How to Do a Sexual Reset
By Guest Contributor, Francesca Williams
Cue that classic Earth Wind and Fire song because here we are again, back in *September*. Whether your kids are finally back in school, that crazy summer schedule is finally slowing down, or you just bought a new paper planner, this time of year signals a new chapter. So, while you are revamping your routines and getting inspired by new projects, why not add better sex to the "to-do" list? In my practice as a therapist and sexologist, I have had people tell me every possible reason why they haven't put more effort into improving their sex lives. Maybe they feel awkward talking about sex, it seems too late in their life or relationship to bother trying, or simply that they don't have the heart to kick the dog out of bed. I am here to tell you why pleasure is worth the pursuit and give you some suggestions to keep things hot long after summer ends.
Why should I make the effort?
If you are reading this, you likely know how babies are made; you may even have made some yourself! And although reproduction is a fantastic reason to have sex, it isn't the only reason this activity is worth your while. Research has shown that, because of the hormones released in the body during sexual activity, there are many physical and emotional benefits to a roll around in the sheets, solo or partnered! For example, oxytocin—released into your body during physical touch, arousal and orgasm—has been shown to increase interpersonal trust, improve sleep, act as an antidepressant, decrease anxiety, improve your immune system and have anti-inflammatory effects. Taking the time to explore your sexuality is not only fun (read on if this sentiment seems unlikely), but it is an investment in your health.
Where do I start?
Red light, green light
No matter what type of intimate activity you have in mind, consent is non-negotiable. There is no wrong way to communicate consent as long as everyone understands and agrees. Having a secret sign or signal that you are in the mood can ease feelings of pressure to initiate, avoid discomfort some associate with declining advances, and add a sexy little inside communication hidden in plain sight. Some ideas include:
- Placing magnets on the fridge in a certain area or order to ask and consent
- Indicating interest in physical touch by lighting a certain candle
- Using music to communicate both interest in sexual contact and the type of contact you may be interested in. For example, smooth jazz may indicate slow and sensual lovemaking, while fast-paced metal or rock may be a request for hard, fast, or aggressive sex
- Sending a pre-chosen emoji (popular saucy choices include the eggplant, taco, cat or peach) to indicate openness to sex or certain sexual activities
- Wearing specific clothing may express a want or hope for what you may desire. For example, changing into sweatpants may indicate that you are too tired, while bright lipstick or adding/ removing a watch may signal that you are open to advances
Pencil it in!
No matter what your circumstances, life gets busy. I don't know about you, but having someone's body parts poking at me while I run through my to-do list does not light my fire. While some think scheduling time for intimacy takes the fun out of it, I beg to differ. Planning gives you time to anticipate the action and prioritizes pleasure! This can mean anything from establishing a tradition of a 30-second embrace to begin your day with increased intimacy to scheduling a quickie while the kids are at school. If you like surprises, take turns planning an activity to try during your designated time together. If this idea feels too bold or forced, plan yourself some solo pleasure! Which leads us to suggestion #3…
X marks the spot
Take time to get to know your own body. Becoming comfortable with yourself allows you to better understand the dos and don'ts before you show up to play. Once you know what you like, you have your own treasure (or, dare I say, pleasure) map that leads to a chest of hidden booty—ahoy, captains! Once you know what you like, you can share that with your partner and let them steer the ship. This can also be a great way to get familiar with toys. I suggest a clitoral vibrator for a great start - the We-Vibe Melt is a bestseller in this store. Click here to get yours.
Want to learn more with Francesca? Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org You can also find her here: www.westlandtherapy.com