As we navigate through our lives, we relate with many people at many different levels. Even with connections that feel ‘just right’ most of the time, when we are aware and honest about what we see within ourselves, there are moments when there are emotional charges or judgments. In these moments, there is the gift of opportunity to turn inward and be with our own patterns, expectations, emotions, wants, needs and so much more. Every relationship dynamic has the possibility to support us in more deeply seeing ourselves, accepting what we see and, thereby, opening our hearts.
I invite you to continue reading with to explore what resonates with you about your relationship to intimacy.
When you make the choice to use your relationships to grow, you will likely discover that it is your intimate relationships that show you the most about yourself. It is your intimate relationships that have the greatest potential to open your heart.
To begin, what is real intimacy to you? Upon reflection, I invite you to add to or delete from the qualities listed below so that the meaning of real intimacy truly resonates with your own heart.
Connection. Love. Care and support. Trust. Compassion. Acceptance. Vulnerability. Directness. Honesty. Friendship. Freedom.
Now reflect further. What gets in the way of real intimacy for you? What stops you from fully opening your heart to someone? How much is fear a factor? If there is fear, a wonderful beginning is to see and be with it.
As you be with the fear, you will gradually get clear on what the fear is about. Some possibilities might be:
- the discomfort of navigating the tension between intimacy and dependency, particularly if you believe that these two qualities belong together,
- the possibility of rejection and/or betrayal,
- a loss of self because of a tendency to over adapt and/or take responsibility for another,
- a sense of being consumed or suffocated,
- vulnerability to the pain and disappointment that comes from unmet expectations, needs and desires,
- painful memories from the past,
- and/or the pain of insecurities that can arise.
The truth is that real intimacy is rooted in your relationship with yourself.
When you are connected to your centre - the stillness, silence, spaciousness within, your essential nature - you are able to be with all of you, including the fear, in a state of love. As presence itself, it is natural for you to BE with yourself in kindness, softness, and gentleness. Even when it’s painful, you feel close to you, intimate with you, there for you.
In this, you don’t try to change yourself, fix yourself, or tell yourself what you ‘should’ be like. You accept yourself as you are.
There is so much fulfillment in the deeper, limitless heart that continues to open throughout a lifetime as you foster real intimacy with yourself. Aliveness, realness, trust - all this and more are the fruits of this inner journey. Loving without conditions overflows into all of your intimate relationships and beyond.
You will know in your very being that the intimacy that your heart has been longing for is here, within you, and is eternally present.