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June 16, 2019

The 16 Questions to Turn your Chemistry into Intimacy.

 

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Why do we foster instant connections with some people and not others?

Why, upon first meeting a person and feeling similar, are we inspired to share information about ourselves? Why do we believe—with just a “hunch” that another person will understand us—even though we hardly know them?

When we speak about connection, we often think of cerebral stuff. We’ve got neurolinguistic programming and brain science explaining how the chemicals work. Those connections that occur because people are like-minded or tend to respond emotionally in the same way. Connecting the dots of time, place, and intention.

The primary law of attraction is what’s shared. It’s about shared experiences, shared focus on similarities (and differences), and shared intentions (hopefully positive). And what matters most where love is concerned is that two individuals meet in the same place. It’s not the kind of attraction that matters; it’s the connection of two people that are in synchronicity with whatever they enjoy or love most. What gets you fired up—be it foot rubs or Foucault—is something that is shared.

How do we know if we are firing on all circuits and connecting on many levels? How can we develop the key intimacy a relationship needs to survive and thrive? Take the time to ask questions. There are never enough things to ask or consider when it comes to being partnered with another person. There are so many considerations.

Use this list of questions as a guideline for you and your current/future love interest. Consider all the elements of love when you answer them, including physical, mental, and spiritual.

Ask yourself some big, real-life questions. Perhaps you can pen your answers in a notebook or just use these as jumping-off points for relationship discussion:

1. How do I connect with this person’s think tank—i.e. have a true meeting of the minds?

2. Do I really understand that person and does he/she really understand me?

3. How do I connect with this person on an emotional level? How do we connect at the psychological level?

4. Can I confide my deepest feelings to him/her? Does the recipient show respect for my deep feelings?

5. Do I feel safe when I let my emotions loose on this person? Is that person emotionally stable? How does that person regulate his/her emotions?

6. Do we “get” each other’s idiosyncrasies or “issues”?

7. What are my unique personality characteristics? What are his/hers? Can we live with our differences?

8. How is the person’s sense of humor?

9. How do we connect where spirituality is concerned? Do we share the same values?

10. Do any of our attitudes pose a challenge to liking and respecting one another? Am I accepting of this person—warts and all?

11. How do we communicate—and forge a strong connection? Do we yell or can we have a civilized discussion—even about hot topics?

12. Are we comfortable with the things each of us likes or prefers? How do we share our time and our things? Do we have enough regard for our different interests that we can afford each other private space? Are our most ingrained habits compatible and endurable or are they so distasteful and irritating that they constantly grate on us.

13. How deeply and meaningfully do we connect in the bedroom? How compatible are our sexual preferences and sex drives? Do we each want the same amount of cuddling, holding, and kissing?

14. How do we feel about honesty? Are we on the same wavelength?

15. How much do we share in terms of values and vision for the future?

16. Do we have similar ideas about things? Do we think about the world in similar ways? Are we intellectual equals?

 

~

For more tips on how you can create meaningful connections personally and professionally, you can grab a free chapter from my book The Connection Challenge here.

author: Alan Samuel Cohen

Image: Brieuc Saffré / Flickr

Image: elephantjournal / Instagram

Editor: Julie Balsiger

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Katelyn Kent Jun 21, 2019 8:25am

I dunno Alan, I think your questions are quite thought provoking. And I had a nagging thought. Are you saying that people should gauge personal relationships health on our sameness? What about the power of the opposing view? is it bad when there are differences? I am not my partners intellectual equal. I know things he does’t and vice versa. Sometimes I think he’s downright stupid about something he feels he’s a master at. And I am sure he feels the same. We are passionate people. Things get heated sometimes. We disagree. And although we both love sex with each other, sometimes we are not always on the same page. I think if what you are suggesting that a good, solid, and loving relationship is based only on our sameness leaves a big piece missing. OUR DIFFERENCES are what allows us to grow. I think having like core values is important, but our differences are not just important, but necessary. You cannot know white unless you also know black. When you answer “quiz- like “ questions you posted, it makes peoples minds worry and wonder when they answer ‘no’ to something. OMG…maybe we don’t measure up! You make some really great points and I do not disagree with a single one. And, I don’t want people to get the idea that if their path is different, then it is wrong somehow. Although it has been a challenge, and sometimes painful as hell, my partners willingness to disagree with me and call me on my sh%$ has given me some of my greatest most powerful lessons. I like the article. I wish I could’ve answered yes yes yes to all 16.

kelseyabbott Jun 20, 2019 12:20pm

So many brilliant questions! I love that you ask us to ask ourselves if we feel safe to express our emotions. We can’t have open communication if we feel we need to hide our emotions.

alisonp0616 Jun 8, 2019 5:09pm

I love the way that you provide questions for us to think about as we reflect on the way we connect. . I used to overlook some of these factors but not anymore. As a single woman in my late 30’s I have found that I am so much more aware of the things that I need in a partner and so I’m definitely adding these to my list of questions to explore as I find my next partnership!

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Alan Samuel Cohen

Alan Samuel Cohen, MBA, PCC is an experienced certified executive and team coach and corporate instructor, with over a decade of experience coaching leaders and teams at companies including MetLife, American Express, Skadden Arps, Tiffany’s, NBC, and numerous PR and Marketing agencies. He helps teams work more effectively together, using assessment tools including Emotional Intelligence and Myers Briggs. He has worked with many sales, marketing, and leadership teams from a wide range of industries (professional services, entertainment, pharma, consumer products, technology).

He is also a professional speaker and has written books on authentic connection in a digital age, and how to manage conflict and difficult conversations in the workplace. His latest book, The Connection Challenge, is currently available on Amazon. Prior to becoming a coach, he worked in PR, Marketing, and Human Resources for more than 25 years, most notably as the Director of Publicity for Scholastic, where he led the team that was responsible for launching the “Harry Potter” book series publicity in the United States, and as Director of Communications for The Broadway League, where he publicized the Tony Awards. He is funny, engaging,  super smart, and has very good table manners.