Wednesday, 7 November 2012

The triangular theory of love

The triangular theory of love

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DO you take love for granted? Do you often operate in a nonchalant, haphazard manner, or do you spend quality time to nourish and cherish each other so that your love can reach the heights that it was meant to? Be honest, who in a relationship doesn't long for deep passion, intimacy and romance? Which man or woman wouldn't want to be taken on 'highs' even momentarily, visiting other blissful worlds and experiencing the true meaning of oneness? After all, isn't that's what love is all about?
The triangular theory of love is a theory developed by psychologist Robert Sternberg. Sternberg posits that the three components of the love triangle includes the following:

1. Intimacy: Encompasses feelings of closeness, connectedness, and bondedness.
2. Passion: Encompasses drives that lead to romance, physical attraction, and sexual consummation.
3. Commitment: Encompasses, in the short-term, the decision to remain with another, and in the long-term, the shared achievements and plans made with that other.
Sternberg said that the amount of love one experiences depends on the absolute strength of these three components; the type of love one experiences depends on their strengths relative to each other.
Different combinations of the three components will lead to different forms of love, as specified below. No means that the element is missing and yes means that it is present in your relationship.
Too many couples settle for empty love, which has no passion and intimacy but only has commitment. If you are currently experiencing only companionate love, all is not lost. You can find ways to rekindle the passion and you can learn how to be really intimate, so that you can eventually experience consummate love, which is the ideal form of love.
Jacqueline Champier is a counselling psychologist from Mandeville.

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