Project Relationship: Creating A Shared Purpose In Marriage With Joli HamiltonNov 03, 2022
If you've ever felt like you and your partner are not on the same wavelength, yet you have to make some important business and life decisions together, you need to pay attention to this! Lisa Pezik goes deep into the need of creating a shared purpose in marriage with Joli Hamilton, a relationship coach, public speaker, and author of Project Relationship. Learn how to balance the power in a relationship, how build a strong foundation with your spouse, and how important it is that everyone is comfortable when having sex. Come and sit down with Lisa and Joli to understand how women can create sustainable, soul-nourishing relationships without sacrificing their career dreams.
· How to get off the cultural escalator for how marriage is supposed to look and how to get set up for success from the start (or how to get you there now.)
· Why resentment is the killer of growth and how to avoid it.
· How to have the best conversation when it comes to decision making with the HALT method.
· Understanding the brake and gas pedals in sex and how to be conscious of the language around sex and the impact it has in a marriage.
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Project Relationship: Creating A Shared Purpose In Marriage With Joli Hamilton
If you've been around the block and you've been here with me, you know that a huge piece I talk about is how our business and our life are not separate. That age-old, you don't have a business problem, you have a personal problem that's spilling over into your business. In this episode, I want to dive right into relationships, relationships with your spouse, whether you're now cohabitating in your home, working from home, doing all the things in the home, all up in each other space that you're not used to. Maybe you're making big business decisions or maybe little business decisions, new decisions, and you're not on the same wavelength. Lastly, we're going to talk about sex and what does that looks like in pandemic time? I'm so honored to have Joli Hamilton on.
Thanks so much for having me, Lisa. It's honestly a total honor. I'm super excited to dive into this conversation because where you're talking about, that intersection, is where we find there’s huge growth potential, but also huge potential for pain and destruction of lives. We're in a juicy zone right here.
We can't run from it because this is where we're at and let's speak to it. Let's pull back the curtain. Let's bring some awareness to it and know that if you're reading and you're going, "This is me. This is my marriage." There's no judgment. There's no shame. It's completely normal.
There's no class in love. In high school, we learn Algebra, but we don't learn how to be in really stable loving relationships. It's okay to not know. It’s a set of skills. You can totally learn it.
Let me tell you about Joli. She's a Research Psychologist, bestselling author, a certified sex educator, TEDx speaker, and a sex and relationship coach. She holds a Doctorate in Depth Psychology from Pacifica Graduate Institute. She spent many years working with clients, helping them improve their relationship skills, and is also a Professor of Human Sexuality. Over the past two decades, started a dozen business ventures ranging from clothing design to personal training, to providing birth and lactation doula services, all while managing her relationships, pursuing her graduate degrees, raising and homeschooling seven kids. You have felt the wild highs and terrible lows that have come with business ownership, marriage, divorce and reinventing love from the bottom up. I love your mission statement. You're committed to helping women create sustainable soul-nourishing relationships without sacrificing their career dreams. Where do we start in this? You lead me where to start in this conversation.
We are, hopefully, moving back into real life but let's start with, what have we just gone through together? If your relationship didn't experience some bumps in the road over the last year-plus, honestly, I'm wondering whether you were in your relationship or whether you had taken a magical sleeping pill and you snooze out the pandemic. It's totally normal to have experience and bumps and bruises over this last year. Let's talk about why that can be so destructive to our bottom line, to our being able to start the business we want to start. You may have had a big inspiration during this time. I did.
I started a new business during this time. I was like, “I see a need there. Let me fill it.” There's also this fear and panic that has been going on. When that enters in, you will go to turn to your loved partner for that solace and comfort and they're scared too. Now, the world is dealing with stuff. You need to make business decisions from a place of abundance, satisfaction and fulfillment and this is hard. I think that people don't necessarily set themselves up for success because they are trusting the fact that the cultural story of, we get on the dating escalator, we go along and after a certain number of dates, we do X, Y and Z. Eventually, we wind up with a proposal in a marriage and we live together. We then probably have a kid or two, or in my case, seven.
We weren’t taught about love in high school, so it's okay not to know what it is.
There was this story and we use that story to hold us, to create the illusion that there is a way to be married. There's a set of rules that will hold us, so we don't have to make agreements. We don't have to negotiate, "How are we going to share power in this relationship? How are we going to handle big emotions in this relationship? What are we going to do about our monogamy? What are we going to do about raising children together? What are we going to do with our money?" Deciding those things consciously is not in that one story that we're told. We're told we plan the wedding. What happens next? Be happy. Good luck. You're supposed to be happy but behind the curtain lies the magic of making a satisfying relationship that is also a growth experience.
I look at a relationship as an individuation accelerator. It's your opportunity to go through hard things with another person and continue to grow. If you want to do that, you're going to have to have hard conversations before there are emergencies. You want to dive in. That's what my work is all about. It's about helping people design the relationships that they really want. No more cookie-cutter, one size fits all stuff. It's not realistic. It never was. We have enough freedom and power now, especially you ladies, to ask for what we want but we got to decide what that is. We can't wait until there's an emergency or until we want to start a business. That's so late in the game. Ideally, you're listening to this thinking, "I need to get some of these agreements made," but realistically, most people come to me when they're already in the thick of it and they're like, "We're not on the same page. We don't agree on how to share power. We don't agree on how we raise our kids. We don't know how to share money well. What do we do?"
When you say share power, what exactly do you mean by that?
All relationships include this aspect called power. When we're in business, we recognize this. We own the fact that if we want to have a powerful meeting, then better to have the client come to us. If you want to do a merger and acquisition, you want to be on your home turf and not on theirs. We know that. What about when we're in a marriage? If you really believe that there's no will to power there, great, but that doesn't mean that your partner doesn't. Power is one of these facts of our existence, especially in American culture, so might as well acknowledge it and learn how to talk about it. Learn how to talk about what it feels like when you have to negotiate for how you spend money in your house.
Maybe one of you makes more money, one makes less. Maybe one of you has always done the finances and so you feel ownership over the finances. How do we figure out how to have a conversation because that isn't about the money, so much as it's about my sense of safety? When I say power, I mean, how much autonomy I feel, how much control I feel over my environment. Now, you're into everybody's childhood stuff. You're into how your parents ran their relationship. You are in the thick of it. It's normal to need some guidance in here. That's the normal thing. It's pretty unusual for somebody to be like, "We just never had to have those conversations and it's always gone perfectly fine," unless one of you is door matting.
You're shying away and not even having the hard conversation. When you have to have it, it becomes this blow-up. It becomes this building, as you said, this escalation and resentment. All that not fighting fair because you're bringing all this baggage into this one time you finally have the conversation.
We know that resentment is one of those four horsemen of the apocalypse. Resentment is coming for you and your long-term happiness. You really want to get ahead of it. You want to you want to get ahead of resentment by having what you may think of as very difficult conversations. If you have them at a time when there's not an emergency or there's not an urgent deadline, then you can set yourself up for a really solid conversation. There are steps to take. Something that I teach all of my clients is, if you're going to have a hard conversation, plan it. Don't just go as a spur of the moment. They don't know you want to have that conversation.
Ask for the time. Set aside an appropriate amount of time, 30 to 90 minutes at least. Make sure that you can do it uninterrupted because one of you may have feelings about sharing personal information in front of your kids. Follow the HALT guideline. Make sure nobody's Hungry, Angry, Lonely or Tired before you start having this conversation. If you are hungry, angry, lonely or tired, deal with that first. If that means you have to reschedule, then reschedule. You could start from there and have a conversation that is probably going to be crucial to how you move forward, especially if you're making big business decisions.
When people decide like, "Are we going to have another kid?" There's another big decision. We're impacting the whole relationship. Set yourself up for success by designing the kind of curated conversation that you would design for a client. That's what you would do for them. You would gather yourself together and have a real conversation rather than assuming that you can, in any car ride, spring something on your partner. They could be thinking in a totally different zone. You then wind up down two different paths and you can get hurt feelings.
Even the tired thing, makes me think about me and my husband. He's a very early morning riser but after like 4:00, there are no important conversations that can happen. I'm the opposite. I get up early more because I have to in this landscape that we're in now but my natural tendency is to be a night owl. If he's trying to have a conversation with me at 7:00 AM, 6:00 AM or even 9:00 AM, my brain is wired to dive in and be here with you. Lunchtime, we'll go on walks. Noon is our sweet spot time. If we need to have a conversation, it’s the time that we have found that we're both engaged, present and not hungry, angry, lonely or tired.
Not having a stable environment for yourself to grow is a big problem.
You can be lonely with a person in the room. If the loneliness need hasn't been met, if there's been distance growing, I recommend trying to close that distance a little bit by doing something that you have traditionally found to be generative like a shared experience or going for a walk. Change the scenery, get yourselves into something so that you close that loneliness gap because the pandemic has been the most crowded, yet lonely experience, at least in my house. You're trying to make a bubble around yourself to do your work but it's confusing.
I love how you said to have these conversations when there's no deadline. Eric and I, my husband are very open about sharing that we've both invested in mentors. We've both done personal development and talked to therapists. We've invested in both our personal and business growth to know what we know and do what we do. We spent a lot of money because you've got to pay fast and that is what's required. When you work with people, you pay them for their lovely expertise in mentoring and services. People will say, "I want to join this program. I want to go to counseling. I want to get a counselor. I want to go to therapy if it's not covered. I want to hire this coach or this mentor. I want to join this mastermind, and my husband won't let me do it." I don't know why. I never rarely hear the wife won't let me do it, not to be sexist, but I almost always hear the husband won't let me do it.
I think you're hitting on one of these cultural pieces. We have to acknowledge the fact that we are still living out the story of our grandmothers and our mothers. It's still there. Many of us forget to recognize that how we watched our parents run their relationship or our caregivers, whoever was raising us, how did they run their relationship? That is the inner model we have for relating. Each of you has this inner model. Now try relating. You may theoretically feel like you have an equal egalitarian relationship, but if your parents didn't practice, not just believing it, but practice that, then there's this unconscious predilection for not leaning that way. This is real. I know in my own case, both my husband and I are committed to the ideals of being partners and equals. Both of us grew up in households where ostensibly there was equality. All you had to do was look at what was really going on to say, "There was, except there was also the subtext."
The subtext speaks to you when you're a child and it just seeps into you. It is not at all uncommon for there to be this, what I think of as a perceived power disparity. It's not necessarily real. It's not even ground in anything. It gets its foothold in the darkness, in the shadows and the things we didn't talk about. How will we make these decisions? How will we plan for these things? Most people don't make a relationship agreement beforehand. If they didn't, now you get into it. You've got a kid and a half, you're trying to make a hard decision and you don't have a framework for how you make decisions, for how you do this together.
That's where I step in, often to people's stories and say, “It’s okay that you didn't have one but we're going to need to go look at what stories you have for yourself, then co-create an agreement. Write it down and then use that framework." At first, it will feel clunky but that's what's needed. We have to use the clunky framework until it works, which is how we all start our businesses too. We start off with like, "I don't know, the expert says I got to do this. I'm going to get on Facebook Live," and that first Facebook Live is tragic but we do it anyway. It's following the steps and one of the steps in learning how to look into the darkness and see what you're doing with your partner, not what you think you're committed to.
This is bringing up the next level of awareness and understanding for me. Even though Eric and I have a relationship and this isn't in our relationship, a lot of times you hear, "My husband was a jerk. He didn't let me do that." Now I'm like, "That's okay." That's sad that you didn't get the growth that you needed but at the same time, how fair is that to your husband if you've never had the question and the agreement and now, you're putting him in a position going, "Honey, I want to do this. I got to make this decision by the end of this event or the end of this call or the end of this thing." They have their back against the wall because you never had that conversation or that agreement.
Now they carry this responsibility. Those decisions add up over time to become the fabric of your relationship. Whether you like it or not, that fabric exists. You wove it together. This isn't about a good guy, bad guy stuff. This is about, what did we actually create together. I'm a true believer that you can reinvent relationships because I did it myself. I left my first husband. It was not clean. It was not clear at all. I thought that when I started a new relationship, it was going to be more sensible because I thought I knew things. Now, I still had to go back to the drawing board and have all these discussions. I've been with him for a few years and that took the first six years to pull apart carefully. I've been studying this stuff for so long and I had to apply it.
When I work with people, it's from the "I did this. I had to figure out what the nuts and bolts of making a relationship work really are,” and not just the ideas. What do I do? What's the step? My book, Project Relationship lays out these steps. Here's the assessment and see where you are. What's a step you can take to move toward each other in different areas like money, sex and relationship resilience? How are we going to put things in place so that we can come back together when we are having a rift? You need action.
What about the women? I've heard of this happen before where the husband will say, "My ex-wife started drinking the Kool-Aid and had this spiritual awakening. Now all of a sudden, she realized we're not right for each other." Where did the breakdown happen there where you could say she found herself, but then it's framed that it caused the destruction of the marriage.
I have a couple of things to say about that. One is marriage is not what we think it is. The history of marriage is not what you think it is unless you've really done your studying. You probably think of this traditional marriage idea as being ages old, but in fact, the way we think of it, the love match that is our helpmate, our best friend, partner and all the things, this is maybe 150 years old. The version where women get to share power and be equal is 50, maybe. My mother couldn't get her own credit card when she first was married. This is very new.
First off, I want to say that the idea that we understand exactly what marriage is, is part of the problem. We have to consciously create our agreements because it is not uncommon for somebody to drink the Kool-Aid, have an awakening, grow and for there to be no process in place for there to be a big growth on one person's part or the other. It's totally normal for you to be going along in your relationship, you're traveling at the same pace and then all of a sudden, one person leaps ahead into something new. Everything changes for them. If you don't have a process in place, what do we do? What do we do while we're in this transition space? I don't know whether I have the same values as you do. If you don't have a process, divorce is right there and it's fairly easy. Even if you consider yourself the kind of person I was, the kind of person who could never in a million years have imagined themselves getting a divorce, then one day I was and I see it all the time.
I don't think divorce is a huge problem. I think that not having a stable environment for yourself to grow is a bigger problem, personally. If you have a process in place, where you say, "We are now in one of those growth zones, we're going now to engage the process." Perhaps, that's pulling in a coach or therapist or that is turning to your spiritual foundations and saying, "What was our original agreement and how can it level up?" Not turning to it and say, "How do we get back?" Never look back. Forget it. Cut the rearview mirror off, in this case. Don't try to go backwards. Instead, look and see, what could your foundation provide you as you grow up, build up? When you do that, you're going to figure out what your shared values are now. What is your relationship’s purpose for each of you?
A relationship needs a purpose.
If your relationship has a purpose, then those rocky times, all of a sudden are, "This is a rocky time. One of us has experienced huge growth and yet our purpose, what is our purpose?" My partner and I wrote a purpose statement and it includes in it this allowance, this very foundational piece, that is, we are more committed to each other's growth than to our own comfort. We wrote it right into our marriage vows and that one is a heavy thing to carry at times because sometimes I have to watch while he grows and changes. I'm like, "This feels rocky for me. This is deep breath time," but that was the commitment we made.
That doesn't have to be everyone's purpose. I know people whose purpose is we want to raise our children in a particular way. Maybe have a particular faith or a particular investment in a way that they want to be educated. We want to raise them this way. We'd like to do it and still be able to stand each other at the end of these next 20 to 25 years. That could be your purpose and maybe you invent a new purpose statement at the end of that college graduation time. I see it all the time. It's not that your purpose even has to be about growth, but if it does, if you can create a relationship that has an agreement to stand with each other through the turmoil of growth, then honestly, the sky's the limit. You can have an elite level relationship where you accelerate your own individuation process and each other's individuation process, just by being together in the mix, doing the things. It is not for the faint-hearted. I'm still in it myself. It is something else.
Be more committed to each other's growth than to your own comfort.
I love that. If there's nothing else that you take away from this, that's such a golden nugget. That stimulates conversation and understanding. That teases up that there are going to be times of discomfort.
They can get you on the team. You want that team mentality. Many women tell me, "I don't feel like I'm on a team." I'm like, "Did you did you set up a team or did you just assume that because he was marrying you, he was signing on to the team because he might have assumed that you were signing on to his team.” What happened there? Where's the team agreement? Show me. If you didn't do that at the foundation, it's not too late but don't assume that either one of you is inherently wrong. You have a misunderstanding. You have a negotiation to go through.
You have a process to go through, but it doesn't mean that you're necessarily wrong. This process takes a little while. I usually lead people through a six-month process to get through this and say, "Now we have agreements. We have explicit communication. We have some processes in place." I teach people how to put the rituals in place so when they start falling apart, they have a way to come back together. This is what it takes to have a relationship in the modern age. It is supposed to feel that vision feeling we have. This is the work that isn't in the rom-com.
They're not going to make a Hallmark movie.
If anybody wants to write that screenplay, I will happily consult.
Speaking about what's not in the Hallmark movies, let's transition. Maybe they are but, they're very PG. Let's dive in. I love that you were like, "I'm game to talk about this." I'm always game to talk about these things because this is real life, people. Let's dive into what you said, sex is such a juicy topic. No pun intended. It can be used for good. It can be weaponized. It can be used for bad. It could be non-existent. It could be there are expectations. I know even the very simplest basic when Eric and I did, "What is your love language?" It was so simple. His was the physical touch. I was like, “That just makes so much more sense to me about what you need in our relationship and what fills your cup from me.” That's superficial level stuff. Guide me. Where do we go with this conversation?
First off, almost no one establishes the key, the most essential ingredient to a satisfying sex life upfront. That is a shared vocabulary. What the heck is sex exactly? Lisa, can you define sex? I have sat in rooms full of sex therapists because one of the things I do is train sex therapists, counselors and educators. When I sit in rooms full of them, and I say, "Everybody, grab that index card and define sex." No two people write down the same thing. You have this partnership with a person and you never co-define what sex is.
I have had clients come into my office who literally do not know whether or how much sex they're having because they've never defined what sex is. If one person doesn’t think that oral sex is sex and another person does, you could be having a lot of oral sex and still be claiming a sexless marriage. It’s that kind of conversation. We need a shared vocabulary and definitions right off the bat. I had a conversation with somebody who's been married for 25 years, and he was like, "We have never had that conversation but I'm telling you, we're having it tonight." They did. It's never too late.
The other piece of this, I said it's the vocabulary. It's not about the definition of sex, but the vocabulary. How do you like to have your body talked about? Many of us shy away. There's shame tied into sex for so many of us. That is totally typical. I would not say it's normal, because I don't want to normalize shame around sex but I would say it's typical. If there's shame tied up with something, we often shy away from talking about it. If we shy away from talking about it, we're left cobbling together our language. We could have a partner using a word for our most intimate areas that turns us off but be too squished to feel, “How do I say? Please don't say that word. I would much rather hear you say this."
It's a simple conversation to have but it can feel so awkward. How do you like to have your body talked about? What words are sexy to you? What words are, "Do not go there." In my book, I have a list of these words. If people turn to chapter eight, they are always faced with this list. I'm like, "That is a lot." If you just flip open that in the bookstore, that list is a lot. I invite people to go down that list, each of you with a colored pencil and circle the words you like and put across to words that make you feel uncomfortable. That is yours to claim.
From that cobbled together a shared vocabulary, we can now figure out how we're going to start to talk about how often we have sex, what it means to have sex, and how do we get the sex we want. We're in the pleasure zone and we got to get comfortable in our bodies. We got to feel the ability to sink into our bodies. We got to do that while we're raising children and nursing babies. It's a lot. It's okay if it's hard, or not hard in the case of sex. It's okay if it's challenging. Ignoring it usually leads to uncomfortable distances in your relationship. It usually either leads to tension. There's this aggressive tension or deepening distance, where we wind up way far apart.
Most of it comes down to missed expectations. What were the expectations? I say, "How many times are you having sex a month?" They're like, "About normal." My blank face meets them and I'm like, "How many times would that be?" There is no such thing as a normal amount of time. There's nothing pathological about wanting a lot of sex. There's nothing pathological about wanting no sex. The trouble comes in when we don't get clear on what we want because we can't communicate it and we have these expectations. Now, I can be mad at my partner for not meeting expectations I have never set.
We had a big thing in our relationship where I was exhausted at the end of the day and I would say no. There's anger. There was resentment. There were all these emotions, Eric won't mind. I asked him if I had permission if we were going here to share things and he said, yes. He was like, "I feel like you don't love me. I feel rejected. I love you and I want to express that to you. I feel like you don't want me. You don't love me." I'm like, "It's not at all that I don't love you." That was a huge conversation about like, “Babe, I'm just tired. It’s not at all that I don't love you or I don't want to be with you.” To him, it was this really deep thing and to me, it was like, “I'm tired. I'm going to bed.”
This can happen over the course of a few weeks. My husband is a corporate guy. He lost his job a few summers ago. We had sex every day, all summer, usually multiple times a day. First off, I was into it. I think he's amazing, but also, I have an awareness of how his ego might have taken a tumble in losing that job and how it was maybe helpful for me to point some of that energy, that libido in his direction. We did. September hit and the semester started. Life got wild. We went a few weeks and we had sex like once. I found him sitting in the rocking chair in my office, so down and bedraggled. He loves the story himself. It's hysterical. He starts telling me the story about how our sexual life isn't the same as it's been and he doesn't know why.
It's so terrible. I'm like, "Look at the calendar," because I write it down. I track these things. Look at the calendar. He's like, "Oh my God." He doesn't keep track of these things. He didn't see it. It’s been a few weeks after a summer of so much joy, passion and meeting. Meanwhile, he'd gotten a job. Now, everything was going well for him in other ways. We have this ability to talk about it, so we were able to get back on the same page again. “Okay, cool. Let's come to an agreement about when's the next time we're going to have some of this.” Had we not had that language? Had he not set it? He was down. He was like, "This has been going on for months. I don't know what's wrong with me. Maybe it's because I'm in my 50s now." I'm like, it's not even true. You're fine.
You run stories when you don't have the conversation.
That also gave us the opportunity to say, "Let's bring this back in." That's a foundation piece in our relationship. We both know that that changes over time. Let's have the conversation. We made a date. We did the hungry, angry, lonely, tired thing. We had a fuller conversation about what we want it to look like when we were both busy again. We reengaged. We picked up a whole new sexual repertoire. I was like, "Let's just do something new. Let's like reinvigorate." I happen to have all the books on this. We added some stuff and it was a huge growth point that we wouldn't have had if we hadn't had those discussions about the discomfort, about the disconnection. Having those disconnection points is an opportunity for growth if we see it that way. It's so often we see it the other way. Any sign of disconnection is a sign that something's wrong. It's like watching a kid grow. You watch them grow up, they get uncomfortable. They start tripping all over themselves. They're probably having growing pains. They probably don't know where their feet are because they grew three inches. It's okay. They're going to adjust. You're going to be fine.
What about the advice? I've never personally bought into this advice. I'm either all-in or not. I don't go with the gray area. I'm either, "Yes, baby. Let's get it on and go," or I'm like, "No, I'm tired. I love you. I'm going to bed. First thing in the morning. I promise." We're on it. I'm not tired. We come to that agreement. I've heard people say, "If you don't want to, just start and then you're eventually getting into it." Is that good advice or not great advice?
I'm going to say it with a caveat. That could be good advice for some people and that could be terrible advice for other people. There's something called the dual control model of sexual arousal. The dual control model that was put out by Bancroft and Janssen many years ago now, came out of the Kinsey Institute. Emily Nagoski talks about it brilliantly in the book, Come As You Are, if you want more info on this. The basic premise that you have breaks and you have a gas pedal. Some people don't experience spontaneous arousal because their brakes are pressed a little bit heavier than other people or some people have a sensitive gas pedal. They get turned on easily. You and your partner probably don't have exactly aligned brakes and gas pedals. It's in fact, really typical for cisgender female-bodied people to not experience spontaneous, like, "I want to do your energy." That's normal. That's a way that our bodies are wired.
For some people, the idea of, "I'm just going to start," and in fact, I count myself in this category. I can decide in my mind, “I want to feel sexy, so let me lean towards sex and I will.” My body will literally join me on the ride. My mind will join me and then I'll be all there. For other people, they need to approach this and set themselves up for that very carefully. They may want to be the kind of person who's simmered all day. Turn the crockpot on in the morning. Start sending the gentle supportive texts in the morning and then ramp them up. Maybe a little sexting happens right before you come home and all the things.
For some people that feel like pressure, this is where it's about figuring out what works in your relationship. The simmering turns me off in some ways. I'm like, "There's pressure. I feel a little awkward about it." I've had other partners where that worked well. It's the way this particular partner I have it doesn't seem to work. We do some other things. There are so many ways to figure out how you too, can get on to your sexual pattern and how it can work for you but you have to assume that you don't know. You have to assume like, "Let me look at this as if my friend was bringing me this problem." What would I tell them to do? All of a sudden there are new ideas because often we're placing the expectation on ourselves, that it should be one way. Whatever that way is, we made it up in our heads, probably out of some rom-com somewhere. We think it should work that way. We never do self-interrogation. Where did I get the idea of how sexual arousal works?
There are so many models of sexual arousal. It's not just one. There are lots of ways to think about this. We could talk about sexual arousal, starting with your words. We could talk about it starting with your ideas, visualization or auditory cues. There are so many ways and there are great hacks for that. If you're an auditory person, maybe you don't like visual porn and it feels a little off to you. I happen to like it, but a lot of people don't. There's this great app called Dipsea. It's porn podcasts. You hear the voices, but you don't have the visuals and there's a consent edge in all of it too, which is cool because we don't get that in a lot of porn. For some women, that's enough. They listen to a story. Like "Now I've kind of shifted gears. I could get there." We can do something about it. We don't have to pretend that it's going to just happen to us. There's nothing wrong with you if you need to do something to get in the mood. You don't have to wait for your partner to do it. You can do it yourself. I have pre-games many a session.
I need to have you back on because I feel like there needs to be part two of the conversation. This is so good and relevant. The underpinning is all about communication and just setting up those agreements, discussions, your purpose statement and the words and the languaging that you want to use. Have those conversations before you need to have those conversations? That's such good advice at this time. How can they get a hold of you? What's the best way to get connected to you?
The best way to find me is to head over to my website JoliHamilton.com. From there, you can hop on over on my Resources page. I have a few resources. If you're having trouble and you need a little curiosity day, a little fun something's like ramp stuff up, I've got some downloads, you can grab from right there and just get your feet wet in a new way of thinking about relationships. I also have a book which you can find on Amazon called Project Relationship: The Entrepreneur's Action Plan for Passionate, Sustainable Love.
Thank you so much for being here with me today, Joli.
Thank you for stimulating such an awesome conversation.
Thank you for being here with us. I hope to serve you. I hope you'll go back to this. This was chock-full of great tips, secrets and reminders. When you're in the thick of it, you have help. You don't have to navigate this rough patch on your own. You've got Joli. You've got this show. I will see you next time on the next episode.
About Joli Hamilton
Joli Hamilton is a research psychologist, best-selling author, an AASECT (pronounced ay-sect) certified sex educator, TEDx speaker, and a sex & relationship coach. She holds a doctorate in depth psychology from Pacifica Graduate Institute.
She has spent many years working directly with clients helping them improve their relationship skills and is also a professor of human sexuality. Over the past two decades, she has started a dozen business ventures ranging from clothing design to personal training to providing birth & lactation doula services, all while managing her own relationships, pursuing her graduate degrees, and raising and homeschooling seven kids.
Joli has felt those wild highs and terrible lows that come with business ownership, marriage, divorce, and reinventing love from the bottom up. She is committed to helping women create sustainable, soul-nourishing relationships without sacrificing their career dreams.
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Written by Lisa Pezik