Flirting with your Pleasure (Ritual + journal prompts!)
I’m on quite the journey right now. The past two years, I have completely devoted myself to transformation, passion, power, and service. As priestess, I chose to walk the path of service. And experience a fuck ton of pleasure. I am doing every single thing I can to learn physically, spiritually, and scientifically, the keys to pleasure and actually enjoying your life in a profound and powerful way. Because to be quite honest, I sometimes find it hard to feel.
Partly due to conditioning from a religious upbringing, and partly because sometimes it is really hard to tune into joy and pleasure when life gets hard, when the world is up in flames, and when you are doing deep work with yourself. And partly because we have created a culture that represses joy in a major way. In a world where you are supposed to be productive, happy, focused, secure, and stable all the time, how are we supposed to take time to integrate, process, and find pleasure and joy?
Thousands and thousands of years and cultural conditioning has told us that pleasure is hedonistic, it is wrong, that sacrifice and doing without is noble. Add in constant advertisements saying you’re not good enough, to actual people online telling you that you’re not good enough, to thousands of years of sexual repression, to having to be “on” and “go” all the time… and if you’re like me, and experience anxiety and depression, pleasure can seem really far away.
Here’s the thing — pleasure is an absolute necessity. It is not self-indulgent. It is not an option. If we want to survive in this world, we have to tune into what turns us on. It is necessary to show up in the world with strength, to heal and restore our nervous system. So how can we find our pleasure?
It is not just in sex. Although sex is great. Pleasure is in our bodies. It is in the mundane tasks of your day to day, as long as you breathe into it. It is in starting to come back home to yourself, slowly but surely, and maybe not every day, but some of them. It is feet on the ground, smelling your favorite candle burning, sipping a cup of tea. It is in your unique rituals that allow you to feel okay on this planet, even if it starts out for just a moment.
To find your pleasure, flirt with it. Take it on a date. Get curious about it. I actually took my pleasure out to a bar, bought two negronis, whipped out my journal, and asked it questions as if it was an actual human. Be with it, even if it is a total stranger to you right now. Now, it is your turn. Find your favorite bar or tea spot, get your favorite journal, and doll yourself up in the most authentic way. You can start with these journal prompts:
What are the small things that comfort me?
Think shows, like Golden Girls and the Barefoot Contessa (maybe that’s just a me thing), scents, showers or baths, your favorite blankets, your most comforting songs (cheesy 70s easy listening is mine), and try and create that for yourself.
What are the things that allow me to feel grounded?
Maybe it is routine, or the smell of dried herbs on a piece of charcoal, or cooking, or going for a run, or jumping up and down, or singing, or being around friends. Think of the things that make you feel at home on this earth.
What are some memories you have of being in your pleasure?
They don’t have to be big moments at all — for me, most of them are around a dinner table. Belly laughs over red wine and big vats of pasta. And also, the moments that I feel completely alone, but not isolated, like when I’m driving by a mountain range, or sitting on a beach at sunset.
What body movements make you feel pleasurable?
Whether it is rolling your neck around, or lying on the floor and deep breathing, or moving your body in a sensual, serpentine way, or shaking your hands out, or stretching your face muscles, or whatever way your unique body can move, try it now. Experiment with yourself.
Go through all of the senses — what is your favorite thing to Feel? See? Hear? Taste? Smell?
Write all of these down — and these are going to lead to our ritual.
Intro to Pleasure Ritual
Set the scene. Maybe you can light some candles, or incense, turn down the lights, turn off your phone. Get all your favorite sensory items if they are available — put on your favorite scent or have it be in the air, as well as your favorite music, have your favorite food ready, and wear something that feels really good on your skin.
Start off by sitting down, orienting yourself to this new sacred space, and take it all in. When you feel ready and if you can, lay down on the floor. Begin to focus on the energy of pleasure. What it means to you, how its feels, and even if it is just the faintest whisper, start to breathe this sensation into your body.
Take a rich, deep inhale and breathe pleasure into your body, into your bones, and exhale organically. If it feels authentic, have a big goofy grin on your face. You can start to move around in it, let this sensation of pleasure guide your movements. Or just lay in the stillness of it.
Do a body scan, starting from your toes to the top of your head. Note what sensations are coming up in your body. Maybe you feel an expansiveness in your chest, or a warming in your belly, or tingles in your arms. Or maybe you don’t feel much of anything at all — in that case, find one part of your body that feels okay, that feels safe, even if it is your right pinky. Wherever your most pleasurable sensation is, breathe into it. Laser your focus there.
Whether you found pleasure, safety, or just awareness in your body, visualize exactly what it looks like: a bright light orb, or a purple vapor, or an iridescent bubble. Take deep, connected breaths in and out of your mouth.
Visualize this pleasure force being pushed from the root chakra at the base of your spine, up to the sacral, right beneath the belly, to the solar plexus, right under your chest, to the heart, right at the middle of your chest, to the throat, right at the center of your throat, to your third eye, right in between your eyebrows, and then your crown, right at the top of your head. Then bring it all back down through each of the chakra points again. Continue to do this for as long as feels good, not forgetting about your breath.
Enjoy your sensual bliss — eat your yummy food, put some essential oils on, feel your silky robe, or whatever your favorite choices were.
Try doing this for ten minutes in the morning or right before bed or whenever you can fit it in throughout your day. Tune in and flirt with your pleasure so you can start building a relationship with it. Grow together. Get to know each other. Be in each other’s company for a while. Besides — how could you expect to be close to anyone you don’t make time for?