Got Performance Anxiety? Here’s How To Be More Confident In Bed

Don't let nerves stand in the way of a good time.

Do you have any sexual hangups? Maybe you’re worried about what your body looks like naked or perhaps you’re more concerned about how you ‘perform’, feeling insecure that you don’t have what it takes to rock your partner’s world. Either way, there are a lot of expectations when it comes to sex, some of them we can blame mainstream media and modern porn for, others are the result of our own imaginations. Add to that, women are told that in order to keep a guy we need to keep him satisfied, adding a whole extra dimension of pressure to something that’s supposed to be about pleasure, and we can get hung up about not reaching – or taking too long to reach – the elusive big O too.

If there’s anything that’s going to kill your libido quicker than you can say ‘cold shower’, it’s feeling anxious and insecure, so here we find out how you can ditch the inhibitions and get over those nookie nerves once and for all.

Pinpoint your sexual hangups

What are you worried about? Do you feel self conscious about your body? Worried about your lack of sexual prowess? Concerned you’ll make a tit of yourself trying to get into some new fangled position? Once you know what exactly is holding you back, you can break it down and figure out what to do about it. Knowledge is power and all that.

Manage your expectations

In every Hollywood movie sex scene ever there’s no awkward fumbling for a condom, no cringe ‘does that feel good for you?’ conversation and both parties climax in a matter of minutes at exactly the same moment. Hollywood has influenced our idea of what good sex looks like and that has led us to doubt our own sexual skillset.

Head’s up: sex isn’t supposed to look like it does in the movies and in reality breathless convos, mistimed orgasms and not-so seamless position switching are all par for the course. Real sex can be clumsy and awkward and still be amazing. Appreciate it in all its wonderful, messy glory.

Do what you can to feel your best

Does a spritz of your signature perfume make your confidence skyrocket? Are you totally feeling yourself when you’re going to the gym? Whatever it takes for you to feel your very best self, do it. You’re not always going to be perfectly preened for sex and bathed in the glow of candlelight, but setting the scene every now and then, be it with a fresh blowdry, a layer of tan or a blast of Beyoncé beforehand, will build your confidence for those unshaven, lights on, impromptu have-to-have-you-now rides that catch you unawares.

Divulge your insecurities

Trying to pretend you’re a wanton sex goddess when really you’re dying a little inside? Sometimes it’s good to fake it ’til you make it, but often we can make matters worse when we’re not being honest.

If your partner is someone you’re comfortable with and can trust (and really, if you’re sleeping with them, they should be) let them know what’s up. Chances are they’ve insecurities of their own and talking about them together is almost certain to bring you closer, which in turn should make things a whole lot more intimate and less awkward between the sheets.

Work together as a team

Now that you’re both on the same page, it’s time for the fun part: Practice! Make a pact to speak up and be completely honest about what feels good and what doesn’t, give each other clear instruction and experiment as much as you like. The goal? To build intimacy and let go of your inhibitions as much as possible so those sexual hangups will soon be a thing of the past. Sex isn’t this rigid thing that you’re supposed to do perfectly. It can be messy, fumbled and chaotic and really, when you think about it, isn’t that half of the fun?

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