Techniques for managing anxious thoughts and how to anchor your thoughts while exploring intimacy.
How do you anchor those anxious, runaway thoughts when you are trying to have a connective and pleasurable sexual experience? It’s a question most people deal with at some point, but if you have anxiety you might find yourself in this situation a bit more often.
I’d love to tell you that there is a simple hack, quick trick, or easy idea that would make this stop forever. But I can’t, because there isn’t. But I do believe in management. The idea of managing runaway thoughts instead of overcoming runaway thoughts is a lovely way to give yourself compassion around a lifelong phenomenon. It is a lot kinder to say to yourself, ‘Oh, I’ve found myself in a spiraling thought tornado. Let’s manage this.” Versus unkindly saying to yourself, “I can’t believe all these intrusive thoughts! I should be focusing on sex right now. This is terrible!” The first allows the thoughts because you know it’s common and you get straight to a solution. The second way finds you in resistance and suffering longer, because you assume the thoughts shouldn’t be there.
So let’s learn one tool for anchoring those thoughts, shall we? Let’s say you are noticing some intrusive thoughts while you are just starting to make out with your partner. The first step is to notice the thoughts and the second step is to use a somatic tool to manage the thought. Anchoring is a tool that comes in very handy in sex. As you shift to management, bring your awareness to one sensation on your body. What does the air from the fan feel like blowing on your butt? What sensation do you feel in your nipples? Notice the fragrance of the candle burning or the flavor of your partner’s tongue. Choose one. Just one sensation to anchor all your senses to. Try to stay there for a minute. (It will feel like a long time.) Stay until you are ready to focus on another part of your body, gently move your awareness to the next area of your body or the next sense.
In this way, we bring our attention back to the present moment, because that is the only moment where you can experience the sensations of your body. You cannot actually touch, taste, hear, see or smell anything in the past or future. Those are memories or assumptions. Thoughts. But in this present moment, you are able to experience sensations, so use those sensations to bring your awareness back to this moment.
Try anchoring the next time you have some anxious or intrusive thoughts. See how you can manage the thoughts by bringing your awareness back to your body. You’ve got this! Also, feel free to explore our free communication tools to help facilitate those important conversations and discover the other’s desires and preferences.
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