• Hope Pregnancy Center

6 Ways to Improve Your Relationships

On the blog today we are discussing the topic of relationships. We often get multiple questions regarding our clients' relationships, so we’d like to share some tips with you about how to improve any relationship in your life, wether it be your family, friends, your lover, a coworker, or your boss.

As human beings we are made for relationship. Wether you are introverted or extroverted everyone thrives in a group of close friends and family. The size of that group will depend on your personality, but no matter what, every human being thrives with social interaction. A Human being’s desire for social interaction doesn’t just stop at physically being in a room with others or being connected on social media - far from it. Human beings ultimately desire to have a sort of intimacy with those closest to us. The sort of intimacy that I’m talking about is that which is marked by a very close association, contact or familiarity. We like to say intimacy is like “seeing into me”. It’s more than sex and much more than just physical, which is unfortunately what the word often gets reduced to in the context of a lovers relationship. There are multiple ways of growing in intimacy with others and I’d like to share with you 6 areas that you can grow the intimacy in your relationships.

Physical

Even though most people believe that intimacy is only physical - it’s still an important part of developing that closeness with those around you. Physical intimacy is the the way you engage with physical touch. In a relationship these might be hugging, kissing, snuggling, back rubs, holding hands, and sexual contact. Now obviously in the context of a working relationship these would be inappropriate - and the so the list of appropriate physical contact will be greatly reduced, however don’t negate the power of a hand shake to greet another co-worker or boss.

Intellectual

Often overlooked in the context of intimacy is the subject of intellect. Connecting with how another person thinks and what they are interested in learning is an excellent way to “see into” them or for them to “see into you”. You may consider taking a class together, reading similar books, exploring current events, or challenging one another to learn something new. This sort of intellectual intimacy can be used widely across any relationship - but it is especially important not to neglect the exercising of the mind with your lover.

Emotional

We are emotional beings and they play an important role in how we think and behave. Knowing one another’s emotional wiring and providing the freedom to express emotions, both positively and negatively will improve your connectedness with others. Your emotions, and the ability to manage them play’s an important role in many aspects of life, including decision-making and your overall happiness and success in life. If you want to build strong, long-lasting relationships you need to practice being understanding of what makes your partner laugh or cry, give them permission to express doubts and fears, and seek a general understanding of one another’s personalities and tendencies. Even in the context of a co-worker relationship, be sure not to get too caught up in your own world and practice exercising respect of another’s feelings, even if you don’t believe they are right.

Social

How you connect with the people around you, and the things you and your partner engage in for fun is a great way to grow closer. When you get out and spend quality time with your friends together, it becomes an essential part of getting to know each other on a deeper level. When you get out and spend time outside with other people it really helps to elevate your mental state by doing things you enjoy. You may consider sharing a hobby together and seeking similar qualities in friendships with others. Keeping your social relationship strong should always include family as well. Family relationships should also include time with friends from time to time. Make sure to devote several quality hours to the people you love and understand how each other view, define and value family.

Spiritual

The way you view the world and express the spiritual nature of your hearts is incredibly important. Your worldview determines which lens you view the world through. It is the very foundation by which your beliefs are formed. How you view the nature of reality and the world around you is all built upon this spiritual aspect of worldview. It is important that you grow to understand the worldview of others in your life. With your partner you may consider attending religious services together, meditating or praying together. You may consider sharing and listening to a friend or co-worker's world views and thoughts about a higher power. It is not always necessary to share the same world view in every relationship - but seeking to understand that worldview builds a close and intimate relationship with those around us.

Financial

Probably an odd area to think of in terms of intimacy, however how you approach, view, save, spend, and give money can really make or break a relationship. Unfortunately financial incompatibility does break many relationships which is why we include this category. You should consider agreeing on budget parameters with your partner, discussing life goals for earning an income, your spending habits and how you view debt. Beyond just discussing finances, consider what gives you both joy in spending and especially how and what you GIVE your money to. Giving is an incredibly effective way to increases connectedness.

Applying the principles

These 6 categories are just a jumping off point to improving your connectedness with the people in your life and especially with your partner. It’s really not too difficult to grasp the principles above, but for some it can prove difficult to implement. It takes a lot of devotion and patience, and what really get’s complicated is when some realize that they may share intimacy physically but the other five categories are missing. Remember to be patient with your partner or friend. If you’re not sure wether the relationship is just needing time and growth, or if it’s truly in the category of “toxic”, then we are here to talk it through if you need to. Contact us today to find out more about our relationship classes where we equip you with the tools necessary to develop connectedness in your life.

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