Nathalie Sommer is a certified Relationship & Intimacy Coach, Women's Transformational Coach, speaker and international workshop facilitator.
Through her communities, 1:1 + group coaching, speaking and events. Nathalie is supporting and transforming women’s and couples relationships and lives from around the globe, helping them to create powerful transformations through sensual feminine embodiment, relationship & intimacy work.
You can also visit her official website to find out more about her services, or take Nathalie's Eros Archetype Quiz.
Or you can follow her work on Instagram and join her Lively Eros Temple For Modern Women Facebook Group for intimate chats all about relationships, pleasure and sex.
There are many possible reasons behind why it is harder for some people to get into the mood of having sex. It is not uncommon that Hongkongers in particular feel stressed from work, leading to a weakened sexual desire. For people in committed relationships, especially those who are married and have kids together, this question might pop up even more frequently. We got to interview a Relationship and Intimacy coach, Nathalie Sommer, to answer some of our questions on how to approach intimacy in relationships, with sex being one of the elements.
Most of us assume that men are more horny than women. In a way, the assumption is true. From a psychological perspective, men and women are wired differently - "arousal of men is more spontaneous and for women it's more situational,& Nathalie points out. That explains why it can be seemingly easier for men to become aroused as it can happen anytime. For women, they need to not only be stimulated, but also feel sexy about themselves, i.e. wearing a lingerie that boost their confidence. People have to take the effort to set the right mood - touching or massaging in places that the other person enjoys, or other sensory stimulations like scents and visuals.
Despite gender differences, arousal in people is ultimately individual at the core. Therefore, it is very crucial to know what we like as an individual, in order to ensure everyone is having a good time having sex.
Understanding yourself is key to better relationships. Nathalie told us that "many people often don't know what it is that they truly desire or how to communicate the desires." That can lead to many misunderstandings and dissatisfaction within the relationship.
While intimacy to many is regarded as something usually related to other people, intimacy to Nathalie means "into me I see." She believes that "we first have to discover what we feel comfortable with and what lies in ourselves on an emotional level." Ask ourselves:
"What does true intimacy mean to me?
Where do I block intimacy?
What am I truly afraid of?
What change do I need to create in myself?"
On the other hand, "when it comes to sensations, ask ourselves:
"What creates arousal for me?
What type of touch do I like?
What shame or block do I need to overcome?"
There are many questions that help with checking in on ourselves. And to put the questions to the test, we can try out new things, to expand our comfort zone bit by bit, and to figure out the answers. During sessions with her clients, Nathalie loves introducing yoni eggs and pleasure wands to women, helping them slowly discover their sensuality and become more confident in their sexuality. And of course, the variety of toys that we offer can be a good starting point to explore our sexuality, vibrators for the clitoris，vibrating rings, or anal toys to discover a whole new world.
"It starts with us, because we have to overcome our own blocks that’s preventing us from being intimate with ourselves. No matter how much someone else feels confident or comfortable, it won't change how we feel about ourselves."
After we have made the first step to understanding ourselves, naturally, we communicate those needs and desires to our partner, and vice versa. It is quite common for the passion to diminish as "the love chemical P.E.A. that is responsible for the passionate connection in the beginning, slowly starts to fade after about 18 months to the two-year mark,” Nathalie noted. We cannot expect the passion to remain without putting in the effort after being together for years. Nathalie emphasizes that "we need to put in some work to create erotic tension and keep our sex spark alive. There is always more to discover, we just need to stay curious and keep the mystery alive."
What happens is that often we give the other person what we personally like, the touch, the sensations, etc. But when we take a step back and find out what both individuals desire, it gives this powerful opportunity to deeply explore and be fed in your desire. "
Sex is definitely one of the ways to maintain passion in the relationship, but there are a few assumptions we might make when it comes to sex. "Often, we experience sex as something quite goal-oriented, hoping both people will have an orgasm and a great time. And if a woman has a hard time orgasming, the clitoral sucking vibrator is a wonderful toy," Nathalie adds.
Yet, we forget that we all have different needs and wants, and no person is wired the same. The idea prompted Nathalie to create a quiz to figure out one's Eros archetype that will "help people understand how to feed each other in their desires, their turn ons and the turn offs. " Basically, it is a good start to understanding what kind of intimacy we crave in sex. Once the two of you have a clearer picture of what you like and do not like, giving consent and setting boundaries. You can then "take turns in giving each other what they respectively like and it becomes a wonderful erotic dance between both people."
One of the practical ways to explore is to start with sensation toys. In her sessions with couples, Nathalie likes "creating a little 'pleasure box' with sensations toys." She also especially loves feathers and blindfolds for couples to help them explore and depending on their Eros archetype from the quiz, she adds more sensation and sex toys so they can both be fed in their desires and keep them curious to explore.
Relationship is always a team effort, let alone sex.