As we usher in a new year, the tradition of making resolutions often revolves around physical fitness, financial goals, and professional aspirations. However, one aspect that tends to be overlooked is sexual health.
Defined by the World Health Organization (WHO) as a state of complete physical, emotional, mental, and social well-being concerning sexuality, sexual health is integral to our overall well-being.
This article explores the significance of incorporating sexual health into your New Year’s resolutions, providing insights into the fluid nature of sexual health resolutions and their potential impact on your holistic well-being.
Understanding Sexual Health and Setting Resolutions
Sexual health encompasses a positive and respectful approach to sexuality and relationships, emphasizing the importance of pleasurable and safe experiences free from coercion, discrimination, and violence (WHO, 2006). Recognizing the profound role sexual health plays in day-to-day functioning is crucial for achieving optimal physical and mental well-being.
Sexual health resolutions for the new year can be a combination of things and the reasons behind them can vary. Sexual health is fluid coming up with a resolution that fits your lifestyle, interest, and/or curiosity can be fun and creative.
Resolutions are typically related to physical fitness and financial and professional goals.
Sexual health resolutions remain underrepresented due to societal taboos. Acknowledging and addressing this gap can lead to a more comprehensive approach to your overall well-being. By integrating sexual health into your resolutions, you not only enhance your physical health but also contribute to a healthier work-life balance.
Exploring Your Sexual Self
As the New Year unfolds, take a moment to reflect on any neglected aspects of your sexual health. Challenge preconceived notions and explore elements you may have deemed unimportant. Consider how prioritizing other health components may have led to overlooking the role of sexuality in your overall well-being.
Think about one thing you have neglected to explore or understand as it relates to your sexual health and see what you come up with.
Try to reconcile why you have categorized this element of your being as not important and how easy it was for you to brush it off to prioritize other health components that make up your well-being.
Promoting Sexual Health as a Resolution
Douglas (2013) highlights the increasing importance of addressing sexual health as part of public health efforts. In addition to managing stress through conventional methods, consider how enhancing your sexual experiences, whether with a partner or individually, can contribute to overall stress reduction and improved mental health.
Examples of Sexual Health Resolutions
- Increase frequency in the amount of sex or self-pleasure you engage in
- Explore a new fantasy or fetish you have been curious about or interested in
- Learn your body language (sensations associated with certain touches or activities)
- Prioritize sex in your relationship to feel better and manage stress.
- Talk about sex more.
- Increase confidence in initiating sex.
- Increase physical confidence by embracing your nude body more during sexual encounters (ex. keep light on; take the shirt off during sex)
- Be open with your sexuality and embrace it with others. (This helps minimize suppression of self which leads to depression.)
- Try a new position.
- Be intent on finding birth control that works instead of avoiding sex because what you have tried before didn’t work
- Seek out and talk with a sex therapist you have been contemplating about
- Try other forms of stimulation besides physical touch
- Self-reflect on some problematic sexual behaviors you’ve engaged in that increase stress and exacerbate other issues in your life.
- Go to the sex shop you’ve been meaning to try that you have been avoiding
- Have sex and sexual activity a part of your healthcare journey to maintain a healthier lifestyle
- Make masturbation a part of your shower or bath time a couple of times a week
These suggested activities aim to incorporate sexual health into your daily living, emphasizing its importance alongside exercise and a healthy diet. Recognize that sexual health is as crucial as other elements of well-being, contributing to disease resistance, strengthened immunity, stress management, and the balance of feel-good and stress hormones. As you embark on your New Year’s resolutions, consider the holistic benefits of incorporating sexual health into your goals for a healthier, more fulfilling life.
There are plenty of health benefits to sex. Indulge in our other articles that further detail the health benefits of sex.
Douglas JM Jr, F. K. (2013). Understanding sexual health and its role in more effective prevention programs. Public Health Rep, 1-4.
WHO. (2006). Retrieved from World Health Organization: www.who.int