Attached by Amir Levine (Book Summary & Review)

LifePersonal DevelopmentPsychologyRelationships

What’s in it? Quick Summary

Attached” written by Amir Levine talks about different attachment styles in relationships and how they are formed during childhood. It discusses how understanding one’s attachment style can lead to a better understanding of one’s emotions and behaviors. The book also discusses the importance of clear communication and happy compromises in resolving conflicts in relationships.

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Attached: Are you Anxious, Avoidant or Secure? How the science of adult attachment can help you find – and keep – love
  • Attached: are you anxious, avoidant or secure? how the science of adult attachment can help you find – and keep – love
  • Amir Levine,Rachel Heller (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 304 Pages – 08/22/2019 (Publication Date) – PAN MACMILLAN U.K (Publisher)

Last update on 2024-05-17 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon

You can buy the book in your preferable format below.

Get the Paperback version: View price on Amazon

Get the Hardcover version: View price on Amazon

About the author

The author of “Attached” is Amir Levine, a psychiatrist and neuroscientist who specializes in the field of adult attachment. He has published numerous research articles on the topic of attachment and has been featured in various media outlets, including The New York Times, The Atlantic, and NPR. Levine is also a co-founder of the Adult Attachment Project, a research group dedicated to studying the science of adult attachment.

In “Attached,” Levine draws on his extensive research to provide readers with insights into how attachment styles impact relationships and how understanding one’s own attachment style can lead to healthier relationships.

Who is this book for?

This book is for anyone who wants to understand more about attachment styles and how they impact relationships. It is particularly useful for those who struggle with relationship issues or want to improve their communication and conflict resolution skills. It is also helpful for those who are interested in psychology and want to learn more about the science of adult attachment.

Attached Book Summary

Once upon a time, there was a fictional couple: Adam and Kelly.

They were both very successful in their careers.

Adam was a rich business magnate and Kelly was a great musician.

But that’s what the story looked from outside.

There was more to it…

Kelly always felt like Adam avoided her.

Kelly always felt that Adam enjoyed spending more time with his friends playing chess instead of talking to her.

While the reality was: Adam was just being his usual. He didn’t have much time to think about this, and he simply did whatever he enjoyed the most.

But then why did they both act in two different ways despite being in a relationship for a long time?

Let’s quickly dive into the book summary of “Attached,” written by “Amir Levine”, and find out what was really going on.

Alrighty, so without further ado, let’s get started.

Lesson #1: Every relationship is unique, so the same formulas we hear everywhere won’t always work.

Countless books have been on written on relationships.

And billions of people are still finding solutions to their relationship problems.

Kindly note that we are not just talking about romantic relationships here.

Relationships are everywhere, if only we actually start seeing with a fresh perspective.

We are constantly in all types of relationships at any given time, whether it’s with a friend, colleague, boss, your surroundings, or even with yourself.

We think of ourselves as individuals because our sense of reality is limited.

If you still haven’t figured out what kind of relationships are good for you, and if all the books you read on relationships didn’t work well for you, that’s alright. No need to worry about it.

It’s quite natural.

Why?

Because every human being is different.

Well, fundamentally, we all want to fit well with our tribes. We all wish to be loved.

But deep down, something within us just feels dissatisfied.

Even people who appear successful and seem to be in good relationships can feel insecure about their partners.

All human beings experience feelings of insecurity when it comes to their relationships.

This is why we should realize this fact that it’s normal to feel uncomfortable because we don’t know what’s causing our emotions in the first place.

And when we accept this fact, we stop judging people from our conditioned lenses. And try to understand what’s really going on deep in their minds.

If you simply pay attention, you’ll realize that every person has a different style of bonding (attachment) with others.

For some people, moving on from one relationship to another is effortless. We’ve all seen those who make friends easily, and they’re not worried when they lose one or two.

On the other side, you’ll find many people who get so emotionally invested in their friendships that the other person literally becomes their everything.

Why does this happen?

Why aren’t we able to vibe with all people in the same manner?

Is it just a personality trait? Or is there something more to it?

Well, before we find answers to these questions…

One thing is certain: there is much to learn and discover about ourselves.

Trust me, relationship problems are the last thing anyone wants in their lives.

When problems arise in any relationship, there is a constant tension that can take away your peace of mind.

Our happiness revolves around our relationships, after all.

So, let’s discuss all those things we need to know to ensure we have healthy relationships with everything in our lives.

Lesson #2: Understand your attachment style to understand your feelings and emotions.

The book talks about 3 types of attachment styles:

  • Anxious
  • Avoidant
  • Secure

If you have an anxious attachment style, you may constantly feel insecure and worried about the connection between you and your partner. As a result, you may desire more intimacy from your partner and pay close attention to all the small things they say or do to make sure nothing goes wrong.

Individuals with an anxious attachment style often feel uneasy about their relationships. They dislike rejection and experience a sense of loneliness when they are not in close proximity to their partner. This discomfort is what drives their anxious behavior in the first place.

Anxious individuals can start the process of healing themselves when they are shown more love and support.

People with a secure attachment style are typically more relaxed and don’t worry excessively about their partner. This doesn’t mean they don’t care, but they feel more secure in the relationship. Unlike those with an anxious attachment style, they don’t have a constant need for intimacy with their partner. They maintain a healthy balance of intimacy and are comfortable asking for support when needed. They’re also happy to support their partners when necessary. In short, they’re the ideal partners we all desire!

Secure individuals do not require any kind of healing or change, as they are already balanced.

Individuals with an avoidant attachment style tend to distance themselves from their partners. They do not like to depend on anyone and do not want anyone to depend on them. They value their space and independence, and become uncomfortable during intimate moments.

Individuals with an avoidant style are frequently perceived as cold or unemotional.

By noticing these signs, you can determine your attachment style.

But identifying another person’s attachment style can be challenging at first.

Often, people jump to conclusions by noticing one or two signs in their partners.

Avoid making that mistake.

To correctly figure it out, you need to consider numerous signs and behaviors with an open mind.

Lesson #3: Attachment Styles Are Determined By So Many Factors, So Don’t Judge Others For Their Attachment Style.

The need for attachment arises from our genes and evolutionary programming.

As humans, we are wired to form relationships with others. It is a fundamental need for us all.

The so-called “great love” that poets speak of is actually the product of our genes.

Sounds weird, doesn’t it?

While the real meaning of “love” is something else, but that is out of context.

Attachment styles are formed during childhood, based on our relationship with our caregivers.

How much our parents loved us when we were babies —when we knew nothing about relationships— impacts how we perceive relationships when we become adults.

As not all parents are equally good or bad, and not all children receive the same level of support and love, we develop different attachment styles.

Our attachment style is not something we consciously choose, and it’s not something we can easily change over time as well.

However, it is deeply ingrained in us and affects how we relate to others throughout our lives.

You can’t redo your upbringing, and therefore it’s difficult to change a person’s attachment style.

While it may be challenging to change your attachment style due to its deep-rooted nature, it is possible for it to evolve over time.

Still, it’s debatable whether you should change your attachment style or not.

For instance, if you’re avoidant, you’re less likely to experience the emotional pain in case you are not close to your partner, which is both a good thing and a bad thing.

The good thing is that there is less pain, but this is also a bad thing. As there is less pain, you won’t feel that strong connection with your partner.

Nonetheless, whatever attachment style you or your partner has, it will stay like that for a long time.

But the good news is: We can cope up and deal with the extremely negative aspects of our attachment styles if we become more aware.

The key is to gather knowledge about ourselves and understand our behaviors and emotions, and also of our partners, so that there are fewer conflicts and strife in our relationships.

Understanding our partners’ attachment styles can help us predict their behaviors and reduce anxiety in our relationships.

There will be fewer surprises, and thus we will be better equipped to deal with future emotions.

This will help a lot, especially if someone is anxiously attached and is in a relationship with an avoidant person.

Let’s understand how.

Lesson #4: People with an anxious attachment style should think twice before getting serious in a relationship with an avoidant person.

The worst pairing is when an anxious person is in a relationship with an avoidant person.

This is because, by definition, they are incompatible with each other.

Here is how:

  • An anxious person seeks more love, closeness, and intimacy, while an avoidant person avoids it at all costs, as they prefer freedom and independence.
  • Anxious people are emotionally sensitive and need someone who can understand their emotions. In contrast, avoidant people tend to be emotionally cold and do not concern themselves with the feelings of others.
  • Anxious people need constant reassurance and may have trust issues, while avoidant people are self-directed and don’t feel the need for approval or trust from others.
  • Anxious people are committed and expect the same from their partner. On the other hand, avoidant people try their best to avoid any kind of commitment and are ready to exit the relationship anytime.

Does this mean that anxious and avoidant people can never have a successful relationship?

This doesn’t mean that they can’t ever form a good relationship, it’s just that they’ll both need to work very hard to understand each other.

In relationships involving an anxious person and an avoidant person, it is common for the person with an anxious attachment style to suffer most of the time.

That is why it is recommended that anxious individuals exercise caution when entering into any relationship.

For anxious people, the stakes are high.

Anxious individuals often blame themselves if a relationship fails because they have a tendency to become very emotional.

For an anxiously attached person, feeling left alone is the worst possible feeling.

Interestingly, sometimes it’s better to be alone than to be in a relationship with an incompatible person. Entering a relationship with the hope that it will improve your happiness levels and that things will get better can actually have the opposite effect.

Lesson #5: People with secure attachment style feel more satisfied with their lives.

Naturally, the goal should be to achieve a secure attachment style.

First, find out what attachment style do you have right now by asking questions like;

  • Do I embrace intimacy or avoid it?
  • How insecure do I feel about my relationships?
  • Do I need constant reassurance from other people?
  • Do I feel empathy for my partner?
  • Do I deliberately construct scenarios where I don’t have to take responsibilities?
  • Do I feel connected to my partner or family?

Questions like these really help you understand your relationships. They basically tell you how you feel about your relationships.

If you’re avoidant, then you should know that it’s also not going to solve all your problems. It will prevent you from connecting deeply with anyone.

And if you’re anxious, you’ll keep worrying.

And worrying all the time never helps, or does it?

Insecurities and doubts have already destroyed countless relationships throughout human history.

Secure people tend to enjoy great relationships, and for good reason.

People with a secure attachment style possess the following qualities:

  • They are open-minded and flexible.
  • They are not insecure and don’t have trust issues.
  • They are always willing to admit their mistakes and resolve any conflicts.
  • They are authentic. That means they are less likely to cheat.
  • They love their partner, but don’t get obsessed.
  • They keep healthy boundaries.
  • They don’t become a control-freak.
  • They take responsibility.
  • They exude safety and comfort.

Yes, these people with secure attachment style do exist in the real world.

But you have to spend time finding them.

It’s not that hard. You just need to know exactly what qualities you want.

Of course, it’s unlikely to find all great qualities in one person. Therefore, it mostly depends on individual preferences.

If you find someone with a secure attachment style, it’s the best thing.

And if you don’t, or you’re already too late to change anything, there is still hope.

Lesson #6: Learn to express clearly and make happy compromises in any relationships.

No matter how much you learn about relationships or attachment styles, there is no perfect person.

While some people may seem perfect at first glance, spending time with them reveals that we are all just big kids trying to figure out the complexities of life.

Did you know that conflicts can actually be beneficial sometimes?

They help us understand our partners better.

Disagreements will always occur.

From deciding who will clean the house to determining who made the mess in the first place, you’ll often find yourself explaining and arguing over trivial issues.

That’s just part of life. Humans have always argued.

We love to argue, even when it’s unnecessary.

Without arguments, we cannot make sense of the reality in front of us.

True wisdom lies in resolving arguments in a way that leaves both parties satisfied. In other words, whatever decision is made, neither party should feel like they were treated unfairly.

The golden rule is to avoid attacking the person instead of their ideas, unless you want to create more trouble in your life.

Try to create win-win situations.

When things escalate, always ask questions like:

  • “Is it worth our time to debate over this topic? If not, why waste time? And if yes, then how important it is in our lives?”

The clearer your thoughts are communicated, the less chance there is for confusion.

Ultimately, we all want to be understood.

We all desire attention in our own unique ways.

Sometimes, giving just these two things to your partner can save you from many problems.

Remember, problems are inevitable. However, this does not mean that you should avoid them.

Many people tend to conceal their problems, thinking, “Why even bring up this debate? It will only make us think and cause stress.”

But this is a wrong approach in the long term.

This way, you will suppress your innermost thoughts.

Eventually, you will reach a point where the truth coming out will be too much to handle.

Resolve problems while they are still small. Don’t let them become mountains.

It’s important to note that you don’t have to agree with everything your partner says.

If you don’t like something, it’s always better to express your feelings clearly rather than bottling them up.

Just do your best and be a good partner.

That’s all there is to it.

Bullet Summary: Key Takeaways from this book

  • Relationships are unique and require different solutions, and everyone has a different style of bonding with others.
  • Attachment styles (anxious, avoidant, secure) are determined by our upbringing and affect how we relate to others throughout our lives.
  • People with secure attachment styles have more satisfying relationships and are open-minded, authentic, and take responsibility.
  • Conflicts are inevitable in relationships, but clear communication and happy compromises can resolve them.
  • Problems should be addressed when they are still small to prevent them from becoming mountains.

Attached Book Review

Attached: Are you Anxious, Avoidant or Secure? How the science of adult attachment can help you find – and keep – love
  • Attached: are you anxious, avoidant or secure? how the science of adult attachment can help you find – and keep – love
  • Amir Levine,Rachel Heller (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 304 Pages – 08/22/2019 (Publication Date) – PAN MACMILLAN U.K (Publisher)

Last update on 2024-05-17 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon

I won’t say that the book impressed me. But it’s a nice book on attachment styles if you are eager to learn about them.

The book is pretty simple to grasp. No prior knowledge is needed to get started with this book.

You can buy the book in your preferable format below.

Get the Paperback version: View price on Amazon

Get the Hardcover version: View price on Amazon

Want to read more books on Attachment Style?

I’ve compiled a list of all the best books on attachment style.

Check it here.

Now It’s Your Turn

I hope you enjoyed reading this book summary.

Now you tell me:

What are your best takeaways from this book summary?

Do you have some feedback?

You can contact me anytime and let me know.

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Thanks for reading.

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Shami Manohar


The Brain Behind Wizbuskout.com

I am Shami Manohar, the founder of WizBuskOut. My obsession with non-fiction books has fueled me with the energy to create this website. I read at least one book every week on topics such as business, critical thinking, mindset, psychology, and more.

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