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Dr. Berman says by being consciously scared of following her mother's example in marriage, Michele allowed a part of herself to become cut off from her own sexuality. "The only way that your sex life is going to get better is if you give yourself permission to embrace your own body and your own sexuality and to loosen the reins a little bit on your life," Dr. Berman says.

The key for Michele, Dr. Berman says, is to release her "inner vixen" using three steps.

The first is to keep a journal of her feelings about sex. "Write down all those negative messages that you got growing up about sex—or those messages you kind of covertly got about what sex meant in your parents' relationships. And then really look at them," she says. "And if it means tearing it out and tearing it up and burning it in some symbolic way or just really looking at it and saying, 'You know what? This isn't me. This isn't the 35-, 45-, 50-year-old woman that I am today. This is my mother or my father.' ... Really become aware and conscious of those messages that are percolating around your head."

The second step is to actively try to be more comfortable with her sexuality. "If it means taking a class, there's all sorts of great classes in most major cities—pole dancing classes or cardio strip tease classes," Dr. Berman says.

The third step is trying something new. "Even if it's just a new position, or trying a new sex toy, or having sex in a new place," Dr. Berman says. "As soon as you start to mix it up, those old voices are going to want to revisit you in your head. And you say, 'No, thank you.'"
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FROM: Best Life Week: Relationships, Intimacy and Sex
Published on January 09, 2009

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