An evening for deep sharing, honoring your Erotic Truth, embracing your journey as a sensual woman, and welcoming your deepest desires.
Our sensuality and erotic energy are our core power. When we connect to this essential part of us, we connect to joy, creativity, and a state of natural flow. Our feminine souls long to live in this space!
If you are a woman who is wanting to feel more connected to your body and your sensuality but you can’t seem to prioritize this area of your life, this evening is for you. If you are exhausted from pushing to try to hold it all together and want to find a new and more pleasurable approach, join us.
It’s going to be a beautiful evening.
Register here: https://bit.ly/2MLmeU7
This event is for women who want to explore this conversation in a safe and supportive space. We will share and discuss, and we will also do fun experiential exercises to help you connect to your body and your sensuality. You’ll get clearer on where you are on the map of your own erotic journey and on how to embrace your desires. You will walk away with tools to embrace this super-power of your feminine genius that allows you to live a life that is juicy, joyful, and creative.
I will also be sharing about my Erotic journey, from a fundamentalist upbringing with a lot of shame around sexuality, to a marriage that ended up sex-less, to my adventure in reclaiming my sexuality, sensuality, and falling in love with being a woman. The journey continues!
*There will be no nudity at this event.
*Please wear comfortable clothing that allows for movement.
*Bring an item that is meaningful to you for our altar space. (Can be a picture, a stone, piece of writing, etc.)
NYC, Thursday, July 26th. 7:00-9:30 p.m.
Register here: https://bit.ly/2MLmeU7
About your host:
Patricia Black is a Life & Sensuality coach. She works with women who are creative rebels, outside-the-box thinkers who want to feel inspired, in flow, and able to create through their feminine energy. They’re tired of struggling with overwhelm and the exhaustion that comes from pushing to try to follow their dreams.
Patricia is trained in various Life Coaching Modalities, with a strong emphasis on embodied approaches. She is a graduate of Mama Gena’s School of Womanly Arts. She is a certified Orgasmic Meditation teacher. She has apprenticed with Om Rupani in sacred BDSM. Patricia is also a Shiatsu Bodywork practitioner and a certified Holistic Health & Nutrition Coach. Her desire is a world where people love their bodies, are free from shame around their sexuality, and are able to access their full potential for ecstasy and joy.
The image of a wild and perfect garden has been full of resonance for me for as long as I can remember. Maybe because it’s one of the first bible stories I heard, and maybe because I spent some early years in the countryside in Nicaragua in the 70’s, running around with scraped knees, chasing chickens, climbing mango trees and bossing around the other kids at the orphanage that my parents ran.
As a preacher’s kid, I grew up on bible stories, I only took them literally until I learned about “sentido figurado” or speaking figuratively, and that afforded me a little pocket of freedom in the Sunday church ritual. Man, did I ever need that little pocket of freedom to interpret the stories in my own way, because I felt trapped in the church routine, and I needed magic! I needed something I wasn’t finding between the pews. But, prophecies and ancient tales I could trip on, and so I did as well as I could with the materials at hand.<
The garden, the unsullied, the mythic place in our collective imagination. Is it just the utopian dreamers among us or is this a deep memory we are all trying to get back to in one way or another? The place where EROS was free, and innocent, the place before shame. Here’s Joni singing about it in 1970
That is my true dream. Without realizing it for the longest time, this was the deep vein in all my explorations, the desire to touch that sense of unsullied wholeness, erotic innocence, freedom.
For the modern person, the city dweller, the body is now the garden, the place where we can find that innocence again, where we are inseparable from nature, even if it often seems otherwise.
The body is the battleground where so much fighting happens–women’s bodies, which is to say the body of the earth. Reproductive rights, body shaming and perfectionism. A woman’s sexuality. The way our culture relates to the body continues to express the christian distrust of our physical being, even those of us who are not religious can easily get stuck worshipping at the altar of the “perfect body” and paying penance through dieting and denial of pleasure. Oh, we will have pleasure one day, we tell ourselves, when we have earned it by being good.
This Mary Oliver line gets quoted a lot, because it’s really on point:
You do not have to be good. You do not have to walk on your knees. For a hundred miles through the desert, repenting. You only have to let the soft animal of your body. love what it loves.
To be at ease and unashamed in the body is the most radical and healing thing I can think of. It’s worth doing whatever it takes to find that freedom.
Spring has come to New York with a beautiful snow day.
I awoke to cottonly fluffs of snow swirling outside my window, falling in that silent and steady way that makes a snow day so magical.
As I was stretching myself awake I had this feeling of, let’s play hooky today. I believe in the power of pleasure and enjoying my down time with zero guilt! But something felt off about blowing off my whole day. Kind of like eating too many doughnuts, even with zero guilt, you’re going to feel sluggish and stuffed.
What to do? Push into “productivity mode”? Call myself lazy and undisciplined. Nah. Doesn’t work for me. What this calls for is to “change state,” by bringing pleasure and the type of energy you want into the moment. If your current state is feeling blah and you want to feel energized and inspired, I highly recommend some type of movement to quickly change your state.
So that’s what I did, I put on this Bebe song and got to dancing, letting my body lead the way with shaking and stomping and singing along badly! To move, to sing, to connect to your aliveness, these are all great ways to change state.
Only trouble is, sometimes I find it hard to stop dancing and sit down to work! But that’s ok, that’s a great new “problem” to handle. Then I shift into grounding myself to feel clear and calm and focused. I do that by lighting a candle, connecting to why I am doing the tasks that I’m doing today, and taking a few slow deep breaths to get settled.
Because I talk about a pleasurable approach, people sometimes tell me if they embraced pleasure they’d never get anything done. But, this is where discernment comes in. Is it truly pleasurable for me to play hooky and watch movies all day? Some days the answer might be yes. Other days, if I slow down and get honest with myself, I know there is a deeper pleasure in showing up for my to-do list and my work because I care about it and I’m connected to a sense of purpose, which is it’s own type of pleasure.
So, what’s your preferred way to “change state” when you feel like blowing off your to-do list? How do you know when blowing it off is the right thing for that day? I’d love to hear from you in the comments.
I started sucking in my belly when I was 10. Around this time, my father started calling me fat whenever I was overly rambunctious and he wanted me to simmer down. I have this memory of dad yelling at me to get down from a carport gate where I was monkeying around, because “you’re too fat! You’re going to break it!” he yelled. I ran into the house, where my sister started poking at my stomach and teasing “suck it in, fatty.” These memories mark the beginning of becoming an awkward and self-conscious teenager, after having been a feisty little girl. That is one clear moment that I can pinpoint where I started to shut down my power.
After that, I’d never go back to being a kid with a relaxed belly, naturally expanding on the rhythm of my breath. I learned to suck it in from my older sister. One day we were walking past a store window and she told me to “suck it in,” pointing to our reflections and how much better she thought we looked with flat, sucked in stomachs. After that I tried to remember to suck it in anytime I was out in public. Eventually this became my normal way of moving through the world, belly tightly sucked in. Store windows and glass doors became witnesses to my constant vigilance, lest that shameful protruding belly dare to show itself.
I don’t tell this story to talk shit about my family or to point out how awful my childhood was. It wasn’t. I tell this story because I carried those memories along with a ton of shame for many years, and because I know that I’m not alone in this.
As I became more self-conscious about my body, I wanted there to be less of me. All that exuberant girl-child energy turned toward dieting and obsessing about my newfound terror of getting fat. Getting fat became synonymous in my mind with not being loved. For years, my body hatred focused intensely on my belly area. Even now, anytime I start to feel down about my body, my belly is the first place my attention goes. This is not a quick-fix topic. To learn to love our bodies, whatever our “problem areas” might be, means confronting all the woman hating messages we’ve absorbed, and all the shaming of the feminine and of women as sexual beings.
In fact, the seeds for much of the work that I do now as a women’s coach were planted in those early days when I learned to hate my body and by extension, my femininity, and myself. I believe that healing our relationship to our body builds the foundation for self-love and self-expression.
How we feel about our bellies is a great barometer for how we feel about ourselves. How we relate to this part of our body makes all the difference in how we see ourselves, and yes I see it as both a vulnerable and a radical act to choose not to suck it in. It’s radical because it says “fuck you” to the notion that your beauty comes from fitting yourself to the culturally accepted norms. It’s radical because by choosing to stay tuned in to your body, your feelings, your in-the-moment intuition, you are much more powerful as a woman. Instead of sacrificing all that power for the sake of some cultural stamp of approval, it means choosing to be sovereign in your own body and life. That is radical. Just imagine what would happen to Madison Avenue and the massive diet industry if women chose the stance that our bodies are perfect and beautiful.
Loving your belly is radical. Loving your belly is also incredibly vulnerable. You take the risk of being judged harshly by other women who will project their own body hatred onto you. You may run across men who judge you for not fitting with their pornified ideals of a woman’s body. You will begin to see just how much you have internalized the fear and hatred of women’s bodies. So, why put yourself through all this? Why not keep sucking it in and worshiping at the altar of flat-as-a-board, six-pack abs? Because…
Hating your belly is really hating yourself.
When you suck in your belly you lose access to your feeling center, intuition, solar plexus center of power. Your breath becomes shallow and you develop patterns of rigidity in your body as a whole. There is a feeling of not being at home in your body and if you can’t be at home in your body then where the hell will you ever truly feel at home? Besides, every time you look in the mirror with critical thoughts, you’re sending your body the message that she is wrong, bad, unloveable.
As you deepen your connection to your belly, you’ll notice that it feels so much better to be relaxed, open, to have strength and solidity, which has nothing to do with your belly being rounded or flat. It’s way harder for us to achieve that “hard body” ideal than it is for men. A truly strong and developed core is not the same as a hard, numb core.
I tried on and off over the years to stop sucking it in. It hasn’t been easy. I understand the feeling of being super self-conscious about your body. The pressure to mold one’s body to the flat-belly model is really strong. But it’s worth practicing. The benefits of an open and relaxed belly are profound and immediate and totally worth it.
Here are some benefits you’ll get from loving your belly and doing less sucking in:
A whole new level of relaxation. Your whole body relaxes. Your breath deepens on its own. This, reduces worry and anxiety, increases oxygen intake and gets your body out of fight-or-flight and into relaxation mode. Ahhhhhh.
Experience your feelings. Not just what thoughts are running around in your mind, but your emotional state in this moment. Along with your feelings, your intuition will also become stronger as you connect to this part of your body. There’s a reason we talk about “gut feelings.”
Know your true needs. Being able to differentiate between physical hunger and some emotional need, for example. With a relaxed belly, you’ll get accurate information. After all there is a whole other “brain” in the belly, as lots of research has revealed. Check out this great piece by Marc David here ( http://psychologyofeating.com/the-brain-in-the-belly/).
Find your Power Center. In the chakra system, the belly area corresponds to the third chakra or “solar plexus.” Solar has to do with the fire of the sun that is like the fire of our will, the fire of our metabolism, the fire of our resolve.
Rich sensuality. Picture the lovely, powerful undulations of a belly dancer compared to some punishing ab-busting routine. Feeling through a relaxed belly lets you feel more with your whole body so that there is pleasure to be found in the simplest experiences of the senses, from petting a kitten to feeling the breeze on your skin.
Great sex. As your breath deepens, energy is able to move up the central channel of the body allowing you to expand orgasmic feelings throughout your body. Also, as you relax, you are able to shift your focus from how you look to how you feel. This is one of the secrets to better sex, and it makes you more attractive because instead of performing or “posing” you are simply being you while in a state of pleasure.
I could go on and on, but I’ll sum it up like this:
Not sucking in the belly changes one’s entire relationship to the body to one of sovereignty. It’s saying to your body: “I am at home here. I belong to myself.” This can change everything.
If you hate your stomach or any other part of your body, by now you may be thinking this is so much easier said than done. I agree that it’s a process. Even if you don’t fully succeed at all times, you can still choose the radical stance of loving your belly and your whole body. It’s radical to choose not to walk around holding in your power, your magic. It’s possible to not live hostage to the ubiquitous body shaming around us. To change from an external focus based on how we think we are perceived by others, to an inner focus where we move through the world from that place of deep connection to our center.
Try this simple exercise to relax and feel your belly: Take a deep breath, fill your lungs and feel your belly expand. As you exhale, allow your belly to fall naturally. Pause before the next inhalation and just feel your belly. Don’t push it out, don’t suck it in. Pay attention to your breath as you feel your belly and allow it to relax.
You may not be ready to do this while you’re posing for a picture or walking into a party. That’s cool. Try it while you’re driving, or while you’re sitting at your desk. Then notice how you feel. See what’s different. I’d love to hear what you discover, in the comments.
Belly love practices: Belly dancing is a beautiful art form that fosters a positive relationship to the belly. Massaging your own belly with essential oils or receiving belly massage such as Maya abdominal massage is excellent. The simple act of putting your hand on your belly and breathing steadily can begin to shift you into belly and body love.
Let’s talk. If you’re sick and tired of putting your life on hold till you lose the weight. If you feel trapped inside your body instead of loving who you are. If you’re exhausted with the dieting game and the constant worry and dread about food and fat. If you don’t feel like you can have love, intimacy, and connection as you are right now. This can all change. When you change how you feel about yourself and your body, you are free to change your life.
If you want to learn how to trust your body as the ultimate source of intuition, pleasure, and power, I’d love to talk to you. If you know it’s time to feel confident in your skin and begin to live fully and embark on your next adventure, let’s talk. It’s possible. What if it’s easier than you’ve always thought?
Contact me through the form below to schedule a complimentary Deep Dive Coaching Session. This is a no pressure conversation where the focus is on you and your desires. We go deep to what you want, and what is getting in the way. I help you get clear, inspired, and give you tools and practices to start to make the shifts that are most important to you right now.
I watched the movie “Her,” where Joaquin Phoenix plays Theodore, a lonely guy who falls in love with his operating system (OS), Samantha, played by Scarlett Johansson. There’s this moment where Theodore is in bed talking to Samantha. She gets quiet and then her raspy voice sounds pained when she asks him, “what does it feel like…to have a body?” Stop and think about this for a moment. What does it feel like? Because it’s so easy to forget these days! Of course, Theodore can’t give Samantha a satisfying answer. She’ll never have a body. But you and I do, every moment of every day. Forgive me for stating the obvious.
Remember those old movie images of brains in jars? These days we live more and more like disembodied brains and our bodies are suffering. But it’s not only our bodies that are suffering–we end up depressed, addicted, and feeling like we’re not really living.
Eventually, the lovers in our modern tale grow closer in their relationship and they want to have sex, or something close to it. Samantha (the OS) finds a human woman online who is willing to be a “body surrogate.” The scene that follows is heartbreaking. Theodore and Samantha are trying to connect through the body of this third character who wants to be part of their relationship. But the awkward attempt ends in horrible disappointment for everyone involved. It’s fiction but it’s not really so far-fetched; people are already finding it harder to connect with other human beings.
In another scene, Theodore walks around the city listening to Samantha through little wire-free earbuds. As he goes down the stairs to the subway, every other person coming up the stairs is talking through their little earbuds, presumably to their own operating systems. Or they are exactly like us today with all our devices? Constantly plugged in, negotiating life through these technologies; each in our private bubble of experience. The first step in alienation is losing the connection to our own bodies, our own physicality.
Artificial intelligence is here and our lives are already changing faster than we realize and that change will be exponential in our lifetimes. Instead of freaking out about some dystopian vision of the future, we need to cultivate the ancient technologies that can only be accessed through the body, the technologies of human connection to ourselves and to one another. It kills me to think that as computers and machines become smarter and beat us at our own games (and jobs), that we will allow ourselves to become dumber and duller and more reliant on them to navigate our way through the physical world.
We are suffering with widespread depression and other emotional and mental problems because we have these bodies that are part of nature, that are still connected to millions of years of being wild, and yet we live an almost machine-like existence–constantly indoors, barely moving, breathing just enough to stay alive. We have our senses, yet we barely explore what it means to have so much capacity to taste, to smell, to feel! The thing is, we can’t really separate the mind from the body. We need to learn how to have mind and body play together.
It’s no small thing to smell the aroma of baking bread, to go outside and feel the breeze on your skin. It’s no small thing to hold another person, because touch is a basic need. When we slow down enough to feel something as simple as sipping a cup of tea can be a richly layered experience. And when we are plugged in to this richness of the senses, of the body, something in us begins to open up. Our anxiety starts to release bit by bit. This is no small thing.
If you do sometimes feel like a brain that is untethered from the body (and who doesn’t, nowadays?) what can you do about it? It’s simple though not always easy. It will take changing your habits, and it will be so worth it.
Here’s the key: Learn how to feel again. Get into your senses while using your awareness to pay attention. Body and mind playing together. Yes!
4 SIMPLE WAYS TO UNPLUG FROM TECHNOLOGY AND RECONNECT WITH YOUR BODY.
Set a timer if you must (use that same technology to help you get free) and go do one of these:
1. Go for a quick walk. Leave your phone at home! If the thought of that freaks you out, that’s something to ponder while you’re outside feeling the sun on your skin and smelling the air.
2. Move that body. Get up from your desk or couch and move around. Go slowly so you can pay attention. Crawl on the floor, or dance to your favorite song. Let yourself be silly if this feels silly. How much can you tune in and feel?
3. Find a practice. Whether you take up yoga or tantra or some type of dance, all of these are great ways to develop your ability to feel more and connect to your body. One caveat, find a practice that is more about feeling and connection than it is about looking good or competing.
4. Be kind to yourself. The habits of disconnection are easy to fall into. It seems like everyone around you is on their phone 24/7. The habit of feeling and connection takes practice. It takes deciding over and over, moment by moment, to come back to your senses.
To have a fulfilling life, we need to live through our bodies again. Modern living can make us forget the joys and pleasures of living through the body, not against it. Healing and real transformation happen through deeper connection with our bodies, not by denying that connection.
As a Women’s Life and Desire Coach, I teach my clients how to connect to the body for aliveness and for intuition. We include body wisdom and pleasure, not only in their vision and their desires but in every step along the way. Learning how to return to our natural state as sensual creatures, our lives can quickly to go from black and white to color–life starts to feel worth living RIGHT NOW, not just in some imaginary future that could be dreamed up by that old brain in a jar!
If you feel trapped in a life of overwork and way too much screen time, don’t be afraid to get some support. Working with a coach who can help you design a rich and embodied life can make all the difference. You can reach your goals and savor every step of the way.
Contact me through the form below and let’s have a no pressure chat about what’s happening in your life and how we might work together.
Thank you, New York, for giving me a deep infusion of love and pleasure before I go on to the next adventure. Miami, here I come, but first I’m spending a few days back in old New York.
I was 25 when I moved here, and kind of clueless about what I wanted, but I did know that I wanted something new and different. I was in love with the man who would later become my husband, and he was here. Even though I told myself that I wasn’t moving here for him, it was the real reason I came. To my young mind, it was so not cool to move to a new city for love. But that’s what got me here and opened the door to so many experiences.
For a long time I felt conflicted about living here. The were periods when I was frustrated by what was missing in my life. I was lonely. I wanted more. My relationship had started to feel stale and I blamed the city because that was easier than looking inside and finding that I was responsible for the things in my life that weren’t working.
But somewhere along the way I realized that I had chosen New York and the medicine I needed was here. Coming had been no mistake and there was so much to appreciate. Instead of fluttering away, I decided to put down deeper roots. I let myself follow my curiosity.
The feast of learning experiments has been varied and rich. From bodywork to tango, from nutrition to coaching to orgasmic practices, and so much more. The loves and friendships have been where my deepest learning and growth have come, and where I feel the most intense gratitude.
That cliche of not knowing what you’ve got till it’s gone rang true after my very sudden move from New York this year. God, did I miss this place!
Every day since I’ve been back this week has been magical. Boat rides and art, friends and long conversations strolling through the parks. Assisting in a workshop where people are learning to feel and connect. Basically, soaking in the rewards of what I’ve created here.
Thank you, New York, for being the place where I have felt so free to explore.
Thank you for teaching me how strong I really am.
Thank you for showing me that power doesn’t always require keeping up the tough act.
Thank you for so many incredible teachers.
Thank you for tribes who believe that life can be magical.
Thank you for teaching me that telling the truth is the way to the sweet spot of aliveness, even when telling the truth is excruciating.
Thank you for permission to embrace my desire.
Thank you for the experience, over and over, of letting go with deep love.