Boost Your Confidence—In Bed!

Insecure about how you look in the buff or if your skills will rock someone’s world? Read on to find out how to stop worrying—and start having fun.

By Sari Locker

et’s face it: Pretty much all men and women face moments in the bedroom when their hearts flutters, their cheeks blush—and they feel less than 100 percent comfortable. Maybe it’s when you first strip down in front of someone… or when your bedmate seems to be guiding your hands away from what you figured was a good spot to be caressing. We all have those awkward moments, but you can minimize them. Here, a few simple tips for kicking your confidence up a notch or two.

Dare to bare all
Taking off your clothes, especially in front of someone new, can make anyone feel less than bold. It especially makes many singles worry about their less-than-perfect proportions. A small
If the prospect of taking it all off gets you obsessing
over your less-than-perfect proportions, try leaving something on.
reality check, however, can easily calm your jitters. That’s what Corey, from Boston, MA, has used to stop obsessing about her bust size. “I’m not crazy about my body because I’m not too well-endowed on top,” she explains. “I’ve found it helps to think about things rationally: He knows you don’t have huge breasts when he meets you, so there won’t be a big shocker when you finally undress.”

Another tactic to increase your ease is to merely be in your birthday suit more often, which Ellie from Virginia Beach, VA, has done with great results. “Being totally naked used to make me feel so exposed,” she says. “I trained myself to feel more comfortable in the buff by sleeping in the nude. That helped me become more relaxed about being unclothed in front of a boyfriend.”

If the prospect of taking it all off still scares you silly, do what Adrienne, a New Yorker, does and cheat a little. “I like leaving something on — like a camisole, or a bra — just in case I’m not loving my body that day,” she says.

Get over your size anxiety
Men also grapple with body image issues that can undermine their sexual confidence. Just ask Michael from New York City. “My fear is a common one: that I’m not as endowed as her last boyfriend,” he admits. “Of course, it’s a pointless concern, because there’s absolutely nothing you can do about it. Still, it’s always a thought that runs through the minds of many guys.” If this concern strikes a chord with you, instead of worrying about your body, focus your attention more on pleasing your partner in bed. The compliments you’ll get on your sexual ability should help relax you.

Another easy confidence boost men can try — and that Michael says helped allay his worries — is putting a little effort into presentation. “A bit of grooming down there can appear to add inches since there’s less hair covering things up,” he says.

Some people start second-guessing themselves when they think what they’re doing in bed is boring. But great sex doesn’t come from fancy tricks and toys.
Don’t worry about how wild you are in bed
Some people think they have to prove how creative and free-spirited they are in bed, lest they be deemed boring. Beth, from Greenland, NH, admits, “I was not confident that I could rock my new boyfriend’s world, so I overcompensated by suggesting all kinds of ways to spice things up. He looked a little surprised and said, ‘Let’s just get to know each other’s bodies first.’ That’s when I realized that there is no reason to try to go all out to impress him during sex. He’s just happy to be with me!”

What Beth learned — and you should, too — is that great sex doesn’t come from fancy tricks and toys. It comes from caring about the person you’re with, and tuning in to your own pleasurable sensations and your partner’s.

Don’t beat yourself up if the Big O doesn’t happen
Some people think that if their partner doesn’t have an orgasm, then that means they are failures in bed. This concern, while common, can shatter one’s sexual confidence, as Brendan, from Portland, OR, can attest. “Like a lot of guys, I felt that the end result of sex must always be orgasm,” he explained. “So it was hard for me to understand how the same couldn’t be true for a woman. Much less, I figured she wouldn’t be satisfied with anything less! I’d get frustrated with myself, thinking it was my fault that she wasn’t satisfied.”

But the truth is, the absence of a Big O shouldn’t undermine your confidence, since it could be due to many things that have nothing to do with your bedroom abilities. “My girlfriend explained to me that for many women, it’s just not going to happen every single time,” says Brendan. By realizing that it is not his responsibility to “make” her have an orgasm, he reduced his anxiety and stopped calling his prowess into question. So if you find yourself in this situation and feel bad about it, try asking your partner, “I’d really love it if you had an orgasm. Is there anything I can do to help?” He or she may make a suggestion of what could work or say it’s fine to just cuddle up and get some sleep this time out. Either way, you two will be communicating honestly about the situation rather than ignoring it... and that’s a vital step along both your paths to sexual confidence.

Sari Locker is a sex educator, TV personality, and author of the bestseller, The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Amazing Sex. She has an M.S. in Sexuality Education and was the host of Late Date with Sari on Lifetime Television. Her website is
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