Tag: sex coaching training

In light of the recent #metoo campaign and other ongoing consciousness-raising around the importance of consent, we are reaching out to all of you, students past and present, and Somatica Practitioners, to give you some updates to how we are going to emphasize consent in our teaching. While the way we teach has always had the intention of helping people read and attune to their partners to make sure everything that is happening is consensual, desired, and pleasurable, we feel the way we have presented it may not have emphasized the importance of consent enough. We are now teaching people how to have consent conversations with their clients and partners, and how to escalate while making sure that there is ongoing consent. Please check out these updated explanations and exercises that we feel more properly represent how we would like people to teach around consent in their practices. These additions will be included in next year’s updated Somatica Training manual.

Much love,

Celeste & Danielle


Consent

Consent is a very hot button issue in our culture, so please pay attention to the activation in your body as you read through this section. The concept of consent touches on our deep need for safety, equality, and respect. If you ask just about any woman what it is like to walk around late at night somewhere by yourself, or to walk down the street in broad daylight and have a man follow you calling out at you, or to go on a first date, at best she will tell you stories of feeling fearful or being extra careful, at worst she will tell you stories of rape, harassment, and violation. Likewise, if you ask men who love and respect women, what it is like to be out dating and having sex or trying to have sex with women, they will often share their fear of crossing boundaries, hurting someone, being accused of harassment or rape, and their fear of being shunned by their community or the people they care about.

Consent and non-consent can also be a part of our arousal. For example, we may be very aroused by the feeling that we can fully trust someone or feel cared for by them because they ask our consent or give their overt consent at each new step of sexual escalation. Or, we may be aroused by overt non-consent, where our partner does whatever they want to us without regard for our needs or we do what we want to them, regardless of our partner’s needs. We may be turned on by the romantic notion that a partner can know everything we want without ever having to ask or feeling like they can attune to us without words. In long-term relationships, women have sometimes expressed to us that they wish their partners would push past some of their crunchiness or resistance and just keep going. Jack Morin does a great job talking about how we can want the world to be a place full of overt communication and egalitarianism and still be turned on by scenarios that are quite contrary to these goals.

In Somatica, we want to account for both the importance of a safe, respectful world and honor that different people may have different needs around how they want their partner to ascertain consent. Obviously, if someone is turned on by doing things to someone that are non-consensual, we need to work with them on finding a partner that they can play this out with in a role-play as opposed to enacting it in the world, where they may do tremendous harm and be punished by their community or the legal system, For this reason, instead of teaching people to ask for overt consent at each step of escalation, we teach people how to have a consent conversation to ascertain what kinds of consent they want to practice in their life and to attune to nonverbal cues.

Experiential Practice: Have a Consent Conversation

Introduction: Read the above explanation of consent and trauma.

How to explain it to your client: You can say, “Let’s talk about how you give or get consent with a partner.”

How to do the experience: Talk with your client about their feelings, history, and possible fears around consent as well as what kind of consent they want with a partner. Help them identify if they are more commonly the initiator of sex and sexual escalation or the recipient or both. If they are the initiator, help them practice talking with a date or partner about what kind of consent their partner wants. If their partner wants them to initiate and escalate without asking, help them make an agreement that their partner will let them know if they are coming to a boundary. If their partner wants overt consent, help them practice how to get consent in a sexy way.

If they are normally the recipient of escalation, help them identify whether they want to be asked for verbal consent at each new escalation or if they want their partner to continue to escalate without asking (or some hybrid, like not asking at the kissing stage, but asking at the oral sex or intercourse stage). If they do not want their partner to ask for overt consent, make sure they are empowered around their boundaries.

If your client has a trauma history or is prone to dissociation as a defense mechanism, it is important that they identify if they are someone who freezes or dissociates during sexual escalation. If so, you will need to help them communicate to their partners that this happens to them and to let their partners know how to deal with it. For example, if your client is prone to freezing, they might say, “I’d really like it if you’d ask before you initiate a new sexual experience every time we have sex and make sure I give you a verbal yes. Also, if my body seems really still or you feel like I’m checked out, I’d love for you to just check in with me” or they might say, “I don’t want you to ask me for each new sexual escalation, but please pay attention and check in with me verbally, if it seems like I’ve stopped moving or am breathing very shallowly or if my eyes look spaced out. If I don’t respond verbally when you check in, please stop all sexual interaction with me until I can talk again.” You can also help your client have these same conversations if they have specific triggers or flashbacks. Help them identify how their partners can tell and what they need from their partners when this happens so that they can communicate this to their partners.

What are you looking for: You want to see if your client can clearly express how they want to get and give consent and that they feel empowered around communicating their boundaries, especially if they are interested in escalation without verbal consent.

Debrief: Talk with your client about how they will take these practices of consent out into their dating or relationship life, what they’d like to communicate to dates and partners from now on.

 

If there is one quality that we insist upon when training sex and relationship coaches it is that they teach from their vulnerability. We may seem like broken records but we cannot emphasize it enough: one of the most harmful and least compassionate things that you can do as a coach, therapist or personal growth teacher is to pretend that you have it all figured out and are now perfect. People suffer constantly under the belief that they have to be perfect to be loved, desired, or in a relationship. They think that they will someday get over all of their hurts and never feel bad or triggered again. This is an impossible task and only causes people to judge themselves harshly and keep themselves closed off against connection.

We also practice what we teach. When one of us sits in front of a client and says, vulnerably, “Last week in my relationship, I got so triggered, that all of my revenge fantasies started flooding in and I just wanted to make my partner hurt as much as I felt hurt,” our clients say, “You? I thought you had it all together.” There is so much projection on teachers and so much shame that results. By being vulnerable about the fact that we are all still on our own growth journey and will always be, we are saying that you don’t have to be perfect to be loved (or to be a coach or teacher).

We also engage in authentic relationships with our clients, not only listening to how we impact them, but sharing vulnerably how they impact us. In this way, they get to see that we are not perfect and to learn about being in a real relationship. Hopefully, most people in helping professions already know that they are emotionally affected by their clients. Allowing your clients to know they impact you just as you impact them helps them learn what it is like to be in a real relationship – namely, that you cannot avoid impacting the other person. Sometimes we feel joy and pleasure with our clients, sometimes we feel hurt or rejected, just as they feel with us.

If we take a step even deeper into the premise that people learn how to move beyond shame and to be in a real relationship through vulnerability, when we work with our clients we also let them know our biggest emotional challenges and how they have affected us and continue to affect us. We also learn each of our client’s biggest challenges and talk about how ours may interact with theirs and in what ways we might trigger one another. We talk about these triggers vulnerably when they arise between us and our clients.

For example, after a challenging email exchange, when we are back together in the office, one of us might say, “The hurts of my childhood sometimes make it hard for me to trust. When I got your email, I felt attacked even though I know that was not your intention and I’m sure you were triggered, too. It took me a while to calm down and write back because I didn’t want to respond from a triggered place. I can imagine that might have triggered some of your abandonment fears and I would love to hear how you felt and also tell you how your choice of words affected me.” This is an invitation to hear each other’s challenges and triggers and to move towards empathy and repair. To be able to talk openly and practice sharing these challenges in a safe space gives them the tools and skills they need to take out into their own intimate partnerships. Helping your clients learn about and empathize with their partner’s challenges and share their own almost always leads to more gentleness and mutual support in their relationships.

Sharing vulnerably and inviting others vulnerability is a skill that takes time, practice and gentleness with yourself and others. If you’d like to do some deep transformational work that will change the quality of your relationships forever, come join us for The Somatica Core Training.

We are so excited to see that you are interested in coaching and personal growth! If you are interested in sex and relationship coaching as a profession or already are a sex and relationship coach, it is important to know the field. Many kinds of practices fall under the umbrella of sex and relationship coaching. Depending on your personality, your interests, and your boundaries, you may be drawn to a particular approach. In this article, we offer an in-depth description of all of the subcategories of sex and relationship coaching so that you can decide what suits you best.

There are two main categories of coaching — talk coaching and experiential coaching. During “talk coaching” sessions, a client will discuss their issues, while the coach gives support and suggestions for change. For sessions during which a coach physically interacts with their client in some way, we use the term “experiential coaching.”

Talk Coaching

Similar to life coaching and business coaching, talk coaching in the realm of sex and relationships is where the client comes to the practitioner with a problem and the coach helps them figure out what steps they can take to solve their problem. The coach may ask the client to fill out an intake form or they will meet in-person, over the phone, or on Skype for an initial session. During this time, they will work together to define the problem and the coach will develop a coaching plan with steps to address the issue. At each subsequent meeting, they talk about which parts of the plan the client has accomplished and where they may be feeling stuck. The coach then helps the client keep their commitment to continue the plan.

Talk coaching can cover many topics including dating, sexual identity, sexual abuse, sex addiction, sex and aging, open relationships, communication skills, gender identity, sex in long-term relationships, and sexual dysfunction. Talk coaches will sometimes offer experiential practices in the form of homework to do outside of the session with partners (or potential partners). For example, a talk coach may encourage a client who is interested in dating to talk to 5 people to whom they feel attracted. They may offer suggestions to couples such as watching a video and then practicing the kinds of sensual touch they see in it. Some of these issues are more about the coach helping the client accept themselves. Other clients may need help speaking to family, friends, or loved ones about who they truly are. In terms of boundaries, talk coaches do not typically have physical contact beyond hugs or handshakes. A coach may offer emotional support by placing a hand on their client’s back or arm when needed, but this is typically the furthest extent to which physical contact is given within a talk coaching session.

Experiential Coaching

Experiential coaching (in the realm of sex and relationships) is active, and sometimes interactive process, whereby the coach guides their client through exercises to help them feel more comfortable with their body, their sexuality, and intimacy. It is often focused on helping clients feel more embodied and mindful in their day-to-day interactions. Examples of experiential coaching include sacred sexuality, Tantra, and Sexological Bodywork. A tantra coach might teach a client who is disconnected from their sexuality particular Tantric breathing practices. These practices are meant to help the client connect with their primal energy, bringing together the sexual and the sacred. A Sexological Bodyworker may invite their client to masturbate in front of them, and then coach them on ways to expand their masturbation practice to have more erotic self-awareness and deeper fulfillment.

Sex and relationship coaches may fall into one of these two categories or may practice a combination of the two. In both of these approaches, the coach maintains a supportive, loving, yet personally distant approach. They may share some of their own personal experiences as a way to normalize a client’s feelings or needs, but they generally do not connect relationally with their clients. In terms of boundaries, experiential work can include touching between the coach and the client. Sometimes there may be client nudity and less often, practitioner nudity as well.

How is Somatica Sex and Relationship Coaching Different?

While Somatica has aspects of talk coaching and experiential coaching, the foundation of the approach is completely different. Somatica was created as a way to fill a gap in the experiential learning realm. In order for clients to learn how to have emotional and erotic intimacy, we felt they needed to have authentic experiences of two-way intimacy—what we call a Relationship Lab. As a Somatica Coach, you will practice authentic relating with your client to help them learn, grow, and transform in their sexual lives and relationships.

As their coach, you would not act as a distant helper, but instead as a partner who engages in emotional and erotic intimacy, seeing what it feels like to be intimate with this person. By engaging in physical and emotional intimacy, you, as their coach, evaluate the client’s sexual and relational strengths, as well as their challenges. Once you understand what they need to learn, you then teach them the tools they need to have in order to attain more emotionally connected and sensually satisfying lives.

Somatica offers both individuals and couples real-time, experiential practices with emotional and erotic connection so that clients can experience embodied learning. Embodied learning is different than purely cognitive learning. When a person has an actual experience of vulnerability, arousal, or passion, they are much more likely to be able to translate this into their day-to-day lives. They are then able to change habits more easily than if they have solely thought, read, or talked about it. If we look at it from a brain plasticity perspective and how people learn, creating new multi-dimensional experiences that involve thoughts, emotion, and the senses is much more effective and efficient. It helps your clients create new neural pathways and is, therefore, a powerful way to change behaviors and old habits. The boundaries of Somatica are clothes-on, with no kissing on the mouth. Touch is acceptable in both directions, but no touch should ever move toward orgasm.

Finally, while some forms of erotic teaching try to help students learn completely different approaches and languages around eroticism (sometimes insinuating that these are superior forms of erotic expression), Somatica instead helps draw out each person’s unique erotic imagination and desires, helping them integrate them out in the world. Somatica does not offer a one-size-fits-all solution to people’s sexuality, but rather helps to expand what’s on the menu until the client discovers what turns them on the most. We believe that a person’s main erotic desires do not change. This means trying to eradicate, ignore, or change them is a great disservice to the person. Approaches that do this often instill both shame and the feeling that something is wrong with these desires. Instead, in Somatica, we support individuals to explore and embrace their unique erotic makeup, learning how to communicate it to a partner.

We did not come to this work because we had all the answers, we created Somatica based on what we felt was missing out there. We started a never-ending journey of asking all of our questions about sex and relationships and eventually gathering those of our clients so we could confront the negative patterns that plagued our own and our client’s intimate lives. By allowing ourselves to ask these questions and to be real with ourselves and our clients we continue to find a way to come out the other side intact and with more love and empathy for ourselves and others.

Show us your Dark Side
The Somatica training is unique from other educational experiences in that we ask you bring all of yourself – the good, the bad, the ugly, the weird, the vulnerable etc. We want you to bring your issues to light, work on transforming them and use them to help others. Your unique gift is based on all of your experiences and these will make you an even better practitioner.Your personal story, no matter how hard, can be the reason you can have a lucrative, fulfilling career where you get to live your authentic life through your work. We want you here because of, not in spite of, all of your hardships, and deep, dark and twisty feelings. Having the strength, courage, and vulnerability to do this work is not possible if you gloss over the surface of the jagged complexities and deep scars that make us who we are sexually and in relationships.

What is a Wounded Healer?
The concept of the wounded healer has become more accepted in psychology and other counseling fields because it acknowledges that nobody goes through being a human without experiencing major challenges of some form or another. However, many coaches feel they have more pressure to truly have all the answers and personify the success they are trying to help their clients achieve. For sex and relationship coaches this can mean pressure to have a long-term relationship, a purely pleasurable relationship to sex, or a jealousy-free polyamorous lifestyle. We want to invite you to let yourselves off the hook and know that the criteria for helping others is not your manifested perfection, but your presence, honesty, and capacity for empathy.

Perfection is a Disservice to Your Clients
We believe that presenting to clients as perfect is actually a disservice to everyone involved. If you uphold the myth that perfection is attainable, this will be their goal, setting you both up for failure and disappointment. This is where the Somatica approach is so radical and unique. We lead with our vulnerability and with our imperfection. In this way we help our clients accept themselves for who they are and this is where real, sustainable healing begins.

Somatica isn’t for Everyone
Somatica is for people who are brave enough to admit that they aren’t perfect. It is for those of you who can look at yourselves and see where you can still grow, and learn how to be gentle with yourself. We know that this isn’t the social standard, the social standard is to hide your faults and pretend you have it all together. In this training, we want to know all of you, and you must be willing to take the risk to fully and vulnerably show up with all parts of yourself!

We are all about sex and relationships over here which means we focus a lot on dating and coupledom. For your New Year’s Resolution this year we want to focus on YOU! First of all, we want to acknowledge that being human is intense. The very fact of self-awareness, that which sets us apart from the rest of the animal kingdom, means we can’t seem to just go about our business, unselfconsciously living in the present moment. Instead, we rehash the past, worry about the future, and obsess over our many quirky obsessions. This New Years, we want to share our secrets to having more ease and pleasure in our lives so you can be more present have more ease and pleasure too! We teach all of them in our Somatica Core Training – so feel free to join us for our next Free Intro and make your New Year’s Resolutions come true!!!

Our Top 5 Secrets

Connect to Your Body: Being more deeply connected with your bodies is a huge resource to keep you feeling a sense of ease and pleasure. It turns out that sensations only exist in the present moment so, by feeling the sensations in your body and especially by focusing on the pleasurable ones, you can come more into the present moment and feel and enjoy your life. Try it right now. Take a deep breath and focus on a part of your body that feels good or a sensation in your body you like, like warmth or softness. Keep breathing and let the sensation build and be enhanced by your breath. You might notice that looking around the room with this focus on pleasure makes everything around you more bright and vivid.

Be Gentle on Yourself: Think of how much time you spend saying mean things to yourself about how you are screwing up. This voice creates so much tension and stress for you and it really doesn’t help with anything. It’s a vestige of past hurts that you carry with you now and you no longer need it. What you really need, and what we want you to cultivate is a counter-voice to that voice (which will hopefully replace it altogether one day). This fabulous, magnanimous counter-voice can be like a santa’s magic elf or a solstice unicorn (what, it’s the holidays, we can’t help it!) Every time you say something mean to yourself, this voice pops up and says the opposite. Your inner critic says “You’re so stupid, you never do this right,” your cheerful elf says, “You’re so smart, you do all sorts of things right all the time!” Your mean, little voice says, “You don’t need anyone, anyway, so screw them,” and your confident unicorn says, “Of course you need people, everyone does, and it’s ok to express your needs.” It’s always good to remember you are doing your best, celebrate your accomplishments, and forgive yourself for mistakes.

Attend to Your Sensitivities: We have noticed that the more we try to power through and get over things instead of attending to our sensitivities, the more our lives are full of irritations and explosions. If you spend a lot of time telling yourself you should be over things by now, you shouldn’t be so sensitive, or you can make it through one more day, it’s time to try something much more pleasant and efficient. You might think that attending to your sensitivities is wasting time, but you really waste time having to clean up all of the tensions and misunderstandings that come from not attending to your feelings. The more you honor, attend to, and communicate your sensitivities in non-blaming ways, the more time you feel relaxed, safe, and peaceful.

Employ Your Tools: If you are like us, you have gathered many tools over your life that you know it would be helpful to use, but you don’t. The reason most people don’t use the tools they’ve gathered is that it is very difficult to make new habits. When you first start, it is like slogging through a thick swamp. Everything in your body wants to take the same old familiar path even though you know it won’t go well. Little changes go a long way. Let’s take active listening for example. Most of you have probably learned that it is really helpful to listen to what someone else is telling you and really make sure you’ve gotten it right by saying it back and making sure you’ve got it. That being said, how many times have you actually don’t this in the middle of a fight? Believe us, we get it, it took us years of employing the same old defensive, yucky strategies before we made the switch and, even now, we don’t do it perfectly, but we do it! And, you know what, it is amazing how much more quickly we resolve painful or challenging arguments. Think of some tools that you’ve learned that you really want to start using, focus on one at a time and see if you can make yourself a new, yummier habit!

Learn About and Embrace Your Turn-Ons: If you’ve spent your life not knowing what really gives you pleasure physically or what turns you on psychologically, now is the time to get to know yourself in this realm. Sex and masturbation can create more ease and pleasure in so many ways. Sexual arousal and release are amazing tension-relievers. Sex lowers anxiety, it makes you feel seen and loved for who you are, it’s a natural hormone-balancer and anti-depressant, and it helps you feel more connected and committed to your partner. You can learn about your turn-ons by trying different kinds of masturbation, reading sexy stories and watching sexy movies, or letting your fantasies run wild. Notices what sensations you like the best and, no matter what it is that turns you on, see if you can bring loving acceptance to it. Your desires are an essential part of you and, whether or not you can get them met, they are beautiful!

Somewhere deep inside you have always known…Maybe you were the one who was always interested in talking about sex in high school, the one all of your friends came to when they had a question or wanted to share a juicy story…Maybe through your own personal growth and transformation around sex and relationships you have found a sense of ease, vulnerability and pleasure and you want to help others feel the same…Maybe you were hurt in the realm of sex and relationships, know what the journey to healing is like, and want to help guide others on their path…Maybe you already work in the realm of sex and relationships and want to do it with greater depth and intimacy. Whatever your voyage has been so far, the time is now to have your dream career!

In creating and training people in the Somatica Method, we have had the great pleasure of seeing so many of our students transform into successful guides in the realm of sex and relationship coaching. During the training you experience your own awakening, opening your eyes to the intricacies of emotional connection and unlocking the mysteries of sexual desire. Next, you gain tools to help people who are suffering around sex and relationships as well as those want to keep blossoming. Finally, you go out into the world with the support of an amazing community of supportive friends and colleagues to make a real, tangible difference in the lives of the people you touch. For us, there is nothing more exciting than seeing emails and facebook posts from our students like this one:

Biz has really picked up and I’ve had several sessions this week and last week. I don’t know about others, but my goodness… This work is literally turning me on! The level of intimacy and connection has been tremendous and when the client leaves, I have to take care of my personal business! Or ravage my husband. Needless to say, he’s very happy.

And another student who received feedback from one of her Somatica coaching clients:

Wanted to share this client’s experience after we did an inner child session yesterday… This stuff really works!!!

I knew this morning’s session was powerful but didn’t know just how powerful until driving away. Came home and lay down for about 3 hours. It was so still and so relaxing. The mind is still. And the body (my body, the young body) now knows more about the experience of relaxing and being held. I’ve “known” that I didn’t have that experience with my mom yet I didn’t get how being out of my body at such a young age and not feeling comfortable relaxing and being held set the stage for feeling alone and like I’ve had to do everything on my own and take care of everybody else. Thank you for being a safe professional, warm, and nonjudgmental person to allow this body to finally relax and experience the tender closeness. Powerful.

Can you imagine getting emails like this from your clients – knowing that you are a safe, caring and knowledgeable helper who can support people in being more connected to their bodies, more open to love and attachment, and more capable of expressing their needs and boundaries. If you feel it in your bones that this is your realm, the realm where your gifts can shine and you can spread love and sexiness then it is time. Don’t wait a minute longer!

If you want to experience your own personal growth around sex and help your clients to do so as well, it is essential to understand what makes you and the people around you tick when it comes to sex. We find that one of the best ways to think about what turns people on is the idea of a Hottest Sexual Movie – and we aren’t talking about what’s playing at a theater near you. Whether they are conscious of it or not, the majority of people walk through the world with one or more sexual “movies” circulating in their imagination. These Hottest Sexual Movies include images and ideas of how they want sex to look, what feelings they want to have, and what kind of experiences they want to play out in their sex lives. The characters may change, but (and this is very important!) the themes generally stay the same.

While most people have the ability to enjoy multiple forms of seduction, a person’s primary sexual movie brings them the most arousal and intensity. People often try and suppress their fantasies for fear that they will not be able to make them a reality or because they are ashamed of them. We encourage you to fully explore and flesh out your fantasies and to help your clients do this as well. A more exciting and fulfilling sex life is right around the corner for people who get to the bottom of their actual sexual needs and desires.

The process of finding and articulating your Hottest Sexual Movie has 3​ steps, you should go through them yourself before trying to take a client through them!

Step 1: Become a Self-Detective
While many people look for answers about what “should” turn them on from professionals, friends, the media, etc. becoming a self-detective and guiding others to do so is actually much more helpful. Before starting the self-detective process or helping a client to do so, begin with an attitude of curiosity and non-judgment. You or your clients may find that some of what turns people on is more accepted by society and other parts are less accepted. If any thoughts bring up shame or guilt, start by thinking of them as desires not actions. Remember and remind those you are helping that, as long as any enactment of them is between consenting adults, there is nothing to be ashamed of!

Once you are in a non-judgmental place, dig into your fantasies. Whether they are overtly sexual or not is unimportant, just start to pay attention to what you think when you start to drift off. What are your daydreams about you and anyone to whom you are attracted? What kinds of thoughts get you turned on?

Next, think back on the books and movies that have gotten you most aroused as well as the sexual experiences that you’ve had that were the biggest turn-on. They might be romantic, full of passion and intrigue, torture or other types of BDSM, or any sorts of themes from porn that you watch or erotic stories you read. Think of the scenes and the moments in those scenes that are the real zingers. You may want to do some writing on all of this to really pinpoint your turn-ons.

Step 2: Identify the Underlying Feeling You Want to Have
As you explore the data you have gathered try to identify the kinds of feelings that you are having or making others have and see which ones seem most relevant and exciting to you. For example, you might want to feel or make others feel powerful, taken, degraded, surprised, in danger, cared for, precious, teased, indulgent, loved, denied, adored, abused, seen, desired, powerless, known, punished accepted, etc.

If you fantasize about sex in public places, this might be a fantasy of being so desirable your partner would have sex with you anywhere. It also might be a fantasy of wanting to be seen (exhibitionism) or of being in danger (of being caught). If your fantasy is of your partner surprising you with a five-course dinner at your favorite, fancy restaurant, it might be a fantasy of being cared for (they planned it) or known (they knew it was your favorite restaurant), or it could be a fantasy of indulgence (five-course and fancy) or of surprise. Make a list of the feeling or feelings that seem to be most linked to your arousal.

Step 3: Draft your Hottest Sexual Movie
It is one thing to passively fantasize, watch, read or allow others to do their best to give you what you want, but we want you to take it one step further and help your clients do the same. With everything you now know about what turns you on, write your own scene (or, even better, many different scenes), that will invoke these feelings in you. While you might not want to act on everything you find that turns you on, all of it can be incorporated into our sex life in one way or another. See what you actually want to experience, what you want to share in bed with your partner (for example, what you’d like to say to them or have them say to you) and what you want to keep in your back pocket to fantasize about here and there during your sexual experiences to give you that extra arousal bump. Yes, we believe it is ok to have your own fantasies running in your mind during sex with your partner (hmmmm, maybe we need to write a blog on this!).

Think about how you want your partner to look at you, talk to you, touch you and how you want to look at them, talk to them and touch them in order to get some of those feelings you so desire. Imagine how you would like your movie to start, what are some experiences that you’d like for the middle part of your movie. How does your movie end and what do you want from your partner once sex is over? Take some times to write out some hot scenarios!

For a more in-depth exploration of your cinema worthy sexual fantasies check out our recent book where we dedicate several chapters to walking you through this process. Also, keep following this series where we will share what we have seen are the most prevalent sexual movie genres and what they say about your own and your clients desires. Finally, we will give you some pointers on how to communicate with your partner and help couples through a hottest sexual movie talk!

Our last blog introduced how finding your “Hottest Sexual Movie” is a crucial element of exploring your own desire and inviting others to do the same. Whether you need to hone in on your movie of choice or facilitate this conversation with others, we want to share the most common sexual movie genre’s we have heard clients describe. This will give you a sense of how to start the journey with yourself and guide the conversation with clients.

It may seem cliche, but we have to start with romance. As women we were fed romantic movies throughout our entire lives, so it should not be a shock that many women, and a good portion of men, find themselves craving romance in action. Even our female clients who have passionate and/or dominant as their primary fantasies often want some kind of romance in the mix. Likewise, many men find that romantic scenarios play into their fantasy life. Unless you are watching arthouse european films, romantic flicks rarely include any graphic erotic scenes. It may take some creativity and fantasizing to fully realize how romance translates into a more erotic interaction.

In Somatica we focus on identifying core desires and, at it’s core, the romance movie is about being deeply loved and cared for by someone who you have a special connection with that is not easily explained. Some folks are embarrassed to admit that they are seeking a soul mate connection, and we know that certain aspects of this fantasy are unrealistic. At the same time, there is no use in repressing your romantic desires, because they likely will not go away. By allowing romance to be a fantasy, we give ourselves and our clients permission to experience the pleasure of playing out the romantic movie in the moment instead of focusing on the disappointment of it not being forever. In this way, you can still experience the longing and pleasure of romance, which is about holding each other as eternally precious and uniquely important. We want to empower you and your future clients to embrace the desire to feel swept up in a meaningful and all-consuming connection.

Four essential elements define each movie – energy, touch, words and gestures.

Romantic Energy: When we talk about feeling something in our hearts this is often romantic energy, but it can also engage us all over. It is often what people are talking about when they refer to the feeling of falling in love.

Romantic Touch: The most romantic touch is an exercise restraint. Light caresses awaken the nerve endings and make the body feel alive. Romantic touch can be a great way start to an encounter, even if you move away from romance later on.

Romantic Words: Romantic language ranges from expressing a partner’s beauty or preciousness to musing about a fulfillment of dreams and eternal connections. Think “I’ve ever seen anyone as stunning” or “You are the man of my dreams.” To the non-romantic ear these may sound insincere or over the top but for others these kinds of declarations are exactly what they long to hear. Check in with yourself and see how these words feel for you.

Romantic Gestures: You can bring romance into all elements of life, not just the bedroom. Romantic gestures include sending letters, cards, emails, or texts with romantic messages and giving classic gifts like flowers, a tie, chocolate, or a ring. Some romantic gestures can be a way to show that you pay attention by commemorating special days like birthdays, anniversaries or better yet, first times (like the first day you kissed or the first time you met). Booking a reservation at their favorite restaurant, going dancing, or having a moonlight picnic can all be ways to cultivate romance through action. What these gestures express is that you are on your partner’s’ mind no matter what else is happening in life.

A Romantic Fantasy: In Our Client’s Words
We could make endless lists giving examples of romantic energy, touch, words, and gestures, but often our clients say it best when they share their ultimate fantasies. We want to offer you one client’s description of her romantic Hottest Sexual Movie that was so beautiful it made us cry:

We both get dressed up – you’re in some tight jeans that show the shape of your ass and that black coat I bought you, and I’m in an elegant dress. We go out to a restaurant together and you open and close the car door and the restaurant door for me. While we’re at the restaurant, we touch each other across the table and you tell me how beautiful I look to you. When we leave, you put on my coat for me. At home you light some candles, turn on some of that music that has no lyrics, and invite me to dance. We start to sway together as you look into my eyes. You lean in and touch your lips to mine, barely kissing me, and then you whisper in my ear how much you love me. You move behind me and hold me close around the waist. Still dancing and swaying, I can feel your breath as you gently kiss my neck and ear. You unzip my dress and slowly take it off of me, caressing my body as it falls to the floor. You’re surprised at my lacy white bra and underwear and you admire my body…..
Anyways…You get the picture. We will leave the rest to your imagination as we continue to guide you in discovering your own hottest sexual movie and helping your clients do the same
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Before you sign on and decide you are definitely a romantic and heart, stay tuned for the other popular genres that might ignite your fantasy life. Next up, find out about Passionate Fantasies…and if you want to hear more about how using Hottest Sexual Movies can help individuals and couples express their desires, check out what we offer in our Somatica Core Training!

While Dominant/Submissive fantasies are still pretty marginalized in mainstream circles and representations, they are slowly becoming more accepted and less stigmatized. Still, people who have dominant/submissive fantasies often feel like they can’t share them for fear of being judged or rejected which can lead to negative relationship patterns and a lack of sex drive. Maybe you have already thoroughly explored your BDSM/Kink and power-related fantasies or maybe you have never felt safe enough to utter those desires. After seeing hundreds of clients, we can confirm that many people’s core sexual needs are about power in some way or another. As you begin to identify your “Hottest Sexual Movie” and find that it does have something to do with power, it is important to consider what side of the power dynamic excites you. This will help you engage in your own sex life, and with clients, with more empathy and presence. You may want to feel like you have complete power, feel powerless, or play around on both sides.

Many submissives desire to feel restrained or contained in some way that makes them feel safe. This can be achieved many ways. You may want to feel like you don’t have to take any responsibility, as if it is all just happening to you. You also may want to feel punished or coerced. If you are dominant, you may want to feel powerful and in command. You may like the feeling of coercing your partner to do something and then having them realize they like it. You may want to be judgmental, scolding, or punishing. You may find that at times you like to be dominant and at other times you like to be submissive. This is commonly referred to as being a “switch” and the act as “switching.”

Achieving the right balance of communication and play to make dominance and submission pleasurable is not simple. Even when someone states they want to be dominated, they may remain a bit ambivalent. Whenever you are playing with power differences, it is important to be aware that this kind of play can provoke strong emotions. Not everyone is ready to play with dominance, and some need to feel a romantic or passionate connection before they are willing to explore it. Some people like light dominance but nothing heavy, and some never want to play this way.

Many women have been told that they can’t be both feminist and act on their submissive desires, which is such a misunderstanding of what women deserve which is choices about how we want to experience our bodies. People often fear that a dominant/submissive power dynamic might in the bedroom will not be contained to that space. The truth is there are power differences in relationships, and dominance and submission can be one way to openly explore these differences. This is why we also recommend switching roles and seeing what it feels like for each of you to be on the other side of the equation. If you are working with clients who want to explore these power dynamics in session make sure that those instances have clear boundaries and are differentiated from the client/practitioner relationship. This way you can still hold the space necessary for their growth while offering them a place to explore without judgment.

Dominant women and submissive men remain less common, and even less commonly articulated in our society, in part, because we are all impacted by heterosexual gender roles growing up. This added level of marginalization can cause challenges for some submissive men and dominant women, as they may feel ashamed of being in the minority or judge of their partner for falling outside gender norms. Another challenge is when two dominants or two submissives get together. In the extremes, you can end up in deadlocked power struggles, or with no one taking any initiative at all (Read: Starfish party).

This is why it is so important to bring an open, non-judgmental attitude to your Hottest Sexual Movie conversations. There is nothing either of you can do to change your partner’s desires. You can, however, accept them without feeling responsible for fulfilling them. Guiding clients in these conversations can be a challenge and it is important to constantly remind them that their partner’s desire is not an insult to them.
Even when dominant/submissive desires align, we caution clients that they need to have realistic expectations. it is very rare to get the dominant/submissive movie right the first time. Both partners need to be prepared to have a number of “takes” in order to find out what words and actions turn the two of you on the most. With regard to words, remember that tone and attitude are important, not just the words themselves. If your partner tells you something turns them on (for example, “I really like it when you tell me to get on my knees and then you grab my hair”), ask what turns them on about it. When you begin to get some insight into why particular actions are a turn-on, you can add others that are similar thematically.

They may say, for example, “I like it because I feel like you’re in control of the experience and I have to do exactly what you say.” On the other hand, they might say, “I like it because it feels like you’re using me for your pleasure.” These are two very different themes that would lead to different kinds of sexual experiences. The first could include pleasing both parties, while the second would mean that, the dominant would focus more on taking their own pleasure and if they focus too much on their partner’s pleasure, they might get turned off. We also tell clients to avoid bringing in “real life” conflicts (even as innocuous as chores or charged as infidelity) unless you have some practice. These can break the scene and also lead to continued conflict instead of easing it.

Once people find some words, gestures, and experiences that turn them on, we still make sure they continue to communicate their needs and desires and give feedback. This will add variety and keep explorations fresh and interesting. After all, there are only so many times a teacher can punish an unruly student before some creativity is in order.

Using the Somatica Method we have seen many of our students and clients integrate Dominant/Submissive role play into their relationships and practices in ways that are safe, exciting, and dynamic. Find out more about what you will learn in the Somatica Core Training here!

We take growth very seriously and, at the same time, growth does not have to be heavy. It is possible to create a fun, free and playful environment where a person can bloom into who they were always meant to be. As an experiential sex and relationship coach, one of the most wonderful ways to create this with your clients and bring out their best selves is to flirt with them. At Somatica, we believe that people can best learn how to be connected and true to themselves in an authentic relationship and flirting is a great way to make the invitation for your clients to enter into that learning relationship with you. Flirting let’s your client know that you are open to connection with them and that the idea of that connection gives you pleasure.

To be sure, this is not about faking it, so it is important to find your authentic flirtatious self. Since we live in a very serious culture, where play and pleasure are thought of as trivial as opposed to essential human needs, it can be hard to find this flirtatious energy and even harder to bring out wholeheartedly. In Somatica, part of the training is getting in touch with this energy inside of you and learning how to lovingly share it. To begin to cultivate your flirting energy start with these 4 attitudes:

1. You are Always a Sexual Being – Part of the trivialization of sex and pleasure teaches us that we are only sexual when we are having sex, yet our sexuality is a part of us in every moment of our lives. Because men feel like they have excessive desire and women are slut-shamed, many women and men shut down their sexuality everywhere but during masturbation or sex with a partner. Shutting down your sexuality will likely have dire consequences for your long-term sexual connections, and it also robs you of the inspiration and power your erotic energy can provide in every moment. Attempts to shut your sexuality down can also lead to depression and/or creepiness (where repressed sexuality leaks out because of lack of self-awareness or self-acceptance). As you are walking around in your day-to-day life, see what it feels like to be on the street or in your car or at work, and just acknowledge to yourself “I am a sexual being right now.” See how that changes your demeanor, your energy, and your sense of self. No matter where you are you can feel your sexual energy and feel your own enjoyment of it. If you are in a place where there are receptive people (who are not your employees), you can share this energy with a flirt.

2. It is ok to Enjoy Yourself – Because we have all grown up in a society that has a work ethic as opposed to an ethic of pleasure, you may feel like it is not ok to enjoy yourself. Also, helping professions can often be problem-focused, meaning that we tend to look for negative “issues” to “work on”. In face, many of our clients come into session and say, “I tried to think of what to work on today, but I couldn’t think of any problems.” When they have worked with me us a while, they are more likely to say, “I’m ready to have fun today!” Sometimes, we enjoy ourselves so much in our sessions, our clients actually tease us saying, “I can’t believe you get paid for this.” This statement alone reveals how much our society believes in the idea that work that you get paid for is not supposed to also give you a great deal of joy and pleasure. When you embrace the idea that your work can be fun and playful and that more growth will actually happen when you and your client don’t take things so seriously (that, in fact, part of growth is not taking things so seriously), then you are ready to bring in flirting as a coaching modality.

3. Flirting is Just Flirting. When we talk about flirting as a coaching modality, there are always students who say, “But what if I am not attracted to the client?” We think this is a fundamental misunderstanding of what it means to flirt. To us, flirting means sharing playful, sexual energy to increase the enjoyment of an interaction with someone. It might lead to something more than flirting, it might not. It can be extremely freeing to realize that flirting does not require anything more than flirting.*

4. There is Something Beautiful and Enjoyable in Everyone. Once you have let yourself experience the freedom of flirting for the sake of flirting and interpersonal enjoyment, you are ready to sit in front of your client and take them in. When your client is in front of you, take a moment to really see the person who you are sitting across from and ask yourself what you find attractive, inviting, beautiful, or compelling about them. You might find there is something about their physicality, like the shape of their lips or their hands or their smile. You might like the sound of their voice, or the heartiness of their laugh. You might like the way they hold their body or cross their legs when they sit across from you. You might find their intelligence sexy or their kindness or even their nervousness or shyness. Whatever it is – something in their looks, personality, intellect, etc. – focus your attention towards that and use it as a bridge to bring your erotic energy and playfulness into connection with them. Most often we find that, as we flirt with our clients, their sexy sides start to show up and they become more attractive. It is also possible that flirting with them invites them to bring out a flirting style that does not appeal to us or is unlikely to appeal to anyone. This is when you want to help them better learn how to flirt with you so you can keep the energy going.

*If you are with a client with whom you are able to flirt but don’t feel a sense of attraction that would make you want to engage with them physically, it is your job as a practitioner to help them learn how to bring their erotic energy, touch, and words in ways that ignites your arousal and attraction.

Once you have cultivated some flirt-positive attitudes, the next step is to actually engage in flirting. This means not only knowing what flirting is, but finding your own flirting style. One fun way to look at flirting is to think of it as walking around the world having your own sexy party – feeling the ways that colors, sunshine, majestic views or beautiful architecture make you feel aroused – and then, when you engage with another human being, simply inviting them to join that party. It’s like saying, “Hey, over here, there’s a sexy party going on, wanna share in it?” The languages you use to make the invitation might be energetic, bodily or verbal. An energetic flirt can start with feeling your connection with your own sexual desire and then letting it exude out of your eyes, your heart and your pelvis. An embodied flirt might be a wiggle of your shoulders, a naughty smile or a wink and a verbal flirt could be a slight change in tone when you say, “mmmmm, it does feel a little warm in here, doesn’t it?”

Engaging in joyful, sexy, flirtatious interactions with your clients not only helps them feel more open and accepted, it also helps them clarify how they want their erotic and emotional connections so be. As we love to say: There are a thousand paths to enlightenment, might as well take the one that’s more pleasurable. If you want to learn how to make your life and work more flirtatious, come to a Somatic Intro Day or check out the Somatica Core Training.