Everybody needs meaningful connections in their lives. Yet our modern society is moving towards less primary relationships and more tertiary ones. In the home, couples are also finding less quality time with each other due to various demands on them, including children, aging parents, finances, keeping a home in order and/or social involvement. At the same time, a healthy relationship requires time and effort, especially over time, no matter how strong the initial attraction was.
Couples may often feel distant to one another, even though they are being physically intimate. Sometimes the issue of trust, or distrust, in varying degrees, may be involved. That challenge may need to be addressed in tandem with a couple’s sexuality. If problems with trust represent a significant dynamic in your relationship, they may need to be dealt with first.
If a couple is together in a no-sex or infrequent-sex marriage, chances are that a habit has been established and the inertia that goes along with that. To change a habit, it always takes injecting something new into the pattern. The old inertia needs to be re-channelled or replaced. That takes time and energy. By the way, it takes at least 28 days to create a new habit. If you are trying to recapture the magic and wonder of healthy physical intimacy, try working on the emotional and/or spiritual intimacy in your relationship before attempting sex. Closeness takes time to develop (or rediscover). Remember that lots of hugs, when welcomed, connect hearts to hearts.
Some connection and/or Intimacy strategies that you might try:
1. SHIFT – Shift your attitude. Be positive – even when your partner isn’t. Change your focus on what doesn’t work to what works. Perhaps you will need to look to the past for this. Look for what you appreciate about your partner. Learn to resolve conflict as soon as possible and forgive mistakes.
2. EXPRESS – Express your love and appreciation. Use any of the ‘Love Languages’ to remind your partner that you love him/her. Rub her shoulders and/or feet, tell him you love him, make him a hot chocolate or ask about her day. Take little opportunities many times a day.
3. ATTUNE – Make it your mission to think about what your partner enjoys. Feel free to be curious and ask questions about any and everything. This sets you up for deep listening and attunement to each other.
4. TAKE TIME -Everything worthwhile takes time and effort. Make sure that you designate quality time for each other. Make it a priority, even though your life may be vary busy with other things.
5. FOCUS – Spend more of your time together focusing on the needs of your partner rather than yourself; something like 55/45. In other words, focus on your partner’s joy first (55% of your energy) and then spend time on what makes you happy (45%).
6. RELEASE – Find ways that you can release, let go of and forgive grudges or resentments that you have been holding on to. EFT, aka the Emotional Freedom Techniques. or Tapping for relationship issues, is one way that is showing to be very effective in terms of relationships in being able to turn charged memories into neutral ones and is worth the time to explore.
Contributed by By Helena Green @ Counselling for the Health of It