Tag Archives: Intimacy

The Holiday Survival Guide For Couples – Part 3: 7 Powerful Tips on How To Get Some Of That Intimacy!

Happy New Year!! May 2016 be a year filled with outrageously delicious love and happiness! Keep reading and improve your chances for delicious love and happiness by following my powerful tips on increasing relationship intimacy.

This is the third in a 3-part series titled, The Holiday Survival Guide For Couples. In last week’s blog, I explained the 4 main culprits for erosion of intimacy: 1) Unintentionally hurting each other, 2) Over reactivity or drama, 3) Turning away or the White Elephant Syndrome, and 4) Taking each other for granted. Today, I will share powerful tips on how to get some juicy emotional and trusting intimacy flowing in your relationship, which are key to a long-lasting loving partnership.

7 Powerful Tips on How To Get Some Of That Intimacy!

  1. Imagine Intimacy Imagination is powerful because beneath the images of the mind, you can tap into the realm of possibility. Like a goal or a dream, envision what you want with your partner. Then, be grateful NOW for what you’ve envisioned, before it actualizes. Gratitude is key because it’s the gateway to welcoming it into your life.
  1. Be Trusting and Trustworthy Author, John Gottman, has spent much of his career researching and writing about the behaviors of couples. He reports that trust is built in a culmination of lots of little moments between 2 people. An example of this would be a husband saying to his wife, “Sweetie, I see that you are having a tough time right now. What do you need? How can I help you?” Or, a wife telling her husband, “Thank you for fixing the wobbly door knob. It’s things like this that make my day run a little easier.” Another interesting trust-builder is asking for help. These seemingly small gestures are great for building a trusting relationship.
  1. Be vulnerable, honest and authentic – If you’re struggling, say so. It’s an amazing opportunity for intimacy with your partner. Here’s what vulnerability, honesty and authenticity sounds like, “Honey, I’m really upset about something and I need a sounding board. Can you help me by listening to my problem and let me know if I’m over reacting?” By letting your partner into your world, he or she feels included and helpful while you feel taken care of. All of this fosters wonderful intimacy.
  1. Pause, feel and breathe – This tip is especially for those couples that tend to have drama in their relationship. Whenever you feel stressed and ready to spew your reactive comments at your partner, do these 3 things instead: 1) Pause- stop what you are doing/saying; 2) Notice how you feel- acknowledge to yourself how you feel. Labeling your feeling is the 1st step to calming down; and 3) Take 10 deep breaths– getting oxygen in your system always begins the calming process. In Part 1 of this series, you learned about the over-reactive Amygdala in your brain. Pausing, feeling and breathing is giving your frontal cortex, the rational part of your brain, a chance to be in charge instead of your ‘fight-or-flight Amygdala’.
  1. Blame-free zone – Have a place in your home where you and your partner agree is the “Blame-Free Zone”. This is a safe room (or part of a room or area) where absolutely no judgments, criticisms, verbal attacks are allowed. This is your place to have “pauses”, fun, and relaxation. This zone is the area where you and your partner can re-group, giving you the opportunity to change your patterns of drama and repetitive arguments.
  1. Have a practice of communication. Next time you have a meal together, turn off your cell phones and just talk. Take turns asking questions and take turns listening. True communication is more about listening than offering suggestions and solutions and sounds something like this:

“I had a stressful day at work today.”

“Why, what happened?”

“There was a last-minute change that I had to make in my presentation.”

“Wow! How’d you handle that?”

“I was able to pull it off, but I had to reschedule my lunch plans with a prospective client to make it happen.”

“But you did it. That’s fantastic!”

In this conversation, you can see that the communication included active listening and support, which is key for intimacy.

  1. Get professional help – Sometimes, couples need extra help to get to an improved state of intimacy. The following are list of ways you can save your relationship:

· See a marriage counselor or relationship coach

· Go to a personal growth course together.

· Attend a meditation retreat together.

Any of these suggestions can be the very thing that turns your relationship around for the better.

Want free relationship advice right away? Take advantage of Tamara’s free 45-minute guidance session where you will finally get clarity and relief from your dating or relationship struggles. Whether you are single or are experiencing relationship upset, by clicking here, you no longer have to figure this out alone anymore. Yay!

The fastest road to delicious intimacy is to give your partner exactly what it is that you desire. – Tamara Green, LCSW

The Holiday Survival Guide For Couples: Part 1- What Is Intimacy?

I’d like to say that the holidays bring out the best in couples, but unfortunately, that doesn’t seem to be the case for many. During this time of extended family visits, increased spending and busy-ness, the spirit of the holidays often take a back seat to stress and overwhelm. Of course, this stress affects relationships and healthy intimacy tends to take a back seat, too.

Welcome to my 3-part holiday series, where I give the low-down on intimacy. This is to help you and your partner get through the holidays not only intact, but also in a loving and healthy way. In week 1, I’ll explain what intimacy is. In week 2, I’ll share with you the main culprits that erode intimacy. In week 3, I’ll reveal the secrets to how you can experience lasting, fun and juicy intimacy in your relationship, not only for this holiday season, but also for the years to come. Last, I’ll give you a homework assignment each week that will amp up your level of relationship intimacy. Let’s get started.

 What is intimacy?

Intimacy is one of the most precious commodities we have in relationships. It’s something that takes time, is a process and journey that two people take together. There are 4 different types of intimacy:

Intellectual intimacy

An exchange and/or support of each other’s thoughts, ideas and opinions. This involves verbal communication.

I’ll use my mother and step-father as an example for this. Every Sunday, they would read the Times while drinking coffee during the morning hours. Then at lunch or dinner, they would discuss what they read, which sometimes turned into a friendly debate. They enjoyed these exchanges because they had a chance to share their opinions and ideas with one another. As the witness to their intellectual intimacy, I enjoyed it, too.

 Energetic or experiential intimacy

When a couple engages in mutual activities. This usually does not involve verbal communication, but rather energetic synergy.

 I’ll share my own personal example of this type of intimacy. Since 2012, my husband and I have produced guided meditations for our Miracle Mondays Meditations community. We quietly sit together – I write and use my voice to guide the meditations while he composes the beautiful music and produces the products. The result – powerful and transformative meditation audios and videos.

Back in the 90’s, we used to invent personalized songs for kids who were in the hospital with cancer. I wrote the lyrics and sang while my husband composed the music and burned CD’s for each child. Creating together is a ‘cloud-9’ experience for us. It has always felt amazing to have this generative energy flowing between us.

 Emotional intimacy

Sharing your feelings and a desire to understand the feelings of your partner. This involves both verbal and non-verbal communication.

 Couples must have a level of trust and comfort with each other to be able to share their vulnerabilities. If one or both are over reactive, it will most likely shut down this level of intimacy. Several years ago, I was working with a couple that really wanted more emotional intimacy but their relationship was ingrained in reactive patterns of communication. He would often roll his eyes when she shared her feelings and she would criticize him for not meeting her needs. Step-by-step, we examined their cycles of destructive verbal and non-verbal habits and replaced them with healthy behaviors of active listening, compassionate rapport and empathetic-type body language. Their hard work paid off as their relationship is now flourishing.

Sexual intimacy

Any form of sensual expression toward or for one another. This involves physical and non-physical communication.

Most people think of intimacy as being only sexual, but as you can see, it’s not only about sex. Examples of non-physical sexual intimacy include talking about sex before having it and revealing sexual fantasies to one another. Examples of physical sexual intimacy include, hugging, kissing, massage, sensual touch, oral sex and intercourse.

When couples end up in my office due to marital problems, it’s not unusual for me to hear that sex is an issue. One of the main reasons for this is because men and women often experience sexual intimacy very differently. For example, men tend to form more of an emotional bond with their partner after sex, while women desire the emotional bonding in order to have sex. Once couples understand this innate and very common difference, and if they can compromise a little to meet the other’s needs, their sexual intimacy problems tend to disappear.

Homework for the week: For the next 7 days, tell your partner everyday at least 1 thing about them that turns you on. Go ahead, have some fun! 😉

Stay tuned for next week’s blog, The Holiday Survival Guide For Couples: Part 2- What Are The Main Culprits To Eroding Intimacy?

 Need relationship advice in a jiffy? Take advantage of Tamara’s free 45-minute guidance session where you will finally get clarity and relief from your heartbreak. By clicking here you no longer have to figure this out alone anymore. Yay!