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intimacy

Planned Intimacy

Failing to plan for intimacy too often means it is left till the end of a busy day where it can become, for some, just one more thing they have to do so they can get to sleep. Planned intimacy means that you and your partner are going to schedule in time for intimacy in your lives. This is not to be confused with scheduling sex. It does however create the opportunity and helps create the atmosphere that may greatly increase your chances of making love.

Intimacy

Clients will comment that planned intimacy does not sound romantic or spontaneous. I am not sure where the idea that intimacy and sex must be spontaneous comes from, perhaps from television, movies or romantic novels. But the reality is that without some forethought the frequency of intimacy and as a result sex are likely to decline as your relationship matures. Continuing to court and to plan for intimate times together after marriage just means that you continue feeding the fire of your passion rather than letting it fade and turn cold.

In order for planned intimacy to work, sex cannot be the goal or even on the agenda. The goal of planned intimacy is to connect as a couple—to see and look at each other, to listen to each other, to cuddle and be close, and to spend time together. You can reminisce, talk about hopes and dreams, go for a walk, hold hands, or play a fun game. What you do does not matter as much as the attitude with which you do it. A minimum of once a week for a least an hour and daily time together for at least 15 minutes are good targets to aim for when scheduling your planned intimacy.

There are only two rules for planned intimacy: 1. Just the two of you. 2. Most important, turn off the distractions and tune into one another.

At times your planned intimacy time may result in love-making. This is much more likely to happen if neither of you is pushing for it to happen. If you feel a great deal of resistance to the idea of planned intimacy, it is likely that the two of you have already grown apart and you are possibly withholding affection and avoiding situations that could lead to sex. Knowing that planned intimacy does not obligate you to have sex, may make it possible for you to experiment with planned intimacy to discover if it will help the two of you rebuild your connection.

Keeping Secrets: 6 Rules

secrets

We create intimacy by sharing who we are, what we think and believe, and how we feel with each other. Mutual sharing is a most satisfying experience. A question to consider is, does total honesty always benefit your relationship? Open and honest communication is vital to the success of relationships; brutal honesty on the other hand is not. When is it okay to not tell the whole truth? There are times when an omission or partial truth simply avoids upsetting the other person unnecessarily. For example the response to the classic question, “Does this dress make me look fat?” perhaps should not be, “Yes, it sure does.” A more tactful, but possibly less truthful answer might be, “The other dress is more flattering.”

Scott Peck suggested 6 rules for withholding or keeping a secret:

1. Never tell a lie.

2. Remember that withholding the truth is always potentially a lie and a significant moral decision is required. (Not something to be done lightly)

3. Never withhold the truth for personal gain (to gain power, to be accepted or liked, or to protect your values from challenge)

4. Always base the decision entirely upon the needs of the person you are withholding the truth from.

5. Genuine love for the other person is required to responsibly make this decision.

6. Ask yourself if sharing this information will benefit or hurt the other person. (Remember that we are more likely to underestimate their capacity to handle the truth)

Lasting Relationship Skills

A lasting relationship is not a matter of luck or even a matter of choosing the "right one." Even the most promising relationships will struggle if the following relationship skills are ignored. Communication Skills

Skilled communication involves first listening to understand and second speaking to be understood. That means listening with both ears. Try to see things from your partners perspective. Communication skills also involve understanding that your partner cannot read your mind, nor can you read his/hers. Share your thoughts and feelings with your partner. Be clear, open, honest, tactful, and respectful.

Loving Skills

It takes skill to learn to show love to your partner in a way that feels loving to him/her. Don't do a Homer Simpson--Homer gives Marge a bowling ball, because he would love to get a bowling ball. Mature love also means behaving lovingly even when you don't feel particularly loving.

Problem Solving Skills

All relationships encounter problems sooner or later. Problems that are ignored or swept under the rug come back to haunt your relationship. Successful problem solving skills will greatly benefit your relationship

Intimacy Skills

couple

Learning how to be intimate in a way that meets both of your conditions for arousal and satisfaction takes practice and skill. Selflessness and an openness to learn can help in developing intimacy skills.

Compromise Skills

Compromise is not a dirty word. Learning to compromise is an important relationship skill. This means finding creative ways for both of your needs to be met, even when you cannot agree on how to solve a problem.

Fair Fighting Skills

Fighting fair is essential in lasting relationships. Dirty fighting leaves emotional scars that may never heal. Since all couples fight, whether you call it disagreement or discussion, it is still important to learn how to do it fairly.

Cooperation Skills

Finding ways to manage a household that involve a fair and equitable sharing of workload is vital. As is finding ways to share parenting responsibilities.

These relationship skills are all interconnected. For example, fighting and lack of cooperation will affect your level of intimacy and a lack of intimacy will increase the friction in your relationship. Improving these relationship skills will improve your chances of creating a lasting relationship.

Celebrating Your Anniversary

Celebrating your Anniversary

Your anniversary is a perfect time to build some treasured memories together. Take time to celebrate your relationship and your love. This is a way to confirm your commitment to each other, to take some time to appreciate the great times and acknowledge that you have survived the tough times.

Ideas for Celebrating

It is easy to fall into the routine of dinner out for your anniversary. But with a little thought and creativity, whether you have been married for one year or many, you can create a special time to celebrate your love and life together.

Build and Share Memories

Do something new and fun together to create a treasured memory. Find things that help you laugh and have fun together. Take some time to cuddle up and share memories of fun times together. Share your wedding video or if you were married pre video, look through your wedding photos.

Take a Romantic Getaway

romanticgetaway
romanticgetaway

It could be a night in a near by hotel, a weekend, or a full vacation. Where your go doesn’t matter as much as where you put your focus. This is a time to leave distractions behind and enjoy one another. Choosing a place where you can enjoy the beauties and seclusion of nature can help to create an intimate mood.

Romantic Date for Two

Invite your spouse out on a date. Make reservation for a romantic candlelight dinner and then go to a romantic movie or enjoy drinks in a secluded corner of your favorite bar. Take a moonlight stroll along a beach holding hands or go dancing in a romantic atmosphere. Whatever you choose, find magic in your moments together.

Second Honeymoon

Whether there was no time or money for a honeymoon, or your honeymoon was lack luster, or your honeymoon was fantastic a second honeymoon can be a great way to celebrate your anniversary. Plan to go some place you both would like to visit, anything from an exotic spa to a cabin in the woods. Make sure that you have time and space to focus on each other.

Renewing Vows

If your wedding didn’t turn out quite the way you wanted it to or you simply want to reaffirm your love for each other, you could consider renewing your vows. Invite those people you want to share this with. Make it as simple or elaborate as you wish.

Stay at Home

Send the children to Grandmas, lock the door, turn off the distractions (cell phones, TVs) and build a fire in the fireplace or light candles to create a romantic atmosphere. Relax, laugh, play, kiss and enjoy each other. Cuddle up and share fun memories and discuss plans for the future.

Plan a Party

You can choose whether you want a small family celebration or you want a big bash. You may want to get your bridal party from the wedding together for a reunion and celebration.

Go on a Picnic

Choose a secluded spot, preferably where you can enjoy nature, a quiet meadow, a lake or waterfall. Pack a picnic lunch and hike, bike, or drive to your chosen spot. Spend time enjoying nature, sharing, laughing and noshing. What is right for your anniversary is totally up to you. Remember the most important thing - enjoy each other’s company. A special date or just quiet time together is the ticket to a memorable anniversary celebration.

romanticpicnic
romanticpicnic

A Word about Gifts

The two of you should decide whether you wish to exchange gifts for your anniversary. The best gifts are not necessarily those that cost the most. The best gifts are those that say I know you, I love you, I care enough to make an effort.

Questions to answer:

What does your partner like to do, read, watch, eat, wear?

The more you know your partner the easier it is to find that perfect gift just for them. The thoughtful gift is treasured for a lifetime.