Workaholics and perfectionists are people who pride themselves on being on the go and multitasking all the time, like when everything is done according to a checklist. This type of person tends to be highly analytical and always seems to be solving unfinished business, preventing bad things from happening, or correcting other people’s mistakes.
Here’s what they have in common: Not everyone can think or see things the way I do.
People in this category often have difficulty connecting emotionally with others. They may logically know that they love and are loved, but they struggle to feel it in their bodies. Most of their interactions are based on what they can do for others rather than how they connect with them. Emotional disconnections in relationships are often part of a survival response that they themselves are unaware of.
The body is constantly scanning for safety outside of our consciousness. This is done to protect us from emotional and physical pain. When a person experiences trauma or pain, the body automatically defends itself. This can manifest as struggle, avoidance, and inaction. Multiple distressing experiences that make a person feel helpless (which is common in childhood) can leave a patterned response of emotional disconnection. In other words, the body learns to disconnect from emotions.
detach from emotions
The human body is designed to be emotionally connected, but often the body learns to disconnect from emotions when it is not allowed to feel them. The good thing about this is that people don’t feel painful emotions deeply (or at all), but the bad thing is that they don’t feel pleasant emotions either.
When emotions are not felt physically, they usually manifest as behaviors that are projected onto others, such as anger, irritation, impatience, hatred, resentment, and jealousy.
get stuck in logical thinking
Logical thinkers are often admired. Because the world is built for those who over-perform, analyze, think outside the box, are solution-oriented, and always act. Acceptance and admiration make it even harder for some people to realize how disconnected they are from their feelings.
Emotional disconnection also means that people often analyze situations when they should be feeling emotions, such as when they are going through a difficult time or when someone is sharing something vulnerable. . Problem-solving often defaults to staying close to one’s own and others’ experiences.
Your body is designed to feel emotions, and it can recognize when you’re not feeling them. This is why people often seek an adrenaline rush to feel. People buy material things, have new experiences, constantly change things (wardrobe, travel, cars, mods, etc.), focus on overachievement, seek legitimacy, release dopamine. It’s common to turn to things like social media and television to get it going. .
give a gift or do something for someone else
Emotional disconnection in relationships often means that love is expressed by giving gifts or doing things for the partner. It can be difficult for isolated people to express love with words, attention, time, physical intimacy, and so on. Resentment is often heightened when we see that others have begun to expect to receive love from us in this way.
How to initiate a connection
The body cannot begin to feel as commanded. The body stopped connecting emotionally because it was not safe to feel. Therefore, only after the body learns that it is safe to feel will it be able to feel again. Awareness is the first step to reconnection.
- Do you feel pain when experiencing or remembering difficult situations?
- What do I feel in my heart when someone says something kind to me?
- In what moments do I feel most connected?
- Do I feel empathy for others, or do I feel empathy for myself?
Emotional disconnection in relationships is common when people have experienced pain in the past. Intimacy can be difficult to practice, so it’s important to be patient and look for safe connecting experiences. Explore safe connection by relaxing your body and then placing your hand on your loved one’s shoulder or arm and seeing how it feels. If you have children, hug them and notice how it feels in your body. Looking into your loved one’s eyes and observing their facial expressions is a good way to start practicing connection. If these feel too overwhelming, some believe it is safer to start exploring emotional connections with pets and nature. Dating people is the perfect time to start making meaningful connections.
Most of the moments of deep connection happen when people are in a vulnerable position. If relationships have been insecure in the past, there may be no room for vulnerability. Practicing weaknesses with people who make it safe, listen without judgment, validate, and allow room for your emotions can help you heal from past experiences.
Emotionally isolated people often feel alone or without support. For in the past, this was often the case. Learning to be independent, or not dependent on others, was part of survival. Learning to ask for help, delegate, and build community is part of the process of regaining trust in others. It’s important to allow things to be different from the way we’re used to and to be comfortable with things being “imperfect.”
If you grew up relying on yourself, you may have learned that getting things wrong is very bad. This internalized response to mistakes usually sets our expectations for how we and others should be, and it helps us accept when we are wrong and how others make mistakes. It can make it difficult to be nice when you rape. Admitting that we were wrong not only shows us that we may be vulnerable, but it also builds trust in others and opens the process of repair.
Everything never goes well in a relationship, it’s impossible. Since each person has their own interpretation of truth and their own lived experience, it is natural that humans often misunderstand each other. The key to increasing and maintaining emotional connection in relationships is knowing how to repair and how to enable repair.
Emotional disconnections in relationships can be a normal reaction to stressful past experiences. It’s important to recognize and be aware of what lies behind it. Then you can start building a real connection with your partner.