Lately, I look around at the people on the street, and I think, “Who isn’t stressed these days?”
With demands from work, family, and society leaving little time for relaxation, it’s no surprise that dysfunctions, diseases and other health conditions related to stress are so common. Stress can all kinds of negative consequences, and can even ruin your intimate love life.
Not all stress is bad
Let me be clear that stress is not always bad in every form. Stress on the body from exercise makes you stronger and healthier. Stress on the mind in the form of learning makes you more intelligent. Stress from emotional situations can prompt you to strengthen and deepen your relationships through conflict resolution.
But a problem arises when the stress just doesn’t go away. When you wake up with it, eat every meal with it, and go to sleep with it. And if you’re going to sleep with it, guess what?
There’s probably not a whole lot else going on in bed.
How stress affects your intimate life
When we have chronic stress, the body produces cortisol, and too much of this hormone interferes with the male reproductive system. Chronic stress redirects your body’s resources, making sexual functioning less of a priority. Nature designed things this way to make sure that if you’re facing an important problem, you don’t get distracted by your libido. Problems first, making love after. So if in your life you have some ongoing stressors, making love simply will not be your body’s priority.
What are some signs of that?
- You’re not interested or too tired for making love
- You have trouble getting or maintaining an erection
- You finish early or not at all
This is one of the most difficult things about our stress/libido problem: it’s a positive feedback loop. The more stressed you are, the more your intimate life suffers. As your intimate life suffers, you stress out about that. You might start fighting with your partner or growing distant. More stress. Less intimacy. And on and on.
Making love has the power to release stress and tension, but you have to be relaxed enough in the first place to be able to have great intercourse. And you can have great intimate relationship. But you have to take some efforts to gain back the libido and performance you once had.
Since stress can affect testosterone levels, you need to add things to your life to give them a boost. Exercise, a healthy diet, and supplements can help with that. Getting enough sleep is also important–when was the last time you woke up feeling rested?
A lifestyle check is in order too. Is your job too demanding? Do you need to move out of a toxic living environment or relationship? Do you spend enough time outdoors getting fresh air? It’s important to look at the primary pieces of your life and ask, “should I keep doing this?” We tend to assume our job, romantic partner, and home is fixed, but they’re not. If changing something will take away your stress, you should consider it.
Sometimes stress calls for a big change, and sometimes just a little one. Does your home need a spring clean? Do you need to have a conversation with your boss to adjust your workload? Maybe there’s an apology you owe someone, and telling them will lift the weight off your shoulder. Take time each day to notice what is eating away at you. Soon you will have your answer.
There are also ways to reduce stress at the moment if you can’t change anything just yet. A visit to the gym can work wonders, or even a night drive under the stars to let your mind drift. A playdate with your dog could be great medicine. Or if you don’t have one, maybe you should adopt one?
Stress doesn’t just have to be this intimidating monster that ruins your love life. It can be a sign that positive changes can turn things around for you. Choose one thing today to ease your mind, and you’ll be back to having great intercourse in no time.