Is sex the best way to elbow out stress and tension? While some claim sex improves their emotional and mental well-being, others say it does more harm than good. Sexual performance anxiety is real. Below, you will learn the ins and outs of this condition and how to navigate it, including talking to your partner, changing how you get intimate, and masturbating before sex. Stable mental health is a fundamental aspect of the happiest sex life. With stable mental health, it is easier to focus on the moment, resulting in hot sex. Sexual performance anxiety is one of the common mental health problems consuming happiness in various bedrooms worldwide. The condition shares the space with self-doubt, embarrassment, and shame. While some get into it with these symptoms, others choose to avoid sexual activities. The former end up with poor sexual performance, while the latter depression. This shows sexual performance anxiety is something you may never want close to your bedroom. What Is Sexual Performance Anxiety (SPA)? According to Kaplan & Horwith (1983), Sexual Performance Anxiety is a psychiatric condition that makes men or penis-having persons anxious before, during, and after getting intimate. The condition stems from increased worry about sexual performance, comparing yourself with people your partner had before meeting you, or being anxious if you will get things right in the bedroom. Although sexual performance anxiety is a psychological issue, most victims end up with physical problems, including premature ejaculation, difficulty climaxing, and erectile dysfunction. Lue (2000) described erectile dysfunction as the failure to get or maintain an erection. When ignored, these sexual difficulties can result in a lack of sexual enjoyment, setting the stage for relationship issues. What Causes Sexual Performance Anxiety? Who said sex should be revied and critiqued? Unfortunately, most partners have turned sex into that, making it anxiety-triggering. Sexual performance anxiety also attacks the guys with high confidence levels. Here are the common causes of sexual performance anxiety. Relationship Challenges How you interact with your partner outside the bedroom plays a role in your sex life. This is why couples with healthy out-of-the-bedroom relationships always win during intimacy. Healthy relationships stem from open and honest communication. The more you become comfortable with your partner, the more your sex grows. Normally, you are more likely to be anxious around a stranger and more comfortable around friends. The same happens in the bedroom. If you are not comfortable around your partner, sexual performance anxiety is more likely to strike. Less Sexual Experience Snuggling underneath the bedsheets without much sexual experience can be anxiety-provoking. Here, you approach things with a lot of guesses, triggering anxiety. The same can happen if you are having sex with a new partner. They are people you have never shared intimate moments with before. Worrying about how you will perform triggers feelings of uneasiness, affecting your performance even if you are very skilled. Negative Body Image Having a negative body image means there are certain aspects of yourself that you don’t like. These include weight, penis size, appearance, and muscle mass. Since getting intimate might uncover some of these flaws, you are more likely to experience sexual performance anxiety. The main fear here is experiencing rejection when the other person discovers the flaws. Consuming Too Much Porn It is best to understand porn is made for entrainment purposes only. Sure, what happens in those scenes is not real. This means that overconsuming porn gives you a false picture of sex. Since you want yours to look and feel like the one you see in porn, you are more likely to experience anxiety-provoking situations. How To Avoid Sexual Performance Anxiety Sexual performance anxiety does not have to dominate your life. If you are figuring out how to avoid this condition, this blog has the solution. Here are the tips that can help you avoid it and gain your bedroom confidence. Masturbate Before the Date Masturbation is the deliberate self-stimulation for sexual pleasure. According to Leonard (2010), masturbation is harmless and convenient for everybody. Masturbating one hour before your date can help you cope with sexual performance anxiety. Masturbation elbows out sexual tension, allowing you to stay focused on the event. What’s more, it helps you last longer in bed. Be Present Worrying about your performance while having sex can kill the vibe. For this reason, shift your focus on the sensations at the moment for great sex to both of you. Be present before, during, and after sex. This reduces the risk of losing an erection during the play. What if it happens? It does not mean your sex life is doomed. Try kissing our eating your partner out to kick out the distracting thoughts and regain your erection. If you don’t regain your erection, you climax earlier than your partner wanted you to, or you experience difficulty reaching the final glory, save the play for another day. Try Mind Relaxation Techniques Mind relaxation techniques, including meditation, can help you reduce stress from work or finances. Carrying work or finance-related stress increases the risk of sexual performance anxiety, causing sexual dysfunction. What if you back up a mediation with regular physical activity and getting enough sleep? Try that. Do Not Skip Foreplay Are you the kind of person that directly goes to the main point? Neglecting to engage in foreplay can be one of the reasons you experience sexual performance anxiety. According to Kreuter et al. (2011), foreplay makes one relax and enjoy sex. For this reason, spend quality time with your partner kissing, cuddling, talking dirty, or eating each other out before getting into the main event. Treatment You can address your sexual performance anxiety with psychotherapy and medication. The former includes cognitive-behavioral therapy, while the latter includes Viagra and Cialis. The Bottom Line Sexual Performance anxiety gives you a false belief that you cannot deliver in the bedroom. The condition mostly stems from having a brand-new partner or a lack of sexual experience. Although sexual performance anxiety can take a toll on your sex life, the good news is that you can reverse it. Overcoming sexual performance starts with eliminating any shame or sexual trauma from a past life. After that, focus on your partner and the sensations they are giving you instead of your sexual performance. References Kaplan, H. S., & Horwith, M. (1983). The evaluation of sexual disorders: Psychological and medical aspects. Psychology Press. Kreuter, M., Taft, C., Siösteen, A., & Biering-Sørensen, F. (2011). Women’s sexual functioning and sex life after spinal cord injury. Spinal cord, 49(1), 154-160. Lue, T. F. (2000). Erectile dysfunction. New England journal of medicine, 342(24), 1802-1813. Leonard, A. (2010). An Investigation Of Masturbation And Coping Style. In 38th Annual Western Pennsylvania Undergraduate Psychology Conference.