July 29, 2014

The Art of Flirtation

rockstar_crop_kiss_gallery

Welcome to the fourth installment of our 8-week summer series, The Womanly Arts Unplugged, in honor of our upcoming course, Virtual Pleasure Boot Camp! This week, Laurie, a Mastery and Boot Camp Grad from Michigan, joins us to teach about the Womanly Art of Flirtation! Laurie, Age 65 – Retired Nonprofit Director The Art of […]

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July 22, 2014

The Art of Sensual Pleasure

simin headshot gallery

Welcome to the third installment of our 8-week summer series, The Womanly Arts Unplugged, in honor of our upcoming course, Virtual Pleasure Boot Camp! This week, Simin, a Mastery and Boot Camp Grad from the NYC area, joins us to teach about the Womanly Art of Sensual Pleasure… Simin, Age 38 – IT Director & […]

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July 15, 2014

Having Fun No Matter What

maurya

Welcome to the second installment of our 8-week summer series, The Womanly Arts Unplugged! This week, Maurya, a Mastery and Virtual Pleasure Boot Camp Grad from Boston, MA, joins us to teach about the Womanly Art of Having Fun No Matter What… Maurya, Age 51 – Lawyer, Coach, Wife and Mama The Art of Having […]

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July 8, 2014

Whetting Your Own Appetite

holly_red dress_gallery

Welcome to the first installment of our 8 week summer series, The Womanly Arts Unplugged! This week, Holly, a Mastery Grad from ’13 and ’14 from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, joins us to teach about the Womanly Art of Whetting Your Own Appetite… Holly, Age 34, Lawyer Whetting Your Own Appetite is one of the most difficult […]

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July 1, 2014

The erotic freedom of giving your all

summer_2

Darling, It’s very nearly July 4th. Which has me thinking about freedom, intense effort, and something I have noticed. There is nothing more erotic than giving your all. Whether it’s to create freedom for yourself, or others. To stand firmly for what’s right. Pulling out all the stops, no holding back, and offering all of […]

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The Art of Flirtation

Welcome to the fourth installment of our 8-week summer series, The Womanly Arts Unplugged, in honor of our upcoming course, Virtual Pleasure Boot Camp! This week, Laurie, a Mastery and Boot Camp Grad from Michigan, joins us to teach about the Womanly Art of Flirtation!

Laurie, Age 65 – Retired Nonprofit Director

rockstar_cropThe Art of Flirtation is so simple and yet I really tried my best to make it hard. Mama Gena defines flirtation as “enjoying yourself in the presence of others.” That should not be hard to do, right? The problem was, I didn’t understand what true flirtation meant.

I thought flirtation meant that I was looking for a sexual relationship and that flirting was a way to attract men. I pictured old movies where a woman bats her eyelashes and fawns over a guy, telling him all the things she thinks he wants to hear, leading towards some kind of sexual outcome. I never had much time for people who only told others what they thought that person wanted to hear. It felt so fake. I had no interest in flirting and never ever thought I could be good at it, even if I wanted to!

As a gay woman I was even more skeptical of flirting — I was not interested in attracting and flirting with men, and was convinced this was not the Art for me. I thought flirting was all about the other person and making them feel good with no regard for how I felt.

After all that I learned from Mama Gena, the School of Womanly Arts and my Sister Goddess community, I now understand that true flirtation is all about enjoying myself, and uplifting someone else as a wonderful by-product of my flirt.

One thing I love about flirtation is that it just removes so many barriers that we create between ourselves and others. It’s like walking into a room and turning on your light, and letting everyone else bask in the glow. It is plugging into my power source, and attracting everyone in that room who cares to participate in my happiness to join in.

I believe that happiness and flirtation go together. It’s hard not to flirt when you are happy! When I’m happy with myself, and comfortable within myself, I reach out more to people, I uplift them, I do anything I can to bring them into their own power and joy…while taking myself deeper into my own power and joy as well.

There is no room for negativity if one is practicing the Art of Flirtation. Practicing flirtation has removed criticism and fault finding from my life. It has relieved my depression, given me great happiness and allowed so much space for me to attract happier people into my life. Flirting is a win-win situation. No one loses!

Honestly, out of all the things I’ve learned at the school, Flirtation has changed my life the most. This tool has enabled me to stop trying to control the outcome of a situation, and just stay right in the moment and be positive about it. It’s like walking through life with my hands open instead of my fists clenched. It relaxes my body and releases tension. I know that I can find my joy, bring others higher alongside me, and get out of any tough situation by using flirtation.

Every woman has her own style, or brand, of flirtation. How would you describe yours?

rockstar_in_new_yorkI’d say my style of flirtation is humour and empathy.

I always try to lighten up a situation by making someone laugh (and making myself laugh)!

I try to have an awareness about people, sensing when they need to be flirted with. I take so much pleasure in giving someone a compliment and making them smile.

I work with our scholarship program at the YMCA  for low income families, and I remember one woman in particular. She was having a really hard time asking for help, speaking in a very low voice so no one would hear her. She had just lost her job, and things were so rough for her. I smiled and said, “Ok, let’s go sit over here and have a little chat.” That’s flirtation — it’s me paying special attention to her. By the end, we were both laughing. We had formed a mutual admiration society, that just took away all the barriers.

Flirting, for me, is about finding all the rights, and not all the wrongs. Really, there is plenty to find wrong in this world. I flirt with love, I flirt with what’s right…I flirt with babies and I flirt with grumpy people. I flirt with men (I am really good at this) and I flirt with women (I am even better at this)!

The Art of Flirtation is such a joyous, happy tool, and I realized that flirting with anything and anybody is what I am all about. It is the essence of me. It makes me have tears in my eyes talking about it because I so much want everyone to practice this art on a daily basis. Flirting is a life force — my life force.

What are the obstacles to flirting, in your own experience or what you’ve observed from others?

1. Self doubt
2. Fear of doing it wrong
3. Overthinking the outcome

Before I tried the Art of Flirtation for the first time, I was convinced I wouldn’t be good at it, that I’d do it wrong, and most certainly be rejected. Why would I even start, from that place?

For me, it was generating just enough confidence to take a risk. I decided I really wanted to change, and if I was going to really practice the Womanly Arts, I had to get out of my own way, stop overthinking it, and just do it.

So I finally did, with a grocery clerk. continue reading…

The Art of Sensual Pleasure

Welcome to the third installment of our 8-week summer series, The Womanly Arts Unplugged, in honor of our upcoming course, Virtual Pleasure Boot Camp! This week, Simin, a Mastery and Boot Camp Grad from the NYC area, joins us to teach about the Womanly Art of Sensual Pleasure…

Simin, Age 38 – IT Director & Artist

Simin headshotPracticing the Art of Sensual Pleasure simply means owning your power.
Sensuality means a lot to me, it is my essence, it is who I am.
My sensual expression is my light, my connection to the divine.
It is the truth that lives in my body and is undeniable.

When I’m regularly connected to my sensual self, everything is different, because I am grounded in myself. I am walking differently, operating in the world with more confidence, feeling calm and relaxed and thus able to express myself clearly. I come from a place of wisdom, I am playful, and turned on. Connecting with my sensuality helps me feel uplifted and to seek guidance when I need it.

The Art of Sensual Pleasure happens for me on three levels. There is the physical level — acknowledging the presence of my sensual self. The emotional level — sensing that I am supported, and held by a deep power within. And at a spiritual level, my sensuality is my wisdom.

Paint us a picture of some of the ways you practice The Womanly Art of Sensual Pleasure in your daily life.

First of all, sensuality is not just about sex. I practice the Art of Sensual Pleasure using all of my senses. I especially use sound, taste, smell, and movement to connect with my sensuality throughout my day.

It’s this practice that helps me stay connected to my divinity and my wisdom, which is so important, especially because I work in computers all day! It’s a very heady job, and if I don’t practice this Art regularly, I can easily get ungrounded and not present.

Here are some examples of how I often connect with my Sensual Pleasure:

  • Fragrances really help ground me and connect with my body. I use pure essential oils often. For instance, I’ll use lavender to calm me — I use it every night, or sometimes when I’m stressed. There is also a particular perfume that really turns me on, and I love to smell it when I’m intimate with my husband.

  • Another way I use smell, as well as the sensual pleasure of beauty, is with flowers. I always keep flowers on my nightstand, for example. When I shop for flowers, I just feel into which bouquet wants to come home with me, depending on what I’m needing. Sometimes it’s roses. Sometimes it’s the fresh feeling of lilies.

  • Then, there’s taste . . . I love flavors. I especially love different flavors bursting in my mouth that surprise me. Taste is so important. Food is a very pleasurable experience for me. It’s also something that I really abused for many years. Because I wasn’t truly connected with my sensuality, I sought instant gratification through sugar and fatty foods. For several years, I was highly dependent on food as my source of pleasure. Now food and taste is just one of many ways I experience pleasure and tap into my sensuality.

  • Music! When I listen to music, it’s like boom, I drop into my body. If I’m very in my head and I’ve had a stressful day, and I feel disconnected, almost like I’m split between head and body, the easiest way I can tap back into my sensual pleasure is to sit at my desk and listen to music. Sometimes I just need to listen to a dark song and move my pelvis — just to feel my connection with my pelvis and my legs and my shoulders. That brings me back and grounds me in such an important way.

  • On a daily basis, I also acknowledge my feminine pleasure center. I will breathe deeply into her, move my hips to awaken my pelvic muscles, and take any action to draw my awareness to her.

  • Another way I really get embodied, feeling connected with my own body and the earth is nature. I love walking in the park, laying and rolling around in the grass. And hugging trees!

For me, practicing the Art of Sensual Pleasure has seeped into so many moments of my day, and how I navigate life.

What can you remember about early messages, or experiences, you received around Sensuality?

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Having Fun No Matter What

Welcome to the second installment of our 8-week summer series, The Womanly Arts Unplugged! This week, Maurya, a Mastery and Virtual Pleasure Boot Camp Grad from Boston, MA, joins us to teach about the Womanly Art of Having Fun No Matter What…

Maurya, Age 51 – Lawyer, Coach, Wife and Mama

Maurya HeadshotThe Art of Having Fun No Matter What is really my favorite art, because it’s about claiming my power and agency, and making the choice in any experience to find my pleasure and joy.

When I’m practicing this Art, I look at my life through the lens of a researcher, exploring ways to inject fun . . . even if, especially if, I’m dreading a particular obligation.

When I first learned about the Art of Having Fun No Matter What, I was like, “Yeah right. Are you kidding me?!” I didn’t think it was possible. Have fun no matter what? Come on. It seemed so frivolous, and unattainable.

Then, I moved into “research mode” — I still didn’t think it would bring enough change to be worth the effort, but I decided to experiment.

It was all about the baby steps. Flirt with a toddler, or a puppy. Go to Starbucks, get your favorite drink and compliment the barista on how they made it. It’s about treating yourself to that connection, and pleasure, in all the little moments that could otherwise just pass by.

That’s the way that I was willing to try this — choosing little risk-free opportunities to inject fun, and practice pleasure. And then notice, okay how do I feel? Lighter. Okay, interesting. And that’s what propelled me to take bigger risks, with bigger change potential.

What was your relationship with Fun like, before and after learning the Womanly Arts?

Before I learned the tools and arts, I did all the things I thought I was supposed to do. I was a good lawyer. I made good money. I was a good wife. I was a good mom. I volunteered. A lot.

I went to parties. They’d be . . . kinda fun. But because I didn’t feel fully confident about who I was and what I wanted, I was still concerned with what people thought of me, there was a certain level of self-consciousness. I would make nice conversation, it was lovely, blah blah blah, but it wouldn’t really feel juicy and connected.

See, I’m not the loudest crayon in the box. Before the SWA, I thought that having fun meant trying to be someone I’m not. I learned how to look like I was having fun — big smiles! But those experiences didn’t really light me up. I wondered, “Is that all there is?”

On a spectrum from A to Z, where A is bottom of the depths heartbreak and Z is total ecstasy, I was living in the middle of the alphabet. It was a pretty narrow bandwidth.

And I think that’s the societal thing that’s expected! If you’re too happy, people are taken aback — it’s too much. I think my standard answer to “How are you?” was “Ok, hangin’ in there,” and depending on how close we were, maybe “Ugh, it totally sucks.”

My life was pretty bland. And when I think back, it just didn’t occur to me that there was an option to have better.  continue reading…

Whetting Your Own Appetite

Welcome to the first installment of our 8 week summer series, The Womanly Arts Unplugged! This week, Holly, a Mastery Grad from ’13 and ’14 from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, joins us to teach about the Womanly Art of Whetting Your Own Appetite…

Holly, Age 34, Lawyer

Whetting Your Own Appetite is one of the most difficult and most essential arts of the goddess. The way I see it, whetting your own appetite is the opposite of playing the victim, or waiting to be rescued. Whetting your own appetite is choosing to love yourself in the way that you’re waiting to be loved by the prince — it’s choosing yourself for that great love affair, and then falling in love with yourself as you would the love of your life.

Whetting your own appetite is how you begin to love yourself with complete abandon — it’s the first lick to the lollypop; the last step off the diving board, and it can be really hard to do. It all starts with being hungry. Appetite is attractive, powerful and contagious in the best way. You know how, even when you’re not hungry, if you’re around someone who is…someone who’s like “oh my god, let me tell you about the pizza that I want so much I can taste it” and pretty soon you’re so hungry for pizza you can taste it too? Same thing.

All the ridiculously delicious situations I have found my way into…they all started with my appetite, my desire.

This art is the first step. If you don’t invest the time, when you’re grumpy and swampy and bored, to properly get that appetite built up; get it not Whetted but WET…the rest of it will not work.

I use this art to deal with 12-hour days, bad news from good people; bad news from bad people, shitty dates, scary conversations, anything I feel nervous or little about.

I tune out of my head, tune into my body and start to feel what she wants, what she desires, what she hungers for. As long as my attention is tuned into that turn-on — to the feel-good part of those desires — then any result that manifests itself is exactly perfect, and more likely than not, the result that manifests itself is the one I was desiring or better.

Back up for a moment…how did you find your way to the School of Womanly Arts in the first place?

I lost a bet, and as the “loser” I was forced to read Mama Gena’s book. I was, at the time, NOT the kind of woman who indulged in self-help books; NOT the kind of woman who had patience for anything pink; and NOT the kind of woman who had time for such things.  continue reading…

Darling,

It’s very nearly July 4th.
Which has me thinking about freedom, intense effort, and something I have noticed.
There is nothing more erotic than giving your all.
Whether it’s to create freedom for yourself, or others.
To stand firmly for what’s right.
Pulling out all the stops, no holding back, and offering all of your attention and all of your love to your endeavors.
To live your commitments, no holds barred.
Giving your all is how to create your destiny, and realign the world.

When I lead my classes, I leave it all on the stage, every time.
Riding hard and coming back sweaty is where the fun is.
The only reason I am capable of laying it all down, day after day, week after week, month after month, in every dimension of my life, is that I know pleasure and I connect daily to my erotic nature.

Pleasure does not deliver you from a life of great output, but, rather, it insists you live your passions with every drop of your being. (Click to tweet!)
Which, inside our culture, is a revolutionary act.

It is not easy to live your passion in a world that encourages mediocrity. And living your passion — choosing to surrender to that place of inner knowing — places each of us in the vulnerable uncertainty of not knowing the outcome, or how we will get there.
Giving our all does not protect us from the times in our lives where we feel the darkness before the dawn, when we very nearly implode from the intense pressure, of work deadlines, of massive projects, of rupture in our personal lives. During those dark days, it feels like it might never get better, and we begin to doubt that we will ever get to where we want to go.

But soon after that lowest point, and, in fact, precisely because of the lowest point, things transform, the sun rises, resolution comes, the unimaginable occurs.

The trick to accelerate and realign your world is to keep flow and movement happening. In other words, you must bring your erotic power to the pressure.
continue reading…