The ability to sustain and enjoy a loving relationship over time is a blessing and supreme accomplishment. When stress, conflict, or periods of separation are successfully resolved, those experiences inspire resilience, strengthen the bond, and expand us as individuals. A couple’s issues are often a result of old attachment programming — body-based emotional habits that trigger ineffective reactions to feelings of threat. Honing skills for soothing stress and embracing loving pleasures can help partners work as a team to heal old pain and to build on the strengths of their connection. Empathic touch, affection, romantic play, and sexual pleasure are the body-based nutrients that support the greatest relationship satisfaction. A primary focus of this week is on the emotional and sensual pleasures that nurture relational and sexual aliveness. Through breath and body mindfulness, and Gestalt awareness and partnered exercises, participants explore methods for better self-regulation and mutual-regulation of stress, as well as the heart-to-heart and body-to-body attunement with their partners that fosters deep gratification. Some of the themes examined include expanding on emotional and sensual empathy; cultivating a broader view of the erotic spectrum; and becoming more mindful of the subtle verbal and body cues that enhance loving feelings and sexual desire. While this workshop is primarily experiential, any health professionals attending will also gain skills relevant to clinical practice.
Recommended reading: The Heart of Desire: Keys to the Pleasures of Love.