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Why does Sensate Focus touching help with sexual problems?


Our Sex Life Feels None-Existent

Sensate Focus Touching

You may have come across Sensate Focus, a technique used in sex therapy. And you’re probably aware that it involves people touching each other without expecting anything sexual to happen. But why exactly does this method aid in addressing sexual problems?

It’s natural

Sexual interest, arousal, and orgasm are considered natural functions akin to breathing, sleeping, and feeling emotions. No one needs to be taught how to breathe or experience joy or sadness.

However, negative thoughts, distractions, and emotions can interfere with these natural functions. For instance, emotional distress might disrupt sleep patterns or cause difficulties recognizing bodily signals like hunger.

Similarly, trying to urinate while feeling anxious or pressured can lead to problems. While these functions are innate, they can be influenced by various factors, including anxiety and anger.

Sexual disconnect

Many sexual issues stem from disregarding bodily cues and focusing excessively on distracting uncomfortable emotions. Additionally, attempting to force desire, arousal, and orgasm as controllable performances can exacerbate these problems.

So, what’s the solution?

It involves the same principle as addressing other natural functions: distracting oneself and refocusing attention on something else that increases the likelihood of the desired response occurring spontaneously.

It’s akin to being unable to urinate when feeling pressured and distracted until the pressure subsides and the mind focuses on something else, like the sound of running water.

Touch serves as the distraction

In the case of sexual issues, the alternative focus is tactile sensations. Through Sensate Focus touching, individuals shift their attention away from performance pressure and mindfully concentrate on touch sensations.

This shift removes the pressure to perform (“I must achieve full arousal”) and allows sexual tension to accumulate naturally between partners. By redirecting attention from unproductive thoughts to the sensory experience of touch, the pathway to sexual responsiveness paradoxically opens up.

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