We all yearn for intimacy, but we avoid it. We want it badly, but we often run from it. At some deep level we sense that we have a profound need for intimacy, but we are afraid to go there. Why?
We avoid intimacy because having intimacy means exposing our secrets. Being intimate means sharing the secrets of our hearts, minds, and souls with another fragile and imperfect human being. Intimacy requires that we allow another person to discover what moves us, what inspires us, what drives us, what eats at us, what we are running toward, what we are running from, what self-destructive enemies lie within us, and what wild and wonderful dreams we hold in our hearts.
In The Seven Levels of Intimacy, Matthew Kelly teaches us in practical and unforgettable ways how to know these things about ourselves and how to share ourselves more deeply with the people we love. This book will change the way you approach your relationships forever!
A throwaway buzzword in pop psychology, intimacy remains a litmus test for the health of relationships and is something everyone should strive for, says Kelly, the bestselling author of The Rhythm of Life. "Intimacy is the one thing a person cannot live happily without," he writes. Since many people cling to the "pubescent notion" that intimacy and sex are synonymous, Kelly begins by talking about what intimacy is not-sex, common interests-and proffering up inspirational tidbits and oft heard motivational questions ("Who energizes you?" "Why do they energize you?" "How do you want to be remembered?") before hammering home the thesis of this book: intimacy is a "legitimate need." His seven levels of intimacy-cliches; facts; opinions; hopes and dreams; feelings; faults, fears and failures; and legitimate needs-each get a chapter-length discussion. Kelly advocates openness-in communication, enduring pain, delaying gratification-and sprinkles in bits of spirituality in cajoling readers to foster intimacy, and, in turn, love and the meaning of life. "Life is about love. It's about whom you love and whom you hurt. Life's about how you love and hurt the people close to you." His view may seem simplistic, but Kelly's simple, direct prose and patient explanations will appeal to spiritual readers.