Saturday, November 5, 2016

Relationships Take Intimacy

14 Types of Intimacy to Build a Strong and Intimate Relationship 

Today it is far too easy, and acceptable, to quit a marriage when things start to go astray. Relationships are difficult, and marriages are often the height of difficulty.
Successful marriages focus on a range of shared intimacy between the partners. 
Not everything on the list below needs to be checked, and not each of these facets of intimacy is necessary for a marriage relationship to work. 
Nevertheless, this list is a pretty good starting point for couples (married or not) who want to build a solid interpersonal and intimate relationship, one which will help ensure they are able to keep their family unit together and functional:
Emotional intimacy: an ability to identify, tune into, and accept each other's emotional needs and range of emotional expressions.
Commitment intimacy: an equality of investment by both partners in the relationship based on trust and the manner in which each partner invests emotionally, mentally and spiritually in the relationship.
Experiential intimacy: sharing of relaxing, playful and enjoyable experiences, such as holidays, hobbies, sports, plays, concerts, events, and even exercise. Also the ability to share aesthetic pleasures such as art, culture, dance, music, and literature.
Intellectual intimacy: sharing ideas and thinking on major issues and topics of the day, plus an ability to share views openly and honestly with one another when opinions differ (combined, of course, with the willingness to accept that it is okay for the other partner to hold a differing view).
Communication intimacy: an ability to share openly and honestly on all levels about all things. More important is the ability to listen openly and fully to all communication from the other partner and to be completely engaged in all conversations.
Physical intimacy: sharing and exchanging physical closeness and connectedness through hugs, cuddling, touching, holding hands, etc.
Sexual intimacy: sharing sexual passions and desires without fear of rejection or harm, including a mutual willingness to experiment if mutually desirable.
Creative intimacy: sharing and participating together in creative activities, including home renovations, gardening, crafts, cooking, and other pursuits. Where one partner has no personal interest or involvement in a creative pursuit of the other, then the non-involved partner shares the other's passion through support, conversation, encouragement, and expressed interest.
Family intimacy: sharing bonding time together as a family unit, both at home and on holidays. Creating shared memories of family experiences that involve all members of the family unit, exclude non-family members, and center around common interests and doing things together.
Contribution intimacy: a shared interest in contributing and giving back to the local community, specific charities or causes. As above, when one partner has no personal passion for a particular cause or activity that interests the other, the non-involved partner supports, encourages and expresses interest in what their partner is doing and why.
Work intimacy: best when applicable to the professional pursuits of each partner (without the aspect of bringing work problems home, unless help and support is needed on these), but also applies to sharing (not splitting) of household chores and tasks such as shopping, cleaning, washing, and other regular or routine work.
Conflict intimacy: the ability to face, cope and even struggle together with differences and problems as they arise.
Crisis intimacy: the ability to face, cope and even struggle as a team when pain, injury, sickness, tragedies, and death strike.

Spiritual intimacy: the sharing of hopes, dreams, visions, overriding concerns, personal values, and spiritual values without fear of rejection.
Pick two of these types of intimacy and focus this week on how to improve them in your life and intimate relationship. Next week pick two more! 
In a month you will be well on your way to building an intimate and strong relationship. 

This article is partially excerpted from our top-ranked personal development book Project You: Living A Determined Lifewhich is available in Kindle and paperback formats at Amazon. 

Friday, November 4, 2016

Building Committed Marital Relationships

Making Intimate Relationships Work Through Commitment

One of the key factors in the creation of troubled families is a relationship breakdown between the parents.
People define "committed relationships" as those in which one's love and sexual desires are committed to only their partner. 
But there's another aspect of commitment that is often lacking in these relationships. And that is the commitment to commitment  ──  the commitment to try, to act, to overcome hurdles and blips encountered on the way, to remain in a true partnership no matter what.
Famous basketball player and coach Pat Riley is certainly on the mark with his observation that, "There are only two options regarding commitment. You're either IN or you're OUT. There's no such thing as life in between."
What Riley says about life and basketball is certainly true about committed intimate relationships and marital situations.
There are two components to commitment ── preparation and persistence.
Persistence is what frequently separates successful relationships from those that are not. 
According to Dale Carnegie, "Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all." The same rings true for successful intimate relationships that last the long haul.
Too many people are ready and willing to discard their aims, desires, dreams, and even their purposes in life by casting everything overboard as the first signs of difficulty or misfortune manifest. They see obstacles and failures as defeats, or even worse as misinterpreted "signs" that things are not meant to be the way they had planned, hoped or dreamed. 
As the Japanese proverb goes: "Beginning is easy, continuing is hard.
What steps are you making this week to commitment to being committed to your intimate or marital relationship?

This article is partially excerpted from our top-ranked personal development book Project You: Living A Determined Life, which is available in Kindle and paperback formats at Amazon. 

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Becoming A Visionary Parent

Making A Success of Life's Biggest Job

According to Mark Victor Hansen, of Chicken Soup for the Soul fame, “To be a visionary parent, we need to keep working on ourselves, becoming forever new and improved.” 
One wonders though, how many parents actually pause to reflect and reinforce their beliefs and values about parenting. Perhaps if more did so, parenting would become more of a planned activity, rather than one that is predominately performed as a reaction to events and happenings. This is why proactively working on your parenting skills, and becoming "new and improved" in this aspect of your life, is an essential part of the Project You Life Journey process.
Essential because, as Denis Waitley has written, “What you leave in your children is more important than what you leave to them.”
Adds Jim Rohn: “If you talk to your children, you can help them to keep their lives together. If you talk to them skillfully, you can help them to build future dreams.”
Lastly, C. Everett Koop, the former U.S. Surgeon General, hit the nail on the head with these comments:
Life affords no greater responsibility, no greater privilege, than the raising of the next generation.
Perhaps one of the best overviews on parenting and children comes from the poet Kahlil Gibran in his poem On Children in his book The Prophet:
Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.
You may give them your love but not your thoughts,
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow,
which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.
You may strive to be like them,
but seek not to make them like you.
For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.
You are the bows from which your children
as living arrows are sent forth.
The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite,
and He bends you with His might
that His arrows may go swift and far.
Let your bending in the archer’s hand be for gladness;
For even as He loves the arrow that flies,
so He loves also the bow that is stable.

As we wrote in the previous blog post about parenting, if your children look up to you as they enter the early years of adulthood, you have made a success of life’s biggest job. 

This article is partially excerpted from our top-ranked personal development book Project You: Living A Determined Life, which is available in Kindle and paperback formats at Amazon.