New research shows that flow state is a predictor of sexual satisfaction. In this article written for Psychology Today Dr. Emily Jamea explains what flow is and how it equates to your sex life.
- New, first-of-its-kind research investigated whether couples in long-term relationships experienced a state of flow during sex.
- The study found that not only did such couples experience flow during sex, but that it was a strong predictor of personal and relationship satisfaction.
- The findings suggest that flow training techniques could be used to address sexual concerns in long-term relationships, including declines in desire.
Flow is a word we usually hear associated with extreme sports or artistic experiences. But my latest research study, published in The Journal of Sex and Marital Therapy, found that flow is a state enjoyed by people during sex as well. Surprisingly, this was the first study to examine the relationship between flow and sexual satisfaction. Another interesting aspect of this research is that we only sampled people in long-term, monogamous relationships. What does this mean? It turns out that passionate, fulfilling sex is very much a possibility for older, married couples. In addition, this study not only suggests that sex improves with time,1 but also that it may be one of the most peak experiences couples share.
Low sexual desire remains one of the most common, yet complex and challenging issues faced by sex and relationship therapists.2 Despite the high correlation between relationship satisfaction and sexual satisfaction,3 improving relationship quality isn’t always enough to boost libido, as any sex therapist can attest. Another approach is to work with couples on improving the quality of sex.4 It’s a natural assumption that if sex isn’t good, one won’t desire it. Improving the quality helps some, but still isn’t sufficient to get some couples to the state of transcendent bliss they yearn for.
Read more on Psychology Today.