The Power of Containing Desire

de·sire

/dəˈzī(ə)r/

verb

  1. strongly wish for or want (something).

noun

  1. a strong feeling of wanting to have something or wishing for something to happen.

    What is it you regularly desire?

    • Certain types of food or drinks? 

    • More sleep?

    • Particular people?

    • Great sex? 

    • Deep intimacy with loved ones? 

    What are your habits around desire? In other words, how do you satisfy or reconcile the sensation you feel inside when you desire something or someone?

    Take a minute to think on that...

    How have your habits around desire served you, or not? 

    I know what you're thinking: "dammit, Lee! Why are you making me think about such deep things on a Monday morning?! I haven't even had my second cup of coffee!" 

    Okay, maybe you're not thinking this...but if you are, my response is: "What better way is there to start the week than by playing with the concept of desire and our potential power that lies beyond some of our quick fix habits to satisfy it [desire]?"

    I wanna tell you a quick story that may resonate. 

    In my not too distant past, I was a glutton for the sensation I felt the moment I got to satisfy a desire. Aren't we all? What I was missing out on was a whole world of richness that can be experienced when we see what it's like to contain a desire within. That's right, to not do anything about it, just feel it. 

    Given the kind of work I do (and the fact that I'm human), I'm quite familiar with sexual desire. One of the ways I related to sexual desire was to express or release it. This may have been in the form of escaping to sexual fantasy land in my mind, texting someone with the intention of having a sexual conversation, self-pleasure, you get the point...

    Does any of this sound familiar to you?

    As soon as I realized that I didn't always have to act on my desires, I started to recognize how often I would choose one of the aforementioned options as both a means of satisfaction and escape from whatever was right in front of me, be it my work, a challenging situation, or anything else. 

    I had become habituated (for many reasons) to acting on desire, even if it wasn't what felt most healthful or appropriate for me in that moment. 

    So, what's a girl to do with all this desire and the newly realized choice of how I want to orient myself to it?

    Here's what I've been playing with: 

    1. Noticing when desire arises

    2. Acknowledging that it's there

    3. Closing my eyes (or softening my gaze) and feeling the sensation in my body

    4. Using each inhale to pull the sensation from my genital region toward my heart (up the backside of my body)

    5. Using each exhale to send the energy from my heart back toward the genitals (down the front side of my body)

    6. Continuing this breathing pattern while imagining the loop of breath up and down within my body 

    7. Observing whatever comes up - could be more sensation, a feeling of calm, a slight smile, curiosity, frustration, etc. 

    8. Feeling the space I've created to now CHOOSE what I want to do next - act on the desire, go back to what I was working on, take a (dance) break, something else...

    The key here is that I recognize that I have a CHOICE to act (or not) on a desire. This alone has made all the difference in the focus I bring to my work, in the amount of energy I have throughout the day, in my overall mood, and in my productivity. I’m no longer a slave to desire.

    When we can sit with something like desire for long enough, we get to acquaint ourselves to it in new ways. We get to see and experience a world beyond habit, and as a result, we feel more of our potential and fullness. 

    The sexual energy that exists within us IS life force energy, IS creative energy, IS the energy we use to manifest the world around us. 

    I invite you to think and feel on how you'd like to use this potent energy that you have within. You've got a whole lifetime ahead of you to play with this. Get curious. Have fun.