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Emotional Connection: 38 Signs, Secrets & Ways to Build a Real Bond

An emotional connection is what bonds you together as a couple. Without it, you’re prone to problems and drifting apart. Learn how to build one here.

Emotional Connection

New relationships leave your head spinning for more reasons than one. The thrill of new love leads to a lot of conflicting emotions. Butterflies in your stomach, nerves, flirty texts, and feeling that amazing sensation as your emotional connection slowly grows into something more. New relationships, are we right?

Opposites may attract with nothing in common, but an emotional connection is still an absolute must when it comes to keeping the fire alive in your relationship.

So why is having an emotional connection so important? Sure, being ridiculously attracted to your crush doesn’t hurt either, but looks fade. An emotional connection? That sticks around.

Whether you’re in a new relationship or are rekindling one you’ve been in for years, we’re looking at how emotional attraction and connection work, the secrets and signs, and several ways to create an emotional connection with your partner. [Read: How to have a long term relationship that lasts]

Love or lust?

When you find yourself attracted to someone, it can be difficult to work out whether what you’re feeling is purely physical *lust* or whether it shows the deeper signs of an emotional connection.

For a relationship to really work and to become deeper over time, there should be a strong emotional connection that runs alongside all that bedroom action! The problem is, an emotional connection takes time to build, and it’s not something that can just happen instantly.

Sex can happen pretty quickly. Simply because lust can be immediate; however, emotions take a little longer to build, and trust takes even longer than that.

So, how can you tell whether you’re moving towards a deep emotional connection or whether your judgment is clouded by lust? [Read: Lust vs love & 21 signs to know exactly what you feel for each other]

Guys take longer to feel an emotional connection

As much as we’d like to believe that men can connect on an emotional level just as easily as ladies, it’s just not true. Guys take a little bit more time to build that deep connection. They need more time in order to evaluate if you’re someone they can see themselves with long-term.

This is also the reason it may take guys a little bit longer to commit than girls. If girls like someone and feel a connection, then we’re ready to be exclusive. Guys need more time to figure that out. And as long as they don’t have commitment issues, it will happen if they feel emotionally connected to you. [Read: How men fall in love and the 7 stages they go through]

How to create a strong emotional connection with your partner

When it comes to creating a bond with your new love, there are definitely some guidelines to live by. If you’re trying to create an emotional connection in a new relationship, here are some dos and don’ts you might want to consider.

1. Bond over interests and experiences

Easier said than done, right? This may not be an issue for couples who both enjoy working out, playing video games, watching sports, and cooking together. But what about the rest?

If you and your mate are truly opposites, try bonding over something new together. *Think: wine/painting nights, traveling together, bungee jumping, escape rooms, or skinny dipping!*

Not only will this experience of sharing something new together create fun memories, but it also bonds you emotionally. [Read: Couples bucket list – 32 things every couple needs to do]

Don’t believe us? The Association for Psychological Science did a study of 23 female college students who were asked to sample chocolate. First with a partner and the second time alone. The findings revealed when the girls were in pairs, they reported enjoying the chocolate more than when they were chomping down solo.

2. Don’t be shallow

It’s easy to feel like you have chemistry with someone you’re physically attracted to. That said, don’t be overly shallow with your partner.

Yeah, they’re good-looking, but that doesn’t make a lasting relationship. Go beyond the superficial and get to know your new partner deep down. This helps you build an emotional connection to who they are, not what they look like.

3. Have sex!

We really don’t have to give you the list as to why sex is awesome for your relationship, but we’re going to anyway. Having sex is a stress reliever, it’s fun, it releases feel-good endorphins, it lowers blood pressure, burns calories, and not to mention… sex is a fantastic way to create an emotional connection.

This is because of that ever-talked-about super-drug, oxytocin! This little hormone is released by the brain and creates a bond of love and trust between partners. Interestingly, Dr. Daniel Amen suggests in his book that this limbic, emotional bonding is part of the reason friends with benefits never work. The bond has already begun! [Read: 20 signs you and your friend with benefits are falling in love with each other]

4. Don’t take without giving

We’ve all had that one friend or partner who only calls you up so they can talk about themselves, their lives, and their problems.

Two hours later you hang up the phone and realize you’ve barely said a word! It’s exhausting. The lesson? You want your partner to feel uplifted by you. This creates an emotional connection, and they view you as someone who is giving, not draining. [Read: 19 signs of a taker in a relationship – Are you a giver or a taker?]

5. Share in spirituality

Psychology Today suggests adding spirituality into your relationship creates an extra layer of love, kindness, and respect. Whether you have your own religion or not, bringing a form of spirituality you are comfortable with adds a whole new level of emotional bonding into your relationship.

Reading the Bible together and applying its principles regarding marriage, praying together, asking one another what you believe are the answers to life’s biggest questions *what happens when you die, how did we get here, etc.* and indulging in the spirituality of nature and grand sights creates a heavenly emotional connection.

6. Don’t fight dirty

Purposely pushing your partner away when you’re fighting is a surprisingly common reaction to a fight. Emotionally disconnecting as a form of punishment to your partner is not only unhealthy, it falls under the ‘fighting dirty’ category.

Name-calling, low-blows, and physical reactions can be deadly to a relationship’s well-being. Avoid tarnishing your emotional connection by keeping the lines of communication open. [Read: How to fight fair in a relationship and grow closer]

7. Talk, talk, talk!

Bonding over activities and common interests is a great start, but the strongest emotional connection is built by getting to know your partner and talking to one another on a daily basis.

Whether you’re talking about your favorite memories, personal opinions, or what flavor of chip you could really go for right about now, talking regularly creates a strong bond on an intellectual and emotional level. [Read: 25 topics to talk about in a perfectly happy relationship]

8. Show your love

The simple answer? People like to be liked. One way to bond with someone is by making them feel loved, special, and not to mention S-P-O-I-L-E-D. And we don’t mean with dollar bills.

Lavishing attention on your crush and showing them you think they’re one in a million is going to make all the difference in creating an emotional connection with your special someone. [Read: 25 ways to emotionally connect with someone and instantly feel closer]

Some examples of showing your love in little ways to your partner include:

a. Celebrating one another’s successes

b. Ask about your partner on a daily basis *”How was your day?” “What are you up to?”*

c. Regularly text one another

d. Let your partner know when you think about them throughout the day

e. Create inside jokes together

f. Expressing your attraction for your partner

g. Showing forgiveness [Read: Emotional intimacy or sexual intimacy – Chicken or the egg?]

9. Don’t be afraid to be vulnerable

To build an emotional connection, you have to be brave enough to let someone in. Being vulnerable means sharing your hopes and fears. It also means not keeping your walls up when you’re around them.

If you’ve been hurt before, remember that they’re not the same as the last person. Give everyone an equal chance and go into love with a clean slate. 

For sure, it’s not easy to open up and be vulnerable, but you have to do it if you want to enjoy the best love around. 

10. Remember to listen

You might think that you’re a good listener, but are you really? Most people think they are, but the truth is that they let things go in one ear and out of the other. Or, they finish sentences and don’t bother to let the other person speak. 

Be sure to listen to your partner and read their body language too. A lot of what we mean isn’t actually verbalized and instead, it’s said for us by our body language.

By reading their body language and looking for signs that they’re uncomfortable or worried, you can forge that emotional bond and look forward to a much deeper love. [Read: 19 ways on how to be a better listener in a relationship]

11. Make them a priority

It’s easy to place your partner way down on your priority list from time to time. Life can become busy and sometimes we end up being washed away by things that, in the end, aren’t really that important.

Always make time for your partner and make them a priority in your life. Make sure that you show them that they’re a priority too – small gifts, words of affirmation, and simply being there are all ways to show them that your relationship is important to you. 

12. Schedule regular date nights

Life can be busy, as we’ve already mentioned. It’s easy to cancel on each other and then realize that you haven’t been out together for weeks. Don’t let that happen!

Schedule regular date nights, perhaps once per week, and make sure that nothing gets in the way. Then, do different things together. Go dancing, go to a different restaurant, perhaps go to the next town.

Not only are you spending time together but you’re creating memories too and that’s what helps to bond you together and form that emotional connection. [Read: 33 awesome date ideas every couple should try]

13. Be consistent

If you say you’re going to do something, do it. Make sure that your words match your actions. That helps to build trust between you and helps your partner feel like they can rely upon you.

Feeling safe and happy in a relationship really does depend very heavily upon trust and that feeling of wellbeing. By making sure that you always do what you’re supposed to do, you’ll help build a strong and healthy connection. 

14. Have their back at all times

You need to be your partner’s support system and you need to be there for them even when they’re not around. If someone is speaking ill of them, stick up for them. If they’re feeling down, be there for them.

You need to be the person who lifts them up and who looks after them when they need help. Of course, you should always expect the same in return. Relationships are two-way things, after all! [Read: How to make your partner better – Is it something that can be done?]

Emotional connection – Why emotional attraction is the most important kind

Yes, physical attraction is really important in a relationship, but not even close to as important as emotional attraction. This type of attraction is even more important than being compatible. You can have everything in common with someone but have no emotional connection.

Without it, your relationship is bound to fail. That may sound harsh, but it’s also true. Here are a few reasons why an emotional connection is vital for the health and continuity of your relationship.

1. Looks fade

You’ve heard this time and time again, yet a lot of us still pine for the gorgeous ones over the people we’d be way more attracted to emotionally. You have to fall in love with someone emotionally and not just physically, because those physical attributes aren’t going to stay that good-looking forever.

2. You have to be able to talk about the important things

If you don’t have that emotional connection, you’ll never be able to talk about the things necessary for a relationship to work. You’ll never be able to understand them or where they’re coming from in order to find a solution to problems.

Sexual attraction could keep things exciting for a while, but before long, you’ll feel more lonely and all alone in a relationship if there’s no emotional connection in place. [Read: Emotional intimacy or sexual intimacy – The chicken or the egg]

3. You have to live with someone else’s mind forever

Often, many things change about a person, even while they’re in a relationship with someone. Having a strong emotional connection is important because you’ll have to live with their mind forever. If you’re not connected emotionally, the relationship can fall apart as the two of you grow and change.

4. It helps foster a deeper love

You can’t have true love based on looks alone. That “love at first sight” just isn’t real, and it can’t happen. You can care about someone and be concerned about their wellbeing, but without an emotional connection, you can’t have a deep and meaningful love.

5. It keeps the passion alive even while the desire fades

Passion is crucial for making a relationship last. After the desire to get naked with someone fades, you have to have something else in place to keep that passionate side of the relationship relevant. And emotional attraction is that thing. [Read: Incapable of love? Signs of emotional deprivation disorder]

6. It makes you want to solve problems instead of just shoving them under the rug

When you have an emotional connection with someone, you don’t want to walk away without making sure they’re satisfied and content with the situation. That means your arguments won’t just get swept under the rug. You’ll want to sort them out, and that can help save a relationship.

7. It increases communication

Just like we mentioned above, having an emotional connection with someone will make you want to talk to them and discuss issues, and really, just about anything. That means that you’ll find it easier to communicate, and we all know how vital communication is to a healthy relationship.

8. It makes you feel like you’re a part of something

If all you ever felt for someone was physical attraction, you wouldn’t really feel like you’re a part of a relationship. You’d just feel like you had someone to hook up with.

Emotional attraction is vital for creating that feeling of being a part of something bigger. It makes you feel like you’re part of your significant other’s team. [Read: 18 bad emotions you shouldn’t feel in a healthy relationship]

The biggest signs you have a genuine emotional connection with your partner

Now you know why an emotional connection is important and you know how to build one, let’s check out the signs that your work is actually coming to fruition. Here are the signs you have, or you’re getting close to, an emotional connection with your partner.

1. You miss them when they’re not around

When they’re not around you, perhaps when they leave the room and they’ve been gone for a while, or you haven’t seen them that day, you miss them.

Now, this ‘miss’ isn’t the same as the ‘oh my god, where are they’ kind of intensity. It’s a gentle ache somewhere in the pit of your stomach.

When you experience this, it’s definitely one of the signs of an emotional connection. It shows that you want to be close to them, and not just in a physical way. [Read: What does true love feel like? The 20 feelings that describe it]

2. When something happens to you, good or bad, they’re the first person you want to tell

Who is the first person that pops into your mind when something happens to you? It could be something bad, i.e. you feel like you need someone’s shoulder to cry on, or it can be something positive, and you’re desperate to tell someone your good news.

If they’re the person who comes to your mind whenever something happens in your life, it shows that your connection is far deeper than just friends or just lovers.

3. You find yourself sharing your feelings with them

Do you have deep conversations? Do you both share your feelings and tell each other things you don’t generally talk to people about?

In that case, you’re becoming closer. It is one of the clear signs of an emotional connection. We don’t generally share our deepest, darkest secrets and feelings with people we don’t trust or don’t feel close to. [Read: How to recognize a soul connection when they walk into your life]

4. Sitting and talking to them is fun

It’s not that you never run out of things to say, because it’s normal to have the odd awkward silence. But if you find yourself sitting there and talking, and realize that you’re having the best time, it’s because of the emotional and deep connection you both share.

You’re getting to know one another. You’re sharing, giving, taking, and the more you do this, the deeper your connection will become. Most people in this type of situation find that they can talk for hours and not realize how much time has passed.

5. You find yourself wanting to help them

The thought of this person being hurt, upset, or simply in some kind of trouble causes a knot to form in your stomach.

As a result, you never want them to feel any kind of negativity. You want to be the one to help them. This is a sign not only of an emotional connection, but also of a flourishing love affair. When you find that you can’t stand the idea of them feeling upset, question how deep your feelings actually are. [Read: 15 rules to be a good partner in a relationship and wow your lover]

6. You just want to listen to them

Not many people actually want, or know how, to really listen, as we already mentioned earlier. If you have no problems just listening to them when they’re speaking and you want them to keep talking so you can learn more, it’s one of the signs of an emotional connection.

In addition, they feel comfortable talking to you, which shows that the connection is two-way. [Read: The 20 signs you need to look for in a soulmate connection]

7. You don’t judge them, you accept them

And they do the same for you. Nobody is perfect and we all have our negative points. If you find that there is no judgment in your relationship, then that’s a clear sign of something deep and emotional.

You simply accept them as they are, warts and all. In return, they do the same for you. Not feeling the need to change someone is a very special occurrence. In this case, your connection will deepen further.

8. You know small details about them

Do you know how they like their coffee? Do you know about the way they like their eggs versus the way they don’t? And do you know their favorite food and how to cook it?

These small details mean that you have talked, shared, and learned the small details about one another. It’s one of the definitive signs of an emotional connection. [Read: 10 signs your partner is truly supportive of your goals]

9. You feel understood and feel like you understand them

There is a feeling that simply happens when you’re close to someone, and it’s almost like a lightbulb moment. You feel understood, you feel like this person really gets you and you get them. You can simply be yourself without any censoring.

It’s such a comfortable and heart-warming feeling that you’ll want to be around them more and more. When you have an emotional connection such as this, it helps to make you a better person. [Read: Don’t let these signs of love bombing confuse the real thing]

10. It’s not all about sex

When you’re together, it’s not all about sex. Of course, sex probably comes into the equation. But you’re equally as happy talking, having experiences together, going on dates, laughing, and sharing your thoughts and feelings. When you have this special combination, nothing beats it!

11. You’re their biggest fan and vice versa

One of the biggest signs of an emotional connection isn’t just that you care about each other and are attracted to one another, it’s that you’re both each other’s biggest fans. You’re always cheering for one another through thick and thin.

When you develop an emotional connection, it’s almost as if you’ve met your soul mate. Of course, everyone has a different opinion on whether or not soul mates are actually real. [Read: Are soulmates real? Here are the signs you’ve met the one who completes you]

12. You can talk about important topics with ease

Some things are really uncomfortable for couples to talk about if they don’t have emotional connection. If you feel like it’s easy to talk about those difficult things with your partner, that’s emotional attraction. You’re emotionally connected to them.

13. You want to hear their opinions on controversial matters

When you’re actually curious about what they think about certain topics, and you desire knowing how they feel about them, that’s emotional attraction.

It also means that you aren’t worried about opening up on controversial topics because you feel accepted by them completely.

14. You admire their intelligence

This is a more obvious sign of a real connection. However, don’t be fooled into thinking that you’re connected in this way just because you find their intelligence to be sexy. That’s not exactly the same thing. [Read: In love with two people? How to make up your mind]

15. You’re more attracted to their personality than their appearance

If you’re really emotionally attracted to someone, you’ll automatically think they’re physically attractive. That’s just how psychology works. But if you truly love their mind more than their body or appearance, it’s emotional attraction.

16. It’s easy to listen to them talk

Being emotionally connected to someone means it’s easy for you to listen and talk to them, just because you care so much about what they have to say.

You can get into topics and you enjoy listening to what they have to say. It’s fun for you.

Emotional connections help your relationship turn into something truly special

If you connect with someone deeply, they know you well and you know them just as well, it’s special. It helps you to develop as a person, it boosts your mood, it makes you feel like you can do anything. As a result, you realize that some of your previous relationships were on the superficial side. [Read: 35 signs a man is emotionally attracted to you and ready to get closer]

That’s not to say that superficial relationships can’t be fun in the short-term! Not everyone wants to have a full-blown relationship with someone. In that case, fun is on the menu only. Of course, it’s also possible that you may have any of the signs of an emotional connection with someone, but it never actually turns into a romantic relationship.

Emotions are funny things, but if you have a deep connection with someone, it’s important to hang on to it. Allow it to develop naturally without pushing or asking unnecessary questions.

[Read: Emotional attraction – 22 signs you have it and why it’s so important]

Creating an emotional connection with your crush or partner shouldn’t be hard. We hope with these tips and tricks you’ll be one step closer to building an emotional connection with your honey-bunny.

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Preeti Tewari Serai
Preeti Serai
Preeti, the founder of LovePanky, is an eternal optimist and believer in the beauty of love and life. With an exhaustive experience in love, relationships, and ...