Good Energy Massage

Integrative therapy for the Body, Mind and Spirit.

Healing the Fear of Intimacy

Are you sick of being afraid of intimacy? Are you ready to have the wonderful experience of emotional intimacy in your life?

Why would someone be afraid of intimacy? Don’t we all want to feel close and connected with someone?

Yes, of course we want that, but there are very real fears that keep us from opening to emotional intimacy in a primary relationship.

The Fears

What is the first fearful thought you think when you think of feeling close to someone?

“I’m going to be rejected or I’m going to be abandoned.”
“I’m going to be smothered, engulfed, controlled. I will lose myself.”
“If I lose the person I love through death, I can’t handle the pain.”

These are the fears that are behind the fear of intimacy. It’s not the intimacy itself, but the bad things that can happen that are sometimes part of an intimate relationship.

These fears come from the pain of having been rejected, or of having lost ourselves in a relationship, or of having too much loss without knowing how to handle grief. These experiences may have been so painful that you are afraid to experience them again.

Is this pain inevitable in an intimate relationship? Yes and no. The pain of rejection or engulfment is NOT inevitable. The pain of losing a loved one through death may happen and is always a huge challenge, but would you really rather live a life without love than face this challenge?

The Healing

The key to healing the fears is developing your loving adult self.

For example, you are in a relationship with someone you really love. One day, out of nowhere, your partner gets angry with you, shuts down to you, or threatens to leave you.

If you are operating from the ego, wounded part of yourself, your reactions might be:

“What did I do wrong?” (Taking it personally and feeling rejected).
“What do I have to do to fix this?” (The beginning of losing yourself).

Then you might also get angry or shut down to avoid feeling rejected, or you might scurry around trying to make things right, taking responsibility for your partner’s feelings. Out of your fear, you would try to control your partner.

If you are operating from your loving adult self, your responses might be:

“My partner is closed right now and trying to blame me or punish me for something. My heart hurts from being treated this way, but I know that his or her behavior has nothing to do with me. I cannot cause another person to act this way, nor am I responsible for how he or she chooses to behave. If my partner leaves, I will feel very sad, even heartbroken, but I can manage this feeling with deep compassion and tenderness toward myself. Now, I wonder how I can best take loving care of myself until he or she opens up?”

As a loving adult, you would not take your partner’s behavior personally and feel rejected by it, nor would you give yourself up trying to get your partner to open up. You might ask your partner what’s wrong with an intention to learn, and if he or she opens up, then you can have a productive conversation. If not, then you would compassionately tend to your own heartache and do something loving for yourself – take a walk, call a friend, read a book, and so on.

You would not fear being left by your partner, as you would not be abandoning yourself. You would know that you will take loving care of yourself.

Developing your loving adult self is a process that takes consistent practice. When you shift your intention from trying to have control over another not rejecting you, to taking loving care of yourself, you gradually develop your loving adult. The more powerful your loving adult self is, the less you fear intimacy. You no longer fear rejection because you no longer take others’ behavior personally, and you no longer fear engulfment because you no longer give yourself up to avoid rejection. As a loving adult, you learn how to manage loss so that you don’t have to avoid love.

The Inner Bonding process is a powerful process for developing your loving adult. Practicing the 6 steps of Inner Bonding gradually leads you out of your fears of intimacy and into the ability to truly love yourself and take loving care of yourself, so that you can share love with others.

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December 9, 2010 Posted by | Sacred Intimacy, Sexuality, Tantra | , | Leave a comment

Fear of Intimacy

We all desire that deeply fulfilling experience of intimacy, yet many people have two fears in the way of intimacy. In this article, discover what these fears are and how to heal them.

Emotional intimacy is one of the most wonderful experiences we ever have. Nothing else really comes close to the experience of sharing our deepest thoughts and feelings with another, of being deeply seen and known, of sharing love, passion, laughter, joy, and/or creativity. The experience of intimacy fills our souls and takes away our loneliness.

Why, then, would someone be afraid of intimacy?

It is not actually the intimacy itself that people fear. If people could be guaranteed that intimacy would continue to be a positive experience, they would have no fear of it. What they fear is the possibility of getting hurt as a result of being intimate with another.

Many people have two major fears that may cause them to avoid intimacy: the fear of rejection – of losing the other person, and the fear of engulfment – of being invaded, of being controlled and losing oneself.

Because we have all learned to react to conflict with various controlling behaviors – from anger and blame to compliance, withdrawal, and resistance – every relationship presents us with these issues of rejection and engulfment. If one person gets angry, the other may feel rejected or controlled and get angry back, give themselves up, withdraw or resist. If one person shuts down, the other may feel rejected and become judgmental, which may trigger the other’s fears of engulfment, and so on. These protective circles exist in one form or another in every relationship. When the fears of rejection and engulfment become too great, a person may decide that it is just painful to be in a relationship and they avoid intimacy altogether.

Yet avoiding relationships leads to loneliness and lack of emotional and spiritual growth. Relationships offer us the most powerful arena for personal growth, if we accept this challenge. So what moves us beyond the fear of intimacy?

The fear exists, not because of the experience itself, but because a person doesn’t know how to handle the situations of being rejected or controlled. The secret of moving beyond the fear of intimacy lies in developing a powerful loving adult part of us that learns how to not take rejection personally, and learns to set appropriate limits against engulfment.

When we learn how to take personal responsibility for defining our own worth instead of making others’ love and approval responsible for our feelings of worth, we will no longer take rejection personally. This does not mean that we will like rejection – it means we will no longer be afraid of it and have a need to avoid it.

When we learn how to speak up for ourselves and not allow others to invade, smother, dominate and control us, we will no longer fear losing ourselves in a relationship. Many people, terrified of losing the other person, will give themselves up in the hope of controlling how the other person feels about them. They believe that if they comply with another’s demands, the other will love them. Yet losing oneself is terrifying, so many people stay out of relationships due to this fear. If they were to learn to define their own worth and stand up for themselves, the fear would disappear.

The Inner Bonding process is designed to create a powerful inner adult self capable of not taking rejection personally and of setting limits against loss of self. Anyone can learn this six-step process and, with practice, heal fears of intimacy. Through practicing the Inner Bonding process, you learn to value and cherish who you really are and take full responsibility for your own feelings of worth, lovability, safety, security, pain and joy. When you deeply value yourself, you do not take rejection personally and become non-reactive to rejection. When you value yourself, you will not give yourself up to try to control another’s feelings about you. When you value yourself, you are willing to lose another rather than lose yourself.

Start to learn Inner Bonding now! Consider joining the membership community and receive the support you need to develop your loving Adult. Moving beyond your fears of intimacy will open you to the deep personal and spiritual growth that relationships can provide and the profound fulfillment and joy that loving relationships can offer.

December 9, 2010 Posted by | Sacred Intimacy | , | Leave a comment

Courage to change, a path to healing.

It takes more courage to reveal insecurities than to hide them, more strength to relate to people than to dominate them, more “manhood” to abide by thought-out principles rather than blind reflex. Toughness is in the soul and spirit, not in muscles and an immature mind.–Alex Karras

When I read this it made me think of my own personal journey of healing and growth. This path I am walking of being in the healing arts has not come easy. I have worked very hard and looked at myself and habits on a very deep level. I am so grateful to have found a path that truly  resonates with me. I would not change a thing.

April 10, 2010 Posted by | Ego, Healing | , | Leave a comment

Honoring Life Changes- The Wisdom of Fear

I get daily emails from www.DailyOm.com and this one really resonated with me. I look back over the past 8 years and and all the personal growth work I have done. Most often the biggest challenges I have faced and the challenges that brought up the most discomfort and fear have been the most rewarding and have allowed for the most growth. Many clients often tell me they are a little nervous about the first Tantric and Somatic work session.  So I wanted to share this….

Honoring Life Changes
The Wisdom of Fear

Anything worth doing will always have some fear attached to it. For example, having a baby, getting married, changing careers—all of these life changes can bring up deep fears. It helps to remember that this type of fear is good. It is your way of questioning whether you really want the new life these changes will bring. It is also a potent reminder that releasing and grieving the past is a necessary part of moving into the new.

Fear has a way of throwing us off balance, making us feel uncertain and insecure, but it is not meant to discourage us. Its purpose is to notify us that we are at the edge of our comfort zone, poised in between the old life and a new one. Whenever we face our fear, we overcome an inner obstacle and move into new and life-enhancing territory, both inside and out. The more we learn to respect and even welcome fear, the more we will be able to hear its wisdom, wisdom that will let us know that the time has come to move forward, or not. While comfort with fear is a contradiction in terms, we can learn to honor our fear, recognizing its arrival, listening to its intelligence, and respecting it as a harbinger of transformation. Indeed, it informs us that the change we are contemplating is significant, enabling us to approach it with the proper reverence.

You might wish to converse with your fear, plumbing its depths for a greater understanding of the change you are making. You could do this by sitting quietly in meditation and listening or by journaling. Writing down whatever comes up—your worries, your sadness, your excitement, your hopes—is a great way to learn about yourself through the vehicle of fear and to remember that fear almost always comes alongside anything worth doing in your life.

August 26, 2009 Posted by | Tantra | , | Leave a comment