How to Stop Feeling Un-Sexy on ‘Fat Days’

None of us wants to admit it, but body image can play a big part in how much we enjoy sex.

Just think back to the last time you weren’t feeling your hottest and no matter how badly you wanted to relax and enjoy yourself, you couldn’t shut down your brain’s criticisms of your body.

When this happens, the issue isn’t that you’re undesirable — it’s that you don’t feel good about yourself. So we spoke to an expert about how to get out of your head, overcome your insecurities, and get down like the bombshell you are.

Laurie Watson is a sex therapist and author who specializes in body image. She confirms that for women, poor body self esteem is one of the biggest distractions when it comes to sexual enjoyment.

“Very rarely do I talk to a woman who says, ‘I feel good about the way I look,'” Watson said. “Most women live in the outside, critical voice about their bodies.”

If you’re the type to look at your body with a critical eye, she said, it can be like you’re “hovering over the bed [during sex], saying, ‘Look at your stomach, what if he touches that dimply place on your ass? What if he can see your thighs when you’re on top? He probably thinks your butt is too big.'”

Of course, this can be a huge deterrent to enjoying sex — despite the fact that your partner probably doesn’t even notice whatever is nagging at your confidence.

But like all things related to female confidence, what other people think doesn’t actually matter. It’s what we think that dictates how we feel.

For example, Watson described one woman she knows who is model-pretty, but refuses to remove her shirt in front of her guy because her breast implants aren’t symmetrical. At the same time, Watson also has a friend who is medically considered obese but enjoys herself in bed more than anyone, because she doesn’t let it get to her.

The second woman’s attitude is, “If he didn’t want to be in bed with me, he wouldn’t be in bed with me, so I just let go and feel,” Watson said.

“She’s one of the rare women who allows herself to inhabit her body,” she said. “And the only way we can feel pleasure is if we’re actually living in the body.”

The key is not to let a number on the scale or the fit of your pants that day dictate whether you want to have sex. Instead, you should be listening to your own mind and body about your desire.

Tune into your body and if you still don’t feel like boning, don’t. But if the only thing holding you back is low self esteem or an imaginary “fat day,” there are a few ways to get yourself in the mood.

Take a Deep Breath

It sounds obvious, but according to Watson, it works.

You can’t have an orgasm without getting aroused first. You can’t get aroused without relaxing. And it’ll be a lot easier to relax if you’re taking deep, controlled breaths.

“As you take a deep breath, you come into your body,” Watson said. And as we’ve established, being one with your body is super important for sexual enjoyment.

Remember Your Kegels

Every women’s magazine emphasizes the importance of “kegel exercises,” or clenching your vaginal muscles like you’re holding in pee.

Kegels have tons of benefits, but according to Watson, they can actually help you in the moment if you’re getting too wrapped up in your thoughts during sex.

“It’s hard to be thinking of something else when you’re holding a kegel squeeze,” she said. “It’s an immediate drift away from the mind and into the body. Your mind might be drifting and your body says, ‘No, no, we’re right here.'”

Have a Glass of Wine

We’re not suggesting you get wasted to forget your insecurities, but if you’re legal and you need help relaxing, one drink won’t hurt.

“Alcohol is one strategy women employ to not just loosen inhibitions in general, but to particularly mute the critical voice that keeps them from enjoying [sex],” Watson said.

Of course, this approach isn’t for everybody. But if a tiny bit of booze helps you chill out, go for it.

“I don’t [advise] everybody to drink more, but I’m not opposed,” Watson said.

Work Out

Not to get skinnier, but to make yourself one with your body.

“If we can move it away from the focus of getting in shape, exercise unites us with our body,” Watson said. “It makes us stronger. And when we’re stronger, we feel at one with our body and more confident.”

Doing something useful and practical with your body can also make you feel better about yourself.

The physiological benefits to exercise also include making arousal easier. If you hook up with someone half an hour post-exercise, Watson said, “the blood is pumping, the muscles are warmed up, and you literally are better connected to your body.”

This can lead to enhanced self-lubrication, a better mental state, and better orgasms.

See Yourself From Your Girlfriends’ P.O.V.

Think about how gorgeous your friends are and how insane they sound when they complain about their appearance.

That’s probably exactly how they feel about you when you talk shit about your own looks!

“We have a gentler eye about our girlfriends,” Watson said. “We see our girlfriends’ beauty. We need to allow that eye to evaluate ourselves.”

Lots of people are their own worst critics.

“If we could be as kind to ourselves as we are to our girlfriends, that would really help,” Watson said.

Now go forth, get laid, and enjoy yourself to the fullest.


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