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Why the 7 types of rest have such impact on libido

 People generally think that there are only 1 or 2 types of rest, sleeping and general relaxing!


So when we are healing (let’s say we have surgery)


What sort of rest do we normally get?

We get some physical rest, and we get some sleep if we’re lucky

 But a lot of these other forms of rest don’t happen.


Perhaps we don’t get emotional rest because the medical bills and other bills need to be paid We don’t get sensory rest because sometimes we’re undergoing physiotherapy which causes more pain, more adrenaline.


We don’t get social rest.

 People want to come and visit us, when we are in the hospital, and we are at our lowest ebb and have to be social, sometimes even reassure our visitors that we’re ok when we are not!


We don’t get mental rest

Because of all the things that happen when we get sick, you could be worried about your partner, your family, people looking after you, not wanting to be a burden…


All these things are happening when you need to be healing and resting.


So when you move into the healing space, we often don’t move into the healing space fully, as we are actually just not getting enough rest!

What tends to happen is we get stuck on a little bit of sleep and bed rest, but our minds’ are going round in circles, our social plans are going mad, the bills are piling up, our work may need us to catch up, or teach someone else what to do.


All these things tend to be happening at the same time, so we don’t get to move into

the correct part of the nervous system for healing, for bliss and relaxation, the parasympathetic nervous system.


This is also known as the “rest and digest” part of the nervous system which we need to fully heal our bodies.


It’s also the part of the nervous system most common to be in

when you have an out-of-body experience

or a spiritual experience.


So, we stay in survival mode instead

If you think of things like yoga, meditation, breathwork, being in nature…


Many of those things are tied to different aspects of rest and take us into the parasympathetic nervous system.


They “gear us down”,  regulate us and make us feel safe.


The parasympathetic nervous system will only be fully accessible if you feel safe and relaxed.


The good news is this part of the nervous system is very accessible through bliss, relaxation, rest and pleasure.


(This is also linked to vagal toning and poly vagal theory, but that a whole other blog post!)


So thinking about libido and sensuality, they are strongly affected by needing rest when dis-ease or illness is present.


Now you know this if you’ve ever lost your sex drive  or lost your “lust for life”.

Or been a long term relationship and you’ve been sick, or needed to take certain forms of SSRI’s or medication


Extended adrenaline / survival states tend to cause a drop in libido


At one point after my hysterectomy, I actually said to my husband, “I don’t know what

I’m going to do because how can I authentically teach about conscious sexuality and intimacy if I’ve got no libido?”


The idea of any sort of play or sex was like a total “Nope”


I actually started crying as said to him, “I think you’re going to have to find someone else,

because I couldn’t do it. I couldn’t be authentic.


So once I once over the op, I was thinking how do I get it back?


I had to go back to which part of the nervous system I was in


Sometimes you have a choice

Sometimes you don’t choose (depends on how much adrenaline is there and trauma)


You have to learn how to relax into bliss and sensuality.

And there are lots of ways to do that.


But sensuality in our world has a deep connotation with sexuality, and sexuality is the difficult one for people because that’s in the “box marked sex”

So you’ve got to learn to integrate it.


And if you want to heal,  and there’s disease  or illness happening and you want more intimacy, you’ve got to learn how to relax with all 7 types of rest


The old methodologies may not work.

So you might not even be able to go to a yoga class or a meditation.


You might not even be able to get into your car to drive somewhere because you’re so exhausted from being sick, from being ill.


So when you can actually make the decision to relax and move into the different types of rest and the parasympathetic nervous system, you’ve got more chance of healing.


If you’re in the parasympathetic nervous system, your libido has a chance of returning.


I really did panic when my libido disappeared


The good news is you can get the pleasure back!


We  have to learn how to relax into bliss and into sensuality!


Separate sensuality out from sexuality.

They are not the same thing

They’ve got a lot in common, but being sensual is not the same as being sexual.


Our belief systems around sexuality affect our sensuality.


So sometimes you want to be sensual, but maybe your partner interprets that as a sexual cue to move into lovemaking or into intercourse


Sexpectations are the quickest way to undo sensuality in my experience!


So that’s why I’m talking about SENSE YOU WELLNESS


And that actually starts with you on your own.

You can learn exercises, and invoke the 7 types of rest, so that sensuality can become its own thing.


And paradoxically, this leads to an increase in libido and better healing!

A. Clulow

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