Nurturing Intimacy In Your Relationship

personal development relationship Mar 13, 2024

Intimacy is essential in one's love relationship and is a critical factor in the well-being and longevity of your love life. This "love glue" refers to the closeness and connection you feel with your partner. While there are different types of intimacy, most couples acknowledge feeling connected through emotional or sexual sharing. Romantic gestures, getting your partner's attention, and keeping the line of communication open create emotional closeness, while sensuous activities and sexual intercourse account for the physical connection we feel with the one we love. Women usually connect sexually after feeling emotionally connected, while men move towards connecting emotionally after feeling sexually connected. As important as this "love glue" is, it does not happen independently; you must cultivate and nurture it. "I don't feel close to you anymore" could be an indication that your level of intimacy needs some attention. Here are five tips for nurturing intimacy in your relationship.

Create opportunities when you can be alone together

By creating these times of togetherness, you are nurturing intimacy in your relationship. You are intentionally putting each other first on your priority list. Relationships grow stronger when we spend time together. Whenever we pay attention to something, we choose to create more of it; conversely, whenever we ignore something, we let go of it. Set aside regular evenings, days, or weekends when you can be together to focus on each other and the relationship. As you spend time in each other's company, listen without judgment, tune out all distractions, be present, and enjoy each other's company.

Be vulnerable with each other

The fear of being seen in your entirety can sometimes sabotage intimacy. This issue may arise because we are afraid of being judged or scared of others seeing our imperfections. According to Brene Brown, a researcher on vulnerability, for connection to occur, we must be seen, be authentic and genuine, love with our whole hearts, and believe we are enough. So, simply put, vulnerability is being willing to admit weakness, uncertainty, and mistakes. It is emotional risk and the most accurate measure of courage to allow yourself to be vulnerable. When you allow yourself to be vulnerable with your partner, you are allowing trust and connection to develop since intimacy is about letting your guard down and allowing your spouse to know how you feel.

Build your trust in each other

To trust someone is to say I have confidence in you; I can depend on you. No relationship can survive without trust. When you trust your partner, you can freely share your feelings, emotions, and vulnerable self. Furthermore, if you don't trust a person, you will not be able to love them because, without trust, no one would extend their heart in love. Therefore, It is essential to create an atmosphere of trust in your relationship by being honest, open, faithful, committed, and reassuring regularly. Intimacy thrives when trust is present and disappears when trust is absent. 

Manage your conflicts

According to relationship expert John Gottman, conflicts develop because people attach different meanings to the same situation they are arguing about. At the heart of the conflict is the desire for connection and to be heard and understood. So, the next time you and your partner argue or disagree about an issue, see it as a bid for connection. Look beyond the conflict and see if you can find the deeper feeling behind the anger, disappointment, or hurt. Talk to your partner about how you feel and what the issue means to you. Seek to identify how your partner feels and the meaning they associate with the problem you are arguing about.

Get your hands regularly on each other

Research has shown that physical closeness is a significant factor in strengthening the bond in a couple's relationship. Doesn't it feel different to walk barefoot along a lake or ocean than to stride in shoes along a concrete path hurriedly? You guessed right! We are most bonded with our spouse when touching, hugging, kissing, or making love. When you touch, the bonding chemical oxytocin gets activated, bringing you closer to each other. Want to activate your bonding chemical? Why not get your hands on each other more often? Go ahead and passionately kiss each other. Offer your partner an after-work shoulder massage, take a bath together, snuggle up on the couch as you watch your favorite movie together, and if you are adventurous enough, why not take a journey through a one-hour sensual date together?

These are just a few tips for getting and keeping you and your lover connected and bonded as you nurture intimacy in your relationship.