How connected are you?
I’m not talking about your social media following. I’m talking about connections with other humans—in person.
How many close friends do you have? Whom do you have to call at 2 AM when all hell breaks loose? Who’s your tribe that watches your back?
Our tribal ancestors had connections with their fellow tribe members. They worked as a team as they battled the elements, hunted for their meals, and developed cultures.
If you were like me, you grew up in a family that had the minimal amount of emotional connection. We inherited a model of limited emotional connections with other people, and this influences our adult relationships.
When I ask people about their emotional connections with other people, I often get a look that seems to say, “What are you asking?” I might get some intellectual, dry explanation of that person’s interpersonal relationships. However, I rarely hear a person describe their actual emotional connections with other people.
Here’s the deal—it’s not your fault. If you grew up with a model of limited emotional connection, that informs how you connect with other people and might stunt efforts to forge these connections. Research demonstrates that we need connections to other humans. We can feel off balance if we don’t have these connections. It can leave us with an emotional hunger.
We need to learn to feel emotions so we can connect emotionally with others.
You can’t connect with another person beyond a superficial level unless you are connected to your own emotions and experience. When you are aware of your experience, open to allowing others to affect you and reach out with your self-acceptance to connect; you have the foundations of connection.
Connecting with Your Partner
No one taught me these things. I developed this model through working with people and contemplating the nature of human emotional connection. You can employ the Emotional Algorithm™, which came out of thousands of hours of working with men learning to create connection in their lives. I have a simple mind—I always look for the easy way to do things. Gradually I began to see patterns. From these patterns, I was able to distill it down to three steps, and from there I tested my algorithm.
It worked. When a man I worked with followed this formula in his own way, he developed connections he didn’t have. His relationship with his partner improved dramatically.
Emotional connection to yourself and others is a human birth right. Connecting to your partner is how it should be.
Immediately start applying this algorithm. There are many tools that can help each of these three steps. For example, the practice of Mindfulness will teach you self-awareness and self-acceptance. Brene Brown’s work on vulnerability will guide you on how to be open. Attachment theory, which I discuss in other blog posts, lays out the whys and hows of connection.
You have every right to be deeply connected to your partner. It’s not your fault you aren’t, but it is your responsibility to do what you need to create that connection. Go for it. We are here to support you.
Let us know how it goes. I will respond to your comments. Leave them. :)