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Emotional Connection: How to Rekindle Your Sex Life

Emotional Connection: How to Rekindle Your Sex Life

 

 

What is the one thing we want and need most in relationships? If you said sex…you’re wrong.

 

According to Ph.D Sue Johnson, inventor of Emotionally Focused therapy, secure couples only attribute 15-20% of their happiness to pleasing sex. So for happy relationships, sex is a small but important part of a tasty and satisfying pie. But for those in unhappy relationships, a full 50-70% of their misery is attributed to sexual dissatisfaction. Where is the disconnect?

 

Since sex is important to feeling close, unsatisfied partners come to the faulty assumption that sex is the culprit. If they had more or better sex, then the relationship would also be better, so they reason. But what comes first- the relationship, or sex?

 

Recent studies have shown that people who have the highest sexual satisfaction and the most sex are married couples. This statistic defeats the commonly held notion that intimacy for couples must decrease with time, and that novel sexual encounters are the most satisfying.

 

 

The importance of emotional connection

 

In the context of a committed relationship, it is not novelty that determines satisfaction, but emotional connection.

 

The deeper you are able to connect with your partner emotionally, the more dynamic your sexual experience will be. The greater your emotional connection is with your partner, the more in tune you will be with their physical and sexual needs as well.  Emotional connection requires the most sensitivity of any of our needs, so it is the most important connection to practice.

 

Emotional connection often fades in couples because it requires so much attention, and our lifestyles leave little room for it. Through our hectic work schedules and lives, we barely have enough time for our thoughts, let alone the feelings of our partners.

 

When we lose sensitivity to the emotional needs of our partners and ourselves, we tend to shut down physically and sexually also. Since emotions are the least known connection and the hardest to observe, we tend to place too much importance on sexuality and physicality in our problems.

 

For many people, decreased emotional connection is the root cause of their sexual problems. Sexual dissatisfaction is the canary in the coalmine, so to speak, and never a cause of relationship problems itself.

 

If you want to experience a deeper and richer sex life, try to re-establish a meaningful emotional connection with your partner.

 

 

What are emotions?

 

Because male culture has been so quick to dismiss feelings, many of us have entered into relationships with an emotional handicap that prevents deeper intimacy.

 

Because of an emotional disconnect, many women lose hope in themselves and their partners when all they need is an emotional breakthrough.

 

Males have come to take pride in how unaffected they are, and how they can overcome their emotions. Not crying has been viewed as a masculine trait, and not speaking about feelings has become standard for guys. But we all have emotions, even the toughest and hardest among us, and the more we repress them, the less able we are to connect with our partners and ourselves.

 

Emotion stems from the Latin root emovere, which means to move through or out. Emotions are what move you. Repressing emotions inhibits the flow of connection through you and out to other people.

 

If you are in tune with your feelings, you can choose the direction you are moved for a positive effect. If you have lost touch with your feelings, you can fall into negative patterns of ignoring your needs and reacting harshly.

 

 

Ignoring emotions and responding negatively

 

 

Take this example for instance. A man’s wife turns away from him as he attempts to kiss her before heading to work. Without sensitivity to his needs and feelings, he may experience anger and attack his partner or shut down completely to protect himself from hurt. That would be a negative response to feeling hurt, or scared that he would lose connection with his spouse.

 

Needing to be connected to your loved one is what drives the majority of feelings in a relationship, so it’s important to observe our feelings and see what needs they lead to. Rarely if ever is that need to attack someone or make them feel bad for what they do.

 

 

Connecting to emotions and responding positively

 

 

A man who is in touch with his emotions is a man who realizes their importance. Without sharing our emotions vulnerably in a relationship, there can be no meaningful connection. Each time you reveal your emotions and the needs behind them, you invite your partner to connect and to grow with you.

 

So for the man in our example, the emotionally attuned response would look something more like this:

 

“Honey, I feel hurt when you turn away from my kiss because I need to feel connected to you.”

 

Or,

 

“Babe, I feel hopeless when you turn away from my kiss because your kisses help me feel close to you. What are your needs right now?”

 

Instead of perceiving him as a pushy and aggressive guy, the wife will see his soft emotions and his desire to connect with her.

 

There are any numbers of positive emotional responses, but they all share commonalities. Positive emotional connections are centered around feelings, needs and requests. They let your partner know what is going inside of you and why, and it also gives insight into what they can do to increase connection with you.

 

 

The importance of empathy and vulnerability

 

 

It’s easier to respond positively to your emotions when you empathize with your partner. Empathizing is looking for the interests, needs and feelings behind your partner’s actions to understand them better.

 

For a man who looks to his wife with empathy, he will not automatically assume she is a bad guy for not going along with his bid for affection. A man who practices empathy will look deeper into the needs and feelings of his partner to see her as a human with needs.

 

In the first example, the man turns away from his own needs and feelings in order to protect himself. He has judged her as someone who hurts him. But in doing that, he is ignoring the needs of his partner as well and preventing a meaningful emotional connection; he is invulnerable.

 

Paradoxically, invulnerability is what hurts us the most, but it is always an attempt to protect our needs. So when your partner is showing invulnerability, know that they are hurting and needing to be close with you.

 

The man in the second example looks to his wife with empathy while being vulnerable about his feelings and needs. In doing so, he opens the door for greater connection and intimacy with his wife.  His emotions “move through” him and towards his wife for a deep connection.

 

Maybe she was preoccupied with thoughts of her sick mother. Maybe she hadn’t healed from an emotional wound he didn’t even know had occurred. If you don’t stop to express your feelings and needs, you’ll never understand more about your partner’s.

 

The invulnerable man’s response will lead to more distance and lowered expectations for connection, which becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. Think about how hard it would be to make a warm sexual connection when a relationship is defined by cycles of disconnect.

 

The vulnerable man displays emotional attentiveness and a desire to grow and understand. Not surprisingly, that man will be the one to get his needs met and to understand the feelings and needs behind his partners actions. Would it surprise you if the second couple went on the have a deeply passionate lovemaking session not long after their connection? Or for their love-making to grow in meaning and satisfaction with each emotional connection?

 

 

 

Having sex is making love when you are fully connected emotionally with your partner. That connection provides security and another dimension in which to explore and appreciate each other freely and creatively.

 

When couples make a habit of being sensitive to their emotional needs, they develop an appreciation and respect for each other than can only occur through growing together; through work.

 

Imagine the security you can have with a partner when you can ride emotional waves together and have faith in each other’s ability to be more connected after the ride is over. It’s exhilarating and happy, and it’s a far cry from the emotional repression that keeps us from giving our deepest selves in sexual encounters.

 

The difference lies in the work couples put towards connecting.

 

Thomas Alva Edison is quoted as saying, “It’s good hard work that does it”, and that applies to relationships too. Connecting emotionally is work in that it requires effort, but it can be the most rewarding work of your life if you make it a practice. Since emotional connection is the most important part of a relationship, it is worth working for.

 

 

 

Back to Sex

 

 

In a secure relationship, excitement comes not from trying to resurrect the novel moments of infatuated passion, but from the risk involved in staying open in the moment-to-moment, here-and-now experience of physical and emotional connection. With this openness comes the sense that lovemaking is always a new adventure.”  Sue Johnson

 

Sex is a living and breathing thing that you create with your partner, and it requires good food to perform well and serve it’s purpose.  The emotional connections and exchanges you make with your partner end up being the food for this sexy beast.

 

The inputs required for the sexy beast are: vulnerability, emotional exchanges and connection with your spouse, security, confidence, playfulness, and hope. If you can create those inputs in your day-to-day life with your spouse, you’ll have done all you need to experience the highest levels of sexual satisfaction imaginable.

 

But after you’ve done the work to create sexual fuel, you’ll realize that the connection you make in the process is infinitely more important than the act of sex itself. With that revelation comes a new sense of sexual freedom because the pressure that once defined sex is now gone.

 

 

If you want to experience mind-blowing sex and intimate connection with your spouse, here are 5 things you can practice:

 

 

1-Empathize with your partner

 

Seeing your wife as a vulnerable person who is responding from emotions created by needs, she will be warm to your eyes no matter what words or tone of voices she uses. If you can see that she only wants to connect with you, as you do with her, then you create an even foundation for an emotional connection.

 

 

2-Express your feelings and needs, then request what you need.

 

If you don’t take the time to examine the feelings behind your reactions, you can’t possibly know what your needs are. And if you don’t know what your needs are, you will never get what you want. So connect with your emotions and see the needs that create them.

 

Once you know how you feel and what you need, you can guide your partner closer to you through vulnerability. When we don’t know our feelings and needs, we become scared and that is when we attack. When that happens, we create cycles that diminish connection and interrupt our sex lives.

 

So express yourself in ways that draw attention to your feelings and needs without criticizing or attacking your partner. Invite connection through your emotions.

 

“I feel ____ when this happens because I need ____ with you. Can you talk about how you are feeling?”  Attacking someone is a superficial way to show our feelings that exacerbate the tension we feel.

 

 

3- Practice forgiveness

 

Becoming acquainted with your feelings and needs will give you the opportunity to see how your partner has hurt you and how you have hurt them. Because our primary need in relationship is to be connected, the biggest wounds we harbor are those where we have felt abandoned, cut-off, and unimportant to our partners.

 

Being able to empathize with those hurts and understand the feelings and needs behind them will help you to heal old wounds and create a new level of vulnerability and intimacy with your partner.

 

When your partner opens up and expresses the wounds, let them know how you understand the way your actions made them feel; empathize. Once they know you are connected to their needs, forgiveness happens. When you forgive each other, you build a new level of trust and security that invites intimacy.

 

 

4- Practice non-sexual touching

 

Physical connection (touching) is another primary need in relationships. Touching is another way to show that we are cared for, and it opens the door for emotional connection.

Think of the last hug where you felt truly connected with another person. You can’t beat that feeling because the unspoken message is this: I’m here for you and I care.

 

If you’ve noticed a decline in sexual satisfaction, practice being present to your partner with hugs, handholding, foot rubs, making deep eye-contact, massages and other affectionate touches throughout the day. Get playful, wrestle, play grab-ass, and be spontaneous with your touch.

 

Practice “Push Hands” together. Push hands is part of the internal martial arts known as Tai Chi, where sensitivity and receptivity is built.  In push hands you focus on channeling energy to and from your partner in perfect harmony, and it can be highly erotic if you want it to be.

 

5- Take a break from sex

 

Dr. Sue Johnson recommends a 2-3 week sexual fast for couples who want to increase intimacy and connection. If sexual pressure is a cause of decreased connection, then making a mutual agreement to abstain from sex will release the pressure and invite connection.

 

If you choose a similar strategy, focus on spending time together and getting to know more about the ways you each like to be touched. You’ll be surprised at what you learn, and when you resume having sex, you’ll have heightened sensitivity to your partner’s physical and emotional needs.

 

 

6- Take a break from porn*

 

*Bonus tip! I like to surprise my audience.

 

Since sexual satisfaction and emotional connection are intrinsic, it’s important to practice emotional connection in all walks of life.

 

Pornography conditions men to view woman as separate from emotions, feelings and inner truth (and vise-versa). Porn use has been linked to erectile dysfunction, and has been proven to alter a man’s perception in ways that make his partner seem less attractive. This occurs through overstimulation of the senses and under-stimulation of innermost needs.

 

I don’t know about you guys, but I would never want to do anything that compromises the beauty I see in my wife. Women need to feel cherished to open up emotionally and share the gift of intimacy with their partners. Of all the couples and wives I’ve spoken with, every one of them felt hurt or betrayed by a husband’s porn usage.

 

 

 

If you want to experience a more profound emotional connection and more erotic sexual life with your partner, quit porn. When you feel the urge to watch it, try writing love letters to your spouse (or future spouse). Talk about how important their connection is with you and what you’re doing to relate better with him or her.

 

Pick up a book. Scientific studies have proven that reading literary fiction increases empathy*.

 

*http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24091705

 

Your ability to relate with your partner is contingent on you being able to relate with him or her on deeper emotional levels. Watching porn works against that goal and inhibits your ability to establish deep and meaningful emotional connection.

 

 

 

Conclusion

 

If you practice emotional bonding with your partner, you will increase every aspect of your relationship to include your sex life. Do you have any tips for building strong emotional and sexual connections? Please share them in the comment section below.

 

 

 

I Was Addicted to Porn

My Addiction to Pornography

Porn picture

My Addiction to Pornography

( Click to visit the page on Mind Body Green)

I’m 25 and I used to have a severe addiction to porn. I grew up in an Orthodox Catholic household where private parts weren’t even mentioned, let alone discussed. It wasn’t until my late teens that I stopped feeling like a criminal for saying words like “penis” or “vagina.”

The only thing I ever heard about sex was, “Don’t do it!” Sex simply was never discussed in my house, so I didn’t know the first thing about it. I discovered what sex was while reading Michael Crichton’s novel, ‘Jurassic World’ in the third grade, and even then it was talking about alligators. So, instead of developing a healthy sexual identity, I was taught to fear the very thing that drives our existence.

Rather than learning about responsible sexuality from the adults in my life, my first ideas about sex came from a horn-ball teenage cousin named Nick during a family vacation. He told me about how much fun porn was, how good it felt, and what I should do when I watched it. I was 12 years old, curious, and couldn’t wait to see more about the woman in my cousin’s magazines.

After that vacation I began a life of covert obsession with internet pornography. I started looking forward to my family leaving so that I could be alone on the computer. I came to care more about getting off to porn than playing with my friends or even reading, which was my first love. The feeling of pornography was so significant that I couldn’t imagine it not being important.

Within the first year I was devoting 5 hours a week to getting high off of porn. And when I didn’t have access to porn, I would focus my imagination on recreating the images in the movies. The eager and curious boy I was became less concerned about play and more about playboy. After my Dad found my porn stash, he quipped to my Mom, ” Is Dan preparing to be a gynecologist?”

After years of watching porn obsessively, my perception of women began to shift. I stopped caring about their innermost as my focus gravitated to their cup size and willingness to engage sexually. If a girl thought too much of herself to fool around with me, I didn’t have time for her. I thought if the women in the movies did everything I ever wanted them to without having to ask twice, what was the point of wasting time with real girls?

My subconscious thoughts began eating away my future. Every time I engaged in porn I was reinforcing thoughts like, “Take! Take! Look at the outside! She’s here to please you!”, which didn’t prepare me to respect women and to contribute. I didn’t realize that all of the energy I was putting into porn and casual sex was energy that I could have been investing in my future. I wasn’t even aware that I had a future because I was so focused on getting sexual fixes.

Needless to say, I didn’t have good relationships with women. I went from one relationship to the next, wondering why none of them had meaning.  When I watched porn I had unlimited access to the most beautiful women you could imagine, but I trained myself to become bored with their beauty in a matter of minutes. Not shockingly that same behavior manifested in real life, but instead of throwing away pixels, I threw away women with futures and feelings.

I had beautiful girlfriends that I would cheat on because I was too bored and afraid to commit to deeper meaning, but I played like I practiced. It wasn’t pretty, but I was okay with it because it was normal for male culture. One frightening aspect is that because of habituating myself to pornography, I battled erectile dysfunction at the tender age of 17, which is becoming increasingly common as males become trained with porn.

Because I hadn’t learned how to channel sexual desire into my dream life, I continued to dump that energy into outlets like porn and casual sex. Instead of learning more about the innermost parts of myself and the people I was with, I completely focused on the external. I let all thoughts of growing as a person and building a career fade while I was content to float between dead end jobs and relationships. As long as I could keep the pleasure flowing, nothing really mattered to me.

By the time I was 21, and after another major relationship had crashed and burned, I decided to stop doing everything that was holding me back; I couldn’t take the pain I was experiencing any longer. I quit porn cold turkey after a decade of daily use when I learned that many of the actresses are graduates from child sex slavery. I even quit casual sex because I didn’t want a child until I could be a dad I’d be proud of.

I observed that when I had sex without commitment, honesty, faith and trust, (which was every time) my relationships dissolved for a lack of intimacy. If sex was where my future children were to come from, I wanted to make sure I associated it with qualities that supported my children’s need for security, happiness and love.

But even though I quit my unhealthy habits, I hadn’t filled my life with positivity from the inside. Because I still hadn’t taken control of my thoughts, I hadn’t yet learned how to channel my sexual desire. Think about how boring it would be to go to a party and meet someone who described himself by who he wasn’t and what he didn’t do. Well, that joker was me!

When I quit porn and casual sex without healthy outlets for sexual desire, my energy stagnated. I lost my health, and even had trouble controlling my thoughts about sex. Instead of being open and vulnerable to sexuality, I had come to despise it for the pain I experienced, so, I repressed it. At that point I didn’t know that sexual desire could be the inspiration for my greatest achievements, so I did what a lot of people do and labeled it a bad guy. My mistake.

After so many months of repression, I realize that we humans wouldn’t be alive without sex, and that sex was in fact a good thing. (Novel idea, huh?) Then I started to take full responsibility for how I responded to my sexual desire. By coming across a Zig Ziglar motivational cd, I learned about how our lives are mostly controlled by thoughts we don’t know we have. After only a few weeks of practicing affirmations and meditation, I became conscious of the limiting beliefs that had kept me from achieving my best. When I learned to control my thoughts I became empowered to channel my energy wherever I desired, like my personal development, my career, and my future. Instead of looking for the right woman, I focused on being the right man.

For the first time in my life I began to make plans for the life I actually wanted.  I knew that empty relationships hadn’t brought me happiness, so I focused on creating a fulfilled and happy me to give towards a lasting relationship. That was the beginning of my plan, and from there I discovered so many secrets about relationships and intimacy that I couldn’t keep them for myself, so I began a writing career.

I endeavored to learn everything about my inner world so I could share deep intimacy with my future wife. I began a daily journal where I recorded my thoughts and feelings, and how my actions were contributing to my goals. When I established daily journaling, all of the patterns and habits that had evaded my awareness became as clear as the writing in front of me. Through consistent journaling I opened myself up to the most rapid growth I had ever known.

When I would see a pretty girl, I would think about how lucky I was to have the beautiful wife I had yet to meet. Instead of objectifying women, I was inspired to create value that would help her future husband get to know her innermost parts. Instead of thinking about what I couldn’t do with all of these gorgeous women, I thought about what I could do to bring out the man I wanted to give to my wife. I was so busy with the adventure of my life that I didn’t have a moment to think of what I wasn’t doing, like porn or casual sex. (** I kept valuable parts of my experiences in observing woman because men honestly don’t know that there is a respectful way to look at them)

I began writing articles and books on self-improvement. I achieved the highest level of fitness I ever had by stretching myself with new sports like rock climbing and beach volleyball. When I payed attention to my inner world, I discovered so many hopes, dreams and interests that I never knew I had. My whole life changed. After three years into my transformation I even built a coaching career to help others thrive in their relationships.

Suddenly my life had meaning. Everything I did had a purpose because my actions were connected to my dreams. Rather than hurting myself and others by blindly searching for pleasure, my holistic plans transformed the way I lived. I became a giver, and I took pride in the new ability I had to help others. I don’t take a single day for granted because having value to give is not easy; I had to struggle hard to make a man I was happy to share.

When I learned how to respond positively to my sexual desire, I began the adventure of a lifetime and haven’t regretted a day since. If you’ve struggled with sexual desire and have felt hopeless in relationships, think about how you can give back to the community through your talents and passions. Think about the type of person you’d like to be and the relationship you’d like to have. Take charge of your thoughts and put your desire towards the life of your dreams. Affirmations and daily journaling have been so invaluable to me that I recommend them to anybody.

What are some of the ways you have achieved personal fulfillment? How have you improved your relationships? I’m always learning, so I’d love to hear about your experience too– join the discussion in the comments section!

5 Tips for Massive Presence in Your Relationships

5 Tips for Massive Presence In Your Relationships

You’re not hearing what I’m saying. You don’t understand. That’s not what I meant. Why didn’t you do that thing I asked earlier? I feel like you don’t even hear what I’m saying. Are you even in your body?

These are things you won’t hear from anybody when you are present.

Presence is your gift to the world. You are you and you are here for a reason. Given our extraordinary capacity for thought and imagination, it’s common enough to not actually “be” in the spot that you are located. Did you see that drunken wasp with mismatched argyle socks fly past your face just then? That is because you either (A- weren’t present, or (B- weren’t tripping on LSD.

When present, you start to notice even more amazing things than aberrant wasps: you begin to notice feeling, emotion, intent, and needs. You begin to notice the gift of each moment.

To be present is to be in the moment. Present day depictions of presence might include yoga pants, people sitting in full lotus, gluten-free bread, and being alone on top of a mountain. If that isn’t your life, then don’t worry; you can still be present. Gluten-free is somewhat of a scam anyway, in my opinion.

I’m thinking about making the headband and flower a requirement for presence

What does presence mean for your world? I don’t own yoga pants, I can’t sit in full lotus, I’m intolerant of non-glutinous breads, and anytime I’m alone on a mountaintop I’m usually yodeling. My presence is different.

Anytime I’m engaging with people, I try to give them my undivided attention. If I’m sitting in a room on my laptop while someone passes by, I will break contact with the screen to make a human connection. A small hello, a smile, or perhaps the craziest ugly face I can muster will do, depending on the person.

A person doesn’t understand how much this little touch helps with relationships until you’ve encountered someone who refuses to break from technology to interact. It feels bad. It makes you feel unimportant and distant. I’ve been guilty of doing it, but I know how bad it feels to be on the other end, so I give my damnedest to be present to others when they’re around. If I’m busy and need time for serious work, I will remove myself from the presence of others so I can be fully immersed in my work. If I’m in a spot where I can’t be alone, I’ll let the people around me know that I’m in work flow and am not available to interact.

When it comes to your spouse or partner, this small step in mindfulness will speak volumes of how important their feelings are to you. “Your presence is a gift” might sound like something a genuine cheese-dick would say, but it’s the damned truth. People take notice when you gift yourself to them moment by moment. One word that comes to mind is charisma.

You don’t have to be the biggest cheese-dick in the room to display charisma, but you do have to be present to the thoughts and feelings of people you are with. I’ve seen demure people who were plain and reserved that had more charisma than the cheese-artists you’ll see at any given frat party. Simply being there, attuned to other’s feelings, and engaged is enough to tell anyone that you are valuable. Acting this way will let others know that you value them. In a relationship, presence is the most valuable currency you can exchange.

And so proceeds: 5 tips for massive presence in your relationships.

1-If you have to have your cell phone on you, keep it silent.

There is no single greater turnoff than a person having their head stuck up their digital ass when you want to connect with them. Your frenemies on social media can wait for you to comment on their Christopher Walken cat meme.

Tempting, but you’re present-ass is gonna have to wait

Your spouse, or friend, or whoever needs your attention now cannot wait. They need your human connection in this very moment. They need to know that you care, that you are aware of their feelings, that you want to be with them and that you love them. When your technology takes precedence, you are telling the person you are with the opposite of what they need to hear. You may think that isn’t the message being conveyed while dicking around on the phone, and it may not be your intent. But one thing is for sure: Actions speak louder than words.

Take this quote from Einstein-

“I fear the day that technology will surpasses our human interaction. We will have a generation of idiots.”

Can you see how freakishly accurate that statement was? Einstein was a smart man and he knew the importance of human connection. He could see the writing on the wall decades before pocket supercomputers were even imagined.

If you want to connect more deeply and meaningful with the people that you love in this moment, ditch your phone. Emails, status updates, Instatwitterbooktagram…that shit can wait. Your presence is needed now.

2. Schedule at least 15 minutes of alone time per day.

Alone time doesn’t require any yoga pants or full lotuses. The easiest way to make room for this is to keep your eyes closed when you first awake.

Unless you happen to wake up like this by default, in which case you’ll have to carve out 15 minutes somewhere else.

Use this time to get your shit together. If your shit isn’t together, then you’ll be distracted throughout the day trying to tie up loose ends. If you take 15 minutes to tie up the loose ends in your mind, your shit will be together. When your shit is together, you can focus on the moment as it unfolds through the day instead of the mess in your mind.

Clear your mind in the morning by setting your focus. What do I need to accomplish today? What didn’t I finish yesterday? What significance does cowboy Jesus riding a velociraptor hold for my life?

Chances are, this will accurately describe at least one of your dreams…Creepy

What is this feeling that I’m feeling? Why am I feeling this way? How can I change my thoughts to act appropriately on this feeling? How do I diffuse tension with the person who is acting like a flaming dickmonster to me? These are all good questions to ask so that you don’t have to be bothered by them throughout your day.

Another important aspect of your alone time is intention setting. What kind of human being do you want to be like today? Here are some examples from my personal file: I am fiercely independent. I am living my dream. I am attentive to others needs. I am fully present with everyone I meet today. I give myself permission to learn as much as I can and to grow in value to myself and to others. I give myself permission to be the difference maker in the lives of many others. I am humble enough to admit when I am wrong and confident enough to persist when I’m right.

This is a small sample you can elaborate on and personalize. Figuring out what you want to be is the biggest distraction of all time because when you can’t be yourself, there’s just too much to be. Setting your intentions and getting your shit together first thing in the morning will help you to be massively present all throughout the day.

3. Remind yourself of how present you are throughout the day.

If you feel yourself slipping away, pinch yourself, bitch-slap yourself if you have to, do whatever it takes to come back to the present moment. It’s easy to get wrapped in other’s bullshit drama. It’s easy to worry about loose ends you have no power to control in the present moment, but don’t let these things pull you away. You have things to do and people to please that can only be accomplished in the now.

Tattoo this meme on your forearm…It helps

If you remind yourself that you are present and in control of your thoughts in this moment, then your shit is automatically together. Pat yourself on the back, or toosh if you prefer, then tell yourself what a boss you are.

It may not seem like much, but it makes all the difference in the farking world. When you’re talking to your significant other and things get heated, you can either, (A-fly off the handle like a doucheball and lose the respect of your spouse along with your dignity. Or, (B-remind yourself to be present and to see where the other person is coming from without judgment. Heck, you might even muster the wherewithal to ask yourself what inside of you is responsible for how you feel toward your spouse.

This might not even seem related to sex, but I think everything is related to sex.
I guarantee your sheets will burn up if you can be massively present with your wife. Nothing is sexier than saying, “You are important to me” with your actions. Conversely, nothing will come off sleazier than saying “You’re important”, only to act incongruously. Check. Yo. Shit.

4. Plan your week with your spouse.

This one is related to your special 15 minutes of alone time, but scaled up and partnered. This is where you get “our shit” together. Figure out exactly what it is that you need to accomplish together so those niggling loose ends aren’t haunting you throughout the week.

What’s worse than nagging and bickering?

This thing from the Never Ending story is worse…Still haunts my dreams

When you make a dedicated plan and look ahead to solve problems, those loose ends disappear. Voila! Now you are both more present in the week and can spend time either relaxed or, in action and making shit happen. Nagging, bickering, bitching, complaining… those are all choices. They aren’t inevitabilities in relationships, like most assume.

They are choices that take you and your spouse out of the moment. This moment, things are good. This moment, you are a human being who is deserving of respect and patience, just like your partner. Any other bullshit that you bring into the equation is false and wholly not present. If you plan your week together with your spouse, you will be more present and available for intimacy. Bottom line.

5. Kick to the hills!

This is my Tennessee miner way of saying, “go outside”. I can’t help it, my Dad is a wannabe cowboy; the vernacular rubs off. Lonesome Dove, Louis L’amour, Michael Martin Murphy, all that crap. He even says “crick” for creek. (End personal tangent)

Go outside. Our electromagnetic system is intrinsic with that of the earth. The earth puts out a certain electromagnetic frequency, as does your body. Before the technology revolution, no one thought of this and it wasn’t an issue. People’s brains and hearts and emotions were more or less harmonized with the earth. Today we have no such luck.
Everywhere we go we are bombarded by EMFs that disturb the harmonizing frequency of 7.83 Hz, also known as the Schumann Resonance. Wifi and cell towers all pump out thousands of Hz that disrupt our connection to the earth and to the moment.

My last tip on being massively present is to get outside. Ground yourself. Be among the trees and river and wild things. Reconnect with the earth. Famous thinkers from Aristotle to Gandhi have sought respite in the outdoors for inspiration. You can only be inspired in the moment. If you need to unwind from a long workweek or stressful office situation, take your hunny buns (or sugar pie, or pumpkin bread, or whatever the hell your sweet names are) for a harmonizing walk in the wild. Go camping overnight. Find your presence in the place that presence was made; in nature.

I know you are expecting a sex-gue (portmanteau of sex and segue; clever, I know), so here it is: The ancient Irish held the act of sex so sacred that they refused to do it indoors. Good vibrations were invented in nature, so it only makes sense to take the big nasty to the great outdoors. Instead of shaking your sheets, why not try shaking the damn pinecones from the treetops? Just make sure there aren’t any voyeuristic bears around to get their jollies off.

 

Creepy Bear

Cah–reeepy

In conclusion

There are thousands of other ways to keep present to yourself and your loved ones. The tips I’ve mentioned are simply the most practical ones that don’t involve isolation in subterranean caves, self-flagellation, or other extreme measures. Thanks for having fun with me! Be good to yourself and to the ones you love. You are needed to be present, so don’t diminish your importance- you are a gift!

Relationships and Entanglements: Do You Know the Difference?

Every time I go out in the publics, I see many who claim to be in relationships. Every third FB notification is a relationship update. An insane amount of media coverage is devoted to Bennifers and Brangelinas of the day, but I honestly haven’t heard enough about relationships.

 

For how much talk I hear on relationships, I see few people actually relating with one another. Take the word relationship- Even saying it makes you feel like you’ve won something. That could be due the presence of “ship”, which also appears in championship, but I like to think it has more to do with the inherent value of relationships.

Championship

Maybe you don’t get as excited as I do about relationships

 

 

I mean think about it, relationships are the cornerstone of human civilization. They are the gateways to new life. They are the foundation of family, which is where intimacy is grown and where love is shared. Relationships are what give meaning to human existence. Relationships are human connection.

 

When I think of human connection, I think of a generous kind of thing, like a stranger giving you a warm smile when you’ve had the day from hell. Or a baby holding your finger with her whole hand. Or, an uplifting conversation between two old friends.

 

To me, uplifting is intrinsic with human connection, which is what relationships are all about; relationships are about intimacy. But in the sea of celebrity coverage and social media updates, I see very little intimacy.

 

I see many people using each other like drugs under the pretext of love, and throwing each other away when the feeling burns out. I see men and women coveting each other’s parts while remaining wholly ignorant of the infinite universe inside each one of us. I see grown people repeating the same mistakes with their partners, and when others suggest a better way, they cry, “Shamers!” I see people so hopelessly hooked on the high they receive from their lovers that they refuse to acknowledge the reality of their interactions.

 

In all of this I see nothing of relationships: I see entanglement.

 

Relationships are a harmonious sort of thing, almost like a dance. They are fluid, they are constantly changing and evolving, and they bring joy, prosperity and life. Relationships always create room for growth. Relationships are an intelligent thing born of the plans and goodwill of two happy people.

 

Entanglements are a different sort of beast. Entanglements are cumbersome things that impede growth. There isn’t enough room to grow in an entanglement because space is never planned into them. People fall into entanglements and call it love because they feel so strongly, but for lack of a better plan, they always fail. Entanglements are a callow sort of thing that prevent people from ever truly knowing themselves or their partners.

 

 

Presence and space: Making room to dance in relationships

 

 

One of the most important components in a relationship is space. You are a creator and are far more powerful than you may yet realize. Your person is not limited by your appendages and your skin, but by your thoughts. If a person has built faith and fulfillment into themselves through a deeply personal and committed relationship, then their field extends far past what the body can tell. This is presence. You can notice it when a powerful person walks into a room- the whole room shifts and is changed by their presence. Their power is not contained in their bodies, and everyone knows it.

 

Those who are unfulfilled and who haven’t developed a strong relationship with themselves have yet to develop a presence, and so they associate power with the body. An unfulfilled person will seek their power in another person’s body in search of fulfillment. There is no space to grow, no thought of creating something better, no room for dancing, but only desire to fill an unmet need.

 

I know this process intimately because I had no fulfillment in self and my life was littered with entanglements. Instead of planning for growth and happiness, I dove blindfolded into relationships in a frenzied lust for fulfillment. I considered myself a hopeless romantic, and that is how I rationalized my behavior. But looking back, I see a clearer picture. I see a scared little boy who was frightened of the responsibility to be happy. I see a frightened lad who put faith in everyone but himself.

 

For all of our romantic follies, there would never be a question about what to do if our feelings weren’t so convincing.

 

Have you ever been in a relationship where you felt absolutely certain that it was “the one”, only to have it dissolve in a matter of months? Welcome to the club. Feelings are so strong that they can make facts seem irrelevant. Have you continued to date a toxic person even though you fully understood they were no good for you?

 

I was entangled with the same woman for a period of 5 years. We kept coming back to each other even though the facts of our relationship were neon-warning signs. We displayed obvious patterns of cheating, emotional abuse, unhappiness and dissatisfaction, but what did that matter? We smothered each other with for a lack of faith in ourselves and left no room for a relationship or growth. Classic entanglement.

 

I cannot speak for her, but I will state my inner truth. I settled for those pitiful feelings because I had no faith in a better way. I didn’t believe that I deserved any better and I didn’t believe that I could achieve any better. I kept coming back to her because I was not supplying the thing I needed most for myself: inner fulfillment.

 

The irony of that inner need is that people generally look to fulfill it through external sources. Self love today is like being thirsty. Instead of going to the well and taking a drink, people hop in the goddamned shower. Then they curse God for their parched throats.

 

In effect, I made my partners God instead of acknowledging and relating with the God in me. I had no presence, and because I had no presence I had no gift to give. Because I had no gift to give I made no room to grow, and because my entanglements had no room to grow, they always failed.

 

Can you relate with any of this? I would be astonished if you couldn’t, because my story is the story of our generation. My entanglements fully embodied the spirit of our age: Do what makes you feel good, no matter what. I did what made me feel good, and my life fell into ruins.

 

The only reason I changed is because my situation was drastic- I lost my health, happiness and sense of self. I put all of my power in others and had given away every shred of myself to the abyss. I had a choice: Find a better way or die.

 

I’m alive and kicking’, so I’d like to think I found a better way. Either that, or I’m a ghostwriter…Ba-dummm—chhhhh.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Relationship or entanglement: Make an assessment  

Old Greg I’m Old Grehhhhhg!

 

If out of boredom, loneliness, despair or misery you’ve sought a relationship with others, you have been part of an entanglement. When you are focused of relieving your burden of self-fulfillment or happiness, you aren’t paying attention to the thing you are building with another person, but only of filling a need in yourself.

 

When people are focused on creating and generating, they build space into their partnerships for dancing and expansion. But as far as I have seen, the majority of people are not looking to create a thing as much as they are seeking to fill a primary unmet need. The hell of it is, the need for fulfillment can only be satisfied by you. Your innermost needs cannot be met by anyone other than you.

 

 

So how do you know if you are in a relationship or an entanglement? I’ve come up with a series of questions that can help you decide for yourself.

 

Your relationship is actually an entanglement if:

 

It brings stagnancy.

If it keeps you from knowing and expressing your inner truth.

If it weighs you down and restricts your freedom.

If it has you making excuses for your partner or yourself.

If it doesn’t allow room for growth.

If you don’t have more to give through it.

If it disconnects you from your family and community.

If it distracts you from the creativity you want to share with the world.

If it makes you question your self worth.

If you are insecure in it.

If you constantly blame your partner for the bad things in your life.

If your power to change your station in life has been diminished in any way.

If you felt strongly that they were the one, but it continues to worsen.

If you have established a pattern of breaking up and getting back together.

If you can’t seem to move on.

 

 

Strong feelings confuse what would otherwise be a simple matter. When people become physically involved prematurely, powerful chemical feelings make the truth seem either inconsequential or inconvenient. When you allow yourself to become hooked on another person’s high, their actions and your history are of minimal importance. “I just wouldn’t feel this way if it weren’t real.” Heard that before? Said that before?

 

 

Entanglements are hard to avoid because they have mostly killed relationships. Look to the movies, magazines and tv- Everyone is tumbling off of the proverbial cliff in hot pursuit of a feeling. “I just feel it so much more with this one” is common to hear from any dating person, along with equally entangled sentiments like, “She just makes me feel alive and new again.”

 

How do you avoid the mess and create a relationship that lasts? The operative word is: create. Simply enough, you must create the life you want.

 

 

You are a creator, not a consumer

 

 

Feelings can be so powerful that they make truth seem insubstantial. They are hard to avoid, and you don’t want to avoid all of them anyway. I just had to take a break from writing because I felt tired and hungry— it’s good to pay attention to your feelings to navigate life. The key is to respond positively to your feelings, rather than allow them to drive your life. If you aren’t in control of your responses to emotions, they will lead you off the cliff and you will ask, “Why me?”

 

One of the most important emotions that lead us to partner with others is inspiration. If you are a human, the beauty of other humans inspires you. Inspiration is a healthy and natural emotion—if we didn’t have it, we wouldn’t exist. So you have a healthy sex dive? Me too. Inspiration is intrinsic with sex drive.

 

If the drive of inspiration is natural and beautiful, then where does everything go to shit?  Your response to your emotions determines your fate. Master negotiator and founder of Harvard Program on Negotiation, William Ury, is quoted as saying, “There are no inherently negative emotions; only negative responses.”

 

Most people feel inspiration and are driven to engage physically with the one who inspires them. So instead of acting out of generosity and creativity, most partnerships are made through a mutual desire to fill a need.  Is it surprising that these entanglements don’t last?

 

I have another way to look at inspiration that will help you form lasting and fulfilling relationships. It comes by way of quote-

 

“Inspiration is the responsibility to create”  

 

Woah. This quote absolutely blew my mind. Instead of viewing inspiration as the desire to attain, see it as a responsibility to create; an obligation to make something, or to make something better. Inspiration is a reminder that we are responsible for the good things in life.

 

Inspiration is the responsibility to create. Responsibility is generally no longer associated with relationships, so it’s a tough word to hear in that context. What with abortions on demand, the idea of inevitable divorce, and us being slaves to our biology, responsibility and relationships almost appear to be mutually exclusive.

 

“Nah, my actions don’t have consequences—kill the baby.”  “I’m not responsible for my children’s happiness and security—sign the papers.”

 

The divorce of responsibility from relationships has not done anything to further our species or increase individual happiness. Instead of taking inspiration and saying, “What can I create? How can I give of myself and make life better?”, we’ve been conditioned to think, “How much can I get? What can I take?”

 

With that mindset, one can only settle for diminishing returns until there is nothing left to take. Instead of creating space to grow and dance, we’ve allowed ourselves to be driven by pleasure. We’ve become entangled and we’ve been tricked into calling it romance.

 

Just because you’re been entangled now doesn’t mean that you will be entangled next week, or even tomorrow. It is your choice to take the drive of inspiration and create with it, and that choice is available to you 24/7.

 

Experts want to talk about human needs to justify entanglement, but they seem to be forgetting the most important need of all: To create.

 

We are creators! You are a creator called a human being. If you aren’t satisfying your need to create, you will feel empty; you will desire to fill that void. I used to fill that void by seeking fulfillment in women’s bodies, through pornography, and through entanglements that took me further away from my inner truth. I placed the responsibility for inner fulfillment in sources external to myself. I did what I was programmed to do.

 

To unleash your potential in relationships, you must fully acknowledge your status as a creator. Creators create—they don’t just take. So, to respond positively to inspiration and to make space for a relationship, you must create. This seems radical because, after all, we’ve been labeled as consumers in a society of consumerism. How fucked up is that?

 

Fresh out of the gate you were lied to and labeled as something other than a human being. If you are like most people, you’ll have bought the lie; what the hell else were you supposed to do?  How is a little kid supposed to reject a lie that all the adults have bought?  You weren’t. You were supposed to have been raised by adults who could share the truth with you for your greatest good. But here you are. Will you reject the lie? Will you stand up for your happiness as a creator, or will you be consumed by consumerism?

 

Creators are not consumers. You are not a consumer. So take the inspiration that we all have and ask yourself, “What can I create with this? How can I give of myself through this?” Your life and your partnerships will change in a week.

 

But like anything else, practice makes perfect. Success is a habit. Get in the routine of being aware of your emotions and asking what you can do to respond positively to them. Come up with your own questions that help you respond creatively to the emotions you encounter. “What can I do to explore my inner truth through this feeling?” “How can I reveal my character?”

 

 

I’ll reiterate- You are a creator. You are not a consumer, but a creator-human being. If you want successful relationships, then embrace your role. You are not limited by anything other than your thoughts and beliefs, so don’t let anyone lie to you or diminish the importance of your innermost truth. There is no magpie loud enough that can drown out your inner wisdom.

 

Creating Business Relationships that Pay What You’re Worth

Business

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Recently featured as book of the month at betterclient.com!

Click ‘Add to Cart’, proceed to check out via Paypal, and the link to download will pop up directly.

Creating Business Relationships is a book that is designed to help freelancers achieve success by shifting their perception of business relationships. We choose our friends and spouses by how much they care about us, but when it comes to business, we falsely believe that money makes an abusive relationship acceptable. This book smashes that limiting idea and gives fresh takes on growing your freelance business.

My aim is to help freelancers establish business relationships that are on equal footing, with mutual interest in honesty, growth, endurance, appreciation and learning. In my new business model money is only a symbol of the real value that is exchanged in a relationship. With that single shift in perception and a plenitude of helpful tips, this book will help readers to achieve the money they desire and the relationships they never dreamed possible.

PS- This will be the funniest business book you’ve ever read. If you don’t agree, I’ll refund your full purchase. If you crap yourself from laughter, I’ll buy you a new pair of pants.  Better yet, I’ll just make the book inexpensive enough to afford a quality pair of depends adult diapers for the reading experience.

 

Click ‘Add to Cart‘, proceed to check out via Paypal, and the link to download will pop up directly. Thank you, and enjoy the read!   If you have any additional freelance needs, please view my ‘services’ page.  *If you are in financial hardship, contact me at daniel@dowlingwriter.com for case by case discounts.

Be sure to check out my book ‘Freeing Your Other Half’, which is now free for a limited time. Cheers to your relationships!

 

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The Porn Conversation You Need to be Part of

 

Porn. Porn. Poooooorn. Porny-Porn Porn Porn. Porn Porn Porn-a-rooo. Porn-ah-reee, porn-ah-rahhh, porn-oh-ronie. PORN.

 

There. Now we’ve shed some light on the scary porn monster and can talk about it honestly, like adults. It’s important to talk about it because porn impacts how men relate with women and vise versa. Porn shapes behaviors that determine your outcome in a relationship. Porn directly affects your capacity for intimacy.

 

Since I know me best, I’d like to start the conversation with my personal experiences. You’ll find you can relate.

 

 

My struggle with pornography

 

 

I was so steeped in pornography that I can’t recall many days without it. When my Dad found the porn stash on my iPod as a young man, he joked to my mom, “Is Dan preparing to be a gynecologist?”   I was immersed in pornography from a young age and was scared to even be in a relationship with a real woman.

 

When I broke that fear, I still viewed women pornographically. I couldn’t connect meaningfully as friends to maintain a significant relationship.  All of my relationships crumbled as I became bored with insanely gorgeous women, just as it happens when viewing pornography.

 

With pornography I conditioned myself to extract a maximum of pleasure from women in the shortest intervals, and with no thought of my personal input.  This conditioning was patently obvious in the dismal outcomes of my relationships.

 

Relationships by their nature are long lasting, built on commitment and teamwork. Relationships require individuals to give freely and selflessly of themselves to create something bigger and more meaningful.

 

Since I had practiced the opposite of that with porn, all of my relationships failed and I was left alone, confused, and resentful.  What was I doing wrong? Why couldn’t I just be happy with another person?  Why was I failing miserably at something that should come naturally?

 

I didn’t realize that I was subconsciously sabotaging myself with habitual porn usage. Every day I did porn was a day that I used women, regardless of their feelings, for ephemeral pleasure. I used them up and tossed them away with the click of a mouse. It is no surprise or coincidence that I displayed the same behaviors in my relationships with real women. How manly? How intelligent?

 

Quitting

 

I quit porn the day I learned that many of the actresses are graduates of child sex slavery.  No matter how difficult it was to quit cold turkey, I could not rationalize it any longer. I couldn’t enable pure evil through my shallow desire for pleasure.

 

After that point, I was forced to deepen my approach to living.  I had to use my brain and my heart together in order to plan for real happiness that helps relationships and communities grow. I forced myself to become a real man.

 

This was not an easy process. I battled repression until I learned to channel my sexual desire intelligently. Repression is the ugliest beast from hell.  I did it alone and without the support of a strong community of men— that was a mistake.  We were put on this earth for each other.  Relationships are our greatest assets.

 

I’ve been free of pornography without a second thought for 3 years.  I have since devoted my life to helping other men overcome pornography more intelligently, and to helping women vocalize their needs in relationships.

 

 

 

Now I have some questions for you. I’d like to engage you with facts about the porn industry and on how it adversely affects your relationships.

 

 

 

Men

 

Do you think porn is a healthy or good thing?

 

Would it surprise you that the foremost divorce attorneys estimate 500,000 divorces a year are attributed to pornography? (https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/porn-use-can-lead-to-divorce-study)  Why do you think that is?

 

When a person associates his or her sexual desire with a lifeless screen, they are training themselves to connect with something that can’t connect back.  It’s a dead end that kills potential for intimacy between two real people.

 

In a marriage, your husband or wife depends on you to be sensitive to their wants, needs and desires in order to experience intimacy. If you practice associating your desire with pixels on a screen, you will not be able to connect meaningfully with your partner in real life.

 

Human connection is a two way street that you pave with each thought and action.  When your thoughts and actions fall short of connecting with other humans, the road to other humans crumbles and fades; you are left with a dead end.

 

 

Think of your daughters

 

Would you be ok with your daughter degrading herself in a pornographic film?  What makes you thick it is respectful decent, or even permissible to watch other men’s daughters do the same?

 

As men, we are called to defend and protect women, not objectify and degrade them. Vir means “man in latin, so to be a man is to be virtuous. To be a man is to be without pornography.  When we play our role as men, we help other men and women find lasting success in their relationships while supporting our own.

 

When we act as men, wee pave the way for our own daughters to be treated with the respect, dignity and honor that they deserve.  When we behave as men, our daughters can look up to us, trust us, and use us as examples for their future husbands. When we objectify and degrade women in any way, we are consenting for our daughters to be treated similarly.

 

 

Women

 

Do you feel like its okay for your boyfriends and husbands to watch porn? If so, why?

 

Do you think that he will be attuned to and concerned about the porn actresses emotions, needs and desires when he watches porn?

 

When a man watches porn, he is using another women as a virtual slave to satisfy his desire for pleasure regardless of how she feels.  This is not how you want him to be practicing for a breathing woman in flesh—you!

 

You are subtle, complex, emotional, living and breathing being; you are distinct from a mass of pixels on a screen. You command a level of intimacy and attentiveness that men who abuse porn are hopeless to supply.

 

In fact, most women who act in these films have to force themselves to be humiliated in front of a camera. They do this with drugs, painkillers and alcohol to numb themselves of the pain and emptiness that they experience. The pain isn’t just emotional; it is common for porn actress to have anal and vaginal tears. What a job?!

 

Clearly emotions, well-being and needs are not factored by a man watching porn.

 

How do you think that impacts you and your relationships?

 

I’ll give you my two cents:  We play like we practice. If a man practices fulfilling his desire for pleasure regardless of how a woman feels, he will not be able to connect with you in the ways you deserve as a beautiful human being. You need to be able to connect intimately with a man if you expect to stand the test of time with him.

 

If he practices porn, he will use you for your pleasure only to throw you away when he’s finished, just like all of the insanely gorgeous women in the videos. We play like we practice, no other way about it.

 

Did you know it has been scientifically proven that men rate their partners as less attractive after watching porn?  You are a woman. You are the most beautiful creation in the universe. You are beautiful and worthy beyond your comprehension. You are infinitely deserving of a man who can honor you, cherish, defend your inherent dignity and respect you. A good and honest man would never dream of compromising his ability to love you and admire your beauty.

 

You are worthy of being constantly admired and desired by a man who would never dream of sacrificing his connection with you for passing pleasure. But it is up to you to set standards that would allow room for such a man in your life. These standards will automatically reject and repel men who don’t have your best interests in mind.

 

 

Men and women- 

 

Did you know that it is extremely common for women to load up on painkillers just so they can smile for you while being abused on camera? That should destroy the illusion that they are smiling with you and enjoying the experience with you. Would you ever ask your wife or girlfriend to take pain killers just so they could please you?

 

Did you know it is very common for women to get anal, vaginal and throat tears that sometimes requires surgery to recover?  How sex and awesome is that?!  Did you know that porn actors commonly require multiple STDs and bacterial infections throughout their careers?

 

If you don’t believe me, allow ex porn star Vanessa Belmond to tell you about it:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9HvC_sEURXA

 

Watching pornography enables this industry to thrive. When you watch pornography, you are complicit in the humiliation and abuse of our precious women; the bearers of life.

 

This life doesn’t sound like anything I’d want for my wife, daughter, sister, niece, friend. So why is it okay to support other women doing these terrible things?  I think it’s a grave disservice to our wives and all women to associate our sexual desire with such abuse and degradation. Women are worth much more than the pleasure we’ve been wont to extract from them.

 

Now is the time to not only act like, but to actually be men. Real men. Men who protect, honor and serve others.  Men who reveal their manliness through how gentle, kind, and respectful they are to women.  Men who refuse to conform to the abysmally low standards set by our culture.  Men who work hard to set new standards that make room for intimacy, dignity, and longevity in our relationships. If you refuse porn, you are well on your way to being this man.

 

For women, now is the time to speak out against pornography.

 

Now is the time to let your voice be heard. Now is the time to set impossibly high standards; impossible for anyone other than real men to meet. Now is the time to vociferously reject abusive and degrading behaviors.  Now is the time to let men know exactly what you expect in relationships and what you will not tolerate. Now is the time to stand up for you dignity rather than allow it to be trampled on by lesser men; no comfort in a relationship is worth the price of your dignity.

 

 

To these ends, I propose The Sex Strike for Better Men

 

Ladies: Work with me. Send me your stories of how pornography has harmed you, your relationships and your families. I am founding The Sex Strike for Better Men, which is a support hub for women taking a stance on pornography as well as a resource for men desiring to quit.

 

I am also compiling a book that speaks on behalf of every woman who demands more from men. I need your voice and your experiences as a call to action for men to quit porn.  The more women speak out, the harder it will be for men to ignore women’s needs. Let’s make male culture so uncomfortable about pornography that it is forced with two choices: Be without porn, or be single forever.

 

Guys, I need your voices too.  I need the stories on how/why you quit porn and learned to love better.  Many women now feel hopeless that good men who are capable of lasting intimacy can be found.  We need to inspire male culture to create an environment where women feel respected and hopeful for their future relationships. You stories of change will be a motivating factor for men around the world.

 

Send your stories through *this form*.    You can also submit stories to daniel@dowlingwriter.com

 

Thanks for being open to this discussion; it takes courage. Any of your personal experiences, opinions and comments are valued and desired. Please contribute to the conversation below.

 

 

 

Share your voice

Sex Strike for Better Men

Centuries ago, Spartan women became fed up with their warring spouses. Every time their backs were turned, Spartan husbands were out at war again. The women declared enough was enough. They put an end to their husband’s bad behavior with a positive NO. They said NO to sex until their husbands ceased warring. Spartan women used their considerable power to change the fate of their civilization. Their husbands laid down arms and came back to the arms of their loving (and badass) wives. Their positive NO was a yes to peace.

Today our men are at war, but it is an entirely different battle. This war is a war on relationships, and the biggest front is pornography.

Porn has conditioned men to objectify women. It has conditioned men to associate intimacy with lifeless pixels instead of their real and beautiful partners. It has instructed men that it is acceptable to degrade, humiliate and use women for pleasure. Porn has lied and taught man that women are only as valuable as their ability to please him. Experts have estimated over 500,000 divorces a year are attributed to pornography- Are you okay with this? Is pornography something you want to invite into your relationship?

If not, I suggest you look to our Spartan heroins for the next step.

Spartan women

Your spears happen to be the legs surrounding your vagina

Until your partner can cease pornography, say NO to sex. Refuse to accept the harmful habit of pornography in your relationships and in your bedrooms. Join thousands of other women this very day in the Sex Strike for Better Men until your partner gives up his war on relationships. Let your “no” to sex be an emphatic yes to a lifetime of intimacy and love in your relationships. Refuse to enable behavior that you know deep down will compromise your relationship.

Sign the pledge today and be part of the Sex Strike for Better Men. Join our community today and find the support of thousands of other women who are saying yes to better relationships.

Have you given up hope for better men? Each day we are featuring a different man’s story on how and why he has given up pornography for good. Men are doing this because they know you are worthy. More than anything, these good men desire the company of a good woman just like you. There is hope.  Another feature of the site is resources for men who wish to quit pornography; tips, stories, etc.

Take part in *this survey*  and let your voice be heard. Tell men what you want and need to be in a relationship. They’ll listen.

sex plan

Sex and Relationships: Do You Have a Plan?

I have a glaring issue with relationships that I just can’t get past: Nobody plans for them!  We plan meticulously for our careers, hobbies, playtime, baby showers, manicures for our dogs,  and anything else that we want to succeed in. But, strangely, there is a cultural fog that obscures the importance of planning for relationships; the gateways to new life.  We’ve been conditioned to hope to fall ass backwards into meaning and significance, but that hasn’t worked out. Sex is the thing that brings new life into the world. New life is important, because without it, our species would die.  So let’s reexamine sex and our relationships. Follow me for an article and I’ll help you plan for the relationships you desire and deserve.

 

Sex is one small but important chunk of the love pie. Everyone is interested in it, of course, because the survival of our species depends on it. In case you didn’t know…Sex is a good thing!!  But, like all other good things, the goodness depends on your plan for using it. Kinda like any other tool.  If you are itching to get sexy before you really know of a person’s commitment, character and quality, chances are there are many more creative ways for you to get to know a person and for them to get to know you. These creative ways also become the foundation for lasting relationships.

From my experience and observations, sex before marriage is harmful because it distracts couples from the qualities that lead to lifelong commitment, like trust, respect, morals, beliefs, mutual goals and needs.  As a wise man once said, “If sex led to fulfilled marriages, everybody would still be married!”

So, I say yes to friendship, yes to respect, yes to marriage, yes to setting appropriate boundaries, and yes to human connection. Mostly I say yes to a plan for your successful relationships. When respect is part of your plan, you can feel good about saying no to everything else and sleep like a baby. Friendship is respectful always, and the highest evolution of friendship between a man and woman is marriage. Respect is maintained throughout, but the context changes as your appreciation, admiration, devotion and commitment to each other increases.  What would be respectful for a couple after 2 years of committing to each other will not be respectful for a couple of 2 months.

As far as I’ve learned, you must have a substantial amount of demonstrable commitment accrued in a relationship before you can get physical if you want to keep respect and admiration at the forefront. Premature physical engagement (PPE- yeah, I spent a year in the army so I get to use cheesy acronyms.)

PPE leads to distraction from the spiritual, mental and emotional connection that is the foundation for lasting love. It effectively blinds you from the qualities of a person that you really need to become familiar with if you expect to last a lifetime together.  If you don’t care about those qualities, please stop reading: you’ll be wasting your time.

 

Education: The Antidote

 

Through all of my education, I never learned a spec about real relationships. So, I had to educate myself deliberately and intensively. I refused to take part in the paradigm that offered brokenness and temporary pleasure as the best it gets, because I had observed others do better. I had an inchoate sense that what we call normal wasn’t the best I could achieve.  I had seen and experienced too much misery and heartache that came through blindly accepting what we’ve been taught, so I committed to a different way.  

After I rehabbed myself and paved the way for a brighter future, I had too many people telling me that I had to share this, so, I couldn’t keep it to myself.  I decided to bring about an education medium that relied heavily on observation, logic and questions in order to work with our sexual desire.  

 My relationship education is focused on intelligently and constructively channeling sexual desire. Our sexual desire is brilliant and powerful. Through it, we can achieve many great accomplishments, but none greater than new human life. That life is the culmination of our creative capacity, which means that the act of sex is the culmination of our sexual desire. The word “culmination” has implications of a road to the top. The path to that peak is the path of edification, adventure, respect, creativity, and admiration. In a good relationships, that road never ends. Death is just another part of the adventure of life. 

Until we have revealed the depth of our character, commitment and creativity, sexual desire is more appropriately funneled into less extraordinary pursuits than sex. Whether that be a writing a song, crafting a painting, plumbing toilets, or whatever it is you are passionate about. There is no limit for what we can do with our sexual energy. But, it is entirely up to us to harness that energy in ways that build up our relationships.

If we choose not to educate ourselves and plan for a better application of desire, we have nobody but ourselves to blame for the train wrecks and disasters that we are so accustomed to. Not biology, not society, not “human nature”, not our genetics, and not anything but ourselves.   We really have to practice , otherwise we won’t show up to the big game when it comes. When I say big game, I really mean new life.

Until you’ve discovered the depths of a partner’s commitment, character and creativity, you cannot trust that they will be able to lovingly raise the children that come through physical love. If you are prematurely physical and the big game comes, you won’t be prepared. When you aren’t prepared, new life does not get what it needs and what should be a miracle and a blessing is perceived as an inconvenience. Pretty messed up?

Imagine being a newborn and knowing that your parents neither wanted you nor had the capability of caring properly for you. Newborn babies can’t say, “WTF Mom and Dad?!  You should have prepared for me!! I don’t deserve this shit!” But I can.     WTF?!!!?!???!!!

Also, when you haven’t built faith in your partner’s commitment, you open yourself up to separation and divorce (contrary to popular belief, it is a choice). Divorce isn’t luck of the draw. It comes when couples lose their commitment to each other, and commitment wanes when intimacy is damaged. (for tips on building intimacy, click here) When divorce happens, children lose their faith in love and rebel against it. In that case, a physical display of affection would not have been making love, but making war.

 

Heartpic

 

The antidote to all of this is relationship education. Relationship education is the systematic approach for determining what actions and beliefs a person needs to adopt to successfully relate with another person. Generally, this is about what you do, not what you don’t do. Do make meaningful connections with another person that reveals your character and content. Do concern yourself with your partner’s morals, character, habits, beliefs, and goals. Do create connection through acts of kindness and selflessness. Do plan for habits that build character and intimacy in relationships.

But, the don’ts are extremely important too. Do not allow any interaction that would degrade your human connection. For women, this is important stuff, because men who engage in pornographic viewing will weaken human connection. This is because they have trained themselves to make transient connections with pixels on a screen, which are distinct from real women. Real women have real needs and complex emotions that pixels don’t.

So, as a man:  How are you going to prepare for a real woman?  And as a woman: How do you want a man to prepare for the real you?

 

Questions for your potential mates

 

After having been pornographically trained, men become unable to attend to the depth and emotional nuances of a real woman. Their commitments are not to the relationship and meaningful connection with her, but to the pleasure that they have learned to associate with her form.  The difference is internal vs. external.

For this reason, the first question you should ask any potential dating candidate is: Do you watch porn?

If he or she answers yes, then tell them exactly why you cannot relate with him. Educate them, and let them know about the real connection that all humans need, and how to practice that. If you suspect that they are lying, run quickly.  *  I realize that mostly men watch porn, but 1/3 of porn consumers are women. That is a substantial number.

A second question should be: Do you believe in lifelong and committed love?

This is an important one to ask long before physical affection, because a man who is high on your love drug might fool himself into believing that he wants lifelong commitment with you, when he really only cares for the pleasure. That would be a man who threatens your ability to meaningfully connect, which is a disaster in the making- run quickly from those types.  If your lover doesn’t believe in lifelong and committed love, then your capability of growing in love and intimacy is automatically restricted. If your partner doesn’t believe in it, then he or she also doesn’t believe that children have fundamental rights to secure and loving parents.

Another question could be: “Why, precisely, do you want to relate with me as a woman (or man)?”  Or, less robotically, “What do you want with me? Where do I fit in your plans?”

This will be disarming to a man, because he will have never heard it before. Many people do not have plans for relationships other than to satisfy a temporary desire to feel good. It’s an honest question though- “What do you want from me? What do you hope to achieve through relating with me?”

Tell him you’ll see him again if he can come up with a decent answer. Let your potential partners fully understand your plan for relationships so that they might come up with their own.  Don’t have one? Make one. What are you waiting for?

 

 

In this human experience, our success is contingent upon planning.  Need an example?  We have turned our world into a giant dumpster that seeps toxic sludge out of every orifice.  Mass wildlife die offs. Oil spills. Floating islands of garbage the size of Texas…Do you think we planned this?  Heck no, we just got greedy and refused to plan better. Because we didn’t plan more holistically, and because of a focus on instant gratification, our success is gravely threatened.

This same myopia has infiltrated our relationships.  Need an example?  60% divorce rate. Oodles of unwanted children. We’ve adopted the insane idea that harmful behaviors in relationships are “normal”, and so we a thrusting headlong off a cliff!  (End rant).

 

The only thing that can reverse this pattern of short-term gratification and long term devastation is: A plan. It’s like my wise older brother told a struggling sister- “You don’t need a man, you need a plan.”    The more specific your statement of purpose is, the greater your chances of success in achieving it. The more detailed your steps and resources are for attaining the goals in your purpose, the more desirable your outcome will be.  You can’t plan everything because life is uncertain, but you can plan and practice your response to the unknown.

 

Get a Plan

 

If you need help, here is a dreadfully simple rubric:

 

My purpose in relationships is to grow in intimacy and love with my partner till our dying days.

(As I said, dreadfully simple.  But, the simpler the better.  It has to be meaningful for you, and it has to be something that you can commit to day in and day out.)

To achieve lifelong regenerative love and intimacy, I need:

1- Fulfillment in self before relationship with spouse. (The resources I need to achieve this are: Satisfaction in my life’s work. Purpose and reason for being that is part of something greater than myself. Intimate connection with my community.  Etc. Etc.

2- A foundation of commitment, vulnerability, trust, honesty, admiration and respect with my partner that I will never compromise. (The resources that I need to achieve this are: Profound knowledge of my spouse gained through substantial quality time.  An objective perspective on my partner’s actions, behaviors and beliefs. A non-physical based courtship or dating that is not dependent on chemical highs.  A deep interest in my partner’s thoughts and goals. Special time 3 days a week to vent unexpressed feelings and to reconnect intimately. Shared interests and goals with my partner that we can work towards each day of our lives. Shared passions and hobbies. Shared milestones. Etc. Etc.

3- An attitude of edification.  (The resources I need to achieve this are: Humility. A burning desire to learn and grow.  A willingness to see my spouse as a mirror to my internal world.  Etc. Etc.

The statement of purpose will be simple, but the resources and strategies required to meet that purpose will be more complex and involved, and they will shift as time goes by.  The beauty in this is that you are actively in charge of your outcome. With a holistic plan, your relationships will be part of the life you plan for. With a plan, you don’t have to settle for the excuses of human nature and genetics; you can actually live the life you want.

When you set out to make your plan, you’ll want to include all of the wonderful things that are important to you and your future family. For me that includes: children, financial security, plenty of leisure and play time, a fit and active lifestyle, a farm that our children can grow up learning about nature, animals,  and life and death on, a positive impact on the earth and a regeneration of her resources (farm is included in this), and much more than this article can fill.

Bottom line: Your most fundamental needs and desires will not be met unless you plan specifically for them and are 100% transparent about them with your potential spouses. If you haven’t established your fundamental needs and desires, and if you haven’t set up a plan to ensure them, you will settle for instant gratification and a life of heartache and brokenness.  Some call that human nature. I call it a choice.

 

A note from the author:

Most relationship experts would have you accept their words as doctrine, but I don’t want to be your voice. I want to help you find your voice so that you don’t have to listen to anyone else who could lead you off the cliff. I want you to live a life of beautiful simplicity. I want you to be able to shed the confusion and complexity that we have come to associate with modern romance. So, I ask you the questions that only you can answer to transform your life.

Have any questions for me? Please get in touch!  Angry, outraged, pleased, curious, inspired, or moved by this article? Please add to the discussion with your valuable comments below.   Thanks for sharing!