The other night, my partner and I were making love and suddenly I went up into my head. Big time. I tried to push it away but it kept coming back and in 'trying to push it away' I moved further from the moment.
I had to stop.
I learnt a long time ago that there's no point in continuing if my inner dialogue is distracting me from being with my lover. Our nervous systems are sensitive. We feel it. Have you ever been with someone and just sensed that they were lost in fantasy or weren't really present? In my system it doesn't feel safe, so out of respect for my lover I had to pause. Once I'd spoken about the thing that was on my mind, we could continue.
Presence is everything when it comes to sex – losing it is both frustrating and disconcerting.
Going up into the head is modern affliction with our busy, screen-based lives. It can be super hard to move into a 'lover's space' and settle into the deep feeling body. If we're conditioned to need a lot of stimulation, it can feel boring. Sometimes we might feel numb. Or there might be other things going on that block connection to the erotic body.
It can be tempting to ignore the distraction and carry on but usually resistance means persistence. The best thing you can do is acknowledge what's going on so you don't override your body wisdom AND so that you stay in authentic connection.
Cervical orgasm is very deep – to go there, we need to drop beneath the superficial chatter and into the subterranean space of sensation.
Four main reasons why we get stuck in the head instead of anchoring into the body and pelvis:
- Fantasy; we may be conditioned to turn on through the visual field either through imagining or watching porn.
- Trauma; we leave the body when we feel unsafe. We try to make sense of it by thinking and overthinking or we may zone out – it's called dissociation and it's a normal trauma response.
- Stress or emotional baggage; you may not have processed the days events, you may feel distracted, focused on the goal or you may be having sex when you're not really in the mood.
- Shame; a type of trauma, sexual shame is a huge reason why we leave the body during sex.
Let's look at each one:
If fantasy is your jam and you've learnt how to turn yourself on through your imagination, this is not necessarily a bad thing. Sharing erotic fantasy with a partner during love making can be very hot. Generally though, with cervical orgasm we're moving out of the thinking mind. We are tapping into a deeper place within.
If you love fantasy, then you probably have a great imagination. Excellent – use it! Enhance what you're feeling in your mind. Create an image of it as if you can see it. Make it bigger and brighter. Imagine the sensation expanding throughout your body. You can even talk through what's happening in the moment – like erotic dialogue only instead of the image being outside of you, you're revealing the magic within. Eventually drop the dialogue and focus on expanding subtle sensations in your imagination.
A word on porn: if you've conditioned yourself to feel turned on or to orgasm with porn, you are well trained in visuals – this means your sexual stimulation might need to look a certain way and it's externally focussed. So if you want to change this habit, you can begin to open your sensory field by practising touch for 5 minutes per day. A great way to do this is by picking an object before bed (any object), stroke your hands over it and around it. Find as much pleasure as you can through the object. Have your eyes closed and focus on what you can FEEL through your skin. This is how you can train yourself to notice the intrinsic pleasure INSIDE of you. At first it might feel boring but your capacity to feel will expand over time. You can transfer this new skill to touching your lover with new focus – touching them opens up pleasure directly through your skin rather than through your eyes.
Let your lover know about what can occur during love making. Talk about what you need if it comes up. Do you need them to reassure you, do you need eye contact, do you need encouragement to breathe? Do you need them to let you know you're safe? It's important to learn about your unique needs so that both you and your lover can navigate the space without retraumatising. Only you can know where you're at in your trauma healing. If you haven't processed an event or experience, it may be appropriate to seek the help of a professional. The best trauma therapy is EDMR or Somatic Experiencing.
If you experience 'everyday' trauma such as shame, the best thing to do is pause during sex to process it. If you bypass it, usually this causes more stress and tension in the body. The best thing to say is: 'Hey do you mind if we pause for a moment? I'm noticing some shame come up, I just need to hold myself for a moment.' Place a hand on your heart and take some deep breaths. Reassure yourself. To overcome shame, access the part of you that is bigger than the shame itself. I created this Inner Child and Sexual Shame meditation; download it here. Once you do this process you can reparent quickly and in the moment.
Stress and emotional baggage
Before making love, make sure you feel emotionally and mentally clear. Something I like to do is create a listening container; we each take 10 minutes and share without interruption. This share could include anything that might distract me during sex or anything emotional that's clogging my heart space. It's good to ask what you each need in order to resolve the stress. Sometimes it might be simple, like a hug. Other times you may need a deeper dialogue to clear any emotional triggers that may be in the space between you.
General tools for embodiment
Breathe – when it comes to dropping into your body, your breath is your biggest ally. Breath will bring you into the moment and into your body if you focus on it.
To soothe yourself: take slow deep breaths focusing on a long exhale.
To expand energy and sensation: take deeper, faster paced breaths.
Sound – focus on the sensation of sound as it falls out of your mouth. Sound happens in the present moment so placing your attention there brings you back.
Touch – bring laser focus to the sensation of touch – there is SO much happening in every tiny moment as you trace your hand over skin.
Going up into the head happens often – it's a modern affliction and a part of our survival instinct. The best thing you can do is acknowledge it in the moment, pause and come back to presence. Your lover will appreciate it and so will your body.
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