Netflix and Chill for the Soul.
Most people under 35 know what “Netflix and chill” means, but in case you’re late to the party, it’s a euphemism for watching 10 minutes of a movie before hitting the sheets.
I spent years disconnecting from my sexually-liberated side. I even went so far as to develop an alter ego, naming her “Naughtya.” I blamed her for all my “mistakes” and wild nights, claiming, “Naughtya did it!” It was a running joke with my friends.
But one day, I realized I had it all wrong. Naughtya wasn’t the problem. The problem was that I was deeming sex to be an unspiritual act.
We’ve spent millennia trying to find the right balance for our sexual desires—some of which are shunned, some of which are celebrated. Religious beliefs and societally-imposed gender roles still influence our perceptions of what “should” be.
But times are changing. People are coming out publicly with their once hidden sexual desires. Women are becoming more autonomous and, as a result, more liberated. These changing times are forcing us to reconsider what is acceptable, and they’re ultimately altering the way we do things—particularly sex.
What if the act of sex was also intended for our spiritual evolution? What if we used our perceptions and subsequent behavior with sex for our own personal transformation?
The Ultimate Climax
Sex is one of the most euphoric acts of the human experience. It heightens endorphins, boosts the immune system, and reduces stress—it’s just straight-up good for the body.
But it’s even more than that. Sex allows us to lead with the soul. The act of sex requires us to drop our shields and become completely present and engaged, which is why we often feel such an intense emotional connection with someone after we’ve shared this intimacy with them.
Without the ego’s walls, we’re able to be instinctual and primal. Our senses become heightened. We’re able to experience our partner soul-to-soul.
The Uninvited Guest
A ménages à trois is only fun if everyone’s on the same page.
When the ego crashes the party and tries to seek self-assurance through another, things can get complicated. When sex becomes a negotiation of self-worth instead of just an amazing experience, we rob ourselves of the true pleasures it can bring us while also surrendering our own value.
It’s my view that casual sex can only be damaging if we allow the ego in—the act itself is not to blame.
Yet women often feel ashamed for having casual sex. Since it was used as a means of currency for so long, many may feel that they have given up their power or “lost the game.” Conversely, men often experience big self-esteem boosts after a sexual conquest. Both of these are actually unhealthy grounds for doing the deed, as the ego’s involvement in each of these experiences is only detrimental to our well-being.
The key is to let go of our ego and to stop projecting our ideas about ourselves onto others just because we’ve been intimate.
What if we re-defined the term “casual sex” as “sexual intercourse without putting one’s worth in the hands of another?” Or “sex without needing validation?” Or “sex without ego?” Wouldn’t that be so much easier and more enjoyable?
Wrangling the Ego & Reaping the Full Rewards of Sex
Before the ego infiltrates our experience with our next sexual partner, we should ask ourselves these questions:
What are we truly seeking?
We have to get real with what we truly want. If we didn’t crave human connection, we’d just stimulate ourselves.
If what we really want is a committed relationship but we’re playing the casual sex card, we might as well fold. If we’re genuinely up for a casual night in the sack, we should be honest about that fact with our partner before we dive in to be sure we’re both up for the affair.
How can we be accountable?
The only way people can “use” us is if we allow them to. No one else can make us feel truly powerful or loved. Only we can do that.
Having sex when we don’t really want it is not casual sex. When we do this, we fail to honor ourselves. Any act based in need or obligation is derived from a false sense of self—plus, nobody really wants an obligatory sheet-session anyway. We can avoid all of this romantic drama by being accountable to ourselves and transparent with our partner from the get-go.
Why do you want sex?
How will casual sex make you feel? Connected? Powerful? Desirable?
Accessing these feelings on our own helps us become sexually and personally liable for our own experience—the ultimate safe-sex. Throwing a rubber on to protect yourself is smart on a physical level, but let’s not act like it also protects our emotional well-being. Confidence and autonomy are key—not to mention two of the of the sexiest qualities on earth!
The Real Safe-Sex
We want sex to feel amazing and euphoric. This requires detaching from our fears and subconscious, dead-end attempts to have others build up our own confidence and self-esteem. It requires being present and engaged, not only in the moment, but with your highest self.
In order for us to reap the full benefits of casual sex, we must be spiritually-evolved and self-assured from within.
I’m not saying this is easy, but it is possible.
At the very least, we can begin to take responsibility for the expectations we unintentionally place onto others when we’re intimate with them. We can begin to use our sexual habits to enhance our personal growth. The ultimate spiritual practice is non-attachment.
After all, love is to be multiplied, not extracted or constrained. By quieting the ego and healing our false perceptions, we can allow our fullest selves to evolve and enjoy the heights of sexual intercourse.
We can finally, truly “Netflix and chill.”
Author: Bree Melanson
Editor: Callie Rushton