It’s that time of the year to reflect on what’s lacking in our lives and how to improve it. We should not limit our resolutions to simply losing weight or reducing stress.
Resolutions are a way to focus on improving life, feeling better and putting more focus on self-care. What about sexual health?
Now is a good time to focus on sexual wellness for one’s overall health and well-being. Sexual wellness includes values and beliefs centered around sexuality, body image, emotional response as well as one’s physical condition.
There are many physical and mental health benefits of sex. We know that sex reduces stress, improves muscle tone, increases emotional connectivity, stimulates the immune system and has some of the same cardiovascular benefits as exercise. Sexual health is not only for couples. It is important for women to focus on sexuality by knowing their bodies and becoming more empowered through self-exploration and discovery. We need to develop intimacy within ourselves to successfully share it with a partner.
Here are some ideas for making your own sexual health resolutions:
Stop negative self-talk and replace it with self-affirming positive statements. Negative talk: “I hate my body. I’m so fat.” Positive talk: “I love my body and all of its curves.”
Explore your own erogenous zones
Learn what feels good to you. Start by purchasing or upgrading a sex toy to help enhance pleasure. Know that erogenous zones extend beyond the clitoris — experiment with varying pressure and sensual touch over the entire body.
Learn about your own anatomy and put the pieces together to understand your own sexual response. Banish myths and unrealistic expectations about orgasm and desire. Every woman’s anatomy is unique and different and women enjoy different types of stimulation.
“We need to develop intimacy within ourselves to successfully share it with a partner.”
Be present and engaged during intimacy. Make more eye contact and use breathing as a tool to stay connected.
Talk about a sexual topic with friends or a partner
Most women bring up sex when there’s a problem, but you should talk to friends or partners when sex is going great too! Talking about sex helps women gain comfort and confidence with sexuality.
Engage in sexual fantasy
Sexual fantasy is linked to improving sexual arousal and desire and can fuel libido long before sex begins.
Assess lifestyle habits and their effect on your sexual response
Smoking and alcohol intake can have a dampening effect on sexual response while a healthy BMI and improved fitness leads to better sexual conditioning as well as overall wellness.
Eat healthier to stimulate your sexual appetite
Increase antioxidants. Red wine, chocolate and nuts are fun choices. Also know that some healthy foods are actually aphrodisiacs — almonds, pineapple and avocados.
Step outside of your sexual box.
Be creative and make a sexual bucket list of what you want to try! Don’t be afraid of a new position or setting to add excitement.
Get a sexual health physical
There’s more to an annual exam than just a pap smear. Physiological assessments can include genital blood flow, nerve sensations and evaluation of pelvic floor tone. You can also address psychological components such as stress, anxiety or depression for improving your sexual wellness.
These sexual health resolutions are key to creating a healthy sexual lifestyle. Make sexual fulfillment a priority for the upcoming year.