My 21 Day Pleasure Activation Challenge (which I extended to all of October) is in it’s final days, and I wanted to share with you the key learnings I have taken away from this experience.
You keen listen in below, or prefer to read….then scroll on!
But before we dive in I want to share a little more around what pleasure actually is:
It’s a state of feeling and experiencing aliveness, joy and connection within our bodies.
And the thing is, the internal and external sensations of pleasure are always available to us. We just have to pro-actively access, cultivate and amplify these sensations so we can be in our pleasure and to fully inhabit all that we are
7 Key Takeaways from the Pleasure Activation Challenge:
1. Prioritise Pleasure
Prioritising my pleasure was the most potent take away I received as a result of the Pleasure Activation Challenge. If I didn’t prioritise my own pleasure, who would?
Completing this challenge and priorititsing my pleasure every day for an entire month was a major act of self-devotion.
I would start my morning asking myself this question, “What would my pleasure ask of me today?” and I would continue to ask this question throughout the day.
Instead of rushing around and ‘doing all the usual life things’ and being #busy, this question allowed me to tune into my body and ask her what she needed in that moment to feel lit up and blissful.
My pleasure may have been activated by going to bed early and reading my book, walking a different way to the shops and admiring some new sights or simply lying in the sun and enjoying having the sun stream on my face for five minutes.
Prioritising your pleasure doesn’t have to be complex.
You just need to prioritise yourself and your body’s wishes.
2. Plan Your Pleasure
Let’s face it, as modern day women we have a lot on our plates. It’s too easy for our own needs, wants and desires to fall to the bottom of the pile.
That’s why it’s crucial to prioritise and then plan your pleasure.
But how do you do this?
For me I would look at my week ahead and ask myself, “How can I incorporate more pleasure into my week?,” or “What tasks or activities would help to fill my body with pleasure?”
Maybe I felt like I needed to book in a yoga class, catch up with a girlfriend, try a new recipe for dinner, spend more time outdoors….you get the picture. Pleasure is different for everyone.
Once I felt into this question and had some ideas I would schedule these things into my weekly calendar (and PRIORITISE them!).
Because once the tasks/experiences are scheduled they are ‘real’ and you’re more likely to action your pleasurable tasks.
++ Little Extra Tip – I also found it useful to create a ‘Bliss List.’ This is a list where I would write down different things that I enjoyed and filled my body with pleasure. This list helped on days where I was at a loss and needed some support when it came to devoting myself to pleasure.
Also, I found that by prioritising and planning out my own pleasure, it:
a) kept me accountable to myself and
b) started to build an intrinsic habit (WINNING!).
Put simply, prioritising pleasure and building it into my day became my new normal.
3. Slow The Heck Down
Another key learning for me from the Pleasure Activation Challenge was the need to SLOW DOWN.
I have been on a ‘Go Slow’ journey for quite some time now….over 3 years, since becoming a mother. But this Challenge taught me that I needed to go even slower.
When we take up the challenge to slow down for long enough, we will receive the sensual pleasures and gifts that life offers up to us.
Slowing down helps us to be more present and to really tune into our five physical senses.
When we consciously slow down we can open our bodies up to enjoy the little (yet highly sensual) things in life like….
….the heart warming smell of fresh coffee brewing on the stove in the morning
….the cool breeze whipping across your face and through your hair on a humid day
….the sweet sound of your child giggling
….the smooth and rich taste of dark chocolate swirling around your mouth
….the beauty of a fiery sunset over the ocean.
When we carve out the time and space to fully feel and experience our pleasure we are more deeply connected to our bodies and have a greater ability to feel all the incredible sensations that are on offer to us.
So slow the heck down sister!
4. Inject Pleasure Into the Mundane
Although we would love to float around and be sensual goddesses 24/7, unfortunately it’s not that practical. We have kids to care for, relationships to nurture, businesses and careers to tend to and the list goes on.
However, when I was in ‘Mum Mode’ or ‘Business Mode’ and doing tasks that I just had to do, I’d ask myself “How can I make this task pleasurable?”
For example, I would fold the washing while watching a favourite TV show; listen to a podcast while ironing; put on some great music and dance around while preparing dinner; diffuse lovely oil while getting ready in the morning; wear my favourite perfume to school drop off; create an extra beautiful altar for my daily meditation, make myself a lovely pot of tea while I answered work emails…..these are just a few examples!
You don’t have to carve out hours on end or plan something really extravagant to experience pleasure within your life.
By adding simple pleasures to your routine, you’re helping to expand your pleasure stamina.
5. Pleasure Isn’t Simply A Reward
How often do we say “I’ll enjoy X once I’ve completed Y?”
The idea that we can only be in our pleasure if we’ve ‘earned’ it is bullshit.
We don’t have to tally up the ‘pleasure points’ and experience all of the wonderous sensations that pleasure gifts us until we’ve ticked off x, y and z from our to-do lists. It just doesn’t work that way.
Pleasure is feminine. It’s non-linear. It’s free flowing and hence it’s always available to us….despite if we’ve completed 100 push ups, cooked dinner, read 14.5 bed time stories and got our inbox down to 0.
At the start of the Pleasure Activation Challenge I found myself saying things like “Oh once I wash the dishes then I can sit down and have a cup of tea,” or “Once I write this blog post then I’ll make myself something nice for lunch.”
Stuff that. Seriously.
We are worthy of pleasure whenever the heck we feel like it. Throw away your to-do list and seduce yourself with pleasure, all the damn time.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again….
We must build pleasure into our natural rhythms and routines of life and business, as opposed to pleasure only being a reward.
6. Pleasure Fuels Productivity
Ok, so I just said throw out your ‘To-Do List,’ BUT I’m here to tell you that being in your pleasure fuels your productivity.
When we are deeply connected to our pleasure we can move into the feminine state of flow. We open up the infinite channels of creativity and we find that momentum builds and builds.
However, we have been conditioned to believe that pleasure is counter-productive. In today’s society it’s believed Pursuing pleasure stops us from #gettingstuffdone and if we’re not achieving our goals and ticking things off, then we aren’t worthy.
But I’m here to tell you that pleasure CAN and DOES fuel productivity. (Even though we can just experience pleasure for the pure delight of it….it doesn’t have to be attached to an outcome).
However, I digress…..I’m assuming that we are all multi-faceted, game changing readers here and we have big visions for our work and the impact we want to have on this world….so being productive is important to us.
And the thing I have found time and time again, is that when we are in our pleasure we work smarter rather than harder and we power through our to-do’s!
For example, since starting the challenge 30 days ago my work days have been slashed from 3 days to 1, yet I have completed so many juicey projects.
I have re-written all of my website copy, created a new email automation series, created and actioned a launch campaign for my latest Freebie – The Pleasure + Productivity Planner, and continued to write content, work with clients etc etc….and I have essentially done all of that in just 4 days over the last month!
I have found that when we are tapped into our pleasure and feeling nourished and full we can more easily access our bodies’ wisdom, which fuels even greater, more aligned action.
If you’re keen to try the exact framework I use each week to work smarter rather than harder, you can download a FREE copy of my Pleasure + Productivity Planner here.
7. Pleasure and Pain Can Co-Exist
I’m going to be completely transparent and share that despite being in my pleasure for the last 30 odd days as a part of the Pleasure Activation Challenge, I have also been struggling.
Struggling with acute loneliness, the physical and mental load of solo parenting, sleep deprivation, health issues…etc. etc. So I’ve been experiencing both emotional and physical pain.
One of the challenges we face when it comes to being in our pleasure is the belief that we have to be completely devoid of pain before we can experience pleasure.
And this simply isn’t true.
We can experience both pain and pleasure concurrently and as Elizabeth Dialto puts it so potently, “It’s ok to struggle and shine at the same time.”
And THIS is why pleasure is SUCH a powerful embodiment tool for helping us experience a more full and flowing version of ourselves.
And it’s so potent in helping us move out of struggle (or diminish the frustration with ‘struggling’) so it can pull us towards the lighter end of the emotional spectrum.
Our pleasure is oh so potent and it is POWERFUL!
I hope my key takeaways as a result of the Pleasure Activation Challenge will help you prioritise, plan and devote yourself to your own pleasure so you too can experience the true aliveness and enjoyment that pleasure brings into your beautiful body and your everyday life.
It is so worth it!
And if you’d like access to an incredible embodied business tool that I have created to help you prioritise your own pleasure….which will ultimately fuel your productivity, then sign up to receive my Pleasure + Productivity Planner HERE.
Expect to get more done each week in your business, while feeling juicy, lit up and oh-so alive in the process!