Do you wonder what happened to that yummy closeness you used to have with your mate? Is the sweetness of that chocolate-like intimacy missing from your relationship? Read on to discover 7 simple ways you can whip the confectionery delight of intimacy back into any relationship.

So what do intimacy and chocolate have in common?

Chocolate, the majority of us crave it. We enjoy smelling it, cooking with it, and of course eating it! Most of us would drive a few extra miles out of our way to try the newest chocolate confection. But, as with anything in life, we need to maintain a balance of healthy eating in our lives so we can enjoy those opportunities to savor the chocolate treats when they arise.

This is true of intimacy too. Most of us crave intimacy. We enjoy the delicious closeness that intimacy with another person can offer. But we have to watch that we balance the attention we give to the concerns and distractions of life with the effort we make to keep that intimate connection alive in our relationships.

So if you're willing to go the extra mile to indulge in the newest chocolaty treat in town, then consider that taking these following seven steps may be worth the effort if they will bring you closer to the intimacy you crave!

Step 1: Create a Supportive Space for Intimate Conversation--The Chocolate of Intimacy

Many experts suggest that honesty is the best policy. The path we suggest is to talk to each other so you can really get to know how you each feel about your desire for intimacy. Discuss what you each enjoy and what things you like to experience during your intimate times together. This kind of intimacy about intimacy can create a deep connection.

While this is a great first step, we believe that how and where you have this conversation makes a huge difference in the outcome.

We suggest that you start by creating a space for open dialogue--one with some communication guidelines that will help both of you feel safe and comfortable. Start by discussing whether there's anything that would prevent either of you from speaking honestly.

In our work we experience that fears about being judged, or criticized can prevent people from feeling safe enough to share openly. Another area of concern is bringing up past wounds. Take the time to discover anything that might cause either person discomfort about having this dialogue. Once you have each shared, come up with some ideas that will ensure a safe space for both of you.

Step 2: Pledge Yourself to Discovery--The Cocoa Richness of Intimacy

Think about it, you've set up a supportive space for dialogue, why waste your valuable time by being evasive or expecting the other person to read between the lines. Pledge to protect this space so that intimate communication can thrive.

The best way to ensure success in Step 2 is to Go for the discontent under the actions and reveal what each of you truly wants. You'll move much faster towards indulging in the new sweetness of your chocolaty intimacy.

• Agree that you'll refrain from analyzing past events to determine who was at fault.
• Agree that you'll refrain from attempts to "fix problems" in other areas of your relationship.
• Agree that you'll let go of discussing "who did what, when" and focus instead on what you'd like now.

Step 3: Create a Mutual Intention--Add In Milk and Stir

Trust and the willingness to understanding of what is deeply satisfying for both of you as individuals and for your relationship are what support a partnership to grow, evolve and thrive.

Our suggestion is that you form a mutual intention for your relationship. This means you come up with a clear, concise statement for what you both want to create.

Here's an example:

We want to create a relationship of freedom, inspiration, and caring where both of us experience fun, support, and true intimacy.

Your mutual relationship intention is taking the yummy chocolate of choice adding milk and stirring, to mix together what both of you value, to create a lasting goal for your relationship to grow, evolve and thrive.

Step 4: Ask For What You Want- Melt Butter and Blend

Now that you understand what's important to each of you, at a personal
value-based level, it's crucial that you explore what these values mean for each in realistic terms.

One value in your mutual intention statement might be caring. For one person caring might be a hug at the end of the day. But for the other a hug might not symbolize caring at all. For them caring is shown through time spent discussing the days events and sharing what tomorrow might bring.

Discover what the value words in your mutual intention mean for both of you. Then discuss concrete examples of activities that will lift your mutual intention from words spoken to actions taken. Make a list

Ahh. The creamy butter of what you want mixed with cocoa of your values and then blended with the milk of mutual intention… another step closer to the chocolate delight of intimacy.

Step 5: Leave behind Compromise, Negotiate to add your special flavoring

A recipe for frustration and resentment… not the chocolate truffle of intimacy!
Compromise is founded in the belief that there isn't enough to go around, so you have to settle for whatever you can get.

Negotiation requires the commitment that each person gives up nothing they value, while at the same time maintaining an equal commitment to give up any particular strategy that would prevent the other person from experiencing what they value.

Go back to your mutual intention and look once again at the values identified. Give another once over to the concrete actions decided upon to bring those values to life. If any action does not create the intention for BOTH of you, give it a rethink.

Remember don't compromise--never do anything that you don't really want to do. Your ability and your partner's to stay true to yourselves and the process is the unique flavorings that the two of you mingle to create your sweet treat!

Step 6: Gratitude: Spreading the Sugar Around

Any day and any time is a GREAT time spreading the sugar of appreciation for what you enjoy about your relationship. Identifying what you are grateful for and expressing your appreciation is supportive in continuing to build upon what you have created.

Make a list. And then express your appreciation to your partner: Give Them That Sugar! You can always find one tiny little thing to be grateful for. And one grain of sugar is the beginning to finding the sweetness you desire!

Step 7: Heat It Up. Top it with Renegotiation and CELEBRATE!

Your recipe for the deep dark rich chocolaty goodness of Intimacy:

• Create a Supportive Space for your Open Dialogue
• Pledge Yourself to a Course of Discovery
• Create a Mutual Intention
• Ask for What You Want
• Remember the power of negotiation
• Give the Gratitude

And Now…..
• Make agreements about who's willing to do what and when

Getting closer to the delicious taste, touch and smell of Intimacy! Both parties involved need to know that either what you've agreed to will happen or it won't.

This is just the truth of making agreements. If the agreement is not kept, most often frustration follows.

Here's a much more satisfying approach…

We suggest, each time someone keeps an agreement, acknowledge and CELEBRATE this wonderful contribution to your relationship.

Now we all know that some agreements are bound not to be kept. Don't dump the recipe in the trash can, celebrate anyway!

Why? Because all it means is that you weren't as clear as you needed to be to make a satisfying agreement that would be kept. So renegotiate. Renegotiation is a yummy topping to any Double Chocolate Treat.

Whipping up the intimacy in your relationship can be like creating the most heavenly of all chocolates. All it takes is that both parties are willing (two cooks in the kitchen), that you have resources that support you (fresh ingredients), and a mutual intention (your own personal recipe) to guides you forward.

Follow these 7 steps and your craving for the chocolate of any relationship: Intimacy will surely follow. Don't forget to lick the bowl!

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