Use your best asset to get (and give) the best sex ever!
When students ask me how to get or give better sex, I ask them, “How big is it?”
We may joke about whether or not “size matters,” but beneath the joking is often a deep longing for a fuller, more satisfying experience of romance, sexuality, and intimacy.
I pause for a few seconds after my students’ question until I see a bright, red blush, and then I clarify my question: “How big is your heart?”
Then, I ask them to tell me how they use their hearts before they ever consider using anything else. Few, if any, recall connecting at the heart level as part of their foreplay. I point out that they may well be forgetting to use their best asset to give and get the most satisfying sex.
When I recommend that partners connect by taking the time to ask each other what they really, specifically want and enjoy during sex, some get downright adamant around their belief that this conversation “just wouldn’t work!”
When I dig a little deeper, I often find one or more of the following assumptions in their thinking:
>> He/she should know what I like.
>> Talking about sex before or during intimacy breaks the mood.
>> I just can’t bring myself to say out loud what I want.
>> I feel stupid/inadequate/inept when she/he tells me how to pleasure her/him.
>> I don’t like being told how to be or perform in bed.
>> It should just happen naturally.
Some truths that I hear in the subtext of these comments are a fear of embarrassment, a deep desire for acceptance from one’s partner, along with a fear of vulnerability, even though they deeply long for it. When partners face these fears head-on and accept themselves and each other with compassion, they often can break through the obstacles that the assumptions create.
I continue to encourage them to have real conversations about their real and deep longings around sexual intimacy. If it is too intense to talk with each other at first, then I suggest they talk with a trusted friend, life coach, or counselor in a “practice conversation”. This can help address some of those fears apart from “the real” conversation which in turn can help reduce any anxiety they might have.
It can take some time to establish a level of trust in an intimate relationship that offers enough safety for this conversation to happen. However, when both partners are ready, not only can it help create sex that rocks their worlds, it can take the relationship to life-changing depths and even become a truly spiritual experience.
How does this heart connection thing actually work? It’s pretty simple.
Here is the process:
>> Make a nonjudgmental observation about your experience of the relationship (sexually speaking) or ask an opening question.
>> Listen with an open heart and mind to your partner’s response, paying attention to what they are telling you about their longings and their feelings.
>> Reflect back what you hear them saying to be sure you are understanding all the nuances of their longings and feelings and to create deeper connection in the moment.
>> Keep listening and reflecting until you know you have really heard her/him.
>> When your partner has fully expressed her or his longings and feelings, offer your own and ask him or her to reflect back what they hear you saying until you know you have been heard.
>> With this new understanding of one another, explore what specific actions you could take outside and inside the bedroom to bring one another more pleasure and create deeper connection.
>> Then do it!
Here’s an example of a possible conversation.
Mike: “Jen, I’m really enjoying what we have going and I’m wanting to explore some ways to deepen our relationship. I’m wondering if we could talk about our sexual intimacy and how we could connect more deeply around that? I’d really like to hear how our sexual connection is for you and how I might help make it more meaningful and pleasurable for you.”
Jen: “Yeah, well, I really like the closeness I feel with you, Mike, especially when we have time to tune into each other for a while before we go to bed. I feel so safe and open when I know how you are doing and when you listen to me in that way you do when you really understand what’s going on in me.”
Mike: So, you feel the most intimate when we have created some closeness before we make love? And being heard really helps you have a sense of safety and openness. Is that right?”
Jen: “Yes, and then when we are making love, it drives me wild when you whisper my name!”
As you continue to increase your heart’s capacity and ability to connect with your partner, you can try some or all of the following strategies.
>> Start talking at the dining room table.
>> Be mindful of your responses and reactions during conversations about intimacy.
>> Practice empathy toward yourself and your partner.
>> Practice honesty
>> Reframe “failures” as learnings.
Celebrate when you show up the way you enjoy and the intimacy is delicious. And remember: the goal is to grow bigger hearts, deepen your connection, and enjoy the ride.
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Editor: Bryonie Wise