Transformation through Intimacy
Although each of the three spheres (Self, Intimacy and Achievement) is fundamental to the experience of well-being or happiness, the central and most difficult challenge for adults is the struggle to become and remain close in a close interdependent relationship.
Our capacity to love grows with us. As an adult, the most interdependent and meaningful human relationship is the couple. As this relationship has an intellectual, emotional and physical dimension it has the potential for the greatest level of human intimacy. Conversely when this adult relationship fails, disappoints or is lost altogether, it becomes the most important source of stress, pain or suffering.
Find Love, Marriage Intimacy, a Happy Close Relationship
To love a man or woman in a couple relationship is not easy. It encompasses the capacity and willingness to give and receive acceptance, dependence, commitment, concern, affection, love, companionship, sensual pleasures and sexual excitement. After the initial stages of ‘infatuated love’ or ‘passive fusional love,’ relationships require an effort. An individual will encounter defenses or stress symptoms in oneself (anxiety, anger, physical symptoms, depression or sometimes psychosis) and in one’s partner as he or she becomes far closer in the nine elements of intimacy (love definition).
When defenses are too strong, a breakthrough in intimacy may require the help of a third party. To achieve a closer relationship than ever before, one has to be open to a new experience of intimacy that goes beyond our traditional experience of passive love.
New Love Definition
Intimacy or closeness goes far beyond understanding better marriage communication. It is not just how you communicate in a close intimate relationship, but what you communicate that is important (see love definition). To understand our fear of rejection or getting hurt in close intimate relationships is not enough. We must overcome our defenses (anxiety, anger, physical symptoms, depression or psychosis) provoked by increasing levels of intimacy. It is only after breaking through in all nine elements of intimacy at a far greater level than our previous best, that inner transformation and a release from stressful symptoms occurs.
The experience of breakthrough intimacy is life changing. It does far more than save marriages. Intimacy is central to an individual’s quest for inner well-being (peace, friendliness, physical health, happiness and mastery). For this reason, in Lifetrack therapy breakthrough intimacy is an integral part of marriage or family therapy, as well as a fundamental experience in all individual therapy with adults.
Intimacy: Largest Impact on Human Psyche
Dr. Ishizuka has found that regardless of the problem (self, intimacy or achievement), working on the intimacy sphere (a close intimate relationship) creates the largest impact on the human psyche.
Even if the problem arises in the self sphere (being in touch, at peace and in control of the self) or the achievement sphere (difficult job, work goals, the desire for work first, the compulsive need for weekend work, loss of a job), intensive work on human intimacy can create a breakthrough in all three spheres of one’s life.
Intimacy Increases Self and Achievement More than Direct Work on Achievement Sphere
In fact, despite the many reasons people come to see a psychiatrist (they are as varied as your imagination will allow you to suppose), Dr. Ishizuka has found that working intensively and almost exclusively on the intimacy sphere produces the most dramatic and long-term change–particularly on a person’s sense of self and achievement. To examine the four stages of transformation through intimacy and its effect on self and achievement read Stages of Inner Transformation.
There is something about human intimacy at a much higher level that has a profound healing effect. This baffling phenomena convinced Dr. Ishizuka that a close loving relationship is the critical factor in experiencing individual happiness and optimal adjustment.
Self and Achievement must Catch up to Rising Intimacy
Although intimacy is an important lever for fundamental personality change, alone it is not sufficient to sustain internal adjustment. A sense of self and achievement must catch up with a high level of intimacy for well-being to be experienced and maintained.
Breakthrough Intimacy Eliminates Symptoms
Breakthrough intimacy (closeness beyond a previous best) eliminates symptoms by making them unnecessary. This is done by repeatedly focusing on improving closeness until defenses such as anxiety, anger, physical symptoms, depression or psychosis disappear altogether.
To succeed one must help both individuals in the couple, regardless of the person who initially sought help. Breakthrough intimacy consists of getting the couple several times closer than their previous best (or when they were happiest).
Success entails helping the couple overcome symptoms on both sides, to attain a much higher level of intimacy where defenses such as anxiety, anger, physical symptoms, depression or psychosis become unnecessary. Symptom elimination of anxiety, anger, physical symptoms, depression or psychosis is a by-product of a successful Lifetrack therapy, but it is neither its goal nor the criteria by which it measures its result.
Copyright © 2010 Lifetrack Corporation
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Breakthrough Intimacy, Find Love, Marriage Intimacy
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