We’re bombarded every Valentines day with the message that being with a partner is paramount. But what if it’s the other way around? There’s often an assumption that self-pleasuring is a poor substitute for a ‘real’ lover. But without knowing how our own body loves to be loved, how can we expect to connect with a partner?
Somatic sexologist and psychotherapist, Barnaby Barratt, suggests that “self-pleasuring is the foundation of our potential to love and be loved…the capacity to engage in active self-stimulation of our own skin envelope is thus essential to the formation of a healthy and happy sense of self.”
So this February 14th, why not indulge in a real treat and set up a hot date with yourself!
Here’s a handy how-to guide for first timers:
- Prepare with some pampering, the way you would if you were meeting someone else: soak in a sensuous bath, slip into something sexy, flatter yourself with candlelight, and turn up Barry White on the stereo…(or – for something a bit less old school – check out my sexy Spotify playlist!)
- Start by waking up your connection to sensation in your body with my 3-minute guided sensate focus exercise.
- Then, when you’re ready to seduce yourself, find a position you can stay comfortable in for a while: lying down, standing, or sitting are all great…
- Breathe: Help your body relax by adding weight to your out-breath. Let it fall out with a sigh (but don’t force it). If you want to increase your body’s arousal response try switching to a short, sharp in-breath (with a gentle out-breath) for a while. Play with alternating between the two, and notice the changes in your body. The more you breathe the better you’ll feel!
- Movement: Your pelvis is the erotic core of your body. Stimulate blood flow and oxygen to your genitals by moving your hips gently from side to side, or rocking them slowly in a figure-of-eight motion. Notice how the movement expands to other body parts… follow the flow and explore how the rest of you wants to move.
- Sound: Let your jaw drop and make a low “aaaaahhhhh” sound. Try expressing the sensations you feel in your body with the sound – so that, however it feels, you’re expressing it with an “aaaaahhhhh” sound. As arousal increases allow the sounds to change naturally: try other vowel sounds…humming…change the pitch…and notice how the different vibrations resonate differently in your body.
- Touch: Aim for constant self-touch. Use one hand to gently stimulate your genitals. With the other hand caress, vibrate and knead other parts of your body. Notice how it feels to be touched and also the experience of giving touch. Keep it slow – repeating the same self-touch stroke ten or twenty times allows for your awareness to focus on and savour what you are experiencing.
And remember: keep it sensual – it’s time to make love to yourself, not to have a quick fumble! Aim for pleasure, not for orgasm (this is your chance to find out the difference!). And slow… it… down – if you think you’re already going slow enough see how it feels to take it even slower!
Enjoy the journey…Who needs a lover when you can love yourself like this!
And if you’d like to learn to love yourself even more, get in touch to find out how
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