Intimacy and sexuality can be an anxiety-inducing subject for many young people. One study, analyzed by the UK’s Guardian Newspaper, found that 35% of young people experienced at least one problem in the bedroom, with 8% reporting anxiety and 10% reporting a lack of enjoyment. The problem often stems from a lack of self-awareness. Understanding yourself and your body will help you to be confident in intimacy with lovers, and ensure that you have a healthy and fulfilling grasp of your own sexuality.
Exploring your own body
There’s no shame in wanting to explore your own sexuality and sexual preferences. As the Australian health service highlight, knowing exactly what you enjoy and what makes you happy is an important part of identifying your sense of self and, by extension, self-worth. How can you achieve this? Looking to experiment with your own sexuality, whether that be with realistic sex toys like fleshlights or vibrators, or through reading about similar experiences online, can help you to develop a clear picture of your own preferences and build a foundation for future relationships.
It’s straightforward to establish what you like – but how can you turn that into self-confidence and awareness of your own body? You might think that those in long-term, committed relationships benefit the most from this sense of self-esteem. However, studies reported by Psychology Today have shown that married men often have a lower sense of sexual self-esteem. Developing this confidence is not so different from developing good mental health habits elsewhere – if you look after yourself and accept your inner qualities and personality, you will develop confidence.
Transferring that confidence to partners
Sexual activity in itself is a boon to mental health, confidence, and shared understanding. Healthline report that it provides benefits to multiple areas of your life, including physical, intellectual, emotional, and psychological wellbeing. However, going into a relationship with someone and carrying their stresses can lead to the opposite impact. Having a well-founded sense of self and being able to communicate that will give a much healthier start to any relationship, and will break with the conventional wisdom of needing to be a strongman in the relationship.
Building confidence in yourself will enable you to react well with others. Sex is about understanding, being relaxed, and not carrying anxieties. Start with yourself before you make the jump into a relationship – you’ll thank yourself, and you’ll build a foundation for a strong future.