Healthy intimacy’s influence is not reserved for just a relationship between a man and a woman. Healthy intimacy affects every part of your life and all of your relationships. Healthy intimacy influences every aspect of your emotional, intellectual, social, spiritual, and physical world.
I’ve outlined what healthy intimacy is in a previous post entitled “Discovering the Art of Healthy Intimacy.” In this post, I want to look at ways to express healthy intimacy.
Like most men, you may have never understood how healthy intimacy can influence every aspect of your life. As we take a closer look at intimacy’s influence, you will discover a wealth of untapped influence that will significantly improve all your closest relationships.
Healthy intimacy is primarily expressed in the following ways:
- Emotional Intimacy: This may seem intuitive, but healthy emotional intimacy is not just strong feelings. Healthy emotional intimacy is both expressing emotions verbally and demonstrating affection through your consistent actions. Action speaks louder than words, so a hug, holding hands, walking arm in arm, or just a hand on their shoulder says more than words could ever say.
- Intellectual Intimacy: Healthy intellectual intimacy is expressed and shared by intentionally exploring activities that develop understanding or knowledge together. Developing and discovering a passion for learning about a variety of topics together such art, gardening, history, music, nature, science, crafts, a foreign language, ancient culture, etc. Intentionally reserving time to explore healthy intellectual intimacy deepens your relationship in ways that can’t be described – only discovered.
- Social Intimacy: Healthy social intimacy is developed by purposely seeking out or enjoying the companionship of others, being friendly and sociable. Healthy social intimacy will require learning to be more outgoing. This may mean getting out of your comfort zone. So, go slow. Like anything else, you can learn and nurture social intimacy. Social intimacy includes intentionally becoming more actively involved in your generational family, new friendships, or with your faith community.
- Spiritual Intimacy: Healthy spiritual intimacy is expressed by sharing sacred things or matters such as religious interests, faith, or beliefs. This might mean developing a deeper spiritual approach to life together or defining your family’s moral compass base upon shared beliefs. A shared moral compass is something that you and your loved ones should strive to live by.
- Physical Intimacy: Healthy physical intimacy is more that physical contact between two people. It’s purposely pursing shared events and occasions that are pleasurable to all your senses of sight, sound, smell, taste, and touch. This may involve having bodily contact with a loved one by holding hands, feeling the mist of a waterfall, warmth, and smell of a campfire, or witnessing the warmth of a sunrise. Discovering healthy physical intimacy can be one of the most enjoyable adventures when you seek to share intimacy using all five senses. The possibilities are endless.
If you work with others to nurture and develop these five facets of healthy intimacy, your relationships will begin to thrive. To continue learning how to break though barriers and develop true healthy intimacy, look for more posts like these to come your way.
I hope today’s blog has encouraged you. Make sure you sign up to receive blogs posted every Tuesday and Thursday. TransformingFamilies.org resources are designed to guide you through the restoration process of developing your heart, mind, and strength, enabling you to become the man God created you to be.
I also provide one-on-one coaching, if you want to improve your relationships, let’s connect through e-mail at ‘firstname.lastname@example.org’. My hope for you is that through these blogs, references, and resources, God will transform you from being bruised or broken to an abundantly blessed man.