So….after a long night of thinking, some sleep, and kind advice from friends, I have figured out what has gone wrong with the EJC.
I let it slip away from what it was intended to be. It’s supposed to be EROTIC. Or at least related to sex and sexuality and intimacy. And it’s a Journal. So, reflection is the name of the game. Plus…it’s a CHALLENGE – which means the topics and questions should push us to think and grow – which sometimes means discomfort and a little squirming as we write.
I think I lost my way trying to make this thing more applicable to a wider audience, and it honestly doesn’t need to be. I started the EJC to spur by own writing. So, that’s what I’m going to continue to do.
I’ve stopped sex journaling, per se. But I blog about my sex life it ad nauseum, and I’ll continue to do so cause, hey…that’s my jam. This blog is, essentially, my sex & intimacy journal. So, in order to guide my OWN writing, and help you with yours, if you need, I’m going to post the prompts I’m using for myself. If you choose to follow along, great. If you choose to share, awesome. If you want to follow the prompts but not share, that’s cool, too.
At it’s heart, the EJC is about candid, confessional reflection. And it never should have stopped being that. I just ran out of prompt juice (because, believe me, it’s hard to come up with those on a regular basis). But I realize that finding and sharing those prompts is where the EJC succeeds as a support for others. It doesn’t really matter if you share what you write.
So, without further ado…here she is again, in all her naked glory.
What is the Erotic Journal Challenge?
A weekly journal prompt (or set of prompts) to help you get to know your sexual self better (or at least reflect a little more deeply).
How does it work?
Prompt(s) will be posted each week to keep you going. You read the prompt(s) and write. Pretty simple.
When will it occur?
Prompts will be released on Saturdays.
New prompts will begin Saturday, March 13th! So get your journals ready!
If you choose to share…
There WILL always be a link-up available, but don’t feel pressured to share what you write. Journaling is a pretty private thing, and not everyone wants to post their whole sex life on the internet for the world to see (some of us are weird that way, but I don’t expect you to be like me).
You can link up a single post, more than one, or a category or tag link if you are keeping an ongoing journal on your blog (even if your whole blog is devoted to your sex & intimacy journal).
This is about you, and I don’t want you to censor your feelings or thoughts, but if you are keeping your journal in a public space and sharing it (or bits of it) with the rest of us, please remember:
Be nice to others. Be respectful. Be legal.
You must be 18 to play.
I reserve the right to remove any links I deem unacceptable.
Read and comment on other posts as you feel comfortable. Don’t feel obligated, though.
The main point of this is to get to know yourself better, but if you choose to share publicly, this could also be an opportunity to learn from each other and to build a stronger community through intimacy and vulnerability. Please respect that this is what is happening. When people offer up their hidden depths, the last thing they need is to feel judged – so hold that negative commentary.
Use the badge and link back to the link-up page.
Share the prompts and posts you like on social media.
Have fun and be safe.
Some (hopefully) helpful information:
Journaling Can Improve Your Sex Life
Journaling is like meditation. It slows the mind down and focuses your energy into your fingers, and the words that come out represent the whirlwind of emotion going on inside of you. Writing those words down gives shape to those feelings, and reading those words later can help to provide a deeper understanding of people, events, thoughts, and your reactions.
Journaling can help you get a handle on negative thoughts, improve your memory, and decrease stress. This, in turn, can free up your brain for other mental activities. Plus, it can help improve your libido. Dumping your worries, anger, fear, and other negative emotions on the page can free you. And writing out your positive thoughts and gratitude can make you a happier person.
Journaling, in general, can help make you more self-aware. So when you focus your writing on a particular area of your life (like sex and intimacy), there is a logical likelihood that it will improve that area of your life…if you let it. You can uncover unhealthy patterns of thinking and behavior, identify positive ones, and reflect on what works or doesn’t for your current self.
A sex & intimacy journal should be a place where you keep track of memorable moments, both good and bad. It creates a written record where you can begin to see patterns and address them over time.
How to Start a Sex & Intimacy Journal
When you start a sex & intimacy journal, you have to first set your intentions. Determine your WHY, so you can stay focused on your purpose. Are you writing for yourself? Are you writing for a partner? Are you trying to solve a problem? Are you looking to simply learn more about your desires, beliefs, habits, and attitudes? Are you looking to dump your emotions and set them free? Are you focusing on gratitude? Maybe it’s a combination.
Journaling about what makes you feel sexy and turns you on can stimulate your sensuality. Thinking and writing about sex can help you access that part of yourself, so WHEN you journal is as important as journaling. Will you journal in the morning before you start your day? At lunchtime when you have a short break? After work, to set you up for a lighter, sexier evening, or right before bed to dump what’s in your brain? Once again, maybe it’s a combination.
Next, you need to choose your HOW. Many people like to simply set a timer and free-write. Some like to write their journal entries as letters to a particular person who may or may not ever see them. Will you type? Blog? Hand-write? Make sure you have the app, program, or writing materials necessary for your journaling.
Journaling should help you find the words you need to discuss your desires with others. It should also provide you a place to let loose and rant. You should never censor yourself or judge yourself or what you write.
A sex & intimacy journal can also be a place where you record and rate your sexual experiences. This can help you learn more about what you enjoy (and don’t) so you are more mindful the next time, and so you have words to explain that to another person. Keep track of partners, foreplay, orgasms, etc.
A journal can also be a place for drawing, artwork, poems, clippings, photos, and other paraphernalia that relates to your feelings and emotions.
If it’s easier to write in third person, because it distances you a bit from the events, that’s okay, too. This may be especially helpful for people who have experienced sexual trauma or who are not quite ready to own their sexual identity or desires.
Here’s an excerpt from an article I recently read:
It may not feel easy to journal about yourself as a sexual being. That could be exactly why you’re keeping a sex journal in the first place…. In this case, you may feel more comfortable journaling about a sexual archetype, aka a sexual alter ego.
“Think of a ‘sexual archetype’ you could embody,” says Audria O’Neill, a love, sex and relationship coach. “Mine is the ‘Love Goddess.’ Yours could be the ‘Queen of Passion,’ for example. In your journal, describe what you would be like and how you would do things if you stepped into this part of yourself. Then follow that by asking yourself what holds you back from being this sexy archetype and what you can do to consciously step into it.”
This type of journaling (and all journaling, really) is a helpful way to explore why you subconsciously operate the way you do, she says. “Then, you use this knowledge to consciously change your habits.”
The important thing about journaling, if it is to be successful, is that you make it a consistent practice. If you feel like you have nothing to write about, it doesn’t mean something isn’t there, just lurking under the surface. Setting a time and writing a word over and over until something comes to you might help. Or just writing about your day until something pops up can be helpful. Making a list, drawing a picture, creating a mind-map. It doesn’t have to be sentences and paragraphs to be deep, emotional work. It doesn’t even have to always be deep or emotional. Try to write daily. It’s just like working out…once you take a day off, it’s easy to go week, and suddenly it’s been a month since you wrote.
But it’s important to avoid making a journal work. This is supposed to be pleasurable. So don’t force yourself to write something you just can’t write. It’s fine to write a few sentences one day and several pages another.