking therapy to help. 

Secondly, I then challenge you to open your heart and your mind and try to view your differences in a more positive and productive way. 

Differences Can:
~ Teach you a new way of doing something
~ Help you understand your partner better or in a new way
~ Introduce you to something you never experienced before
~ Be motivating
~ Produce self-growth
~ Open you up to a new way of thinking
~ Move you out of your comfort zone

After thinking of it in a more positive way, differences don’t feel so bad after all.  In fact, I see there can be a lot of good in differences.  I hope you can learn to do the same!

Different is just that…. Different.  It doesn’t make us either right or wrong, it just makes us different!