The fear of getting intimate does not only have to do with the fear of holding your partner’s hand or the uneasy feeling when he or she would rub your skin. It also involves dealing with co-workers, family members, friends, and even yourself.
Signs that indicate that you probably have a case of intimacy anxiety include the following:
- Getting busy all the time.
- Pointing an accusatory finger outward, judging other people instead of looking within.
- Displaying anger or hostility towards other people.
- Use of cutting and sarcastic remarks that are supposedly meant to be humorous.
- Being sexual yet closing down connections or chemistry.
- Adopting a superior attitude.
How do you know when to move past the fear and open yourself further into the relationship, or when to use your fear as a signal that being intimate in your relationship is not very wise?
Be open to love no matter what – Love the person while maintaining boundaries that are healthy for you. It doesn’t necessarily mean agreeing with the other person, but it does mean that you should honor them and hold them in compassion.
Don’t confuse being busy with connecting – If you tend to be busy all the time, chances are you tend to overlook getting connected with other people. Take time to be close to people even with just a smile or a kind word.
Listen from your heart – True intimacy begins with listening with an open heart and not from your frame of reference. You need to understand the other person’s perspective also.
Learn to receive love and kindness – Just because you give love and kindness doesn’t mean you are already intimate to other people. True intimacy comes from giving love from deep inside as well as appreciate the love the kindness others give to you.
Take time to support and nurture yourself – How can you expect to be intimate with another person if you do not allow an intimate connection with yourself? Take time to be introspective and learn to love yourself. Get a massage for instance. Go to the park and breathe fresh air as you read a book. Do anything that you would love to do.
Speak your truth in ways that others can hear – Unfinished business and words left unsaid build up walls that keep intimacy out. Although you may have a hard time telling your truth, it is best to begin opening up by praising the other person first and then tell him or her that there are some things that you need to say.
Let go of the fear of getting hurt – Until you let go of the fear of getting hurt—both physically and emotionally—you would never have the kind of love, depth, and connection that we know is possible.
If your fears of intimacy are keeping you from having the best relationships, then work through whatever is causing you to be fearful. Once you are able to win over those fears, then you are bound to feel good when receiving more love and connections from the people that matter most to you.