I freely admit that I used to spend long nights dreaming of being made love to and having the “sexual Goddess” awakened within.
However, when the actual, long-awaited fireworks moment presented itself, I wasn’t always able to truly savour it. Instead, I remember myself staring at the ceiling or creating a new dinner recipe.
At the time, I didn’t have the courage to speak about it and the awareness to question it, but deep down, I silently did feel that the lovemaking was off.
When we have sex with our heads, our genitals don’t always do what we ask them to. If they could speak, they would tell us that they do not appreciate feeling pressured to perform.
The truth is, we can fake our lives and careers—but not our sexual expression. Our bodies are too intelligent for that. We can try to perform or to fake our pleasure, but who are we lying to? Ourselves. And what do we get? Mediocre sex. Guilt. Feeling sexually inadequate. Loneliness in our partnerships.
We have a tendency to enter the bedroom as if we are entering an exam hall, where we can either pass or fail. Performance anxiety is founded in the belief that we’re unable to perform sexually. We are in a state of constantly evaluating our “performance.”
For people in a male body, the consequences of performance anxiety are more apparent, often related to premature ejaculation and erectile dysfunction (though the latter may also have other, health-related causes).
For people in a female body, things are always somewhat more mysterious and hidden in the great dark temple. Essentially, performance anxiety in women adds up to an inability to orgasm vaginally; three in four women don’t reliably experience orgasm through vaginal intercourse.
The implications of performance anxiety are real and permeate our whole lives.
We try so hard to comply to some invisible standard of being a great lover that we end up denigrating our own intrinsic need for authentic sexual expression. The physiological experiences may differ for both sexes, but the common denominator is identical; the pressure we create for ourselves is insurmountable.
We blame ourselves, thinking that there’s something wrong with us. If our partner can’t orgasm, is coming too soon, or can’t get there at all, they’re most likely blaming themselves. And we blame ourselves too for being unable to support them.
This way, we end up with two people in bed blaming themselves. On top of that, most couples have a major difficulty even addressing this soul- and genitals-deep topic. The implications can be heart-wrenching—from unsatisfying sex and unmet needs to cheating and breakups.
Our need to perform reflects an underlying belief: “If I were to truly expose myself, my partner won’t love me. I’m not good enough as I am.” This is deep. Take a breath here.
We give our power away by letting others’ expectations and opinions affect our feeling of self-worth. True self-love entails loving ourselves each moment, whether we’re feeling orgasmic or not feeling sexual at all. Our manhood or womanhood is our heart, not our performance.
The experiences we undergo behind the bedroom door mirrors our general feeling of confidence, self-love, and power. Thus, by deciding to truly show up for ourselves sexually, we’ll also show up for our relationship(s) and our whole lives. A risk certainly worth taking.
How can we alchemize self-doubt in bed into a greater self-esteem in life?
1. Dare to reveal your truth.
Inhale. Equip yourself with some courage and have that conversation with your beloved. You don’t need to be apologetic, but you do need to be vulnerable.
Reveal what’s truly going on for you—not by purging out some toxic pain, but by taking responsibility for your emotions. Pretending that you’re “just fine” and trying to hold things together is simply exhausting and makes you feel like a fraud.
Truth will set you free and invoke the depth of life you so long for.
2. Take the totality of yourself to the bedroom.
Don’t bring your Instagram-polished self into the bedroom. That’s boring. Take the real, raw, wild, soft, loud, tiger-like, juicy, inviting, bold, gentle, dirty, present, angry, authentic, playful, emotional, allowing, intuitive you. There is so much power (and fun) in allowing your love act to naturally move through all of the spectrum of emotions.
The more authentically you express your sexual self, the more your soul will be touched by your lovemaking. Not to mention the afterglow (you know what I mean).
3. Do your “homeplay.”
Do your self-pleasure homework where you practice feeling the journey as much as the destination. Get to know your body in and out. Stay connected to your breath. Sound out any sensations that you feel in your body. Ask your body how it wants to move, dance, or stretch. Practice awakening all of your body as if it were one big genital. Ravish yourself the way you wish your partner ravished you.
Letting go of agenda is a process. Authentic sexuality, in essence, is not learning new sophisticated techniques but about unlearning that false stuff we’re fed to believe. Here, sexuality becomes a profound tool for self-inquiry and provides a sacred space to intentionally cultivate our sense of worth.
By connecting our sex to the heart, we’re bound to meet more of who we truly are. Only in this vulnerable space, a true merging of souls is to be found.