How to Self-Pleasure for Personal Transformation

 "Allow" - artwork by Kristine Andrea, available at kristineandrea.com

"Allow" - artwork by Kristine Andrea, available at kristineandrea.com

As women, our sexuality can be a profound portal for awakening our personal power, purpose, and fulfillment in life. While there is an abundance of practices and teachings that can guide us on this journey, self-pleasure is undoubtedly one of the most powerful.

Self-pleasure is, of course, all about doing whatever feels best for you. Being intuitive, listening to your body, and enjoying yourself.

However, there are approaches and tools that can contribute to particularly profound shifts in your journey towards greater pleasure, orgasms, confidence, body-love, relationships, and more.

1. Full body emphasis and exploration

When you think about sex involving another, if that person was to only focus on stimulating your genitals and nothing else, how would that experience feel?

Women also often complain about not engaging in enough foreplay with partners - but when you self-pleasure, are you taking the time to truly open yourself up?

The experience of arousal and pleasure involves all of the senses, and it also requires the right balance between relaxation and activation of the nervous system. Touching your body all over and in new ways can support you to relax and de-stress (stress is what often contributes to low libido or difficulty with arousal!), create greater awareness of the emotions and tension held in the body, and ultimately set the tone for self-pleasuring in an explorative, intimate, and fulfilling way.

In addition, by touching and exploring your entire body rather than just the well-known erogenous zones, you may discover ways to experience pleasure that you had never considered!

2. Go inside

While the clitoris is beautiful and pleasurable, exploring and spending time inside the vagina is invaluable. The life-changing shifts like discovering my vagina and womb as an intuitive power source became noticeable for me when I began putting far more attention and awareness towards the sensations, tension, and pleasure available inside the vagina.

The intense rise and fall of pleasure from the clitoris is great - but the connection to self, the expansive, heart-opening, and life-shifting experiences of pleasure and orgasm available to us go far beyond the climactic appeal of the clitoris.

Tension and emotions are stored inside the vagina. So the more profound processes of self-healing and transformation often take place through exploring the internal walls and the cervix! 

This being said, be sure to honour yourself and allow yourself time to feel ready for penetration before exploring internally.

3. The breast-heart connection

Often times when sex or self-pleasuring feels dull, it is because the heart is closed. This can mean being closed off to our partner or else being closed off or avoiding feeling something we don't want to feel.

Paying attention to and massaging the breasts - especially as part of your whole body massage in the beginning, or focusing on the breasts exclusively for long periods of time - is powerful for awakening and opening the heart, and increasing arousal.

Many women have dissociated from their breasts for various reasons, so paying special attention to the breasts and heart-space can be powerful for re-establishing this connection and awakening pleasure.

4. Breathing & circulating energy

Breath is essential for circulating sexual energy, expanding pleasure and orgasm, and helping to move through emotions that arise during self-pleasure. There are many breathing practices that can be utilized during self-pleasure to enhance the experience, but as a start - simply bring awareness to your breath so that you can notice how it changes and why. From there, intentionally slow and deepen your breath while noticing how that affects sensation and the flow/build of pleasure.

5. Self-honouring & listening (patience!)

To truly deepen your connection to yourself and experience transformational shifts from self-pleasuring, it is essential to remain present to the physical and emotional sensations in your body, and to honor and follow them. It's about regarding your body as your teacher, and so listening and responding to what it wants.

A powerful aspect of this is letting go of expectation - especially expectations of experiencing pleasure or orgasm. When we place expectations on the experience, we immediately close ourselves off to the growth and discovery that can occur by self-pleasuring with absolute presence and openness. If we are attached to creating a particular experience for ourselves, we don't allow ourselves the space to feel and process the things that may be in the way of the experience we ultimately desire!

So it's about exploring, listening, and honoring whatever comes up. Interestingly, I find that the more I do this, the more pleasure I experience!

6. Vocal expression

There is a powerful connection between the throat and the vagina. Thus, the more we allow ourselves to vocally express in all ways, the more the vagina opens to sensation and pleasure. This means allowing the expression of all emotions and sounds - including anger, sadness, laughter, etc. The vocalization of sounds and emotion is also essential in the healing process.

7. Embracing the full spectrum of emotions

Many of us have been conditioned away from connecting with our vaginas in truly intimate ways. This is due to factors such as cultural shame around female masturbation or touching oneself, beliefs around the vagina and our body's processes as being dirty or shameful, and the constant display of the female body and sexuality as being in service of "the other" rather than our bodies being in service of our own pleasure and fulfillment.

When we start to bring awareness to the vagina in more intimate ways through touching and even watching (time to get the hand mirror out) - shame and beliefs surface and come into our awareness almost immediately. 

Just the very act of self-pleasuring may bring up emotions for you. Touching your body with the intention of giving yourself pleasure may bring up shame, guilt, or sadness. It also may bring up excitement, relief, or joy. Allowing yourself to feel all of these emotions is an important part of the space you hold for yourself while self-pleasuring.

Particularly when you begin massaging and pleasuring internally, you may be surprised by the arising of anger, grief, sadness, or shame. It is essential to honor these feelings and to express them.

8. Intention & time

Setting an intention for your self-pleasure practice can dramatically affect your experience. Tune in to yourself before you begin, ask yourself what you need or want in the moment, and speak that intention aloud or inwardly to yourself. For example: "I allow myself to receive," or "This time is for me to be present and honour myself."

With this, be intentional about the time you set aside for self-pleasure. Maybe even schedule time each week to make your pleasure a priority. While any amount of time is better than no time, the longer you spend with yourself, the more you give yourself the chance to open up and surrender to pleasure. Particularly when it comes to internal stimulation, it's essential to give yourself enough time to open so that you feel truly ready for penetration.

Along with intention comes commitment - especially commitment to the process and journey. I've embarked on a couple of 30-day self-pleasure challenges, and the self-discovery and expanse of pleasure becomes particularly noticeable with regular practice. If 30 days seems unrealistic for you, try 7 days, or even 3 times in one week.

Even by implementing just one of these principles, you will quickly notice a deeper sense of connection with yourself, as well as the awakening of your vagina’s intuitive guidance. The practice of intentional self-pleasure and its power to transform us is hugely underrated. Not only will your pleasure and orgasmic potential expand by utilizing these tools, but you will transform your relationship with yourself and others.

To learn more about how to awaken your connection to your vagina to experience powerful intuition, pleasure, and fulfillment as a woman, check out Viva La Vaginathe 4-week online course for women.