Intimacy – what is it and how do I get more of it?
Until recently, intimacy has been linked predominantly to sex; we now know intimacy is SO much more than just physical closeness.
Below are the four main types of intimacy in romantic relationships (and hints on how you can incorporate more of each of them into your life).
- Emotional Intimacy – Emotionally intimate couples share both the ups and downs of life and are emotionally connected with each other, comfortable opening up about their innermost feelings.
*HOT TIP: To increase emotional intimacy: Be curious about your partner, don’t be afraid to ask them why they feel the way they do – really start to understand what makes them tick. Start slowly with one or two questions if your partner is a closed book or if this is new territory (you don’t want to scare them off!)
- Physical Intimacy – Holding hands, cuddling, kissing, hugging – these are all methods of showing physical intimacy towards your loved one. Physical intimacy also includes sex. Sustaining a physically intimate relationship can either make or break couples.
*HOT TIP: Getting close doesn’t have to start in the bedroom, make an effort to connect with your partner physically whenever you can – even starting with sitting close to each other on the couch while watching TV then gradually moving towards giving each other massages. Starting off slow will help you both relax.
- Spiritual Intimacy – Spiritual intimacy is achieved in a relationship when you share morals, values, spiritual beliefs, religious views, ethics, and what meaning you each place on life.
*HOT TIP: Respecting your partner’s philosophies and beliefs is the key to increasing spiritual intimacy. Sharing each other’s individual values, dreams, goals, as well as your vision for the future together, can increase spiritual intimacy.
- Intellectual Intimacy – Intellectual intimacy is connecting brain to brain, being able to have in-depth conversations about any topic and growing together as a couple.
*HOT TIP: Intellectual intimacy doesn’t have to be all about discussing the latest political endeavour or which book to read – it can be the personal humour shared between you – sharing meme’s, articles, texts or emails that have your own private jokes and witty puns is a great way to build intellectual intimacy.