Do you think you’re great in bed? If your answer is something along the lines of “Well… Maybe?” you’re not alone. According to the SKYN Condoms Millennial Sex Survey, only 45 percent of Millennials say they’re “good” or “amazing” in bed. That means that a solid majority of us are just not feeling confident about our skills in the sack — and that’s a bummer. But how important in confidence in the bedroom, anyway?
According to a 2002 study from researchers at the University of Groningen and Arizona State University, both men and women prefer partners who are more confident than they are, with women preferring partners who are “considerably more self-confident than they were” and men preferring partners who are “slightly more self-confident than themselves.” While that study looked at self-confidence overall, it’s not a far jump to hypothesize that people with higher self confidence in general also have higher self-confidence when it comes to sex.
So, yeah, it looks like confidence in the bedroom is pretty important when it comes to not only your own personal satisfaction but also finding an awesome mate. So what can you do to boost your self-esteem during sex? Try these seven things, from foreplay to sex bucket lists.
1. Use Lubricant
“If you still believe there is a stigma attached to using lubricant during intercourse, you’re missing out on more sexual pleasure and more orgasms,” Dr. Emily Morse, sexologist and host of Sex With Emily , tells Bustle. “Despite what you may have heard, our natural lubrication is not an indication of our arousal. The fact is, using extra lubricant enhances your sexual enjoyment, reduces pain during sex and increases the probability that you’ll reach orgasm.”
2. Focus On What You're Feeling
“If you find yourself lost in negative or critical thoughts in the bedroom — whether about your body or your performance — you could be sabotaging your sex life,” Dr. Emily says. “Go back to your breath, focus on what you’re feeling in your body in the moment. You can redirect your thoughts and retrain your mind to be more present and have better more connected sex with your partner.”
3. Try Some Toys
“Adding toys into your sex life will not only mix things up in the bedroom, but will also guarantee some new sensations, more variety and more orgasms all around,” Dr. Emily says.
4. Foreplay All Day
“Here’s the thing about foreplay: It’s less of a suggestion than it is a requirement,” Dr. Emily says. “Women don’t just like foreplay, they need it, so you should work on infusing foreplay into your daily routine. That doesn’t mean you need to squeeze in some quick oral on your lunch break (although that could be fun, too!) It can be as simple as exchanging a sexy text messages about what you’d like to do later or sharing a specific memory you have from the last time you were together. The more you think of foreplay as a process, rather than a few minutes of physical touch, the more satisfied you’ll be in the bedroom. For women, foreplay is not only about physical intimacy but emotional intimacy as well, so make efforts to connect more throughout the day you’ll be raring to go when you see each other again.”
5. Exchange Bucket Lists
“If there’s something missing for you in the bedroom, chances are your partner may feel the same,” Dr. Emily says. “Instead of playing the blame game, turn it into a sexy game for two, one where everyone wins! Exchange a bucket list of three things you’d both like to try in bed. You don’t have to actually do all of them (at least not in one night) but just by communicating what you’d like to experience, you’ll be more likely to get your mutual needs met. Plus, it opens up the dialogue for more experimentation and exploration down the line. When your partner knows they are fulfilling your fantasies as well as their own, you’ll both have more confidence and enjoyment in the bedroom.”
The best thing I ever did for my sex life started long before I ever even kissed another person: Masturbation. Masturbating has shown me exactly what physical sensations and mental processes my body needs in order to reach an orgasm and that knowledge — that I can always get myself off, no matter what — has made me extremely confident in bed.
7. Have More Sex
No but for real though. Not only does practice make perfect (or near enough), but the more times you prove to yourself that you can have great sex, the more likely your subconscious is to believe that you’re great in bed.
So what are you waiting for? Go get it on!
Images: Giphy, Rubén Carbó / EyeEm/EyeEm/Getty Images