For most of us, being confident in bed isn’t just something we’re born with. Instead, building sexual confidence takes time and practice. It’s a skill to be developed just like any other.
In this stream, sex educator Q Wilson discusses how to build sexual confidence using a couple valuable techniques.
1. Look back on past experiences.
The first thing Q suggests is to look back on past experiences where you felt most confident, and ask yourself what helped make you feel that way. Take those positive feelings into your next relationship and/or sexual experience and build on them.
2. Know what gives you pleasure.
This can start with masturbating — a great way to explore what turns you on and to gain more body confidence. “Learning to give yourself pleasure or receiving pleasure are really really awesome ways to start to feel more solidly in our own bodies and being very present,” says Q. If you’ve been with the same partner(s) for a period of time, but feel insecurities about your body or your attractiveness, remind yourself that you’ve already met their standards.
“Stop worrying about it and enjoy the moment, enjoy this opportunity to connect with another person,” says Q.
3. Learn to communicate.
Communicate with your partner by setting your own boundaries, learning their boundaries and what’s on and off the table for today. Having these kinds of conversations can feel awkward (as your sex education likely didn’t include communciation or consent skills), but it’s something you can practice. The more you communicate, the better you will be at asking for the pleasure you want and finding out what your partner wants.
4. Focus on pleasure, not performance.
So much of our performance anxiety comes from pressure to meet unrealistic expectations, often set by porn that tells us every session must end in orgasm. “Don't focus on performance, focus on feeling good, and making each other feel good,” says Q. We don’t need connections to be about sex all the time, and we don’t need sex to be about an orgasm.
There’s no one-size-fit-all definition of sex, gender, sexuality — any of this stuff. So might as well pave your own way by exploring yourself, what feels best, what brings you joy and pleasure, and then communicating those things to your partner(s). Once you can start communicating what you want your path to look like, the more confidently you can walk it.