Every day I talk to people who are unhappy or struggling with their sex lives. From lack of desire to a complete communication breakdown; from secret fantasies or trauma to feeling stuck and uninspired, I see a lot of frustration and confusion when it comes to sex.
Truthfully, sex is one of the least understood, most desired interactions in the world. The chasm between what we see on TV and in the movies, what we learn in school (if anything), and what the lived experience of sex and pleasure actually are could not be wider.
Most of us stumble along, figuring things out on our own, using friends, Cosmo, and porn to guide us. Which also means it's really common to feel abnormal, awkward, and lost - none of us have clear maps to guide us or the tools to find our way on our own.
The good news is a skilled lover is not simply born with all the gifts of Casanova.
Being sexually adept takes practice. It also takes self-awareness, communication, curiosity, creativity, and most of all, the resilience to be wrong often.
I've had some bad sex in my life. (Bad sex is different from traumatic sex.)
I have been the person who checked out during sex because I wasn't really invested. I've been the person who avoided sex at all costs because it always led to a fight with a partner, or to tolerating sex I didn't really want to just get past it.
I've even been the person who freaks out when their partner shares a desire because I had no idea how to do The Thing and completely shut them down as a result of my own shame and ego.
To this day, I still struggle with articulating my needs and desires at times.
But it's a process. It takes practice. And I know that. Most people don't.
Once the newness wears off in a relationship, folks often find they've become bored - never taking new information in about the person they're with, assuming they have a magic technique that always works, going through the motions or expecting sex because that's what you do.
Sex can be many different things to many different people, and even different things to the same person on different days in different moments. Sex won't always be immersive or mind-blowing, but it can be a powerful source of connection, pleasure, and enjoyment when you do have it.
In my own journey, both personally and professionally, I've discovered what it means to be a skilled sexual partner. It's endlessly simple, but not always easy.
A skilled lover understands that context matters, that the kind of day you had and the way you're feeling in that moment can profoundly impact the way you experience touch and pleasure. So, they practice curiosity.
A skilled lover is attuned to each gasp, each sigh, each muscle spasm, and takes all of the information in, constantly adjusting and reading their partner as the moment unfolds. They nurture and cultivate mindfulness, staying present and in the moment.
A skilled lover is not concerned with ego or goals, but instead, remains open to the endless mystery that is their partner. They know that no two moments are ever the same and allow themselves to be surprised by just how much they don't know - and delight in that. They communicate openly and frequently, asking questions instead of assuming answers.
If there's one thing I've learned it's that sex takes practice.
Practice means failing, messing up, being awkward, and trying again. It means no end point. No moment of final achievement. Mastering sex is mastering comfort with the unknown.
Click to tweet that statement!
Ask questions. Check-in. Read erotica. Turn a critical eye towards everything in the media. Seek out information that feeds your creativity.
Know that your pleasure is entirely your responsibility, so a skilled lover also knows how to ask for what they need and want - specifically and unapologetically.
Awkward is OK. Failure is OK. Having no fucking clue what you're doing is OK. As long as you remain open to what comes next and stay curious. You're learning. We all are.
The moment you lose your curiosity and wonder is the moment your sexual experience starts to become stagnant and disconnected.
So, marvel at your body and the pleasure it's capable of both giving and receiving. Get profoundly interested in your partner's reactions and requests. Introduce newness - from new questions to new locations to new techniques to new fantasies - whenever you feel yourself slipping into a routine.
Let yourself be imperfect in bed and invite the same in your lover(s).
Sex is not about obligation or expectation. Sex is about exploration and discovery. Check your attitude often.
My question to you today is what are you curious to learn? In what ways could you be inspired by your experiences or partner(s)? What is one small thing you can practice today that will set yourself and a lover on fire?
Your pleasure. Your love. Your terms.
If you're ready to start rewriting the stories you've been given and to step into connection and pleasure on your own terms, that's exactly what I help people do.
From one-on-one coaching to my Sex is a Social Skill group calls, there are a variety of ways we can work together to help you find the relief you've been looking for.