positive body imageI see a bright, sexy future for you.

Most women with low body esteem don’t suffer from physical conditions that prevent them from improving their sex lives.

That means you’re only a few reframes away from a love life that can make the air vibrate with passion. That’s the good news.

The bad news is that you’ve been so conditioned to expect instant results (“Lose ten pounds by the end of the week!”) that you might get discouraged by the pace of your progress.

Don’t be. You can’t undo in a couple of weeks what took years to build.

If I had an instant teleportation machine that would deposit you at the end of your journey, I’d give it to you, but I don’t, so we’re going to have to rely on taking a trip the old-fashioned way—by putting one foot in front of the other.

How To Feel Good About Your Body In Bed

The journey begins by understanding a central premise: You don’t have to improve your body or your image of it to have a great sex life. Admittedly, this is a difficult concept to grasp because you’re surrounded by messages and images that tell you differently.

So let me repeat it: You don’t have to improve your body or your image of it to have a great sex life. I am not saying this to make you feel better or relieve you of the responsibility to be fit and healthy.

I am distilling twenty years of research showing that female sexual satisfaction has very little to do with size, shape, or weight.

It is not true that losing ten pounds will make sex more satisfying. It is not true that if you got yourself down to a size two, you would liberate yourself from worry and angst, and suddenly stop feeling self-conscious in bed.

Women who have vibrant, satisfying sex lives can be underweight, normal weight, or overweight. They can be tall or short, apple-shaped or pear-shaped. Sexually satisfied women don’t have a particular size or shape, but they do have certain traits in common:

  1. They have a strong sense of well-being. The nexus between their health, vitality, relationships, work life, and self-purpose creates the environment for their love lives to flourish.
  2. They are sexually competent, capable of bringing enormous pleasure to their partners. They value themselves for what they can do, not just for how they look.
  3. If they have a positive body image, it’s in great part because they’ve had and continue to have positive sexual experiences (good sex contributes to strong body image).
  4. If they have a poor body image, they still have great love lives because of what researchers call “habituation,” the process of getting so used to a stimulus (obsessive negative judgments) that it no longer elicits a response (the compulsion to avoid, hide, or not enjoy sex).

I’d like you to pay particular attention to the third and fourth categories. Some women who have great sex lives have strong body images and some don’t. This points to a fundamental premise that you need to constantly remind yourself of, if you’re ever to get out of the vicious cycle that you’re in:

Liking how you look is preferable but not necessary to enjoying sex.

Quit being so impressed by how much you dislike your body. You don’t need to like it to have a vibrant sex life.

You need to be sexually competent, have a strong sense of well-being, rack up the kind of sexual experiences that create body confidence, and value yourself for more than your appearance.

If you missed the last post, read it here.