Get Unstuck with Sexual Mindfulness

sexual_mindfulness
Dr Rich Blonna - Your Guide To Less Stress and Better Sex

Written By Dr. Rich

For more than 30 years, I have devoted myself, both professionally and personally, to helping people just like you stress less, have better sex, and enjoy life more.

Learn more about Dr. Rich

I am a university professor, author, and a world-renowned expert in how the mind and body work together in creating and managing stress. I’m proud to be one of the creators of Acceptance and Commitment (AC) Coaching, an exciting form of cognitive psychology that combines mindfulness, acceptance, and commitment to help people stress less and enjoy better sex and a more fulfilling life. I’m certified in Naikan and Morita, two forms of Japanese psychology that emphasize mindfulness and acceptance training respectively. I’m also a Board Certified Coach (BCC), National Certified Counselor (NCC), and Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES). My eclectic approach combines the best practices from all of these disciplines. I’ve helped thousands of people from the United States, Europe, South Africa, and Asia through my books, audios, and adult training courses. My home is in Marco Island, Florida where I live with Heidi, my wife of 48 years. I love writing, tennis, running, kayaking, swimming, biking, weight training, meditation on the beach, and anything that gets me outdoors in the sun.

April 9, 2022

stuc_in_a_sexual_rut

stuck in a sexual rut

 

In a recent post I discussed how to get unstuck using the six components of psychological flexibility.

  • Contact with the Present Moment (mindfulness).
  • Acceptance (acceptance).
  • Valued living (defining valued directions).  
  • Committed Action (commitment).
  • Observing Self (self-as-context).
  • Disentanglement (cognitive defusion).

These same six processes are used to get unstuck from unhelpful sexual thinking that is keeping you from having the kind of sex life and relationships you want and deserve.

In this post I want to focus on what Mindfulness means and how it related to your sexuality.

Mindfulness is best described as moment-by-moment awareness. There are four dimensions of mindful moments. They are

  • present centered
  • non-judgmental
  • non-verbal
  • non-conceptual

Mindful moments always focus on the present, never the past or the future. Most of your thoughts are one step removed from the present moment because they focus on the past or future.

Mindful moments always exist in the present space and time, a context often referred to as the “here and now.” Mindfulness revolves around being fully involved in the here and now.

Mindful moments are not thinking moments  where you try to figure something out or judge it.

Mindful moments are non-conceptual because during them you merely note the occurrence of something and accept it for what it is.

Let me give you a sexual example. Imagine that you are making love with your partner. If you were doing it mindfully her is what would be going on:

Present Centered  – You would be fully attentive to what is going on with your partner.  This means experiencing your partner with all five senses. Your thoughts would only focus on what is going on with your two bodies as you make love. Your thoughts would not drift to something that happened yesterday or will happen tomorrow.

Non Judgmental – You would not be judging or comparing your partner and your lovemaking to anything.  You would enjoy and accept your partner and your lovemaking for what it was, not for what it could or should be according to some societal standard.

Non-Verbal – You don’t need to say anything. Your body and your spirit will say anything that needs to be communicated.

Non- Conceptual- Instead of thinking about why things are going the way you are you simply note what is going on and enjoy it. You don’t try to figure out or anticipate anything, just accept it for what it is and allow it to play out however it will.

 

zen garden

Mindfulness Training

There are two types of mindfulness training, informal and formal. Informal mindfulness training is really attention building and involves becoming more mindful of everyday activities. Formal mindfulness training involves a structured program of daily practice of mindfulness meditation. The goal is to be able to meditate for 20 minutes 3-4 times a week.

Informal Mindfulness Training

There are two dimensions of informal mindfulness training; (1) becoming more mindful of your internal environment (thoughts, feelings, mental images), and (2) becoming more aware of your external environment (behavior and immediate physical surroundings).

Mindfulness can greatly enhance your ability to experience sexual pleasure and eroticism through all of your senses. By slowing down and integrating all of your senses into your daily experiences, you set the stage for doing the same thing in the bedroom. The following exercise, Release Me, is a fun activity taken from my book and will help you start paying more attention to how you touch and release things. You will find that it not only will help you increase your awareness of the sensation of touch, it will make you aware of the sounds associated with the way you touch and release things.

 

 

Mindfulness Exercise: Release Me

One way to begin to be more mindful of your sensuality is to start to pay attention to individual senses such as touch. In this exercise you will begin to pay attention to the way you touch, hold, and release things in your environment.

Instructions:

  1. Devote one full day to this activity.
  2. During this day, be mindful of every instance where you let go of something. This could involve letting go of a cup or glass, door handle, cabinet or drawer pull, your pen etc. Pay particular attention to how you touch and release other people in your life. What body parts did you touch? How did you touch and release them?
  3. Notice exactly how your hand touches, handles, and releases every object.
  4. Notice the texture, weight, shape, and feel of everything you touch, handle and release.
  5. Notice how paying attention to these things influences how you perceive them and release them.
  6. Notice the effects of your release on your environment. What happened when you slammed a door or drawer? Did this cause you to perceive your “releasing behavior” differently as the day went on?
  7. Notice the effects being mindful of letting go on others. How did others react to your mindless releasing compared to your mindful releasing?
  8. If you practiced this on a regular basis, how do you think being more mindful of letting go could impact your life and slow you down?
  9. When the day is over, write down what you’ve learned from this exercise.

Becoming more mindful of your sense of touch is a good way to start paying attention to how you interact with your external environment.

Formal  Mindfulness Training

Formal mindfulness training revolves around a structured program of daily practice of mindfulness meditation. These sessions are done in addition to your continuing informal mindfulness training. Begin by meditating for a few minutes three to four times a week. After a couple of weeks increase the duration of your sessions by five minutes and repeat this until you can meditate for 20-30 minutes at a time. When you get to this level aim for 3-4 sessions each week.

 

Mindfulness Activity: Mindfulness Meditation

Instructions:

Frequency: Practice at least three times a week.

Duration: Start with 5 minutes and add a few minutes a week until you can meditate for 30.

Location:  You should meditate somewhere that you will not be disturbed by other people or distractions such as the telephone, cell phone, television, or your computer. A key component of mindfulness meditation is practicing without interruption.  I love to meditate on the beach at sunrise (see photo).

Posture: Sit on the floor on a cushion or on a straight-backed chair with your back straight and your head up resting gently on your neck.

Practice: As you sit, notice the thoughts, sensations, and feelings that come over you. Stay in the present moment and go with these wherever they take you. Continue to sit for the full time, noting what you’re experiencing in an accepting, nonjudgmental way.

If you catch yourself drifting to the past or future do not fight this. Instead, tell yourself, My mind is taking me out of the here and now and into the [wherever it’s taking you]. If you find yourself evaluating or judging something, tell yourself, My mind is judging or evaluating again instead of merely noting [whatever it’s judging or evaluating].

Mindset: Be patient and forgiving with yourself as you practice mindfulness meditation. It will take time and practice to get comfortable with it, but it is time well spent.

                                                              

Click Here for More Information on my Great Sex Course

 

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