It's vital for mindful acts of emotional and sexual intimacy to steadily develop as a daily practice for healthy sex. To that end, Center for Healthy Sex has created daily meditations to help you reach your sexual and relational potential. (You can subscribe for free here.)
Many people dwell on defects in relationships; their brains seem wired to repeat unfortunate patterns. With this same dwelling attention focused on healthy solutions, we can rewire our psychological patterns in order to receive and share healthy sexual love in the present. Here are three meditations on the themes of expectation, awkwardness, and erotic intelligence for you to ponder and practice this week.
Meditation 1: Expectation
"The secret self knows the anguish of our attachments and assures us that letting go of what we think we must have to be happy is the same as letting go of our unhappiness." -- Guy Finley
Let go. This is the call to happiness by most teachings. Expectation can be a way to stay out of the present while anticipation can have a feeling of nervous excitement about it. Let go. See what plays out between you and your environment.
We've all planned vacations with great expectations only to be disappointed that our experience didn't meet them. The problem was not the place we visited or the experiences we had; the problem was having expectations that catapulted us into the future.
Let go. Be here now. Drop your expectations about what "great sex" is and see what happens next time you connect with your beloved. Stop worrying about his or her experience or orgasm or how you think the sexual experience should go. Allow each experience to have its own unique imprint and don't measure it on the last time or how you think it "should" have gone. Let go of your unhappiness about your sex life and enjoy!
Daily healthy sex acts
- Drop your expectations about your next sexual encounter with your partner.
- Show up in the present moment, breathe, and let nature take her course.
- Stay present in your body and with your partner and be willing to step into the unknown and see what unfolds.
Meditation 2: Awkwardness
"Anyone who realises what Love is, the dedication of the heart, so profound, so absorbing, so mysterious, so imperative, and always just in the noblest natures so strong, cannot fail to see how difficult, how tragic even, must often be the fate of those whose deepest feelings are destined from the earliest days to be a riddle and a stumbling-block, unexplained to themselves, passed over in silence by others." -- Edward Carpenter
Not having grace or skill is often a result of a socially clumsy childhood. People who feel awkward in life, and especially in sex, were typically not seen, heard, understood, or cherished as a child. Moreover, many others were sexually shamed or, worse yet, sexually abused. Shame creates sexual awkwardness, so overcoming sexual trauma is the first order of business.
Once you've done the major work of reclaiming your sexuality and pulled it out of the grips of shame, feeling awkward in sex can be overcome. Like a beginning dancer or musician with no skill, you may feel that any attempt to a make a sexual move feels impossible to you. With practice and patience (with yourself and by your lover), the impossible will become difficult as your nervous system recalibrates to read sexual contact as something good instead of a set up for danger or rejection. Eventually the difficult becomes easy and, with time, you will experience your sexual ease as a thing of beauty.
Daily healthy sex acts
- Set sail on a course of sexual healing by committing to address one thing you need in order to move out of awkwardness. Does this mean going to therapy for the first time to address sexual abuse you experienced as a child or does it mean that you're awkward around a certain sexual act you need to talk to your partner about? Today's the day to take action.
Meditation 3: Erotic Intelligence
"Our erotic knowledge empowers us, becomes a lens through which we scrutinize all aspects of our existence, forcing us to evaluate those aspects honestly in terms of their relative meaning within our lives." -- Audre Lorde
It's challenging to think about who we are sexually and how much erotic knowledge we have about ourselves and our partners. Erotic means tending to arouse sexual love or desire or to deliberately seek out sex for the purpose of pleasure. Intelligence means the skilled use of reason. Deliberately seeking pleasure with the skilled use of reason means that we're thinking about who we are sexually today, what we want, like, dislike, and why. This conscious process indeed becomes a "lens through which we scrutinize all aspects of our existence."
Erotic sexuality emerges over time on the path to adulthood. The processes involved are wholly personal. Until puberty, your caretakers have effectively demonstrated important social behaviors through modeling, but it's not possible for caretakers to directly model healthy sexuality. It's one of the only areas in life where you are largely on your own to realize and develop your sexual potential.
As sexual adults, we evaluate our sexual likes and dislikes and then share our process with our partners in hopes of them knowing us more deeply and in service of challenging our sexual limitations so we can grow and change over our sexual lives.
Daily healthy sex acts
- Share your sexual self with your partner.
- Challenge yourself to reveal something that scares you or that you worry your partner will judge you on.
- Notice how you feel about tolerating the possibility of being rejected or shamed. Is that your partner's doing or your own self-judgment?
For more by Alexandra Katehakis, M.F.T., click here.
For more on conscious relationships, click here.