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The Quest For Intimacy Begins With Self-Love

The biggest obstacle to cultivating the authentic intimacy you desire with the special person in your life is a part or parts of yourself you do not love. These are hidden parts, parts you have never fully accepted, perhaps parts of you that were disowned, rejected or shamed by a parent when you were a small, or parts you feared would cause conflict or anger. These subconscious parts of you, essentially, are the main obstacles to forming and enjoying the healthy, loving, mutually enriching couple relationship you desire.

These hidden aspects of yourself are powerful shapers of your life because the operate subconsciously, outside your awareness. Even if a miracle occurred and you awakened tomorrow morning to find that your partner was “exactly” how you want them to be and your relationship instantly changed, for example, you will not likely be able to sustain the changes long enough to enjoy them.

These unloved parts of you would likely begin to act quickly to return your relationship back to what you had before.

Though some call this “self-sabotage,” it really isn’t.

These hidden parts of you are controlled by a part of your mind known as the subconscious. It is responsible for managing all processes of your mind and body that you do not have to think about with your “conscious” mind, the part that does conscious thinking, makes plans, decisions, and so on.

Your subconscious mind monitors all systems 24/7. It never rests. That’s because its primary directive is to ensure your survival. Unlike the conscious mind, it does no “thinking” of its own. And, it does not know the difference between physical and psychological threats to your survival! That means: It relies on information from you, at any given moment, to interpret life around you, especially in terms of threats to your emotional survival, which is as real and conceivably more intensely guarded than physical survival.

It’s safe to say that: our greatest fear is intimacy. And intimacy is the art of balancing our drive for meaningful connection, on the one hand, with our drive for self-agency, on the other, correspondingly, our fear of closeness (feeling controlled, limited) with our fear of distance (feeling separate, alone).

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