5 Questions to Jump-Start Your Sexual Desire
“Jump-start” definition: To impart fresh or renewed energy; to energize.
It’s an unfortunate reality that all too often, women internalized that it is only okay to make themselves desirable – but to notice, experience, and express their own innate desire they begin to experience some major roadblocks. Just as in this example, many women need to ask themselves if there have been some beliefs they’ve picked up over the years that are simply not useful and are creating unnecessary difficulty.
If physical intimacy has become an aspect of your life that is causing any level of pain or distress – you may be in need of a sexual jump-start! The good news is, as well, that you don’t have to be struggling in order to sense that there is something deep within that wants to nourish, cultivate and experience growth in the sexual realm as it can be a necessary vehicle for continuing on the path of becoming more whole and connected to yourself and your partner. If this is a topic that speaks to you, following are five questions to ask yourself that can help jump-start your sexual desire!
1) Do I participate with intention?
You are the most important factor in your sexual experiences. Embrace the permission to intentionally participate and challenge any urge to be a passive participant. If this is an area that is difficult for you, it can be quite helpful to identify what may be getting in the way of intentionally participating. Do you struggle with low self-esteem, sexual fears, shame, or perhaps a lack of adequate and accurate information regarding the sexual experience?
2) Do I set the stage?
Remembering the acronym FDR (Favorites, Dating, Relationship) can help you to set the “stage” for an optimal sensual experience.
Favorites: Identify your “favorite” aspects of the sensual experience. In other words – what gets you in the mood!? Some “favorites” to consider identifying are location, time of day, day of the week, specific clothing, certain lighting, and anything and everything to do with catering to your five senses! Get to know what your favorites are and intentionally incorporate them into your experiences regularly!
Dating: Aspects of dating can be ripe for strong desire. Specifically, there are structural aspects built right in that make it easier and much more likely to create the “wanting” of your partner and of the experience. Just think of pieces that come along with courtship and dating. There is curiosity, mystery, uncertainty, planning and active interest between the partners. It can be fun to begin identifying what aspects of dating you and your partner could incorporate back into your relationship as you create space for both partners to want and challenge being motivated by obligation or duty.
Relationship: Take a look at improving the overall friendship within the partnership as you improve communication skills between both partners. It can also be helpful for both to increase intentional acceptance of their own and their partners’ body in the here and now.
3) Do I experience pleasure?
Start with the basics and learn about the many ways your body is meant to be your ally and is, among many things, designed to bring you pleasure and fulfillment! So much of this has to start with giving yourself permission and kindness.
Tips for how to experience optimal pleasure:
Learn about the body’s capacity for pleasure. What could this mean for you?
Seek treatment to eliminate any pain experienced during sex.
Increase ability to climax. It’s a skill!
Engage in frequent, meaningful exercise and provide the fuel your body needs.
Strive for consistent adequate sleep.
Increase acceptance of your body shape and size in the here and now.
Attend to symptoms of any depression, anxiety or chronic pain.
Stay current on MD visits and frequently inquire about conditions and/or medications that may impact libido.
Reduce/eliminate sexually inhibiting substance use/abuse.
4) Do I stay in the moment?
Knowing how to be present and “tune in” to what’s happening or could happen in the moment is an invaluable ability in having an ideal sensual experience. Learning what it means to be “mindful” of experiences in your mind, body, heart and spirit means intentionally taking yourself out of autopilot and assuming your driver’s seat. It is important to become aware of your thoughts and begin to differentiate between those that are “useful” versus those that simply are not. The task then becomes striving to only invite and/or entertain the thoughts that increase likelihood of having an enjoyable experience. This is a skill that takes time to cultivate, so be patient with yourself.
5) Why is this important to me?
It’s back to the idea that it starts with permission to make wanting and pleasure not only important but a priority. More often than not, women begin intentionally making their intimate experiences a priority because they desire to feel more whole and connected to the self as well as to their partner. Some have experienced loss or unnecessary difficulty due to not knowing that it was okay to dedicate energy to this area of their life. Giving yourself permission allows the wheels to begin turning in a way that creates space for your own desires. That’s why it can be so helpful to seek and identify your own personal “why” in making intimacy a priority.