The Four Cornerstones of Extraordinary Relationships: Part 2

31 Oct


Last time I talked about the importance of knowing and understanding the four Cornerstones of great relationships. As a quick review The Four Cornerstones consist of an Intellectual, Spiritual, Emotional and Physical connection. In Part 1, we discussed the Intellectual and Spiritual connections. Today, we will conclude our discussion with the Emotional and Physical connections.

The Emotional Connection

There are two components to the emotional connection.

First, you have the love component. This is the spark, the chemistry, the emotional connection you have with your significant other. Healthy love is love that gives without expecting anything in return. Unhealthy love requires and expects some action or response. I will love you “if” you do this or say that. Healthy love just gives with no strings attached.

The second component is emotional health and emotional maturity. Without emotional health and maturity, you cannot develop a loving relationship because the love you give, in general, is based on manipulation of your mate to get something that you desire.

We’ve all experienced bad relationships. Many of them are caused by emotional immaturity. These are the ones that are demanding of your time and attention whether you have it to give or not. They will usually be jealous if you talk to someone else, want to know where you are at any given moment and want to start being the center of your world to the exclusion of everyone and everything else. Your wants, needs and desires are subjugated to theirs. Emotionally unhealthy people may have anger issues, drug or alcohol issues or obsessions with work, sports, pornography and other things that take their focus from daily life.

Don’t Confuse Infatuation with Love

The chemistry portion of this connection starts with infatuation but develops into the emotion of love when you are with the right person. And, don’t confuse the two. Infatuation is the butterflies in the pit of your stomach, weak in the knees feeling you have when you are first in a relationship. It can also blind you to the red flags of a poor relationship. This can last for up to two years. Love, on the other hand, is the deepest, most indescribable feeling that makes you want to sacrifice your wants, needs and desires for those of your significant other with no expectation of anything in return. In the right relationship, your mate will feel the same desire to sacrifice their wants, needs and desires for yours.

When you experience the emotional connection with a healthy lover, you will truly know it. The connection you develop with your mate is so incredible that it literally transcends words. Your mate becomes the first person you think about and want to see in the morning and the last person you want to see or think about as you drift off to sleep. When you look across a crowded room and you catch his/her eye, you will sense a connection like no other, that there is no one else in the room besides the two of you.

The Physical Connection

Just as with the Emotional Connection, there are two components to the Physical Connection.

The first is physical attraction. We all want to be attracted to our mate. Looks, in general are more important to a man than to a woman. That doesn’t mean that women don’t want an attractive man. It just means that they are more likely to look beneath the surface appearance and get to know a man before she passes judgment.

The second component of the Physical Connection is physical intimacy or sex. This is an important part of nearly all relationships and should be the last part of an extraordinary relationship that you explore together. Studies have shown that if you introduce sex into a relationship too soon, the ability of both men and women to connect will be severely limited intellectually, spiritually and emotionally.

Waiting until marriage is the best policy for a strong healthy relationship. This is usually a pretty hotly debated (and disagreed with) subject in my seminars and one-on-one coaching, but studies consistently show that the longer you wait, the stronger your long-term relationship will be. Studies indicate that most of you reading this will have had sex with someone before the seventh date with that person. And, most of you will understand the hollow awkward feeling afterwards when there is little or nothing to talk about as one of you gets dressed and heads home. Then comes the regret of sleeping with someone before you have the chance to find out if the two of you are really compatible. The longer you wait, the more likely you are to develop a strong and healthy relationship.


No individual cornerstone is more or less important than the other. Each has a critical role in creating and nurturing a strong healthy relationship. Picture your relationship like a four legged table. If you remove just one leg, the table (relationship) becomes unstable. All too often relationships are built on just one leg of the table, the physical leg. You can learn to balance your table on just that one leg…temporarily. However, as soon as there is the slightest disturbance, the relationship crumbles.

Learn to recognize these Four Cornerstones in your relationship. If you are not building your relationship on a firm foundation, you are setting yourself up for future heartache and tears.


To get Rick’s book Dating Backwards, or find out about Rick’s workshops and coaching visit his website: Love For A Lifetime

Over the past 30 years, Rick Soetebier has been a student of self and relationship improvement and has become an astute observer of people and relationship issues.  Over time and through a relationship and marriage that ended after 25 years, Rick started to develop some of the fundamental principles that are found in his book, Dating Backward: A practical guide to dating and finding your soul mate.  You can benefit through his observations, education, research and personal experience by letting him help you make better relationship decisions.


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