HEY THERE!  I'M SO GLAD YOU STOPPED BY!

NOT SURE WHERE TO BEGIN CREATING YOUR EPIC RELATIONSHIP OR BUILDING THE LIFE YOU'VE ALWAYS WANTED? FILL OUT THE CONTACT FORM ON THIS PAGE & LET'S FIND YOUR STARTING LINE TOGETHER!

IF YOU'RE READY TO MAKE EPIC CHANGES NOW, CLICK HERE TO SCHEDULE YOUR FREE 15 MINUTE CONSULT!

I LOOK FORWARD TO MEETING YOU SOON!

-Robyn

23151 Verdugo Drive, Suite 201
Laguna Hills, CA 92653

714-390-1652

Relationships are messy + delicious. Learn about how Robyn D'Angelo, The Happy Couple Expert uses science to effectively help couples in Orange County, California to master the messiness of relationships while learning how to love + be loved, better.

The Blog

Filtering by Tag: relationship repairs

When you're you're Lonely + Married.

Robyn D'Angelo

LonelyMarried.png

To the woman who feels lonely, misunderstood + like she's mismatched from her spouse,

This letter is to you. From me. From my heart that knows intimately what being married + lonely feels like.

YOU ARE NOT ALONE. 

Here's what I know about feeling lonely while being married:

It's EXCRUCIATING. 

Because when we're feeling lonely + misunderstood, we're likely asking things such as:

-    What the hell happened to us?
-    Why do I have to BEG for your attention?
-    What would it take for you to just WANT to spend time with me?
-    When did we become so incompatible?  

BUT WHY IS THIS SO DAMN PAINFUL?

No one gets married to feel like they are doing this whole LIFE thing, solo. 
We don't get excited about weddings, honeymoons, anniversaries, holidays, major life milestones with the hope of doing it all ALONE.

Togetherness. Inclusion. Connection.

They are what we're wired to do. They are what we're wired to FEEL.

And here's the things about connection: when we're feeling connected, we're usually also feeling accepted, loved, valued + like we matter. 

Which means … if you're lonely, you're probably wondering some version of:

"What the hell is wrong with me that they don't want to spend time with me?"

For the many women that I work with, this is also attached to feeling taken for granted for all that they do to keep everything together.

If you must beb.png
To keep track of kids schedules.
To make sure there's clean clothes.
To ensure grocery shopping is done.
To get all the birthday presents bought.
To plan vacations, holidays, family events.
To keep track of appointments. 

So, loneliness not only means, "What the hell is wrong with me?" but it also means,

"Why the hell can't you see + appreciate all that I do for this family?" 

To the woman who feels lonely, misunderstood, here's what you can start doing RIGHT NOW:

#1: Slow Down + Remember.
Ask yourself … "When was the last time I felt the opposite of lonely? When did I feel connected, included, appreciated, + important? Not just to my partner to but in life."

Was I kicking ass at work on a project my boss tasked me with?
Was I full of joy from being on day 79 of a 90 Days of Gratitude Challenge?
Was I volunteering 2x per month at my kids school + loving the energy?
Was I planning a girls' trip with my long-time grad-school ladies to a tropical destination?

Give yourself room to slow down + remember what it was like to feel NOT lonely. 

#2: Connect. (with others)
This may sound like a no brainer but if it was, you probably wouldn't be feeling so lonely right now.

Once you've done #1, and identified the last time you felt NOT LONELY, connect to those things + people who were a part of your feelings of connectedness. 

Connect to projects, interests + activities that fill you up. 
Connect to friends who see you, laugh with you, hug you, cry with you + love you. 
Connect with opportunities to give, volunteer + show up.

The most loving thing you can do for yourself, is to give to others, the very thing you crave.

#3: Get Away, together.
When is the last time you had all your partner's attention? No kids. No work. No phones. No distractions. 

It's time to get honest about what it is you LOVE, MISS, + CRAVE that only they can give you. 

TODAY, say some version of:

I am so lonely in our marriage. I miss the hell outta you. I miss us. Let's make time this week to reconnect. Let's get a sitter. Let's get in the car + drive up the coast. Let's book a quick weekend getaway. Let's get outta here. I need you, me + no distractions. How can we make this work in the next 2 weeks? 

And then make it happen.

Pull out the calendar. Text the sitter. Check for local flights. Google events within driving distance. AND JUST GO. TOGETHER.

Reconnection.png

4. Reconnect. (with your spouse) 
While doing #3 (getting away), take time to reconnect with your spouse. 

Take the time to touch them. 
Take the time to get to know them deeply.
Take the time to let them feel you: physically, emotionally, + spiritually.

Feeling like a total mismatch when it comes to the daily interactions is pretty typical. 

Knowing that you have the power to reconnect to the parts of you that fell in love is what's going to offset the feelings of incompatibility. 

While married life (after decades, children, relocations, job changes, health challenges, etc) may have created staleness… 

You must choose to get back to the source of your love + connection.

Whether it's your passion for French press coffee, your love for hiking outdoors, or it's just being still together - RECONNECT to that source.

In relationships, we all suck sometimes. Which means you're going to feel lonely, misunderstood + completely incompatible at times. And so will your partner. Knowing that this is the nature of being an imperfect human, with faults, irritations, and limitations in a relationship with another imperfect human enables a little more empathy + kindness. 

Yes, it's awful to feel lonely + invisible in your relationship, but sometimes it's going to happen and having the tools to cope will greatly reduce the pain associated with your experience.   
 
Remember, you're just two imperfect humans trying your best to not suck at being together.  

So, if you're ready to reconnect with your spouse + you'd like some personalized support, let's talk. 

Click the button below right now. Today is the day that YOU can choose reconnection over loneliness + disconnection. 

 

 

How to Repair Your Relationship After a Fight

Emily Porta

Feeling like you're having the same fight over and over again?  Is it causing your relationship to veer in a direction you don't love?  Well, you need a relationship repair and I'm here today to tell you how you can start the mend and get back on track!

 Click Here or click the image below to watch more!

 
 

Your relationship does not have to be hanging by a thread in order to start making minor shifts. Most couples that I work with will say they are the 80/20 couple. 

80% of the time they are really, really good. And 20% of the time, they're bad. Really, really bad. But no one is ready to throw the towel in. They just need some tools to move through that messy, shitty 20% of the time. Relationship Repairs is one of the MANY ways you can start connecting deeply with your partner by allowing conflict to bring you closer together vs pushing you further apart.

Can you imagine that? Post-fight, you're actually feeling more in love with your partner? It's totally possible. I do this often.  And I teach people just like you how to do just that. Daily. 

If this resonates so deeply with you that you want more? Reach out! I would be honored to speak with you about how I can support you in mastering the messiness of couplehood + create that epic relationship you deeply desire and truly deserve. 

Click HERE to schedule a FREE 20 minute phone call. Let's get you unstuck + moving in the direction of living a happy + fulfilling life. With the love of your life. 

Relationship Rehab: You Asked For It!

Emily Porta

You asked for it, and I'm hearing you loud and clear.  But now, I need your help!

As you know, I do videos on all things relationship-related. 

I talk to you about maybe topics about you and your partner aren't talking about because maybe they seem a little taboo.  I'm constantly providing tips and tools on just how to make conversations with your partner a little bit easier, maybe a little bit smoother, less awkward, even help you to increase some of the conflict that might come up. 

I've also done some videos on how to love your partner.  Various partners, right?  Which is, how to love your anxious partner, which people love that one, both the anxious partner and the non-anxious partner.  I recently did how to love your funky partner, which is--we all get in a funk.  We know what that's like when we're just feeling really blah and out of it, but how in the world do we love our partners through that? 

And so, I have been getting so many requests to do more videos on how to love your partner in various topics that--you got it--you asked for it, I'm delivering.  So, if you subscribe to my YouTube channel now, you will not miss out on the upcoming series I'm doing called "How to Love Your Partner". 

So, and if you have any topics that you're curious about--maybe your partner is impatient...How to love your impatient partner.  Maybe your partner is a really loud talker in movies--how do we love them?  Send me some messages. 

Leave a comment below or shoot me an email and I will create a video just for you.  I look forward to your topics and please check back here for more videos.

Relationship Rehab: Loving Your Funky Partner

Emily Porta

We all have emotional dips at times.  Or, as I like to put it, we all get into funks once in a while.  When you're experiencing one of those downturns, what does it look like?  What do you need?  And what does it look and feel like for your partner?  This week's video takes a look at the importance of communicating needs during (and even preemptively!) these slumps so that you can both move through it together.

So many of us in relationships struggle with a number of things.  Some of us struggle with anxiety.  Some of us struggle with things like depression.  Some people are very particular.  You know that type of person.  We might call them "Type A" or they've got OCD, or what have you. 

And then there's times where we just get into what I like to call just a funk, where we notice we're feeling down, where our energy is really low.  Our moods might be all over the place or maybe they're just pretty low consistently. 

Maybe we find it hard to come up with the right words.  Some of us even get a little clumsy, start walking into walls or, you know, you go to take something out of the fridge and put it back but you put it in the cupboard. 

And you're like, "What is going on with me?  I feel like I'm in this really weird funk." 

I want to talk to those of you who have experienced this and I want to talk to your partners.  I want to teach them how to love their "funky" partner. 

I want you guys to know, first and foremost, that getting in what I call a funk and feeling this way--it's our body's way of trying to get our attention.  It's our brain's and our body's way of saying, "Hey, pay attention to something.  I need you to slow down and pay attention to something."  And that could be a number of things, and could be a whole other conversation.

But right now, I just want to talk about how the people in your life can support you during this time.

I wanted to share this because I recently had a moment--a couple of days actually--where I was just in this total funk and my partner showed up for me in a way that blew my mind. 

Well, and of course this has been many years of kind of being able to connect with him and talk with him and show him what I need in those moments. 

And, it takes a lot of being able to have open, honest conversations with your partner to be able to do this. 

And, I just want to say that, if you can connect with your partner and talk about it before our funks happen, and talk about what are the things that you feel at your most vulnerable, like you're operating at your lowest capacity, what are some things that your partner can do for you and either help catapult you out of that funk or just support you while you navigate through it yourself? 

An example is something that I personally need and appreciate so much from my partner is when I'm in a funk, I just need a hug.  I actually need a lot of them.  And, he's wonderful at that. 

And the way that we learn about this is I just asked.  I said, "You know what, I'm having a really hard time right now and I just need a hug." 

And I can't tell you how many times he just hears the words "I'm just having a hard time right now" and he knows. It's like his little radar goes "Oh, I know what to do right now." 

Not only does that make me--a person who's going through this funky moment--feel really supported and cared for and loved, it makes him feel like he can actually help.  I can be a part of this solution.  I can be a part of supporting my partner, rather than just standing back and feeling totally helpless (which is really hard for partners to see in the first place). 

So, I want to encourage all of you to have conversations with your partner and talk about:

1.  What happens when you're in a funk? 

2.  What does you being in a funk look like? 

3.  What are some of the things that you need when you're in a funk, so that your partner can show up and help you through it?

4.  Then ask the same questions about your partner's funks.

Start a conversation because that's the best way to start getting your needs met, as well as learning how to meet your partner's needs.  

If you have any questions and you're really maybe struggling with, "How do I start this conversation, Robyn?" feel free to reach out

And, if you have comments about how this has worked for you or what you've observed in yourself or your partner, let's continue this conversation in the comments below.

Relationship Rehab: Making Your Anxiety Your Superpower

Emily Porta

Does your anxiety feel more like your cape or your noose?  Let's talk about how I made my anxiety my superpower on this rainy day.  Check out my latest video and join the conversation!

Today, I'm talking to all of my fellow anxiety sufferers.  Good morning.  It's raining like crazy here in Southern California, which is great because we need the rain.  However, for those of us who experience anxiety, this can be a really tough time. 

 I woke up this morning thinking about all the different places I needed to go, and my anxiety immediately started:  "Oh my goodness, I have to get into my car, I have to drive...."  I know that when the weather gets like this, people tend to not drive at their very best, and so I get anxious.  And I start thinking what are the ways I can make anxiety my superpower?  How can I do this?  And I'm struggling this morning. 

So, I just wanted to share a little something with you.  First thing this morning, I had to take my dog to the vet, and I noticed: I'm going in there, I kind of took my time, traffic wasn't too bad.  And I start interacting wtih the gal who's checking me in and helping me out with my dog.  And I called her by name. And I noticed how it just shifted the energy between us.  She got more smiley.  She kind of lit up a little bit, and it started with that. 

I went to grab some stuff and check out and again, the next guy that I interacted with who worked there, called him by name and I said "Thank you.  How are you today?"  Just taking a moment to get present.  And to check in with someone who you're interacting with.  It seriously lit him up and it was so wonderful to see him go "Oh gosh, thank you for asking."  And it just kind of continued on.

I decided to treat myself to a coffee this morning and as I'm walking in there, I'm smiling, I'm looking at people.  People were probably thinking "What is this chick's deal?"  But I just felt so happy.  I felt so relaxed because what I was doing was I was doing my best to keep present.  And when I'm acknowledging people within my environment, when I'm holding doors open for people and saying "Go ahead, after you," not only does it create an energy and kind of a connection with others, it--ZAP!--brings you right into the present moment, which is one of the best ways that you can manage your anxiety. 

So, I just wanted to share that with you guys this morning because it just had me feeling really great (unexpectedly, because I did expect to be really anxious today).  And I'm doing a great job of making my anxiety feel more like a cape for my superpower, and less like a noose--you know, something that just feels like it's stifling. 

So, if this sounds like something you need some help with or you struggle with, give me a call.  I'd love to help you out with it.  714-390-1652.  And if I can't be that person, I'd love to help you find someone in your area that can help you learn to manage your anxiety and make it your superpower. 

What tricks do you use to make your anxiety your superpower?  I'd love to hear your tips in the comments below!

Affairs & Repairs: Possible to Heal?

Emily Porta

Is healing is possible after your trust has been broken?

In the midst of all the media coverage with sites like Ashley Madison or Established Men, and kind of the threat of their clientele being exposed and all of their personal information, I just wanted to start a conversation.  I wanted to share with you guys kind of my experience with affairs and the kind of people that walk in my door.  And their hope and their despair.  And what that's like and how therapy can help.  Often times, if not always, you know the discovery of an affair of any kind, whether it's an emotional affair or a physical affair, it's a betrayal. And so, someone is often times left just feeling completely shattered and hopeless and wondering how in the world could we ever get past this?  And often times, more often times than not, the couples that I work with are able to do that.  And there's a lot of work that goes into that.  And it's not easy to do, but it's possible.  And I just wanted to share that with you guys today.  If there's anyone out there watching this right now that's listening, that's going, "I just don't know, Robyn.  I don't know if I can do this.  I don't know if I can ever trust her again.  Or him. I don't know if I want to do this.  I don't know if I want to put the work in to rebuilding something that we worked so hard for."  I hear you.  And you're not alone.  And you don't have to do it alone.  And if this is something that you're struggling with, call me today.  You don't have to go through this in secret and full of shame and guilt.  Call me.  Let's work through this together.  And if I'm not someone who it's a good fit, you know, or if you're not in the Laguna Hills area or Orange County area of California, I'll help you find someone who can help you.  Because this doesn't have to be the end of a relationship.  Call me.  If this has been helpful and you want to check out some of my other videos, hop over to YouTube.  Subscribe.  You'll get these in your email weekly, if you subscribe to my channel.  If you have any questions, please feel free to call me (714) 390-1652.

Relationship Rehab with Robyn: Making Time to Be Married

Emily Porta

How are you making time for this today?

I want to ask you something.  I want to know, how are you making time to be married today?  We make time to do all sorts of things every single day.  We make time to be parents.  We make time to be employees, show up to work.  We make time to get down on the ground and, you know, play with our dogs or our cats.  We make time to do so many things throughout our day, but do you actually make the effort to be married?  And this can look like so many different things, but I just want to tell you a story that really inspired me to make this video today.  See if this can inspire you as well.  Everyday I see a couple from my window in my office walk up and down this short little block holding hands.  They stop at the corner, give each other a little kiss, turn and walk to the end, kiss and part.  And I was watching this for months and I thought, I have to ask them what's their deal?  What's their story?  And I did, and I ran out there and said "Oh, nice to meet you.  This is who I am and you're so inspiring.  What's your story?"  They work for the same company that got split into two different buildings and they wanted to make it a point to connect everyday, to not lose that interaction that they have when they're in the same office.  Now, you may not be able to do that with your partner, but you can make it a point to show up and be married.  How are you doing that today?  I want to hear from you.  Leave a comment below or just reach out to me at robyn@counselinglagunahills.com. 

Don't Let Anxiety Kill Your Relationship

Emily Porta

Anxiety in a relationship is challenging and here are three things YOU can do to ensure it doesn't kill your relationship. 

Did these help you? I'd love to hear from you! Leave a comment below or email me directly. If you're in the Laguna Hills, California area and you'd like to know more about how to create a happier and healthier relationship - I'd love to work with you directly. (714) 390-1652.

The Magic 5 Hours - Keepin' it Fresh

Emily Porta

It only takes 5 hours a week to recalibrate your relationship - check it out. Did these help you? I'd love to hear from you! Leave a comment below or email me directly at

If you're in the Laguna Hills, California area and you'd like to know more about how to keep your relationship fun, connected and fresh, call me - I'd love to work with you directly. (714) 390-1652.

Transcription:

Hi. Robyn D'Angelo here, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and Relationship Specialist.   And today I'm going to be answering a question that comes up often in my office from couples and individuals, which is how much time should we, as a couple, be spending a week to keep our relationship fresh, to keep it on point?  And according to Julie and John Gottman of the Gottman Institute, they have come up with the magic five hours per week. And that consists of five different things. The first thing being partings. So, when you leave your partner, you know, for the day, the goal here is to find out one interesting thing about their day. What's going to happen? What do they have planned? Who are they gonna see that day? And then see if you can squeeze in there a six second kiss. This is something that John Gottman says is "a kiss full of possibilities." It can make you late to work--one of those good ones. So, that's the first one, is partings.  The second is reunions. Think about when you walk into a room full of friends or you show up to a party and people just light up. How good does that feel? Would it be possible for you to do that for your partner when they come in after, maybe, a long day? Or think of how great it would feel for them to just get super excited after seeing--you know, after being away all day and seeing you. Whether you've been, you know, with the kids or at work, at school--whatever it is. See if you can create an environment of excitement upon reuniting. And the third thing is admiration and fondness. And this makes me think of the story of the Swedish farmer who loved his wife so much that, one day, he almost told her. All right. It goes to the point of you have to do more than you think loving and kind thoughts. You have to make it a point to tell your partner the things that you appreciate about them and what you love about them. The goal here is to have two appreciations a day, and that will look different depending on what your partner's love language is. And we'll cover that at a later date. The fourth one is affection. So, there's been research on attachment that shows when people go in to get an MRI, if they're in there with their partner holding their hand, they--their stress levels, their anxiety is reduced significantly and it even predicts that they'll have lower levels of pain. How powerful is that? That's just from touch. So this shows that gentle touch from your partner can really heal and get you through really tough times. So make it a point to have affection, have touch and play, and really connect in this way. And the last thing is weekly dates. This is so important. Make it a point to spend two hours with your partner a week. So, no one else, no screens. Keep it really intense, with your focus and attention on each other. The best gift you can give your partner is time. So, I hope this has been helpful. If it has, great. Leave a comment below or you can contact me directly. And if you have questions or you'd like to know more, since this is obviously just a tidbit on how to stay connected and keep your relationship fresh, please call me directly at 714-390-1652. Or you can email me at robyn@therapywithrobyn.com. Talk to you again soon.

[Transcribed by NMS]

Top 10 Ways to Improve Your Relationships Now!

Emily Porta

Can you really surmise improving relationships in 10 bullet points? Well, I think this is a great starting point. You will note the title isn't top things the other person can do to make your relationship better. Nope, change starts with you. This is the hard part, the piece that we often cringe at facing. What is your responsibility? 

You can't control the actions of others. You can't predict the behaviors of others. That leaves you with you. Only you can make changes. They will inevitably impact the other person and from that you can decide what you want to do in the relationship. You actually are only responsible for you - owning your feelings, thoughts and behaviors.

So, if you would like my Top 10 list, then join my newsletter here. I also include other fun tidbits on a monthly basis of ways to help transform your life.