Being too stressed for sex creates an interesting paradox. Stress can kill your sex drive, but good sex is an excellent stress-reliever. Stress can hide in your body, disguised as low energy, exhaustion, moodiness, and even aches and pains like head or stomach-ache. These are all symptoms of stress, along with a loss of sex drive or ability to have sex.
If you are exhausted and have a headache coupled with low sexual desire, it’s easy to think you have a cold, or are tired, or it’s the weather, when actually identifying and dealing with stressors can be the most effective way of getting your sexual mojo back. As this year ends and a new one begins, many moms feel stressed out about goals we haven’t yet accomplished, new year items we need to tick off our lists, and we may even be suffering from the post-holiday season doldrums.
Here are some ways you can beat libido-killing stressors and get your mojo back:
1. Get your sleep, mama.
2. Turn off your phone and disconnect from electronics. Make it an hour, or a day, but relish the freedom of not responding to every beep and chime your phone makes.
3. Spend time doing something you enjoy. Allow yourself to relax.
4. Get out get some exercise. Can’t get out? Stay in and move your body.
5. Avoid the salty, fatty, sweet foods that are the most tempting for mindless, stressed-out eating. Munch on healthy, nutritious food that strengthens your body and doesn’t cause sugar rushes and crashes.
6. Look deeply and identify what’s causing your stress. Be as specific as possible.
7. Find ways to deal with your stressors. Too busy? Take something off your schedule. Dealing with a difficult person? Work on creating healthy boundaries for yourself. Need help? Find and use a great babysitter, assistant, therapist…whatever it is that you need, or ask for help from loved ones.
8. Make time for all-fun, no-stress time with your partner. Play a board game, go for a walk. It doesn’t matter what you do together, just set the intention of being in the moment with your partner and enjoying each other’s company.
9. Are you striving for perfection? Let go. Perfection is impossible and focusing on attaining the unattainable will lead to perpetual stress and anxiety.
10. Practice gratitude. This is my personal new year’s resolution, to practice gratitude daily. Elizabeth Gilbert, author of Eat, Pray, Love, recently posted on Facebook about her happiness jar. Every day she writes her happiest moment on a slip of paper and drops it in her happiness jar. On days when she needs inspiration, she reads through the moments in the jar—she also keeps these slips of paper as reminders that happiness and joy can be found even among dreary circumstances.
Check out these stress-management resources:
- How to Reduce, Prevent, and Cope with Stress
- How to build a meditation practice to fight stress.
- The science on the benefits of gratitude
Not convinced, read this post by Dr. Logan Levkoff about how stress affects your sex life.
Wishing you and yours a vibrant, stress-free, 2015.