We are in the middle of a pandemic and it is understandable that you may not have been getting enough sex or any at all considering social distancing. If you are looking at getting your freak on any time soon, we have listed some tips on how to get your body back in the mode.
Gauge Your Baseline Sexual Energy Pre-pandemic.
Before you stress about whether or not you’ve lost your “spark,” try to remember what your sex drive and sensuality were like before, er, all of this. Try to remember that sexiness and sexuality are multifaceted and ask yourself what you think might have contributed to feeling less sexual than you would like in the past. Maybe you’ll realize some of those factors have actually changed for the better, like if your sex drive felt “too low” before the pandemic because you were dealing with health issues or relationship challenges that aren’t a problem anymore. If your drive was sort of faint or nonexistent before, be gentle with yourself as you explore.
It can be easy, with all of the obligations you’re facing, to talk yourself out of any sexual desires that might be cropping up. In fact, given the End SARS riot, ongoing pandemic, police brutality, and more, it can feel downright silly or even selfish. But it’s not. You cannot get through the long-term effort that change requires without having times you make for pleasure and enjoyment.
Understand Your Body Has Changed
Remember to acknowledge that a lot has changed over the last few months and that this impacts your mind and your body. “We are not in the world we were in a year ago. That means that the way your body experiences pleasure and the way that your body functions may be different right now. If, for instance, you’ve found yourself glued to your social media feeds and news (so, most of us), it could be having an impact on your mind and body. Experiencing chronic stress—which involves fight or flight hormones like cortisol and adrenaline—can have a major impact on your libido. So if your tried-and-true ways of tuning into that side of yourself are less effective. Ask yourself what you need, like, “Do I have to turn off the news and get off Twitter so that my brain can calm down?” It might not directly result in you feeling sexier, but it could help minimize stress so that you can reconnect to your body.
Adopt An Experimental Attitude
To do this, you can revisit things you’ve ruled out or just never considered, and let your curiosity inspire new ideas. Dr. Powell suggests asking yourself questions like, “Does it help me to watch something really steamy? Does it help me to read some erotica? Does it help me to watch some porn or take a long bubble bath?” Trying new things and creating full-blown rituals—like turning off your phone notifications, lighting a candle, and watching a really sexy movie on Netflix—might help you feel a little sexier. You can absolutely experiment on your own, but if you have a partner who is ready and willing to help you get more in touch with your sexual side, you can include them in your experimentation. If necessary, work on moving away from the idea of sex only being one particular act, Dr. Buehler says, adding that you and your partner can find ways to be sensual and affection without feeling pressure to have “full-on” sex.
Talk To Someone
To be fair, not feeling as in touch with your sexual side as you like may not top your list of mental health concerns. But that doesn’t mean you have to ignore it if it’s bothering you. If you feel like losing your sexual identity or having a low sex drive is part of a larger issue, or you’re experiencing this along with feelings like grief, sadness, rage, or despair, you might need some support from a health professional. Even if you think that not feeling sexy is NBD, given all of the “other things” to fret over, you might find that talking through your concerns with your primary care provider or a mental health professional has an impact on how you feel overall. And you can work directly with a sex therapist to explore some of your feelings, if possible. Don’t feel any trepidation or shame. Sometimes just a few sessions can be really helpful.