CULTIVATING EMOTIONAL INTIMACY FOR LASTINGNESS.

Cultivating emotional intimacy provides us with a strong emotional support system since committed friends like or love each other and care about each other’s happiness.

To most people, friendship or personal relationships require a measure of investment. This investment includes time, effort, energy, thought and feeling. With friends, we also expect emotional intimacy or closeness that unveils our inner selves in a mutual manner. The interpersonal climate is the emotional mood or dominant feeling between people in a relationship. To invest our time, energy, thought and feeling into an interaction is to invest ourselves in others. This personal investment, though irretrievable, helps to nurture and deepen relationships. Studies indicate that the partners are happiest when they perceive a balanced personal investment between them. Imbalance disconfirms and breeds dissatisfaction.The decision to remain in a relationship is a commitment, not a feeling. Unlike momentary passion or attraction, commitment promotes a togetherness extending into the future, between partners. Committed partners engage their problems constructively and do not allow them to sound a death knell to their relationship. Cultivating emotional intimacy that promotes well-being and a healthy relationship can be accomplished by the agency of the following means.

Behave in a consistent, sincere manner that proves that you are emotionally reliable. It is constructive to make ourselves dependable before we expect a similar measure from others. The confidence for others to be dependable in fulfilling their promises and the belief that a friend cares about us and our welfare are two vital components of trust. Trust is believing in another’s reliability or steadfastness in fulfilling his or her promises, the unflinching emotional conviction that another will care about and protect our welfare. Partners nurture trust between each other by communicating honestly and honouring each other’s perspective, and expressing love and respect that engenders psychological safeness. We take risks and open ourselves to those who have earned our trust. Partners deepen their emotional intimacy when they share their confidence and feelings. Reciprocity of personal disclosures reduces vulnerability between partners and lifts up their relationship. When friends¬† reveal themselves to each other in a continous, steady manner, it means that the level of trust between them is increasing. As each new self-disclosure is accorded acceptance and confidentiality, the trust continues to grow. Emotional intimacy frequently follows in the wake of this self-disclosure. Thus, a high level of trust in a relationship means that the parties successfully cultivate emotional intimacy.

CULTIVATING EMOTIONAL INTIMACY

To become a source of help and comfort to your friend or partner in times of personal stress is helpful in cultivating emotional intimacy. Through the medium of support, we demonstrate to a partner or friend that we genuinely care. We show support by mindfully listening to a partner, talking through options in view of a problem, letting them know that they are not alone and having the grace to forgive them when they appear to hurt us. To support a partner is to make yourself available, to validate his or her worth and to help him or her to assume a more positive outlook. Support also comes on the shoulders of intimate talk and verbal emotional support that knits friends closer together and fosters emotional intimacy.

Talking and listening are activities that create and sustain feelings of closeness. Discussing the major events and issues and also day-to-day activities enables friends to understand the trends of their individual lives. When friends talk about themselves and their relationships and reveal personal feelings and information is the time they start cultivating emotional intimacy. Friends get a buy-in on emotional intimacy through intimate conversation that builds a strong, deep sense of connection. Also, cultivating emotional intimacy holds true when couples accept each other’s feelings, and stay involved in the other’s dreams, problems¬† and lives. Giving feedback that indicates understanding and interest to know more is in rhythm with cultivating emotional intimacy.

Sharing activities are also a means of expressing and cultivating emotional intimacy. To do things together, to do things for one another and to work towards a common goal builds a sense of camaraderie. To a nicety, partners or friends learn about themselves in the process of doing things together. Cultivating emotional intimacy bears good fruit through doing things together.

To accept a partner or friend for whom he or she is, irrespective of the shortcomings or vices, holds with cultivating emotional intimacy. Not to put up a false front when we are feeling low or unhappy and not to harbour any fear of being rejected, when we are in the presence of a partner, testifies to a strong emotional intimacy. Our sense of self worth is enhanced when we feel accepted by others.

Cultivating emotional intimacy gives us a leeway to become real with our feelings, unhinge the fear of rejection in our minds and take some pressure off our shoulders.

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