The mystery of the disappearing libido & the sacredness of all women

 

Lack of sexual desire is most common in women, with one third of all adult women expressing that their low libido is a chronic problem that affects the quality of their lives, including half of all premenopausal women aged 30-50 experiencing this issue. This common condition is known clinically as hypoactive sexual desire disorder or HSDD, a term which most of us are unaware of.

Symptoms of HSDD include:

  • lack of sexual thoughts
  • lack of sexual desire that cannot be attributed to any physical or mental condition
  • Distress about the lack of sexual desire and the impact this is having on their intimate relationships.

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When counselling couples this is an issue I hear raised time and time again. It is typical for problems to arise after the birth of their first child with the added responsibilities including also having to work and the maintaining of a household. I have found that many women become highly identified with the ‘mother role’ and in their attempt to live up to an idealised version of what they believe a mother to be, lose touch with the woman they are.

This idealised image of a mother can never be attained or maintained for any length of time, so the woman will generally experience anxiousness in trying to attain it or avoiding feeling the failure of not being ‘all that’. Either way she loses out big time.

Women have taken on the role of ‘doing everything’ in order to try to be or feel ‘better’ then becoming resentful as a result. This resentment is then projected onto their partner and tension arises. Because she can never live up to this ideal, she feels dammed either way and therefore begins to internally give up and withdraw. This is the beginning of depression and chronic dissatisfaction.

Being a ‘good mum’ according to our conditioning does not include being sexual or feeling sexy, it doesn’t fit the picture so there is a loss of connection with their femaleness and sacredness which is physically located in the cervix. Because some women are becoming completely disconnected from ‘down there’, there is little wonder they lose sexual desire.

The same can be attributed to women who have not had children but who are driven to live up to an image in other areas of their lives. Even a woman who is attempting to live up to a temporal ideal of being sexy, is most times disconnected from her true sexiness and operates according to the image they are run by, therefore still experiencing the emptiness of not feeling themselves or that of being truly fulfilled.

An important factor to consider is that men, are not always, but commonly having sex to find a sense of connection they lack with themselves or just for relief instead of truly making love to their partner by honouring where she is at and all that she is. For women this becomes tiresome and an eventual turn off, so we do just that, turn off and shut down. We simply get sick of ‘having sex’ rather than experiencing the depth and healing that truly making love can offer us. 

Honouring the True Woman

Thousands of years ago it was natural for women to honour themselves. In the temples of the ancient world women were revered for for being the living embodiment of sacredness. This was nurtured, and from that way of being these women were able to live the great wisdom they carried,  a wisdom that we all still carry to this day, but for most lays dormant. 

It was from this connection that women would make decisions on how they chose to live and be in the world as opposed to the ideals and beliefs that are imposed upon women from birth in todays society. Instead of connecting to and living from our innate wisdom many of us live from our heads, we are confused, overwhelmed, feel somehow flawed and unworthy. But this of course is a choice, something we have the power to change. 

How? 

  • When we interrupt the constant chatter of the mind and reconnect back to our bodies we have the opportunity to connect deeply to our essence. A great way to initially support this connection is to do a simple Gentle Breath mediation for a few minutes several times a day. This creates a ‘stop and connect’ moment – a moment to realise that the knowingness and wisdom we naturally hold within far surpasses anything that is fed to us. 
  • Honour what your body is telling you. You know that little voice deep down that whispers a ‘no’ when you still find yourself saying yes? Let your inner knowingness guide you towards making more supportive choices in the way you are living. True vitality in the body supports your connection. 
  • Natalie Benhayon founded a dance called Sacred Movement which has been specifically designed to support a return to the connection with our sacredness. Please click the link above to find out more.

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  • Finally, know that it is ok to embrace your true sexiness, your connection, to claim this and live this. Do yourself a favour and everyone around you and hold none of it back. It is time women reclaimed this power within and lived it in full for all. 

 

Grieving the loss of a relationship

 

Grieving any kind of loss can be very difficult at the best of times and can cause feelings of confusion and desperation. If you identified strongly with who you were in the relationship or had your primary focus on your partner then the loss can be quite confronting, leaving you feeling lost and not knowing who you are anymore or where you belong. 

To avoid grief we may stay in unhealthy relationships that are clearly not working to avoid facing the prospect of being alone or experiencing the inevitable feelings of loss. 

What actually is Grief?

Grief is dealing with the loss of attachment. When we form an emotional attachment to another person we naturally invest our time and energy into the relationship, and consciously or unconsciously we are getting our needs met through our partner, to feel loved and needed, to feel worthy. When we are having these needs met through another person we place ourselves in a vulnerable position because if the relationship breaks down, we are then left with feeling the emptiness of what we did not give ourselves. Unless you are extremely evolved, feeling some kind of grief cannot be avoided, but there are things you can do to support yourself into not sinking into the depths of depression if your partner leaves you.

  • Meet your own needs – Whether in a relationship or not it is important that you know what your needs are and meet them yourself. Love and nurture yourself, appreciate who you are and what you bring. Care deeply for the beautiful you. By doing this you are setting a foundation on which you can stand in any given situation. Let that foundation of love be your rock, not your partner.
  • Do not hold back your love – Be as loving as you can be towards others. Many times we grieve not so much for the loss of our partner but for the fact that we did not show them our true selves or that we did not express lovingly with them on a consistent level.
  • Know that your relationship is not your life – The relationship you are in may be amazing, your partner may be amazing and what you have together incredible, but it is amazing because you are, it is how you are within your relationship that makes it what it is. When you live the love that you are and share it with your partner it is a beautiful experience but if they leave or walk away that love does not go because it is something that you are, not something you get from someone else. Love cannot leave you, but you can choose to express it or shut it down, the choice is yours. 
  • Allow yourself to feel your hurt – If your relationship breaks down it hurts. So allow yourself to feel it but be careful not to indulge in these feelings as this will confirm and cement your negative emotional state. Feel it, acknowledge it and get on with being as loving and gentle with yourself as you can.
  • Be gentle with you – Lets face it, drowning your sorrows in a bottle of chardonnay or downing a family sized block of chocolate actually ends up making us feel a whole lot worse! So take time to care for yourself, eat to nourish, hydrate (with water!), exercise, and find a close friend or trusted therapist as a support to share what you are feeling. 

Stages of Grief 

By understanding the process of grief we can make sense of the variety of emotions we may be experiencing. Anyone who has experienced deep grief can relate to the ‘waves’ of emotion that can arise and then subside. Grieving is not linear and each stage may be felt at anytime until the final stage of acceptance is reached and maintained consistently. 

  • Denial – as a response to the initial shock, the protective method of denial comes to the fore to buffer the hurt. We may even isolate ourselves from others to avoid the truth we do not want to face. 
  • Anger – As we get to a point where we can no longer deny the truth, but are not ready to feel our hurt, we use anger to mask the pain we do not want to feel. Anger may be directed at the loved one, at yourself or even at God, especially if your partner has died.  
  • Bargaining – In an attempt to make some semblance of being in control again we can bargain with ourselves, “if only I had been more loving”, or “If I hadn’t ignored him so much he wouldn’t have left me for someone else”, “maybe if I change she will take me back?”. This is our last line of defence before the dropping into the painful reality. 
  • Depression – When we realise we are not able to fight the truth any longer we may simply withdraw from life, there is a sense of defeat or giving up. This withdrawal creates a space within in that is felt as a deep emptiness, which is depression. 
  • Acceptance – In this final stage we begin to accept the truth, that our loved one has gone and will not be returning but realising that there is life after death so to speak. We commit back to life and start to feel ourselves again.

Kate Chorley is an experienced psychotherapist who has supported many of her clients through their grieving process. She practices in the Blacktown and Parramatta areas of Sydney and via Skype. Contact Kate here on or call 0402134097

The Importance of Self-Awareness in Relationships

 

Self awareness provides us with the emotional intelligence to successfully interact with others, the more deeply we know ourselves and why we do what we do, the more we can understand others, and with this understanding we can start to let go of judgement and bring more compassion to situations and therefore be less impacted by life. 

Self awareness is knowing what makes you tick, why you make the choices you do, why you think the way you do and how this impacts your life and that of the people around you. 

“To know thyself is the beginning of wisdom.” ―Socrates 

How to become more self-aware.

1. Learn to see yourself objectively – honing the art of self reflection is an important tool to develop self awareness. To do this well it requires honesty and lack of judgement. If you find you are judging others and defending your position, then you are only seeing life from a narrow, one sided point of view where there is no room from personal growth. Take a broad view on life and yourself, take time to feel what is true for you and what is not. You may find you have been unconsciously subscribing to a way of being that does not align with who you truly are. By becoming aware of this, you can begin to let it go. 

2. Reflect with another – Find someone you feel comfortable enough to be completely honest with, someone who will not judge you but provide constructive feedback. Doing this can provide invaluable support in your evolution. A great way to do this is with a therapist or other professional who is practiced at being objective and non judgemental in their response. When you can start to decentralise and see things from another’s point of view it is easier to see how change can be possible in all areas of your life. 

3. Keep a Journal – By keeping a journal you are able to see patterns of behaviour that occur in your life. Being able to see theses trends you can look for triggers or things you do that feed the pattern which opens up an opportunity to make different choices. When you journal things that you do each day; what you eat, whether you exercise or not and can see a link in the behaviour that follows these choices. One of the ways you can do this is by using the OurCycles App, a tool that is designed for both men and women to track your feelings and moods and make notes about your day. It is a great tool for self reflection. 

4. Nominate things you want to address – When you are able to clearly see those choices or ways of being that are not working for you, only then you can begin to truly address them. 

Growth and developing self awareness is an ongoing journey, one where you never truly arrive. So take your time and make it an everyday part of what you do and reap the rich rewards of living a life that is about evolution and personal growth. 

Kate Chorley is a psychotherapist & couples therapist practicing in the Parramatta & Blacktown areas of Western Sydney. She supports her clients in raising their self-awareness to lead more productive and fulfilling lives. Contact here or phone 0402134097 to make an appointment. 

Jealousy – Does the Green Eyed Monster Rule your Life?

 

Jealousy is an emotion that we all experience from time to time. But for some of us it can be crippling, effecting every area of our lives.

Jealousy is one of the most powerful and painful of all human emotions, in fact it can be deadly: Statistical data shows that jealousy ranks as the third most common motive for murder. And lets face it, being on the receiving end of jealousy is downright awful.

I can’t stop feeling Jealous, help! 

Have you struggled with repetitive and consuming thoughts over your new partners ex for example? Do you constantly put yourself into comparison with others leaving you feeling depressed, and that you are not good enough? Or do you begin to feel enraged when you see that friend or family member who is super confident and successful or who just seems to have life all worked out?

Feeling this way can begin to effect all your relationships, you are likely to become withdrawn, resentful and bitter. You want revenge, you decide that if you can get this person out of your sight you can start to feel better, so you begin to plot as to how to make this happen by having thoughts of how you can attack them and bring them down and to even get pleasure out of watching them suffer somehow, even for a moment. All this sounds pretty evil hey? Probably because that’s exactly what jealousy is – evil. 

So What is Jealousy? 

By understanding what jealousy actually is and how it works you can start to address it.

When you see and feel that someone has made different choices to you that has got them where they are today, choices that you could have made for yourself, this can enrage you and fill you with jealousy, why? Because deep down you know that you could have made those same choices yourself but didn’t, everyone has the freedom of choice.

We always have the choice of how we see ourselves, our attitude to life, of how we are in relation to another, the way we care for ourselves and others, the way we use our time and the list goes on… The truth is, regardless of our childhood or past experiences we can always choose differently today.

So how do I stop feeling this way?

  • First it’s important to nominate that the fact you are feeling jealous. By getting honest with yourself you can start to make true inroads to change.
  • Next, take the time to self-reflect, as jealousy is never about the other person, it is about you. Look at what it is you are jealous of, it may be that they are confident and joyful in their lives. If this is something you want, the fact is you can have this too, you just have to make certain choices to get you there. Look at where you may have made not so supportive choices and simply start to make changes in your own life, in other words – take responsibility for yourself and how you feel. 
  • Develop a healthy relationship with you. Let’s face it, no one is perfect and this is not something to aspire to, let it go. Start loving you for exactly who you are today, do not look back and beat yourself up for past choices, learn from them, and then simply start to choose what is true for you and what you want out of life. For example, if you want love, you need to be love! 
  • Be Inspired. If success and fulfilment is what you want, look to others who have this in their lives and let what they do and who they are inspire you to do the same, let their reflection confirm to you what is possible for you too when true choices are made. 

Relationships & Letting Love In

 

During the last 10 years that I have been working as a counsellor for individuals and couples as well as being married for over 20 years, I have found that most of us seem to have trouble with letting love in.

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This appears to be a huge contradiction to the general consensus that we all so desperately want and need to be loved.

So why when love arrives gently at our doorstep do we have so much trouble opening up and letting it in?

Many of us have grown up not knowing what true love is, we are told that we are loved, it’s written in cards and in messages but how many of us have actually felt truly loved and cared for, just for who we are?

On top of that we may not have been supported in learning to love ourselves, to develop our connection with ourselves and to make choices that support a healthy and vital body.

So how do we stop this cycle, as in truth we cannot blame our parents or anyone else for that matter because they may not have been raised in love either.

For many generations the focus was on survival, making sure that we enough money for food and a roof over our heads.

There was also the trauma of war and periods of depression. Although this is not the era with live in today, many of the consciousness’s of old have carried through and still subconsciously drive our choices and ways of being today. The focus is around money, having enough or accumulation of wealth; big homes, cars, holidays etc and also centralises heavily around what we do; our work, our achievements and that our lives must present well regardless of what is truly going on.

This will bring us the joy and fulfilment we are missing in our lives right?

The plain truth is, it doesn’t and we all know it.

Rates of depression, anxiety and suicide have never been higher; obesity rates are soaring as is diabetes and many other chronic conditions. This clearly states that something is very wrong in the way we are choosing to live our lives today.

The good news is we all have the power to change this, we are not victims of this world, of our family or society.

By choosing to take full responsibility for where we find ourselves, with as much love and care for ourselves that we can muster, true change can and will take place. It is through beginning to really love ourselves, and getting support in letting go of the hurts we carry, can we find ourselves in a place where we can begin to truly love another.

Love itself can never hurt you, how can it?

Love just loves, it asks for nothing because it knows it is already everything.

It is at the central core of who we are. Love will never leave us but we can certainly choose to reject it.

This is where I have found many have an issue, they reject love. I have found this is partly because we have grown up with a distorted view of what love really is.

We are taught to believe that love is something outside ourselves that comes to us, something we get if we do the right thing or something rare that only special people get to experience.

All of this is simply not true.

The love we so desperately seek resides within in us, and by making choices that support our connection to this love, this is something we can get to live each day, it is ours. Due to it’s endless abundance that can be felt when lived, we will then love nothing more than to share this love with others by letting them in to feel it too, so they may be reminded that it is within them also.

We come to know that we do not own love but that it is part of everyone, equally.

Love is about letting people in, so when we don’t like ourselves or fear that love may hurt us, we put up protection against it.

This simply does not make sense as to reject love we are rejecting ourselves which is an incredibly painful and exhausting thing to do, and something that will never truly work anyway.

Does this protection prevent us from getting hurt?

No it doesn’t. Why?

Because the very act of rejecting love and of keeping people out is where the true damage is done, this is what hurts us most.

The time is now to reconnect to the love within so we can begin to experience the abundance and joy that true love can bring.

By truly listening to our bodies and eating a diet that supports us to be centered and balanced, to do some gentle exercise everyday, to go to bed early and to develop open and honest relationships with ourselves and those around us are simple and straight forward ways of being that lead back to connecting to the love within.

But this is just the beginning because there are never ending ways we can deepen our love, with self-awareness and commitment we have the potential to live from this endless and abundant love 24/7.

I write this piece from my own lived experience, my ongoing learning and from the constant inspiration I receive from Serge Benhayon and Universal Medicine.

Are you Addicted to Love?

 

What is an Addiction to Love?

Being addicted to love means having on overwhelming need for adoration, attention, recognition and even physical touch. This is coupled with the initial rush of having these needs met by an individual or “new kid on the block so to speak.” The deep emptiness that the individual holds is now being filled, which gives a great sense of relief, and this is not unlike any other type of addiction pattern.

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Chasing a new target becomes the drug of choice used to medicate that which we do not know how to address or overcome ourselves by truly loving, supportive means.

Unfortunately this initial high is short lived, as those intensity of feelings cannot be maintained, what was once the greatest love story ever quickly descends into a horror movie of co-dependency, insecurities, controlling type behaviour, emotional, mental or even physical abuse patterns, constant bickering and fighting, and of course the barrage of text messages or calls.

What is happening here is the demand within the individual that is no longer being met at the level that is required to give them relief, so desperate and demanding type behaviour begins to surface. This type of behaviour incites feelings of guilt and unworthiness in both individuals. Unfortunately this sort of relationship can be very difficult to break away from.

So what is love?

The question here really needs to be – “was this really love in the first place or something else?” From what my understanding of what love is, it is certainly something else! I understand love to be a gentle and unimposing way of being, that is compassionate and deeply caring and accepting of others. Love is who we are not something we do or get from someone else. Love is an expression that we share. Love is complete and full and totally without need.

How to overcome this addiction?

To overcome this pattern we need to start with honesty. By being truly honest with ourselves it will direct us to finding true answers and ultimately true healing. I feel it is important to get some support, someone we feel we can trust and open up to; a professional and experienced therapist is geared to provide the kind of support needed here and is one of the best ways to go.

Any type of addiction has a pattern that needs to be identified and broken and replaced with new more loving ways of being. The bottom line here is to overcome your addiction to love you must start to love yourself first, where there is no self-love there is an emptiness and this is what drives the addiction.

There are many reasons for the lack of self-love but is usually comes from not being loved, respected and met for who we truly are from a very young age, we then hold onto these hurts, shut down, create false beliefs about ourselves and decide that all people cannot be trusted, the world cannot be trusted.

We stop expressing from the love that we are deep down, we instead express from our hurts and live in protection and simply do not live in a loving way with ourselves or others.

So right there creates a deep well that must be filled, so if it cannot be filled with true love anything else will do that gives a sense relief, even if short lived, so we confuse what gives a relief as being the answer, thinking it is love which it surely is not in this case. Take the time to build your relationship with self one that it is solid and true, and based on love, then we can go forward and build that with another.

Why am I so Anxious when it comes to Making Love?

 

If you struggle with feeling relaxed and at ease when your intimate with your partner you are not alone.

Many women more often than not silently battle with these feelings regularly. They feel confused, they know they love their partner and want to be with him, love spending time together, and just feel very comfortable in his company, naturally. But when it comes time to get amorous things begin to get a little frosty. He wants to connect with the woman he loves but he begins to feel the metaphoric door begin to close.

She starts to make excuses; I have a headache, its too hot, it’s too cold, the children may come in etc. he gets the drift, she simply doesn’t want to make love. For him, this is straight out rejection something that cuts deep, he may start thinking “if she really loved me it wouldn’t be this way….” So what is really going on for her?

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Most commonly women suffer from lack of self worth and even self loathing issues that plague them.

From not being met for the amazing beings they are as little girls to being bombarded constantly by images and ideals in the media, which are impossible to live up to. Women learn from a very young age they will be loved and adored for what they do as opposed to who they are. Very quickly they begin to lose themselves to a world of unrealistic ideals and beliefs they struggle to live up to or rebelliously oppose.

We as women, begin to disregard our true knowingness deep within in favour of what we believe the world wants us to be, its in this state of disregard we begin to lose touch with our essence, our worthiness, our preciousness.

We become hardened and disempowered, slowly building resentment against what we think we have to do to be loved and accepted.

To manage these unpleasant feelings we find activities and behaviours to numb and bury what we do not want to feel, such as smoking, drinking alcohol, chocolate, online shopping, or addictions of any kind. These activities will contribute to self esteem issues and feelings of not being good enough and even self loathing.

We simply do not feel good in our bodies anymore.

Along comes Prince Charming wanting to sweep us off our feet and the last thing we want to have happen is to take our clothes off especially with the lights on! So how do we overcome this. We know we want to want to make love and connect but there is something stopping us, just frustrating for everyone involved.

What is needed is for the woman to come back to herself. Within every woman is an inner essence of great beauty and wisdom.

Its about taking time to listen to our hearts which will always tell us what is true for us and what is not. Our minds have a great ability to lead us off track particularly if we are sold out to ideals and ways of being that are found outside ourselves. Its about being present with our bodies, with our thinking in alignment with what we are doing which is simply a state of mindful presence.

Take time out for you, lovingly prepare nourishing food that will support your body, go to bed early, exercise and most of all rest if you need to.

By treating yourself in a loving and nurturing way, your feelings of worth will begin to heal.

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You are gorgeous and amazing deep down. You are not your past experiences or your past choices, the essence of you will never change, it is divine and eternal. So take time to be gentle and kind to you and build a foundation of love that will support you.

Opening up to your man and making love will be something you will look forward to as it becomes a celebration of you, of him and the love that you share.

 

 

Dealing With Addiction Relapse

 

Many of us are struggling with addictions of all types on a daily basis whether it be drugs, alcohol, food, gambling, porn or any compulsive activity that takes us away from who we truly are. After working hard at getting yourself back on track and feeling positive about life again, you somehow find yourself slipping back in your old patterns and behaviour and feeling terrible about it! First thing I want you to know is, its OK! Don’t panic.

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I have listed a few very practical steps you can begin to implement right now, so lets begin..

1.     Be kind to yourself – remember life was never meant to be about perfection, it’s about finding a way of living that truly supports YOU and then simply living that way. It’s not about adhering to some external plan or idea someone else has fed you. It’s very personal and unique to you. It’s basically about being honest and true to yourself. So be gentle, this is not a time to start beating yourself up and being hard on you, he or she needs help right now not self condemnation!

      There is always a reason behind why we slip back, we may be stressed, overwhelmed, having relationship difficulties, starting a new job or it could even be that we are trying to live up to some ideal we think we should be living up to, very toxic! As I said now is not the time to start beating yourself up. Just recognise and be honest that you have slipped back – that is, nominate your current state and then begin to work from there- objectively not emotionally.

2.     Seek Help. It’s ok to ask for support if we need it. It takes courage and strength to be honest and open about what has happened. Its great to discuss this with another to feel their love and support. There are many amazing, loving people in this world willing to be there for another, one of them may even be you! So don’t be afraid open up and let people in, you don’t need to do this alone.

3.     Be Honest. By being really honest with yourself and using tools of self-reflection like journaling or talking with a friend, you can begin to realise what is going on at a deeper, subconscious level. You may be scared of failing at something, or you may be afraid of losing something or someone, or you may have gone into self doubt or perhaps deeper, unresolved issues may be popping up to be healed. Whatever it is for you its OK! By realising what it is we can begin to move forward with a deeper understanding of ourselves.

4.     One step at a time. I know it’s an old saying but I believe a very wise one –  just take one day at a time. Break it down to even smaller chunks if that works for you. It always amazes me how quickly we can come back when we work in this way.

5.     Regroup & Plan – Next step is about finding your way back to choosing a way of being and living that really supports you again. You know how to do this because you have done it before but this time we are going to refine the plan further, make it more specific to you. And that is the key, its needs to come from inside of you, not from me or anything outside of yourself. If you take time to be honest with yourself, you know what choices support you and which ones do not. A new day is a great place to begin again. Write down how an amazing day would look if you were living in a way that would make you feel really yourself again one that you could feel really good about.

·      How much sleep would you get, what time would you go to bed and wake up?

·      Would you enjoy having some gentle ‘wind down’ activities before bed such as a lovely bath, peaceful environment and some candles, fresh sheets? Much more appealing than being stressed and disorganised!

·      How would you prepare for the following day, what will you wear, etc? How would you like your room to feel like when you wake up the next day? Lovely, fresh, clean and organised feels good to me.

·      What will you eat? What and how much we eat has a huge impact on how we feel. Discover what truly feels right for your body and shop, prepare and cook the foods your body needs. Eating less can be more supportive also.

·      Incorporate some gentle movement, a lovely walk in the early morning helps you really start to re-connect back and support yourself again.

·      How would you be in relationship to others, what would that look like for you? When we support ourselves lovingly we are having a direct effect on those around us. We all have a responsibility to really care for ourselves, imagine if the whole world did this? What would life look and feel like, very very awesome I say! Ok so that’s a way off at the moment but if we do it in our little corner of the world it does make a difference.