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What if there were a simple solution

to your most painful relationship problems? 

Gain insight into your love life, in 4 questions, when you take this attachment styles quiz!

Are you looking for a secure relationship, but find yourself trapped in toxic relationships with partners that are either emotionally unavailable, or too smothering and over-controlling? Learning about attachment styles in adulthood can help.

Perhaps you have acquired a lot of skills, tips, techniques or “red flags,” to help you make better decisions in love, but no matter what you do, no amount of insight seems to help you break free from unhealthy patterns, or stop feeling attracted to the “wrong” kind of partner.  If this sounds familiar, you are in the right place. 

Hi, my name is Briana MacWilliam, and I am a licensed and board certified creative arts therapist, with more than 14 years in the field, working with individuals, just like you.

Using a psycho-spiritual approach to attachment styles (which are 4 unique blueprints for how you give and receive love), I help insecure lovers go from self-doubting to self-sovereign, and calling in those soul-shaking, passionate partnerships they want, without having to talk in circles around their feelings for hours or even years on end, with no tangible result. And I do this, using my unique service, The MacWilliam Method™.

“I am astounded by Briana’s knowledge of attachment. This comes from someone (albeit a layman) who has read voraciously on the subject for 7 years, now. There is insight and detailed explanations that simply can’t be found anywhere else…She should have a cable show.  The level of clarity provided is beyond anything I’ve seen.”

-Jim Lewandowski

What Are Attachment Styles?

Attachment styles are 4 unique blueprints for how you’ve learned to give and receive love in your childhood, but also through your adult romantic relationships. Your blueprint is like a compass for how much closeness or space you desire, when it comes to emotional intimacy.

  • Individuals that want a lot of closeness with a partner, typically have anxious attachment; I call them “Open Hearts.” 
  • Individuals who want more space, usually have avoidant attachment; I call them “Rolling Stones.” 
  • Individuals that both want and fear closeness, are sometimes considered “fearful avoidant,” “anxious-avoidant,” or “disorganized”; I call them “Spice of Lifers.”
  • Individuals who are comfortable with both closeness and separateness in relationships, and can flexibly move back and forth between those states of being, are considered securely attached; I call them “Cornerstones.”

How do attachment styles affect relationships?

Most couples who struggle with insecure attachment styles frequently trigger one another’s most basic fears of rejection, failure, criticism and judgement, or just not being “good enough.” Both partners are usually trying to prove their worthiness and look to the other to confirm they are lovable, but the way they have learned to ask for approval an acceptance typically starts a fight, or leads to the silent treatment and stonewalling. Inevitably, one partner feels the need to run away while the other feels emotionally abandoned.

Checkout this video to find out if you are caught in the anxious-avoidant trap!

“Briana MacWilliam is the kind of teacher who gets down to the bone where the blood is hot and running. She will never point to a thing when she can show it to you… She knows when to drop the important stuff and she drops it on you form her own experiential core. She does not take you anywhere she is not willing to travel herself. She has a combination of grace and grit that make her a fantastic teacher and a fabulous clinician.”

-Alan Pottinger

Anxious Attachment: Are you doing all the work, and its never enough?

Checkout Kairi’s story of how she found “an amazing secure man” who has become her “rock in the storm” soon after taking my course, Anxious Attachment 101: 5 Days to Take The Open Heart From Clingy to Confident!

If you’ve been trying hard to impress a partner but wind up walking on eggshells, because no matter what you do, it only seems to push them away, it is likely you are an anxious Open Heart. Open Hearts tend to demonstrate behaviors such as…

  • Falling into people-pleasing mode.
  • Waiting around too long for the reciprocation of loving feelings.
  • Assume the blame, because you think if you are responsible for something going wrong, it must be within your power to fix it.
  • You may have critically low self-esteem and struggle with feelings of unworthiness.
  • Deep down, you believe you have to earn love and approval, and so, you are drawn to partners that are “challenging” or “edgy,” that make you work for it.
  • On the other hand, if a partner gives you love and affection too freely, you find them “boring,” or “too nice.”
  • You think, “If they need me, they won’t leave me.” But you always question whether or not they really love you for you.
  • You struggle to know who the “real” you is.
  • You tend to get lost in the potential of the relationship, rather than the reality of it.
  • You may also struggle with forms of addiction, such as drug abuse, alcohol abuse, food addictions, shopping addictions, hoarding, gaming addictions, and so on.
  • You find yourself in partnership with someone that is emotionally unavailable, thus “proving” your deepest fear: that you are unlovable.

Avoidant Attachment: Do you need a lot of space and independence in love?

Find out about Jordan’s experience of avoidance and decoding the Rolling Stone’s Lovemap.

If you are sick of falling headlong into relationships, only to wind up feeling bored, smothered, trapped, or worried about hurting your partner, just when things are supposed to be getting good, it is likely you are a Rolling Stone. Most Rolling Stones demonstrate behaviors such as…

  • You are accustomed to partners demanding too much of you, so you are sensitive to even benign requests.
  • You view generosity as a form of manipulation, obligating you reciprocate more than you are comfortable giving.
  • You you anticipate being blamed for when things go wrong in a relationship.
  • You might be described as having a fear of commitment.
  • You might be considered aloof or emotionally distant, but when you do feel things, you feel them very intensely.
  • It might be hard to identify the feeling, let alone express it, and so you try your best to shut it down.
  • You may struggle with perfectionism and fears of failure, but act just the opposite so as to avoid appearing too weak or vulnerable.
  • Deep down, you believe you have to earn love and approval, and so, you are drawn to partners that are “challenging” or “edgy,” that make you work for it.
  • Tend to focus on the flaws in the relationship, and your missed opportunities.
  • If your partner flirts with someone else or expresses a need for space, you may feel a sense of relief, at first, followed by a need to test them.
  • You may also struggle with forms of addiction, such as drug abuse, alcohol abuse, food addictions, shopping addictions, hoarding, gaming addictions, and so on.
  • You tend to split your emotional life from your sexual desires.
  • You find yourself in partnership with someone that is emotionally dependent on you, thus “proving” your pessimistic perspective on love: that it comes at the cost of personal freedom.

Disorganized Attachment (“Fearful Avoidance”): Do you crave connection but fear it at the same time?

Learn about Joe’s experience of disorganized attachment and how compassion and creativity helped him experience more positivity and felt security.

If you feel you (or your partner) may exhibit a combination of the behaviors of both the Open Heart and the Rolling Stone attachment styles, you are likely a Spice of Lifer. Sometimes this is harder to determine because their attachment style might lean more towards anxious or avoidant, depending on their partner’s attachment style, and their contexts. It’s important to realize a Rolling Stone or Open Heart might lean in the opposing direction from time to time as well, but a Spice of Lifer experiences this in the extreme, which makes their presentation qualitatively different. Spice of Lifers tend to…

  • Behave in frightened or frightening ways  in moments of distress
  • Demonstrating unpredictable, confusing or erratic behavior, sometimes with no apparent trigger
  • They often can’t make sense of their experiences
  • If they’ve suffered abuse, they may offer unusual explanations or justifications for their abuser’s behavior 
  • When they’re asked to convey details of their relationships, their stories are fragmented, and they have difficulty expressing themselves clearly.
  • They may struggle to self-soothe, and have difficulty allowing others to help them co-regulate their emotions.
  • It may be difficult for them to open up to others or to seek out help.
  • They may struggle when parenting their own children.
  • View the world as an unsafe place, and have pessimistic beliefs about the possibilities for love.
  • In conflict, they tend to vilify their partners and assume their partners have malicious intent towards them.
  • They are prone to severe black-and-white thinking, and cannot sustain ambiguous feelings for very long without taking action to find relief, which might look like acting out in various ways, including sexual infidelity, ending a relationship on a whim, or picking up an addiction, for example.
  • They tend to overgeneralize minor issues, assuming even the smallest disagreement is a sign the entire relationship is flawed and never going to work.
  • The assertion of personal boundaries is received as a criticism or a threat to the relationship security, and so they may treat their partners with hostility, or emotional withdrawal, if a partner attempts to assert their boundaries.
  • But the hardest thing for the Spice of Lifer, is that they usually attract other partners with insecure attachment styles, and so each partner is constantly feeling triggered, because for the Spice of Lifer, their attachment figures are considered a source of both comfort and threat.
  • It feels like there is no way to relax into a partnership, or regard any conflicts in the relationship as opportunities for deepening intimacy.
  • Because no healthy relationship can be sustained like this, for the  Spice of Lifer, it proves their deepest fear, which is that they are inherently helpless and unworthy, and relationships are really just a game of power dynamics; control, or be controlled.

Briana has a way of breaking down complex ideas into their simplest explanations, and the creative activities we did made it so much clearer than before. Just from one exercise I was able to express myself to my partner in a way that I never could before, and he said he never knew I felt that way. I finally felt like I got through. Thank you, Briana!”

Laurie M., Detroit, MI

Can Attachment Styles Change?

The Liberating Truth

Most people search for quick fixes or easy solutions to changing their partner’s behavior, and feel frustrated when they wind up in the same old situations. But the liberating truth is the one common denominator throughout all of your relationships, is you. And all the insight in the world is not necessarily going to make you feel any differently! Research has shown that attachment styles change; but not if you are left alone in isolation, and not if you are only talking about it!

I help individuals struggling with insecure attachment go from self-doubting to  self-sovereign, and calling in the soul-shaking, passionate partnerships they want, without having to talk in circles around their feelings for years on end, with no tangible result. And my service is called The MacWilliam Method™. 

The MacWilliam Method™

The MacWilliam Method™ (TMM) is a service that utilizes a psycho-spiritual approach to applying creative arts interventions, through the framework of attachment theory. TMM is informed by evidence-based practices in attachment and trauma research, but is rooted in creative arts interventions as the primary modality.

The directives in my online courses have been modified for experiential learning, coupled with live support and discussion in private Facebook group forums (they are not intended to replace long-term therapy, but you may learn what type of therapy would be a good fit).

TMM is composed of three principal tools to address mind, body and spirit: 1) Cognitive Reframing, 2) Body-Activation, and 3) Arts-Based Experientials. 

Cognitive Reframing

Raise conscious awareness through cognitive reframing, so you can re-write painful narratives and create an openness to receiving the love you want.

Body Activation

With a blend of guided imagery, basic movement, and sound healing, we gently titrate all that anxious energy stored up in your body to build new neural networks in a healthier framework, using the language of the body and the unconscious.

Arts-Based Experientials

Through creative expression we externalize the inner world, and achieve self sovereignty by being in dialogue with the Authentic Self.

A Taste of What It’s Like

In this 6-minute clip, I walk you through a demo of an abbreviated guided meditation and arts-based experiential.

Client Testimonials

“Thank you for the opportunity to do this work. I really enjoyed the process and found it to be engaging and insightful. I found that each experience built on the previous challenge in a flowing way.   It was a lovely step by step reintroduction to my divine feminine culminating in a true feeling of acceptance of myself as a whole.”

-Leanne Northwood

“This work has me poised to see what happens next in my deepening my relationship to my body…Mindfulness and using art in that pursuit are the ways I want to begin to address this gap in awareness. It’s a challenge I accept in receiving this piece of the puzzle of myself.”

-P.H.Q

“The exposed chest cavity signifies the raw vulnerability I am experiencing. I want it to remain open even though it feels scary and exposed…because in actuality, it is a warm and nurturing place…It feels messy and emotional, but I am willing to sit with the ‘seed’ until it starts to grow in the world. Thank you, Briana, for helping me see this opportunity.”

-E.H.

The Benefits of Learning About Attachment Styles

✔ Takes you from fearfully avoiding conflict, to standing your ground and getting your needs met, without fearing rejection or abandonment.

✔ Helps you feel confident and clear about what are your feelings and desires versus someone else’s agenda.

✔ Helps you find it easier to make decisions on your own without falling down a “what if” spin cycle.

✔ Helps you understand when you are people-pleasing from a place of scarcity and a need for validation, versus giving and receiving from a place of self-confidence and generosity.

✔ Helps you feel more confident in your body and in your emotional well being, so you don’t feel a need to withdraw, escape, act out, hit below the belt, or turn your partner into a villain, when you are feeling scared and threatened.

Your Next Step…

If you are ready to dive into learning about attachment styles with The MacWilliam Method™, first I want to assure you, all the things and the feels are possible for you. More than that, its even probable, once you you decide and commit to living nothing less than a next-level life, and committing to the processes that will set you on that path.

The good news is, the tools you might need are relatively simple.

And the MOST crucial information that you will need on this journey, already exists INSIDE YOU.

However, learning how to access those parts of yourself can sometimes be a difficult task, when you’ve been taught your whole life to do the exact opposite.

But that’s just conditioning. And it can be undone. Just as the brain is blessed with plasticity. And it can be rewired.

Negative energy and defensive patterning that keep you stuck in a confusion cycle around attachment styles CAN be transformed and healed, so that you can RELAX into the brightest luminescence that is your spirit.

It is a process which will allow you to step into a state of being on FIYAH about life, and share that brilliance with a stars-in-their-eyes lover.

If you are ready to dive in, I recommend checking out my online courses, today. You’ll be so happy you did!