Intimacy is all about connection — I am not going to talk about self-pleasure here… so don’t worry… or get all red in the face. I am going to talk about getting to know “self”.
You are probably in many different relationships: with acquaintances, friends, family, co-workers, to name a few. When you think about the relationships in your life, does your relationship with yourself ever come to mind? Probably not, yet this relationship is central to all of your other relationships.
Self-intimacy is the experience of feeling connected to all of yourself – the parts of yourself you naturally embrace as well as the parts you wish didn’t exist. This connection allows you to feel grounded – giving you an emotional center that anchors your experiences. This anchor has an important place in your relationship.
To get a better understanding of your relationship with yourself, reflect on the following questions: “How do I feel about myself? What do I like about myself? Dislike? Hate? Which parts of myself do I find easy to accept? Which parts make me feel uneasy or conflicted?” Your answers to these questions reflect the type of intimate relationship you have with yourself.
Unfortunately, you may not have access to important parts of yourself. Why? Because you can dislike a part (or parts) of yourself so intensely that you deny its existence. Your denial doesn’t mean that these parts do not surface in your relationship with self – they usually seek expression. When you ignore parts of yourself, you’ve left the realm of self-intimacy (a connection to yourself) and have entered the world of self-estrangement (a disconnection from yourself).
At one time or another we’ve all denied certain truths about ourselves, maybe with little consequence – truths that would make us feel vulnerable or ashamed, desperate or inadequate. However, when you’re in a relationship, the consequences of self-estrangement are always significant. Why? Because you can never fully hide….
When self-intimacy is the norm, you’ll be fully present and emotionally available to everyone you have relationships with. When self-estrangement rules your inner world, you will remain disconnected from yourself and anyone else. Your relationships are robbed of intimacy whenever you close off aspects of yourself to yourself.
So… get to know “self”… all aspects of YOU…. This is the foundation of any successful relationship.
Now, my relationship with coffee must be explored.