Can Mindfulness Make you Better in Bed?
In short, yes! Let’s look at how.
First, let’s look at the differences between mindfulness and meditation. Mindfulness and meditation are similar, but not exactly the same. According to the Chopra Center “Mindfulness can be practiced informally (at any time/place) and formally (during seated meditation)”. Read on to learn more.
Mindfulness is a mental state achieved by focusing one's awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting one's feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations. You can practice mindfulness anywhere, anytime, with anyone, simply by showing up and being fully engaged in the present moment.
Examples of mindfulness
Meditation is a type of mindfulness that typically refers to a formal, seated mental practice, such as calming your mind, expanding your awareness, opening your heart, and experiencing inner peace. Seated meditation often begins with deep breathing and bringing your awareness to your breath, consciously guiding your mind toward an anchor or single point of focus. If you are new to meditation we recommend using an app such as Calm or Headspace to help you get started. We have yet to see anyone who doesn’t benefit from a daily meditation practice.
Now, let’s look at five ways mindfulness and meditation can improve your sex life:
1) Mindfulness can increase sexual desire and enjoyment.
Many of us are stressed out from work, our relationships, money, and many other reasons. Stress increases cortisol and adrenaline levels, and increased levels of cortisol and adrenaline decrease sexual desire and overall enjoyment of sex.
Since mindfulness and meditation are incredibly powerful stress-reducing tools, it stands to reason mindfulness can increase sexual desire and enjoyment by reducing cortisol and adrenaline levels.
2) Mindfulness decreases stress, which may improve orgasms.
Increased cortisol levels can prevent orgasm and cause erectile dysfunction. Fortunately, mindfulness can make a big difference.
Research shows mindfulness can reduce the stress hormone cortisol. When our stress drops, our senses perk up. We can touch, taste, smell, hear, and feel more intensely. According to Emily Fletcher, founder of Ziva Meditation, mindfulness helps train our brain to slow down and focus on the “sensations that push us over the edge”.
3) Meditation gives you deep rest, which may revitalize energy for sex.
If you’ve ever heard, “Not tonight, honey, I’m too tired”, you’re not alone. According to a recent study by the National Sleep Foundation, about one in every four married or cohabitating Americans claim they're so sleep-deprived they're often too tired to have sex.
Meditation boosts melatonin, the naturally occurring sleep-compound. Extra melatonin leads to deeper, sounder sleep, which in turn, leads to waking up feeling refreshed, revitalized, and more energized for sex among other things.
4) Mindfulness makes you more present and less distracted.
How many to-do lists have you compiled in your brain during sex? Or maybe you’ve wondered how your body looks from your partner’s angle? Or perhaps you’ve noticed you’re spending more time in your distracted mind than in your body during sex.
Mindfulness reduces things that make sex more stressful such as anxiety, fear, and body shame, and helps us stay aware and present during sex. Research indicates those who practice sexual mindfulness and avoid self-judgment during sex have an increased sense of sexual well-being, including increased relational satisfaction, sexual self-esteem, and sexual satisfaction.
5) Mindfulness helps you attune to your partner.
Imagine applying mindfulness during sexual pleasure with a partner. Rather than becoming distracted by your own gratification or focusing on a particular outcome, mindfulness creates shared awareness with your partner moment-to-moment. International Sex & Tantra Educator, Monique Darling writes
“There is a place beyond what most people imagine. A place of intimacy, connection and pleasure beyond your wildest dreams. This place comes when we place mindfulness on our sexual interactions. Take time to slow down, to feel into what your body wants, giving your partner time to feel into and ask for what they want. The agendas drop away, and instead of a few minutes of orgasm, every touch, every breath, each interaction becomes orgasmic.”
Are you are interested in learning more about what mindfulness and meditation can do for your sex life contact us at 651-401-5010 or request a free consultation.
Diane Sparish, MA
Sex & Relationship Therapist
Marriage and Family Therapist
Brotto, L. , (2018). Better Sex Through Mindfulness: How Women Can Cultivate Desire. Vancouver: Greystone Books.
Men’s Health. Daily Expert: This Mindfulness Technique Will Enhance Your Sex Life. https://www.pulse.ng/lifestyle/mens-health/daily-expert-this-mindfulness-technique-will-enhance-your-sex-life/r539bjn
Many women find at some point sex is painful or uncomfortable for them. This is not normal. I repeat this is not normal. I say this not to make you feel bad or shameful about your pain, but to give you hope that there IS help and treatment for painful sex—and you shouldn’t have to “just deal with it”.
Lets break down exactly what I mean when I say “Painful Sex”. Painful sex is defined by pain in your vulva, vagina, or general pelvic region. This pain can be a burning, sharp pain, itching; basically anything that causes discomfort. This pain can happen upon anticipating sexual intimacy, during sexual intimacy, or after sexual intimacy.
Painful or uncomfortable sex can be caused by myriad of factors. These include: bladder infection, yeast infections, STIs, endometriosis, PCOS, vulvodynia, vestibulodynia, trauma, anxiety, insufficient stimulation/lubricaion, and more.
When sex hurts in can cause shame, anxiety, depression, disconnection with our partner, and more. The good new is painful sex is treatable. Painful sex is often treated with a team of providers which include sex therapists like us. We can help you figure out the best course of action for you and your symptoms.
If you would like to meet us and see if we can be of help to you, please contact us for a free 30 minute in person session.