The ability to recognize a "wise choice" or lifetime partner puts you
ahead of most people. When you
begin a new relationship, you likely use one of two
techniques to make your “yes/no” decisions.
You may use your emotional feelings to attract a mate, or rely on your
mental reasoning to progress beyond the first date.
If your emotional and intellectual perceptions are in balance, you will do very well with the intimacy
love and dating scale.
If these talents are out of balance, you will recognize immediately why a
relationship is in trouble or has failed.
THE INTIMACY LOVE AND DATING SCALE
Getting a person's ATTENTION is the initial phase of attracting a potential partner.
Of course, the first step is getting the other person's attention.
Perhaps you've decided to meet through a dating service, a blind date, family introduction, or
a night out to dance, drink and mingle. Each step is a path to
moving the relationship forward.
Remember, your first impression will win the next date. ATTENTION
comprises attracting the first glance, the first conversation and the first
exciting contact with each other. Did he/she respond actively, or did they appear bored?
Did you have a lot to talk about, or was the conversation strained?
Did he/she like you more you liked them (or vice-versa)?
Were you trying too hard because you were nervous, or was the
conversation easy? Was his/her
money and physical appearance more important than personality?
If your emotional gut feelings conflict with your intellectual perceptions, be
cautious or simply move on. If you chose to accept inconsistent feelings or
actions, most likely you will attract and accept inconsistent relationships.
Doing so will conflict with attracting your true soul-mate relationship.
Have you arranged for a second meeting with your new potential partner?
If you have, congratulations! Hopefully, you will choose not to become overly physical or
sexually intimate at the end of your first encounter. If you become overly intimate, your chances of growing a
healthy relationship decrease.
To build a loving
relationship, you want to be genuine and real.
your new mate is doing the same with you?
INCLUSION is a wonderful and exciting next step.
This is what most relationship counselors refer to as the "Honeymoon
Hopefully, you feel comfortable to begin sharing your aspirations, goals, and
and effortlessly. You begin talking
about your work, friends, family, and past experiences.
You want to know everything about the other person.
You are being your best self, and they are being the same with you.
You begin talking on a daily or weekly basis, and you enjoy getting to
know each other.
Each conversation makes you feel better about growing the relationship
with your potential
INCLUSION you discover if your goals are compatible:
financially, socially, spiritually and emotionally. Also, you will
discover if your goals regarding
family and children are harmonious. Make
sure to cover all aspects of your quirks and similarities during this
stage. If you can continue to have great conversations and increase your
attraction for each other, and feel a strong level of synchronicity, you will be
prepared to take the next step.
Here are some questions to
How does your new partner show respect for you?
What things do you find in common with each other that spark new ideas and things to do together?
Has your new companion
introduced you to his/her closest friends and family members?
your partner considering your needs and desires as a priority?
What talks have you had to
begin discussing longer-term goals?
much fun are you having in
planning your life together?
Is your new partner dating
you enjoy your conversations so much that you feel like you are sharing with your best friend?
Many people mistake early stages of INCLUSION
as true love. If this mistake occurs in your relationship,
watch your relationship slowly slip away. Inclusion
means that you are getting to know each other, and wisely doing so in an easy
and effortless manner. During the INCLUSION stage, men and women often let themselves "fall in
love," when in fact, they are simply infatuated with this new face and
is where most relationships fall apart. Infatuation
turns into what one may feel is love (which results from behaving as if
truly in love -- a future stage), while the other person is still back in the stage of INCLUSION.
This now creates an unbalanced relationship where one person may care more than
the other. Whoever cares more
usually loses because they are trying too hard. They are trying to
personally change or change their partner to force the relationship forward.
person who loves least is in control and will likely either
"use," keep at a distance, or ultimately drop this new partner.
At this point the man backs off if the woman develops
"puppy dog eyes," assuming the two of them are an ITEM after only a
women skip INCLUSION (II) and move straight from ATTENTION (I) to CARING (V) and
PHYSICAL PASSION (VI) WITH COMMITMENT. If they make love on the first, second or third date, and assume that
their partner will suddenly "fall madly in love with them" as a result of having
made love, then wishful thinking will take over their emotional and intellectual
logic. If sex is introduced too soon,
the balance of emotion and intellect is upset, and people stop seeing each other
as they truly are.
you learn you MUST go through INCLUSION by simply
getting to know each other (before sex), then you can move to the next stage of
AFFECTION and get past playing games.
This stage begins as you begin to see the frailties, faults and
weaknesses in your partner. The
good news is your partner has seen your flaws, too. You both decided to move forward and help each other be your
"best self" and assist one another growth process.
Stage" is over, and now a feeling of long-term commitment begins. You
you really like the other person, and he or she feels the same about you.
maneuvered through arguments, misunderstandings, and frustrations. These events
brought you closer together.
Your talk of commitment gets deeper, more complex, and serious. By now, you have
decided you don't want to lose your partner. Your companion wants to be
with you, too.
However, be aware of a common mistake during this stage of development. Love is a very
complex feeling. Perhaps your AFFECTION is fostered by a deep need for financial
security, sexual discovery, social status, child rearing, emotional bolstering,
etc. Putting undue attention upon these issues, which are only aspects of
your needs and perhaps NOT your highest-self soul mate needs, can distort the
AFFECTION is a pivotal point where you can feel safe to process
and break through your fears, and invite your partner to be a part of your growth.
If he or she is unwilling to support your growth, then you have not attracted the stage of AFFECTION.
Also, if you hope that your partner will rescue you, your partner
will either wise up and leave for someone who is secure in his/herself or the
relationship will enter a cycle of push/pull -- a cycle likely to ultimately
lead to a troubled relationship.
As a final thought, if you have been physically intimate in the early stages of
AFFECTION without a sense of commitment first, your chance of this relationship
failing is pretty high.
There are three levels of Trust:
A. Trust with your feelings.
B. Trust with material
C. Trust with your physical body.
Even though there are three categories,
trust levels occur simultaneously. We examine all three areas of trust
separately to help provide clarity.
A. Trust with your feelings.
After you successfully grew a sense of AFFECTION and
developed the early stages of commitment, you enter the
TRUST phase, commonly known as the "trust zone."
this phase is compromised, your relationship cannot mature and it will splinter
apart or repeat initial stages, cycling through them again and again but falling
apart with the unresolved trust issues.
During the AFFECTION stage, you shared your strengths and weaknesses,
and grew stronger in your relationship. With
TRUST comes the agreement that each of you is "first" in the relationship.
priorities are set, both individually and as a couple together.
Even if a boss, parent,
sibling, child, friend, or stranger creates a disturbance in your relationship,
this type of trust (feelings) means your partner comes first.
You trust that your partner has clarity, compassion, and awareness to help
the two of you through the "moment."
As this trust grows, you know your partner values you and your opinions.
You feel safe with his or her ideas, insights, and suggestions.
Your mutual actions are based on mutual respect and
appreciation for each other, developing consistency. You know he or she will be there for you because your
communication is easy, dependable, and trustworthy because the words are backed
by consistent action (follow-through).
If you feel unsure or insecure with these thoughts and actions with your new
sweetheart, you have not mastered trust with your feelings (in this
relationship). If you cannot get
past your uneasy feelings, it is quite likely you will fall out of love and your
relationship will fall apart. Of
course, if you can develop this level of trust, your relationship will deepen.
B. Trust with material belongings.
One of the most important issues that couples encounter is trust with their
material belongings. Often, new lovers will
share their car, home, stereo, keys, credit cards, etc., with a new love when
they are still in the INCLUSION (II) or AFFECTION (III) stage.
If this stage of trust is entered too soon, disappointment can occur to
one or both parties in the relationship. During
the early stages of the Intimacy Love and Dating Scale, if a potential partner shows great
respect for material belongings, the giver may assume he or she is the
"one" and jump from INCLUSION (II) to CARING (V). Skipping TRUST development may
jeopardize your relationship.
You can be frank in your
approach to this step:
Can you trust your future
financial stability with your new partner?
If he or she is wealthy, will
they care for you and your needs?
If he or she is not financially
secure, will they take advantage of you?
How does your new partner respect
and show care for the items in your home?
your partner talks
about how you can become more financially secure together do they sound
controlling or patronizing?
If your respective long-term
financial goals are incompatible, or if your concepts of wealth conflict, then the
relationship is quite likely to fail. In
my experience of counseling relationships, money
issues top the list of reasons for divorce in the United States
(next to issues about sex and raising children).
It is imperative you maintain
this level of trust in your relationship to enjoy a lasting, loving union.
Trust with your physical body
Trust with your physical body
is the most abused phase and the least understood step to developing a truly
loving and caring relationship.
It is fairly common for single women to feel (in today's age) that if they do not have sex
by their third or fourth date, their gentleman suitor will move on.
Also, single men commonly say, "If I haven't had sex by the third
or the fourth date, I'm in the friend zone."
Both of these assumptions have created havoc in the dating scene, by
creating pressure to have sex early in the relationship, rather than waiting for
the stages of intimacy to develop and be truly able to say you are "making
love" with your soul mate.
These statements are true if you believe in them, meaning each individual is
moving from ATTRACTION, INCLUSION, or AFFECTION, directly to TRUST WITH YOUR
If you want quick and
spontaneous sex, go for it. If you
want to learn about sex, then go for it. If you want to have an affair, that,
too is your choice. However, with
each of these decisions comes the possibility of acquiring a sexually
transmitted disease and a complete lack of communication with your partner. Be aware that by moving into an intimate relationship prior
to developing spiritual, mental, and emotional intimacy you’ve upset the
natural balance in your system and risk the relationship’s development.
The Intimacy Love and Dating Scale does not advocate moving so fast, but if this is your
preference, then enjoy the experience and good luck with your results.
Doing so (moving fast) attracts a 90+% failure rate.
The Intimacy Love and Dating Scale defines great sex as the deeper level of
communication and understanding sex under “making love." You can
only make love when you truly are loving each other and KNOW each other.
Otherwise, be aware - you're just having some fun sex. Fun sex might be
fun, but it IS risky to your health AND your goal of developing a true
"soul mate" relationship.
Sharing true love and intimate passion results when you travel this far through
the intimacy scale without skipping the previously mentioned steps. This
is a healthy time to "make love." At this point, you learn much about your partner.
You have realized that you
are so pleased you met your new love. This
person means so much to you. You
can hardly wait to spend the next day with them and forever sounds even better.
Sex never grows old. You want to discover the depths of sexual passion, but also
how to always keep it alive because you are realizing you LOVE this wonderful
Now, intimacy bonds you closer and closer every time you are together or even
think about each other. And if you
learn to keep this trust alive for the duration, it fuels you to continually add
to your relationship's depth, meaning, and growth.
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In this wonderful phase of a relationship, you have added genuine caring to
Trust, Affection and Inclusion. Caring
comes out of the levels of trust. This stage is the awareness that if you lost
your new love you would be devastated. Not
remorse due to fear of financial loss, fear of starting over, or losing social
status. Rather, you realize, this
person in your life knows you better than anyone else and vice/versa.
This feeling is not only awesome but also irreplaceable.
You feel as if God moves through you, the person you love, and the people you
share your lives with.
Now nothing seems impossible. Sex
is great, you are building dreams together, you can tell each other anything and
life gets better! You give each
other cards, flowers, and candy. You
constantly think of making each other's day better, because it feels good and
brings you closer. This is a
lasting routine that never ends.
If it does, you can watch your relationship have many ebbs and hopefully new
flows when caring re-enters the relationship.
Arguments, failures, angst, and disappointment are a part of the relationship,
but not a cause for ending it. In your caring you have decided that each of you
always comes first, and you will never
sacrifice the other's needs for your means to an end. In caring you can overcome
life's pains that always face us: loss of a loved one, disease, losing a job,
moving, financial change, children, new technology, growing older, change in
You both have committed to face these issues together and you believe in one
another to get to the other side. This stage is one in which you have been
dating seriously and are talking about marriage.
Here is where the Commitment Phobics always lose and so do you.
Commitment Phobics are
relationship addicts enjoy and indulge in every stage until it comes to
professing ultimate caring. Hopefully
you haven't spent seven or ten years discovering you have a dance away partner.
Sadly many, many, have reached this stage and watched a relationship crumble.
The signs were available, but there was always a reason to stay, forgive, or
start over in the intimacy scale, hopefully to get through it all the way, down
the line. Somewhere along the way, your emotional or rational goals were
compromised, allowing you to continually re-invent the intimacy scale.
Commitment Phobics are masters at keeping you in this cycle. If you have given
years of your life to someone who says they can't go to the next stage of
marriage, click to the AspireNow Advisor and look at your life patterns.
VI. PHYSICAL PASSION WITH COMMITMENT
This is the stage when the question of marriage is no longer a concern. You can hardly wait to
be married (if you aren't, already). A total commitment to each other is a primary desire.
Whether you choose to wait for marriage to have sex is up to you -- this is a
personal issue (and, for many, a religious value).
This is when you realize life gets better through marriage and a blending of the
two of you. Marriage is not only exciting but opens new doors of opportunity for
your goals, dreams, and plans. Not only do you plan logical goals, but also your
emotional goals are blended such that your compatibility and passion grows.
It is very rare that this stage falls apart.
By now you know each other, your true motives, needs, wants and
frailties. Sex, love, future,
children, problems, dreams, thriving, are part of the zest for
life. Rather that achieving to be
happy, you are both happily achieving. Also
life becomes the experience of living together, not hoping to experience life
and learning to love each other.
VII. LOVE IS PARTNERSHIP
Love is no longer learning the steps of relationship. It has become partnership. You are partners for life and how
wonderful the feeling is day to day. Love
is no longer an ideal, fantasy, hope, wish, dream, or a someday experience. Love
is so real that you revel in it every day.
nd you KNOW it will never go away. This is the goal so many lovers want and so
many never achieve.
Your love isn't an agreement. Your
love isn't continually processing relationship issues. Rather, your Love is a
partnership in which you agree in all matters.
Your partnership gives you continued confidence, security, nurturing,
fun, stability, and equal power. You
have learned to thrive together. You have accepted each other completely, and
are enjoying the "being" and "doing" of life together.
You also realize, that when you die, your loving husband/wife/partner will be
waiting for you. There is no special award given to you at the Pearly Gates of
Heaven, simply the fact that you have loved so truly and this love and those who
have loved you will always be with you.
This STEP of the Intimacy Scale allows you to always reach for your best self.
Even if a relationship has failed there is hope.
If you have lost a loved one, you are more likely to find true love
note: the author of this article may not be certified as a
licensed psychotherapist -- please consult professional assistance as your