Welcome to our online class for Relation^ology. (It begins with this post.)
This post is for all those crazy kids out there singing, “Watch me whip and nae nae and superman” as well as everyone that just plain ole wants people watching them. And then for those who discover they want more than just attention.
Why? We’re talking about our first two intimacy impostors:
Simply read the eight posts linked below (if you like, invite a couple friends to do the same and discuss with them) and then share your thoughts and questions with us.
Nobody Just Wants Attention
Whether you always want to be in the camera’s eye or whether you fear the government is watching you 24-7, you might have an attention addiction. And if you do, this will impede your ability to grow in healthy, life-giving intimacy without you knowing how or why.
1: Intimacy and SQUIRREL!
Do you suffer from Relational Attention Deficit Disorder (RADD)?
It’s important that you know, because it’s a serious condition.
That’s the bad news. But the good news is this: it is treatable.
The further good news is that it doesn’t take a crack team of psychologists to diagnose you. You and those who know and love you well should be able to do that with the help of this post.
2: How Many Selfies Does it Take to get the Attention You Want?
Some people are obvious attention hogs, but just because you freeze behind a microphone or hide in the corner at every party doesn’t mean you don’t wrestle with this intimacy impostor.
Beyond helping you detect hidden attention-seeking tendencies, this post uncovers why too much attention is so unhealthy.
3: Do You Know the Peek-a-Boo Principle?
If grabbing all the attention in the room doesn’t hold a candle to the richness and depth of growing in intimacy with a few special people, why do so many covet it so much?
Even further, why do some seem content with ANY attention: good or bad?
This post explains the reason why: the Peek-a-Boo Principle.
4: Lonely for Attention?
How do you conquer your attention addiction? Do you have to swear off Instagram or Facebook? Wear a bag over your head? Wear camouflage and blend into the background? Erase yourself from the system?
This post takes us to God’s word where we discover that, whether or not the government is watching our every move, someone is. Indeed, only by basking in the glow of His attention can we find release from the compulsion to demand the attention of others. It’s our prayer that this post inspires you to do just that.
The Mirage of Acceptance
Regardless of a person’s passion for attention, usually some time before one’s 13th birthday the desire for acceptance eclipses one’s desire for attention. Surely there is no other relational need as innate and incredible as the drive to be accepted.
1: A More Wonderful Love
Of course, the kind of acceptance most of us long for is unconditional. We want to be accepted just the way we are, which would be right and good if we were right and good. Sadly we are not.
No matter. God is right and good and therefore He offers us a love that is even more wonderful. We describe that love in this post.
2: You Can Stop Trying to Get God’s Acceptance Now
How can you ever hope to be accepted by a God who says things like, “Be perfect as I am perfect”?
This post explains how. And the truth could set you free from the bonds of the intimacy impostor of acceptance.
3: Intimacy and Performance Don’t Mix
What happens if I refuse to let go of my desire for unconditional acceptance? That’s when I’m tempted to make one of two terrible choices:
- Keep trying to earn the acceptance of the important people in my life (family, friends, pastors, teachers, coaches)
- Give up on that and seek out other “friends” who will accept me just the way I am.
This post details the outcome of both options. And neither result is pretty.
4: Beware of the Dark Side of Cliques and Contract Friends
Driven by the desire to be accepted just the way they are, many seek out social groups that make them feel at long last like they have arrived.
But in this post we discover that unconditional acceptance is like a mirage in the dessert; it looks promising, but is also empty. And in light of this truth we make one final appeal to abide in the love that not only asks you to change and grow and mature, but empowers you to do so.
Next week we present the next two intimacy impostors. But, let us know your thoughts after reading through the posts in this lesson. Does it answer questions? Raise new ones? Give you fresh insight? Give you gas? Comment below!
DNA: It’s What’s For Dating
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The LoveEd study guide series, Beyond Sex & Salvation, will empower you to prepare for relational success when it counts: BEFORE YOU FALL IN LOVE! It’s NOT for couples, but for any wise individual who thinks they might want to get married sometime before they die. Check out the first two 8-lesson study guides in our store. You can walk through it on your own, but it’s more fun with friends, so consider putting together an FMU LoveEd small group study. Even better? And ask a married couple you respect to lead it!