You’ve heard about journals and diaries, but have you heard about sex journals? A sex journal is a personal notebook in which you document your sexual experiences. Think of everything from fantasies and dreams to sexual activities past and present, changes in libido and everything sexual in between. It’s also referred to as a sex diary or an intimacy journal. Here are the benefits of keeping a sex journal and how you can start one.
Benefits of keeping a sex journal
Improved self-awareness: Writing about your sexual experiences can help you explore your sexual desires, boundaries and feelings. It can help you become more aware of your desires, boundaries and triggers. You could easily begin to see patterns in your preferences that you were previously unaware of. You’ll learn about your sex drive and how it changes and maybe how certain people really boost it in a positive way compared to others.
Better communication: The improved self-awareness about your sexual desires, needs and preferences can improve the way you communicate your feelings and desires with your partner. Better communication can lead to a more fulfilling and satisfying sexual experience.
Reflecting on past experiences: It can help you reflect on past sexual experiences and track personal growth. This isn’t just for long-forgotten exes. Reflecting on past experiences with a present partner and sharing those feeling with each other can increase intimacy between you which can lead to an even more satisfying and fulfilling sex life. Even if you’re not having sex with any other person, a sex journal can help you process your individual sexual experience and your future desires.
Better sexual experiences: Knowing what gets your motor running and what you don’t want more of can help you make adjustments to your sexual routine and sexual experiences.
Tracking sexual health and wellness: It can help you track sexual health information like birth control usage, STI testing and other sexual health concerns. For example, if you have chronic pain, you can use your sex journal to track how it affects your sexual experiences.
Explore fantasies: If you keep having certain recurring dreams and fantasies and they keep recurring in your sex journal, you could consider making them happen and spicing up your sex life.
How to start a sex journal
A sex journal can be beneficial for individuals and couples. Here’s how to start one and some things to keep in mind.
Choose a journal format: will you go pen and paper or digital?
Determine schedule: will you write daily, weekly, or monthly? After each sexual encounter or aggregated after a period of time? Setting a schedule helps make journaling a regular habit.
What to include: what will you write about your sexual experiences, fantasies, desires, boundaries, past or present? What gets to go in?
Consider using personal reflection questions: using questions can help you go deeper into the experience. What did you like? What else would you have wanted to happen? And so on. You can compile questions online.
Write freely and honestly: focus on expressing your thoughts and emotions as honestly as you can. Be specific about what you liked, what you didn’t, and what you’d like to try in the future. The more specific you are the better it will be as a tool of self-reflection.
Don’t judge yourself: there’s no right or wrong and the truth is most of our views of sex and intimacy are clouded by baseless societal constructs. Make your sex journal a safe space for you.
Be safe and private: find a way to keep your journal safe and protect the privacy of those involved. Ensuring it’s safe will help you be more open and honest because there’s no fear of it falling into the wrong hands.
Evaluate your journaling: pay attention to how writing the sex journal makes you feel. How do you feel, before, during and after? It should feel good and not like you were just judging yourself on paper. If you consistently feel overwhelmed by the experience, consider speaking to a sex therapist.
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