For many, the word sensual has a purely sexual connotation, but the more traditional meaning of the word is, 'gratification of the senses'. Using that definition, a sensual person is someone who knows how to stimulate their senses for not just practical, but also both pleasurable means.
Aside from the obvious benefit of experiencing pleasure, being able to tune into or focus one's 5 primary senses has numerous physical and mental benefits.
What Keeps Us From Being Sensual In the First Place?
As babies and small children, we were completely engrossed in sensory exploration of the world around us - putting everything (including our own little toes) in our mouths, delighted to hear the sound of our own shrieks, laughs and cries. Our five senses were the way we learned about everything. But social conditioning and maturity taught us to lessen our sensory interaction with the world in the name of appropriateness. Things like self-touch, loud vocalizations and uninhibited movement were discouraged and labeled as things that 'well-behaved boys and girls' didn't do. As a result, many of us have become largely detached from our senses, and may even be uncomfortable as over-indulgent or immoral.
To become a truly sensual person, some unlearning of the norms of so-called good behavior is necessary.
25 Ways to Increase Your Sensual Awareness
- Walking meditation
- Give a hug
- Eat and drink more slowly
- Silently observe nature - watch your cat grooming, listen to the wind rustle the leaves outside, pay attention to the pace and rhythm of your own breathing
- Go barefoot
- Close your eyes to enhance your hearing
- Focus totally on your breath
- Look at a close object then a distant one and alternate focus
- Study your hand – explore the detail and aging!
- Smell deeply – differentiate between subtle odours
- Touch with eyes closed – explore textures, surfaces, shapes
- Close eyes and feel temperature of objects with hands
- Close your eyes and sense individual body parts
- Close your eyes and identify objects solely by touch
- Close your eyes and try observing your pulse or blood flow
- Gently pull your ears out and listen!
- Feel the wind – really feel it with all the senses
- Close your eyes and pass your hands through water
- Identify foods with your eyes closed
- Close eyes and brush fingers lightly over arms and face sensing hairs not skin
- Walk and be conscious of every step as you plant your feet
- Become aware of your entire body and “feel” with every cell
The more we feel with non-judgmental awareness, the more we open to the experience of our innate sensual pleasures"
While becoming more sensual may make you feel sexier - it may even make you a better lover - the real benefit in being more in tune with your senses is improving your ability to deal with the stress of everyday life.
What tips do you use to heighten your senses?