When it comes to libido – how do you feel about yours?
For some, their libido drives them crazy. Like they’re walking round all day with something insatiable that lives inside their pelvis. (Like surely there’s a patch or something for that to stop the cravings?)
For others, there is little desire for sexual pleasure at all. Life seems rather overwhelming and sexual attention is interpreted as a pressure. (Yet another area of their life where they are judged if they don’t show up. And how off putting is that?)
Chances are you have found yourself somewhere along the spectrum of desire throughout your life, and noticed it changing too.
Let’s have a look at what tends to affect your sexual desire. And then finish with some tips to stabilize (that’s either decrease or increase) libido in your own body. As you prefer.
The Main Factors Affecting Your Libido
It goes without saying that stress will affect your libido profoundly. We live in times that are extraordinarily stressful, but also we have never had more insight or education into stress levels and the impact on our own health. Of course, your libido is no different. And, sensitive as it is, it can be knocked right out of the equation.
The effects of stress are so well documented – from muscle tension to exhaustion to hormonal deficiencies.
When it comes to muscle tension alone, this means less blood flow, which inevitably means less sensation in the genital area to begin with. No horny feelings if there’s literally no feelings.
Likewise we all know that libido doesn’t stand a chance if we are exhausted. We may even have the stirrings of desire, but the competing desire to stare at Netflix and fall asleep mid sentence will pretty much always win out.
Of course stress affects our hormonal cascades, and women are particularly sensitive to this. Female hormones are like a finely tuned orchestra – introducing stress into the mix is like putting Motorhead’s Lemmy on bass guitar right in the middle of a sweetly vibrating baroque violin solo. (Love Lemmy. But there’s a time and a place.)
Our hormonal balance is knocked out easily then. Most often this shows up as fight, flight or freeze. Which is fine until we literally become habituated to that stress response as a state of being. Love hormones and feel good hormones like oxytocin take the back seat.
As we are on the subject of hormones – it is also worth mentioning the menstrual cycle. We all know women who go crazy for some lovin’ mid cycle, or just before their periods. It is possible to make the most of this of course, and many women cite these times in their cycle as being the only times they have interest in sex. We can either complain about this – or celebrate and make the most of it. Our hormones can work for or against our libidos. Take advantage!
A quick mention of menopause is needed – due to the fall off in hormones during this time, libido is notoriously affected. It doesn’t need to be however, and there are significant ways to help if this is troubling you. More on this shortly.
Sometimes couples will resolve conflict with hot sex.
I can’t see a problem with this, personally.
But, if you are in a relationship with a lot of unexpressed anger, resentment or hurt? or if you are constantly fighting and in perpetual drama cycles together? Neither of these states of being are conducive to sexual interest.
Your libido is a sensitive creature. You can either prioritize the drama and watch your libido sneak off into the wardrobe to hide until you’re done. Or you can prioritize relational safety and health and watch your libido come out and dance center stage in full technicolor.
At the end of the day, it’s a question of choosing to take care of your body. To resist the toxicity and to choose love, communication and mutual well-being instead.
Your libido will thank you for it and start to thrive.
Sex as Compulsion
Just before we finish up with some ways to increase and/or stabilize libido, it is worth mentioning that for some, increased stress can send their libido through the roof.
The bottom line here is that you want to feel pleasure with your desire, not compulsion. If you find your libido is leading your behavior, rather than the other way round, the practices I am about to describe will also help.
Basically, we are looking at regulation. So these practices apply for both too much or too little in the bedroom.
Practices to Nourish and Regulate Libido
- Taoist Breast Massage
The Taoists knew to start sexual turn on in the heart chakra – at least for women. Breast massage will soothe and add a gentle, regulated sense of turn on into your body. Practice regularly for ten minutes a day before bed for best results.
- Clit stroking
Playing with your clitoris in a contained way, without striving for climax or goal, on a daily basis, will do wonders for your libido. With 8000 nerve endings for pleasure in the clit alone, clitoral play is hands down the best way to boost feel good through the love hormone oxytocin. You will find, over time, that this increases turn on in every area of your life and leads to a much bigger desire for sex.
- Sensate Focus
Particularly useful if you either feel very little libido, or too much all the time. Focusing on the sensations in your body as they arise, giving them presence and quiet attention, will prevent you from hooking sexual turn on into the mind, where it tends to fan flames and get compulsive. Likewise, paying attention to sensation will also mean you notice it more. And there is nothing more your libido likes than attention – it’s like inviting her out to be friends.
I hope that inspires you to get playing with your sex drive! Let us know how you get on.
Julia Lally, Made Hot Coach, is a trauma-informed coach for men, women and couples who want to harness their sexual power and improve their relationships. She’s an expert in all things sex, orgasms and relationships, helping men and women embrace a more profound capacity for pleasure. Julia views life as innately erotic and believes that your outlook on sex has the potential to open your mind. Through her expert teachings, you will learn how to surrender and tap into your wildest and deepest being in order to live a more fulfilling life inside (and outside) of the bedroom.
Social Links: https://instagram.com/thejulialally