Category Archives: Relaxation Techniques

Nienke Helder designs therapy tools for women recovering from sexual trauma

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Design Academy Eindhoven graduate Nienke Helder has created a set of sensory objects that can be used to rehabilitate women affected by sexual abuse.

Presented at this year’s Dutch Design Week, Sexual Healing is designed to help women who are suffering from trauma-induced sexual problems, such as pelvic muscle blockage.

According to the designer, current treatment available often focuses on a clinical perspective – putting too much emphasis on physical issues, rather than the psychological aspects of trauma.

From her own experience, Helder recognised the frustration this can cause, which prompted her to develop an alternative therapy which focuses more on the emotional aspects of sexual trauma.

“I was really frustrated with the way we treat these kinds of issues. In my opinion, the treatments that I got only made it worse,” she told Dezeen.

“It was totally taking me away from the sexual context; it became really clinical. It was so focused on this end goal of penetration that I totally lost all fun in my sexuality.”

The designer worked with medical experts and women in recovery to develop a set of five objects which invite users to discover their own sexual pleasure.

The objects encourage women to explore what feels good to them, which in turn, relieves fear and pain, and help them regain a sense of security about their bodies.

The first object is an ergonomically shaped mirror that lights up.

“Research shows that if you look at your own vulva, it increases your body positivity a lot. But if you have a trauma, it can really be confronting to look at your own body,” Helder said.

She made the mirror in such a way that it only shows exactly what you hold in front of it, allowing users to take their time and slowly start exploring their own bodies.

The second object is a brush made from horsehair, which is meant to help users become comfortable with being touched again. It also enables them to invite their partner to the healing process.

“If you have a trauma, it can be really difficult to talk about it. But by giving someone an object and making them part of the therapy, it opens a lot of doors for conversation,” Helder explains.

Two of the objects focus on biofeedback and are designed to help the user detect if they are feeling tense or stressed.

“Trauma creates certain reflexes in your body that comes from your subconscious mind,” the designer said. “To break that cycle, you need to rationally understand what is causing these processes in order to overcome them emotionally.”

One is a sensor that is meant to be placed on the abdomen. The device lights-up when the user’s breathing becomes tense, functioning as a signal to relax again.

A second is an object that measures the pressure in pelvic floor muscles. If the user tenses up, the device starts to vibrate, signalling the need to relax.

The final object is a kimono made of silk jersey, which emphasises the need to feel warm and relaxed in the bedroom.

“I made it because the bedroom is one of the coldest rooms in the house,” said the designer. “As I mentioned in my project video, it is important to keep your socks on when having sex because women could not have an orgasm when they have cold feet.”


 
Mental health is becoming an increasingly explored topic in design, particularly among graduates.

At last year’s Design Academy Eindhoven graduate show, designer Nicolette Bodewes presented a tactile toolkit designed to be used in psychotherapy sessions, while Yi-Fei Chen channelled her personal struggle with speaking her mind into a gun that fires her tears.

Helder’s Sexual Healing project was presented at this year’s Design Academy Eindhoven‘s graduate show as part of the annual Dutch Design Week event, which took place from 21 until 29 October 2017.

Complete Article HERE!

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How to Stop Getting So Damn Distracted During Sex

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By Vanessa Marin

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During sex, do you frequently find yourself thinking about grocery shopping, or getting distracted by the cobwebs on the ceiling? It’s frustratingly hard to turn our brains off when we’re being intimate, even though we all know how much better sex can be when we’re mentally present. These tricks can help.

Practice Outside the Bedroom

The key to all of this is mindfulness, or put less jargon-y, learning how to be more present in the moment. If you spend your entire day adrift in a sea of anxiety, multitasking, and overactive thinking, you can’t expect to be perfectly calm and centered the second your partner starts taking your clothes off. The best way to learn how to be more present in the bedroom is to practice slowing your mind down outside of the bedroom. Being present is a skill that requires practice, and it’s usually easier to make the space for that practice when you’re not naked with another person.

Meditation can help a lot here. I highly recommend Headspace, an app that teaches you how to meditate. Headspace takes a topic that seems befuddling to most people, and breaks it down into simple, easy-to-understand concepts. It guides you through structured meditation sessions, so you’re never left wondering what you’re supposed to be doing. Even 10 minutes of meditation a day will naturally make it easier for you to feel more present during sex. If ever there was a good argument for starting up a meditation practice, this is it.

Set Yourself Up for Success

The distractors that I hear about most frequently from my clients are clutter, electronics, and to-do lists. You can transform your bedroom a sex haven by making it a clutter- and electronics-free zone. If you’re a frequent to-do list ruminator, quickly jot down your list items before you go pounce on your partner.

Take a moment to think about any other distraction triggers that you might have. Do you tend to get distracted if you know there are dirty dishes in the sink? Or maybe the peeling paint on the wall always catches your eye. Take any necessary steps to remove that distraction. Some distractors can be eliminated permanently, while others may require ongoing effort, but the idea is to try to create more mental space for yourself. You don’t want to create a situation where things have to be perfectly in place before you’re able to be intimate with your partner, but you can try to keep your usual distractions at a minimum.

Expect Distraction

If you’re like most people, you’ve probably had the experience of thinking about the cupcakes you need to bake for your kid’s soccer team, and the consequent feelings of guilt for thinking about baked goods while balls deep in your partner. You get so derailed by your frustration that you wind up getting even more distracted than you were by the original thought.

The truth is that it’s impossible to be present and focused 100% of the time. You can’t stop your brain from thinking. You’re going to have unwanted (and incredibly random) thoughts pop into your head at all moments of the day, including during sex. If you have the expectation that your mind should be clear of all thoughts except for how much fun you’re having with your partner, you’re going to be bitterly disappointed. Instead, acknowledge that distraction is the price we pay for having brains. Try to reframe your goals and think about minimizing distractions rather than eliminating them altogether.

Don’t Fight Your Thoughts

Trying to prevent yourself from thinking never works, and usually just intensifies the distraction. You’ve got to figure out a way to let the thoughts just be, without making them take up even more space.

 


 
Headspace has a great metaphor where they compare mindfulness to sitting beside a busy intersection. Imagine that your thoughts are the cars driving down the roads. You can’t stop the flow of cars, but you can prevent yourself from hopping into one of the cars and driving off in it. Try to allow thoughts to pop into your head during sex, but don’t actively think about them. You may even find it useful to visualize them driving out of eyesight.

Use Your Breath

Focusing on your breath is one of the core principles of mindfulness. It’s a great way to let go of your thoughts and bring yourself back into the moment. When you feel yourself hopping into that little hot rod with one of your thoughts, take a deep breath and imagine gently opening the car door and escorting your brain out of the car. One particularly effective breathing technique is to imagine sending your breath down to your X-rated bits as you inhale, and back up to your nose as you exhale. This requires a bit of extra attention, and brings your focus back to your body.

Narrate What’s Going On

Here’s another super simple mindfulness technique that can work wonders during sex: Tell yourself a story (in your head) about what’s happening from moment to moment. It might sound something like, “now he’s running his hand up my thigh. Now he’s spreading my legs apart.” This trick gives your brain something to do, but focuses it on the sex itself. You can also narrate your body’s reactions to the events at hand, which will help you tune in to the sensation even more. For example, “now I’m feeling my breath start to quicken. Now I’m feeling my stomach flutter. Now my skin feels like it’s tingling in anticipation.” It’s like writing your own erotica.

Consider Your Choice in the Moment

Sometimes the best way to combat distraction is to remind yourself of the decision you have in front of you. You can allow yourself to get swept up in your thoughts, or you can make an effort to stay present with your partner. Try something like, “I can keep thinking about the asshole who cut me off on the freeway, or I can enjoy finally getting a chance to be alone with my incredibly sexy partner” or “I can spend all of my mental energy worrying about when I’m going to work out, or I can spend it on this beautiful ass in front of me.” You can try being gentle with yourself, like, “It’s okay to feel annoyed about my client no-show, but I’ll have plenty of time to worry about that after I’ve boned down,” or you can try being a little sassy, like, “am I really going to think about my mother while I’m getting it in?” These kinds of statements help bring you back into the moment and focus on what’s actually important.

Staying in the moment during sex can seem like a challenge if you’re used to constant distraction, but it’s much more doable than you might think. Plus, is there any great motivation for learning to improve your mindfulness skills than hotter sex?

Complete Article HERE!

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Whoa, Big Fella!

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Hey sex fans!

Welcome to this our latest edition of Product Review Friday. Today we welcome yet another innovative company to our review effort. Join me in saying hello to the Canadian company, BodiSpa. You’ll be seeing several more products from them in coming weeks, but today Dr Dick Review Crew members, Kevin & Gina are here with our first review.

Let’s go see what they’re up to, shall we?

The Almighty —— $169.95

Kevin & Gina
Gina: “Here’s a little known fact: I’m a massage therapist. Actually, I’ve been practicing massage and bodywork for over five years, it’s just that I haven’t identified myself as such in this venue.”Almighty2
Kevin: “I tell you this woman has the most talented hands! I have been on the receiving end of her miraculous touch for years now. I am like putty in her hands.”
Gina: “Oh, that’s so sweet! Thank you for that. I am super proud of my talent and, this might come as a surprise, I have my grandmother to thank for this gift. My mother suffered from migraine headaches and my grandmother was able to relieve most of her suffering with head and neck massages. She taught me the power of therapeutic touch.”
Kevin: “It’s amazing to think that this healing talent is locked up in all of us. Gina has been kind enough to pass on some of her techniques to me and now I can make a cuddle session on the couch a way of relieving her stress.”
Gina: “He’s awesome! But wait, we’re not here to talk about my skill set, we’re here to introduce you to a truly amazing instrument of pleasure and therapy. This giant is called Almighty. And it is aptly named too. I say giant, because this wand-type, hot/cold massager is a whopping 16.5” tall. Its ergonomically shaped head is 4” wide and it weighs in at almost 3 pounds. It’s a monster with a long, cordless handle.”
Kevin: “The Almighty is not a toy, nor is it specifically for sex. In fact, I had to check with Dr Dick about this. ‘How did you score this thing? It’s not really a sex toy, now is it?’ He assured me that the BodiSpa people knew we did sex toy reviews and they wanted to have our take on it.”
Gina: “As soon as I held the Almighty in my hands for the first time, I knew it was something special. I immediately knew that I would be able to incorporate the Almighty into my massage practice. It’s that good. Why, this vibrator is so strong that you can use it through clothing, which is wonderful, because some of my clients come to me only for a neck and shoulder massage and they don’t get undressed for it.”
Kevin: “There are so many wonderful features to the Almighty. It is made of ABS, a super durable plastic, which is phthalate free. It is beautifully designed to last. Gina mentioned earlier that it is cordless. In other words, it’s rechargeable.”almighty
Gina: “The thing that won my heart is the Almighty not only delivers two speeds of deep and penetrating vibrations, it also heats up or cools down depending on your preference. You see, there is a metal plate in the head of the massager and this is what delivers the heat and cooling. This feature further extends the therapeutic nature of the vibrations. Think about it, 104-122 degrees Fahrenheit of warmth to relieve arthritis and other joint and muscle pain. And 50-59 degrees Fahrenheit of chilling power to reduce muscle spasms and swelling. Both the vibration speed and the hot/cold intensity are regulated with easy-to-use dials in the handle.”
Kevin: “Speaking of swelling, and since this is sex toy review, the Almighty is brilliant at making my cock swell and my balls tingle, as well as making Gina’s pussy tingle and her clit engorge. So there’s that.”
Gina: “Thank you for adding that. I don’t want our readers thinking this whopper is an all work and no play massager. You know how we often talk about hot/cold sensation play using some of our glass or metal toys? Well the Almighty has that feature built in AND it vibrates. It’s the best of both worlds. And just so you know, this vibe is super-powerful. I can place the head of the Almighty on my spine, between my shoulder blades and it will deliver vibration so deep and heavy that my teeth chatter. That’s powerful!”
Kevin: “Although the Almighty isn’t waterproof, it is still easy to sanitize after each use. Simply wipe it down with a lint-free towel moistened with mild soap and warm water. Then wipe it down again with another lint-free towel moistened with peroxide, rubbing alcohol or a 10% bleach solution.”
Gina: “The Almighty gets my highest rating. Sure the $170 price tag is a lot, but consider all the fantastic features you are getting all rolled into one product. I mean you can easily spend nearly that much on a high-end vibe that is neither as powerful or as versatile.”
Read Full Review HERE!

ENJOY!

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SEX WISDOM with Shai Rotem – Podcast #179 – 01/13/10

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Hey sex fans,

I have a fantastic show in store for you.  I am delighted to inform you that I am launching yet another podcast series today.  I call it the SEX WISDOM podcast series.

Besides the wildly popular Sex EDGE-U-cation series and The Erotic Mind series that have been running for the past year and longer, I thought it would be grand to chat with some of the movers and shakers in the field of human sexuality.   So in the course of this new series we will be chatting with researchers, educators, clinicians, pundits and philosophers who are making news and reshaping how we look at our sexual selves.  I can assure you that these conversations will be well worth the time you spend with us.

I have chosen a remarkable man as my first guest.  His name is Shai Rotem.  He is a certified surrogate partner; or a sex surrogate, if you prefer.  And he’s here to tell us about the critical work he is doing with his clients.  This is fascinating stuff, sex fans!  Please stay tuned.

Shai and I discuss:

  • A working definition of the term Surrogate Partner.
  • How a sex surrogate differs from a sex worker.
  • Being part of a scripted therapeutic intervention.
  • Surrogate partner therapy and the law.
  • Who can benefit from surrogate partner therapy.
  • The impact of a repressive religious upbringing on sexual wellbeing.
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Sensate Focus Techniques.

Shai invites you to learn more about surrogate partner therapy by visiting the International Professional Surrogates Association’s website HERE!

BE THERE OR BE SQUARE!

Check out The Lick-A-Dee-Split Connection. That’s Dr Dick’s toll free podcast voicemail HOTLINE. Don’t worry people; no one will personally answer the phone. Your message goes directly to voicemail.

Got a question or a comment? Wanna rant or rave? Or maybe you’d just like to talk dirty for a minute or two. Why not get it off your chest! Give Dr Dick a call at (866) 422-5680.

DON’T BE SHY, LET IT FLY!

Look for all my podcasts on iTunes.  You’ll find me in the podcast section, obviously. Just search for Dr Dick Sex Advice. And don’t forget to subscribe. I wouldn’t want you to miss even one episode.

Today’s Podcast is bought to you by: DR DICK’S  — HOW TO VIDEO LIBRARY.

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Room With A View

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Look for my new

Video Reviews!

This week we have two great titles: COUPLES MASTURBATION and EVERY COUPLE CAN.

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“I think we can all agree that there’s nothing more fundamental to a happy and healthy sex life than masturbation. Dr. Michael Perry. Ph.D., ACS, the producer of these fine movies, introduces the concept of masturbating with and for your partner.”

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“This R-rated video (EVERY COUPLE CAN) has much more of a story line than the previous one. First we meet Sam and Marie, a sexually frustrated couple. Sam turns to a sex surrogate to learn how to overcome his sexual problems in the hopes he’ll be able to save his marriage. Sam’s friend Trevor and his wife are having sexual difficulties too. What a surprise! “

…full reviews here

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