The Seven Levels of Intimacy: The Art of Loving and the Joy of Being Loved, by Matthew Kelly. Though our hearts crave intimacy, though our minds understand our deep need for it, the self-revelation it requires is often too daunting a task. Complete and unrestrained sharing of self exposes the deepest human fear of being rejected for being ourselves. In The Seven Levels of Intimacy, Matthew Kelly both acknowledges and calms our fears, while teaching us how to move beyond them to experience the power of true intimacy. Matthew reveals that each relationship is built upon a pattern of interaction. In the beginning stages, we rely on casual interactions, gaining familiarity by focusing on superficialities and facts. We grow closer and begin to share our opinions, learning to accept each other and embrace the growing relationship despite the difference in our experiences and viewpoints. Once our differences and opinions are shared and accepted, we feel safe enough to reveal our hopes, dreams, and feelings, developing trust. With this trust, we open ourselves and are able to share our legitimate needs, becoming liberated from carrying the burden of our real needs alone. At last, we are deeply intimate and both willing and able to reveal our deepest fears. We are beyond judgment and feel trust and acceptance. By moving through and building upon each level of intimacy, we find comfort and gain trust in our partners and ourselves until, by developing and deepening our intimacy within each level, we are able to fully open ourselves, finally opening to the possibility of truly being loved. It is through mastering the seven levels of intimacy that we will break through to fully experiencing love, commitment, trust, and happiness.
The Seven Levels of Intimacy is a brilliant and practical guide to creating and sustaining intimacy, whether you are looking for a deeper sense of connection with your spouse, looking for more fulfillment in your relationship with your boyfriend or girlfriend, trying to improve your relationships with your children, or simply wondering what you should be looking for in a partner. With profound insight and the use of powerful, everyday examples, Matthew Kelly explains how we can nurture the intimacy in our relationships. The Seven Levels of Intimacy redefines how we view our interactions with others. This new understanding leads us to successfully create the strong connections, deep joy, and lasting bonds that we all long for.