We have been married and together since the early 80’s and we understand that marriage takes attention and work.  There were times we were challenged and not sure how or if we would stay together.  Many couples go through this at some point in their relationship.   Yet, we made a decision to leave “no stone unturned” and it literally changed everything.  Our passion now is to help couples create a relationship they truly desire- no matter where they are starting from.   You can read more about our journey  HERE


Who we are professionally:


Michael is a relationship expert who has worked with individuals, couples, and families since 1979.  He is a Licensed Marriage Family Therapist in the states of Washington and California.  Michael has been a Clinical Member of The American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy since 1995.

His passion, is to help couples who work together in business, and any couple wanting more, to create extraordinary powerful relationships that keep love and intimacy alive.

He believes since life is precious and short that we must live it to the fullest and with no regrets. This requires a certain the amount of courage as life has many challenges. In order to face these challenges we must rise to the

In order to face these challenges we must rise to the occasion, grow, and make the necessary adjustments.

Personal growth is a continual process and we are never done. That is, if one is willing to face the challenges of life head on. Otherwise, we are likely to shy away, restrict our growth, and not feel as free to enjoy our life completely.

Intimate relationships are what give people enough reason to grow through their challenges and evolve further.

The first 12 years of his professional development was spent working with adolescents and their families in a variety of therapeutic settings. He focused on the family systems and how they operated. He’s come to appreciate that presenting problems are evidence of underdeveloped skills that may need refining rather than a system that is “dysfunctional”.  This work eventually let him to focus on refining parental skills and then marital relationships.

In addition to Michael’s work with adolescents, parents, and families, he spent five years doing crisis intervention work where he developed the skills to manage the most difficult of circumstances.

Rather than looking for what is “wrong” or what needs to be “fixed” he is more inclined to respectfully explore and curiously investigate what might be challenging each individual’s current level of skill.  Knowing he can more effectively support couples to create the relationship they desire.  He refers to this as a Humanistic Approach or a Health Based Model.

To contact Michael:
(C) 509.879.4778 (O)727.223.5783
E-mail:  mike@mlipstein.com


Valerie is a certified coach/business consultant, author and national speaker.

Previously she was the CEO/founder of Inspired Living Now, formed in 2007, a company that offered programs for small business owners and women solopreneurs ready to up level their results.

Since forming Couples and Business, LLC with her husband, her primary focus is working with  spouse/couple run businesses supporting them to thrive personally and professionally.  There are unique challenges that these companies face and both Michael and Valerie had family who worked together and saw some of the challenges and benefits firsthand. 

Their company provides business and relationship coaching, assessments, workshops, signature presentations, couples retreats and programs.  The couples programs are based on a unique system she co-created with Michael: Courageous Loving-Taking Relationships from Ordinary to Extraordinary.   Their newest program, is Roadmap to Extraordinary Relationships.

Valerie became passionate about coaching/consulting shortly after the death of her close friend, Susan, a defining moment for her.  She made the choice to leave a lucrative state job she had outgrown to pursue her dream; and knows firsthand the importance of breaking through outdated beliefs that limit one’s potential.  She has been in the coaching field since 2007. 

Additionally, Valerie’s background includes 30 years of combined experience in social work, law/mediation, counseling and advocacy. She holds a Juris Doctor degree and BA in Social Work. 

To contact Valerie:
(C)509.869.0255 (O) 727.223.5783
Email:  valerie@couplesandbusiness.com