Strive for Great Health Podcast Episode 104 – Sexual Health, Intimacy, & Desire
The quality and frequency of intimate moments you share with your spouse affect your health. Did you know if you have intercourse 52 or more times a year, you decrease your risk of death from cardiovascular disease and cancer, among other disease states?
I am joined on the podcast by my good friend Dr. Angela Jones of Get Centered Counseling & Consultants, who is a certified Sex Therapy Candidate at the Texas Sex Therapy Institute and also holds a Bachelors of Arts in Psychology, a Masters of Arts in Community Clinical Psychology and a Doctor of Philosophy in In Counseling. This episode is for both men and women who want to discover how to foster sexual health, intimacy, and desire with their partners.
Dr. Richard Harris MD 00:00
This episode of The strive for great health podcast, I have my good friend with me Dr. Angela Jones, who is a certified sex expert. We’re going to be talking about sexual health and intimacy. And you may be asking, why does that matter? Well, those who have sex more than 52 times per year compared to those who have sex 01 times per year, had a 49% Lower all cause mortality 21% lower cardiovascular disease mortality 69% lower cancer mortality and 48% Lower other cause mortality in one clinical study, having sex and the desire to have sex and the intimacy that comes with it is a conglomeration of many different processes and you need good vascular health, good mental health, obviously a stable relationship stable partner. So there’s a lot that goes into the actual act that is a marker of our overall health. We’re going to talk about how you improve your sexual health how you foster intimacy, are you ready to boost your health, EQ and IQ? Cue the music? Join me Dr. Richard Harris as we strive to unlock the secret to the human body. Strive for Wellness strive for great health. Follow the show on iTunes, Spotify, Google and Android. And now a word from our sponsors. Our sponsor is Nimbus healthcare, the company that I co founded personalized medicine personalized results. At Nimbus. We don’t believe that there’s a one size fits all when it comes to treatment. And the data is starting to show that there’s a large variety of how people respond to certain things. And we’re in the Age of Science where we can use things like genetic testing, and biomarkers to truly customize a plan just for you. And that’s what we do at Nimbus healthcare. We are in the hair loss and the hormone space. And what we do is we use lifestyle medicine, supplements, and compounded prescription medication to tailor and individualize a plan just for you. If that sounds like something that you’re looking for, you can check out Nimbus healthcare.com. Or click the link in the show notes. One of the things I get asked all the time is Richard, how can I support the podcast and the best way that you can support what we do at the strive for great health podcast is to invest in your health with our lifestyle medicine course. The course is essentially everything that I do for myself and my loved ones to keep us in optimal health. It covers nutrition, exercise, sleep, stress management, we also dive really heavily into mindset and do commitment into willpower, intentionality and habit change. This is something that has been life changing for me. And I really think if you want to support the podcast, the best way you can do so is invest in your health, or invest in the health of someone else around you. Through our lifestyle medicine course. It’s 4999. And as listeners of this podcast, we’ll give you 10% off using the code podcast. Let’s dive in to this week’s episode. Before we get into our discussion with Dr. Angela Jones, there are a couple of things I got wrong that we need to talk about. So one of these things is Nutritionism. This is looking at individual ingredients and foods and not looking at the whole food in general. And there are several things that I got wrong when it comes to this. One of the things you’ve heard me mentioned on this podcast is FIDIC acid and phytates. These are found in things like lagoons, nuts, they’re also found in wheat. Here’s the thing about phytic acid, the amount can vary, and foods so like almonds can be up to 9.4% FIDIC acid by weight. Other times it might be 0.4%. So that’s a large variance. Why is FIDIC acid there? FIDIC acid is how these plants store phosphorus. Well what’s the problem with phytic acid phytic acid can bind other cat ions like iron, calcium, manganese, and zinc. And what happens is when it binds these, it creates phytates and humans cannot break phytates down we don’t have the enzymes for this. Well, this sounds bad. But the thing is, by the time the food hits our plate, there could be very little phytic acid left things like sprouting, cooking, baking, soaking, fermenting, adding yeast. These all decreased the amount of phytic acid and also FIDIC acid might not be bad. There’s evidence showing it’s an antioxidant. If you look at the foods that are high in folic acid, things like nuts, legumes, whole grains, meta analyses show benefit for people eating these foods. And this is that whole concept of Nutritionism, you cannot take one ingredient in the food and say, Oh, it has this one ingredient. That’s bad foods contain 1000s, of phytochemicals, and nutrients and vitamins all together. And you have to look at the impact of these things in totality. So should you be concerned about this? Probably not. The only time that this might be concerning is in people who are primarily plant based, and they already have pre existing nutrient deficiencies like iron and zinc, and they get most of their caloric intake from these classes of foods. The other one would be in countries where there’s malnutrition, and they get most of their nutrients from these categories of foods. But for most of us, this is not something to worry about. And if you are primarily plant based, we have an episode go back and listen to that nutrient deficiencies episode where we talked about the possible nutrient deficiencies with primarily being plant based excluding meat. But if you are primarily plant based, soak these things sprout ferment when possible, and incorporate some animal protein if you can into your nutrition plan. What else along this vein, we just mentioned almonds so overall meta analyses show almond intake is beneficial for cardiovascular health markers. LDL on body weight on a fob on glucose on diastolic blood pressure, in almost actually contain a little bit of cyanide. Oh no, it contains cyanide. Yeah, it’s well below the amount that would be toxic to humans. Another thing I mentioned is Cylon cinnamon, Cylon cinnamon contains less of something called coumarin Kuma in in petri dish study was found to cause liver injury. However, we’ve talked about the problems with these studies or looking at animal studies. Again, we’re not going to focus on one ingredient if you’ve ever heard me talk about one ingredient on this podcast, and there was harm, then go look at a meta analysis for overall intake of that food because again, there’s 1000s of chemicals in these foods. So humor in in this one study was associated with liver injury. However, a systemic review of cinnamon showed no effect on liver enzymes and actually reduction in hlt, which is a liver specific enzyme and diabetic patients when they are taking about 1500 milligrams of cinnamon day or less, and they had a follow up of longer than 12 weeks. So pretty robust study. Other animal studies with concentrated parts of cinnamon showed some harm but overall human studies show benefit to consuming sentiment and not just silence cinnamon show benefit to consuming sentiment and little adverse effects. In fact, an umbrella review umbrella review is a meta analysis of meta analyses, it’s the highest level of evidence there is showed safety with using sentiment. The final thing that we’re going to talk about is oats. I believe in the podcast I did with Ben bickman. I talked about how I didn’t respond well to oats and he mentioned how lots of people don’t respond well to oats. And I think that mainly comes from the fact that people will just eat, you know, oatmeal, add sugar to it, add fruit and there’s no protein whatsoever. And that’s not how you want to craft a meal protein as a centerpiece of every single meal. It’s the most important thing is making sure we get enough protein intake and then getting our essential fats and then our beneficial carbohydrates. That’s kind of the order when I structure my meals, protein first essential fats and then beneficial carbohydrates. So oats overall made analyses show reduction in diabetes, all cause mortality, may be cardiovascular disease. It does show improvement in cardiovascular disease markers, things like cholesterol, blood sugar, BMI waist circumference with oat intake. So I’m not going to sit here and demonize oats if you eat oats. Great. If it’s overnight oats even better if you soak those oats make them resistant starch. Hey, that’s perfectly fine. Throw into protein powder, throw in some peanut butter or the peanut butter extract that just has the protein I forget what it’s called right now throw in something that has a little bit of fat and some protein and you’re good to go. So speaking of which, we just found magic spoon. I’m not paid by magic spoon of anybody has a connection to magic spoon. That’d be great. But we just tried it. It is awesome. And the number one ingredient is protein. That’s the cereal that we will eat going forward. If I feel like eating cereal it makes it good. ate snack because it’s high in protein. Okay, now that’s not what you came here to listen to. You came here to hear me talk about sex with our sex expert, Dr. Angela Jones. Enough of hearing from me. Let’s get to that conversation. Welcome to strive for great health podcast with your host, Dr. Richard Harris. And today I have with me a friend I’ve known for quite some time, we did a talk together, and we’ve been in conversations back and forth. I have Dr. Angela Jones with me of get centered counseling and consultants. My go to therapist whenever i Someone asked me, Hey, I need to see someone in Houston. I send them her way. She’s amazing, incredible speaker, incredible mom incredible life. Just super strong. And I’m so glad to have you on the
Dr. Angela Jones 10:48
show. Nice. I appreciate it. I’m really happy to be here.
Dr. Richard Harris MD 10:51
Well, thank you, I appreciate you taking the time out of your busy schedule to come and talk with us. Because we’re going to talk about something that is taboo. A lot of people are afraid to talk about this subject, even though it is essential to life like literally none of us would exist without it. Right? We’re gonna talk about sexual health. And the first question is, what is sexual health? It’s gonna have something that’s different to every person. But you what does it mean when I say sexual health? What does that mean to you? Yeah,
Dr. Angela Jones 11:21
well, you know, it means a lot of different things. But for me, it’s about its holistic, right? When I’m talking about sexual health, I don’t want to only address the actual act of sex, I want to be able to address who we are holistically. So it’s about our physical, emotional, our mental and our social well being in relation to sex and sexuality. So it’s, it’s basically who we are, and how that defines our sexuality and how it defines what our thoughts are in regards to sex. It’s not only about you know, function of sex, or the absence of it, or too much of it, it requires like a positive and a respectful approach to sex and sexuality, as well as having pleasurable, safe and safe sex. And, you know, being able to do it without coercion and without discrimination, and really encompasses everything of who we are, and an act. So sexual health is all encompassing, you know, the fact that I know you’re a medical doctor, you address things with a lot of people that aren’t helping their sexual health, even though that may not be your focus, right? Helping them with what they’re eating, what they’re putting in their body, how they’re hitting, you know, how they’re dealing with themselves, and how they’re looking at their physical health. All of that creates great sexual overall health for people.
Dr. Richard Harris MD 12:48
Yeah, there’s a couple of things you said that I think is really important, because it is an outward expression of our innermost thoughts, right, and our feelings in our self. And so I feel like to really get to know who you are as a sexual and intimate being, you have to spend a lot of time discovering who you are, and what’s important to you. Is that something that you’ve seen with, with your clients and people you work with? Absolutely. So
Dr. Angela Jones 13:13
it’s interesting when people come to me, you know, they’re like, hey, I want sex therapy, right? And I’m like, Okay, let’s do it. And they have this idea that, all we’re gonna do is talk about it, you know, it’s talked about sex. But really, what they realize pretty, pretty rapidly is that we’re now talking about your childhood. And we’re now talking about past relationships, and how you attach to people in attachment styles, and the way we think about sex, the way we think about ourselves sexually. It should feel the Act should feel free. But there’s so many things that happen within human beings that makes us feel like we can’t be free within the bedroom. We can’t be free with our sexuality, either in regards to you know, stereotypes, cultural normative, there’s just different things. It can’t just be about that. It has to be about everything else, how you think about men, how you think about women, how you think about bodies, right? Can you even look at yourself in the mirror naked? You know, and sometimes I even have to ask some of my clients, especially women, when is the last time you took a mirror and look that you know, your vulva and vagina area? And you’ll be surprised like some women don’t do that at all. And, you know, I have women in their 40s and their 50s that I’m like, okay, don’t do that. That’s your homework. That’s what I need you to go do. No, I
Dr. Richard Harris MD 14:33
think you brought up a really interesting point is one of the things that people always ask me as well, how did you go through medical school and work and how do you go through pharmacy, school and work and all that and I said, I know myself. I spend a lot of time figuring out myself and figuring out how I work and what’s optimal for me. And I think it’s the same thing with our bodies. This is not me being vain, but I’ve spent a lot of time looking at my body and looking at the contours and the curves and the moles and the things I like and the things I don’t like and what symmetric and what isn’t symmetric, just so I know myself and I feel comfortable with myself. Yeah. And then there’s also the health aspect, like, you need to examine your genitalia, right? For health reasons to make sure that something isn’t supposed to be there. Right, right, do your testicular exams do your breast exams? Right? And part of that is so you know when something is wrong, but also part of that is just having a good sensation and a good comfortability with your own bodies and the ins and outs of your body.
Dr. Angela Jones 15:35
Right. So yeah, like you said, you examined yourself, and often use the word research, often I said, you need to look at yourself, your body, your life, like a research project, you need to be the best researcher, you need to be studying, you need to understand, you know, the cause and affects and what happens if I eat this? And what does that do to my body? What happens if someone touches me here? How does that make me feel? What you know, why are certain things and not symmetrical? Why is one breast higher than the other? Why? Why do I have so much fat around my midsection and, you know, so many different things, right? So the fact that you like you said, you examine your body, and it doesn’t sound vain at all, it sounds like you care about yourself. And it really does come down to it. It’s about caring about yourself, and not expecting someone else to care about you more than you care about yourself. Because when you get to that space, of course, what happens in the bedroom, it’s very lopsided,
Dr. Richard Harris MD 16:36
that you can’t expect someone to love you more than you love yourself lately, perhaps. And I think a lot of people in society expect that they expect someone to come in and fix them, or rescue them or save them, or this person over here. If I find them, there’s going to make everything better. And when I first met Brittany, I told her, I said, but your happiness is not my responsibility. And if you can’t make yourself happy, how could I ever expect to make you? Exactly,
Dr. Angela Jones 17:04
exactly. And so, you know, but there is a little, there’s nuances and little, you know, caveats to what we’re saying, right, which is culture expectations, religious expectations, or just the way we were brought up, right. So for women, women are not taught to be sexual beings, but we’re expected to be sexual beings. You know, when we’re growing up, and especially as a teenager, and we start, or we start to develop, our breasts are coming in and our waistlines are sinking in and our hips are spreading a little bit. The first thing our parents or people around us do is want us to stay covered up, they don’t want people to show it. And if you do, you are, you know, insert explicit of insert whatever terminology that they use in that moment. And they tell you, you know, if you if you are not pure, and I’m putting that in quotations, if you’re not pure, you’re no good, or you have to save sex for marriage. But then when you get married, you have to be expected to, to have amazing sex but your whole life, you’ve been told to suppress it. Right? And then as for men, and I’m, and I’m kind of an I am stereotyping, right? I’m putting everybody in a certain space, men have more freedom in regards to expressing themselves, right? A boy can come in at 14 and say he lost his virginity and his dad will give him a high five, right and be like, alright, well tell me how it was, you know, in a woman is not not able to do that. And I am talking about heteronormative relationships, if you want to explore different different people in different sexualities, I mean, we are told to suppress so many natural emotions, that when it comes down to have sex, that’s why it is a taboo topic, because it is so like, the messaging is so opposite in every way. It wouldn’t be taboo, if we embrace it in a way that we’re supposed to embrace it. Now, I’m not saying you should tell your 1314 year old like go and have sex, but you want to be able to have them be comfortable in their own skin. You want them to be able to name their body parts, you know, correctly, you don’t want them to say ding dong, you want them to say pain is you know, you just like you don’t want them to say you know, long part you want them to say arms. So, you know, we have to show like it’s okay to talk about these things. It’s okay to be curious. It’s okay to ask questions, you know, and it’s okay to be safe at the same time. I feel like culturally it’s like we have to we want that freedom. We want that comfortability, like we’re saying research your body, but especially for women everything. We’re told to not do that. So sometimes it’s uncomfortable for some women to even look in the mirror and look at themselves because they have been told that it is a weapon over her you know, or something. So it’s, I mean, I could go on and on about this, so I’m gonna I’m gonna pause it but yeah, there’s like me Yeah, you should be free. You explore yourself. But there’s so many things in our society and many societies all around the world that make people suppress our natural desires, and we don’t know what to do with it.
Dr. Richard Harris MD 20:13
Yeah, I think you bring up a really interesting point about environment. And oftentimes we leave education, especially to kids to other people. And really the best place to learn is an environment that you think is safe right now me I’ve always been a curious kid. I remember asking my mom questions about sex as a kid. Yeah, you know, as a teenager, right? And just asking your questions, because she’s my mom, I felt comfortable talking to her. Our family had our faults, but one of the things we always had the the space to shass question, it’s amazingly, that you have and get answers freely. And so that was one of the things that I respected. And there was always honesty in our household, we were always honest with each other. And I think that is a microcosm for what relationships should be whether it’s intimate or not intimate. You need that trust and that honesty between both people. And this kind of leads into the next question. It’s something that I get people asking or or hear about all the time is, how do you foster intimacy in a relationship? A lot of times people have trouble doing that. And I’m sure this is a reason why people come to see you all the time.
Dr. Angela Jones 21:25
Fostering intimacy in a relationship is, again, sometimes it can be a selfless act, because sometimes fostering intimacy in a relationship means you have to sometimes put yourself aside and really invest yourself in someone else. So you can have that intimacy, right. So there’s like, there’s different types of intimacy, there’s emotional intimacy, there’s physical intimacy, there’s intellectual intimacy, there is spiritual intimacy, there is experiential intimacy there. So we’re not just talking about physical intimacy, there’s all these different types of intimacy that we have to really take into account, right. So if someone is saying, you know, I want to be intimate with someone, you can only invest in the emotional intimacy and ignore the spiritual intimacy, right, or ignore the physical intimacy. And unfortunately, a lot of people are having, you know, they’re linear thinkers when it comes to that. So they focus on one thing, when they hear intimacy, they think sex, right? But intimacy is everything, honestly. Everything is about intimacy, relationships, friendships, even the fact that like me and you, we met each other at an event. And we clicked and we were able to talk and we felt comfortable. And I was able to meet your wife, well, she was your girlfriend then but your wife, and that’s intimacy, right? There was a comfortability that happened there. And intellectually, we felt connected in some way, right? I was learning from you, you were learning from me, that’s intimacy. To foster intimacy, you have to look at your partner holistically. And you have to look at the different types of intimacy. So with emotional intimacy, it’s basically what you describe how you grew up, it allows you to tell your loved ones personal things, things that you might not necessarily share with like, casual strangers or associates, there’s a safety I have to feel emotionally safe to express personal things to you, and know that it’s not going to hurt me later. So in especially in marriages that have been together a long time, one of the main complaints I hear in regards to emotional intimacy is like I told my husband this are told my wife is really big and very secretive are very important thing. If she threw it in my face later, or she used it against me in argument, you are you are breaking down that that level of intimacy by doing that, intellectually, it involves like getting to know another person, how their mind works and sharing. And like kind of sharing the map to your mind. Right? So you’re getting to know their mind and sharing your mind with them. The key thing is that it’s not because y’all are in agreeance. Intellectually, it’s about the acceptance of our mind. If I talk to you, Richard, maybe when you’re telling me about certain things, maybe you’re more scientific, you know, your might be more black and white, logical. And me, I’m more emotional, and I say kind of in the gray. But we have to appreciate those things intellectually, and have meaningful conversations physically, of course, it’s about touch, closeness, somebody’s holding hands, cuddling, kissing, even the way we look at each other. I’m trying to go through them. So we know like the difference between spiritual it means different things to different people. And spiritual intimacy can vary within a relationship, generally speaking, like maybe we’re both Christian, but you believe in going to church every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. And I’m a Christian, but I don’t really believe in going to church and but understand Being like each other in that space and being able to have, again, a connection there, knowing that we believe the same God, but maybe we worship differently. And I take some things from you, and you take some things from me. And the last one is experiential, which is you’re building intimacy by spending quality time with someone doing common things, common interest going to places that we both like, we both bond over, what’s a new show the house of dragons or something like that. That’s the show I’ve been watching lately, but you know. So you have to look at the dynamics of, of them if you want to build intimacy. And unfortunately, when people come to me in my practice, and they want, like you said, they want to rebuild their intimacy, there’s a one note to him, and I have to educate them. And then it’s almost like you see a flower blossom when they realize like, oh, okay, I’m really lacking in this area, looking at them in all those categories. And asking yourself, have I invested in that other person in that way for them to want to feel intimate with me?
Dr. Richard Harris MD 26:07
Yet, that’s powerful. There’s a lot there, too, because I assume this is sort of sort of like the love languages where every person has a different ranking of what’s important to them. And so you have to know what your ranking is. Yeah. And I assume all five are important. We may foster all five, but we might have different ranks, for different people like mine might be spiritual and physical. And yours might be intelligence and experiential, right? And so we have to come together and know ourselves well enough that we can say, Hey, these are the intimate areas that are most important to right, what’s most important to you, so I can be able to bridge that gap? And then check in with each other? One of the things that my wife does, and I’m terrible at this, is she routinely asked me, Is there anything that you need from me? What do you need me to do? She asked me that all the time. Because she’s, she’s making sure we’re on the same wavelength. Now, I think it’s because I probably feel a little bit more connected innately to her than I think she feels to me. And so she feels like she has to check in. I think I just kind of feel when we’re off. Yeah, and try to bring us back. But these are things that I didn’t know about this. But we’ve kind of worked on to find that balance in our relationship, I think is very important for you to spend time self reflecting on these things, before you come to your partner and just start attacking them for stuff when you’re not even sure what you really want.
Dr. Angela Jones 27:36
Right. Right. And I think that’s beautiful that she does that. You’d be surprised it takes people years to learn to even ask someone, what do you need from me and be selfless in that actual request, right? That, that actually takes humility, because I’m opening the door and I’m saying, Tell me what to do to help you. And it’s not to help you to help me just to help you, to make you smile today to make you feel better. You know, if that means that I’m just making you a cup of coffee, I’ll make you a cup of coffee. When it comes to like being married. There’s a part of it that is about service to each other. You’re serving one another, you’re supporting one another. People don’t like the word serve. So I use the word support. But it is service, right? I’m serving you. You’re serving me. It’s a mutuality. And so she’s coming to you because she is she loves you, if she wants to invest in you, if she wants to serve you. And then as you were saying, like it’s more innate. So you feel like, I’m watching you, and I’m seeing what you need. And I serve you in that way. You take pride in knowing what she needs without her saying it. And she takes pride in knowing that she’s asking you what you need. And so you’re right. Yeah, it’s kind of like the love languages, it’s everybody needs something different. And there’s has to be some service in that there has to be some selflessness in that. And investment. I always tell people when I noticed that people are having a hard time connecting with their their mate. I say every morning, I want you to wake up and look at your partner, even if they’re sleep and snoring with slobber coming out of their mouth. And ask yourself, What can I do today for them? It doesn’t have to be big. You don’t have to buy them a brand new Gucci bag or anything like that. It can literally be like, You know what, let me lay out his clothes. Let me iron his outfit for the day. Because I know he usually wakes up late. Or, you know, well, I know she has a lot of things to pack in her car. Let me go ahead and do that for her while she’s getting dressed. You know, and that service and it feels good, especially when there’s like a mutuality and we’re both doing it for each other. It doesn’t feel like serving, but it is what you’re doing. And it feels fulfilling because you’re like I love this person. And I love to love them in this way. Love Languages, I think is a great baseline for a lot of relationships to read. Because all of them are important. All of them have to be relevant because even when you take the test, you’re higher on luck. helpful, but they never exclude any of them. They’re all still there. It’s a good way to know like, Oh, this is what this like my husband, he is. He likes getting gifts, right? And I am well I like teeter between quality time and acts of service. So when I know he likes getting gifts, I know little things mattered to him, and go to the grocery store and get his favorite thing to eat, right. Or if I am getting myself something like a new outfit, I get him a new shirt to these things make him feel special because it what it tells me reminds him is that in that moment, while you were doing something for you, you thought of me too. It’s hard because it’s not my love language. So you have to be intentional keyword is intentional with all of everything I’m talking about.
Dr. Richard Harris MD 30:49
Absolutely. And it’s really interesting, because you can apply holistic principles, once you understand holistic principles, you can apply them to multiple areas of your life. And one of the principles that I say is, every single day, do something where someone else was glad you were there. If you don’t do that your life is gonna be miserable. Because your life is all about you. Right? And I don’t care who you are, you will be miserable. If you make life all about you. If you never think about ways to serve other people, I mean, there’s scientific data on this, your brain lights up when you give to other people. Yep. When you service other people. So I think that’s important. I also think, you know, like you said, with the love languages, figuring that out, I never really thought about it till Brittany. And I figured out my love language is acts of service and quality time. Those are my things. Hers are physical touch and words of affirmation. So we are completely different. Yeah, on our love languages. So we have to put, like you said investment into making sure the other person has their needs fulfilled. Yeah. Because if we just go by our default operating system, neither one of us would have our needs. Absolutely. Because we have different needs. So has to be top of mind. I have to think about it. When I’m thinking about her and thinking about her needs and thinking about making her happy that I’ve got to do something for her that’s not in the way that I’m default. Right. And it takes some time. But you know, now, I’m getting better about just reaching for her hand, because that’s a little moment. That means a lot. Yeah. telling her she looks beautiful, telling her she did a good job on something that I appreciate her effort. I don’t need any of that. Yeah, I’m perfectly fine with like very little physical touch. I’m perfectly fine without any words of affirmation. I go by actions. I go by, do you want to be around? Yeah. And she’ll often say I need no physical space and lots of people. I don’t need any space. Yeah, she could literally be in the same room with me all day, I’d be perfectly fine. Yeah. All right. So it’s figuring these things out. And I think you’ve given a lot of really great advice today. One of the things that I want to talk about next is something I hear a lot and this is specifically from a lot of men in my circle, who have been with their their partners or their wives for a long time. It’s they feel like they’ve they’ve lost that spark that their libido has dropped in committed relationships. Is this something that you hear all the time from, from your clients? And do you have any tips on how you can rekindle that spark? Because they say they’re still attracted to them? It’s just that, you know, the the sexual desire is still there. It’s just that initiating sex, they just don’t try to initiate as much as they did before. Yeah,
Dr. Angela Jones 33:35
yeah. I do hear that often on both ends. But yeah, especially with men. Here’s the thing, we get complacent. We’re with someone a long time and we kind of get a routine and, and we something, we lose something. And one of the biggest, one of the biggest, the most important aspects when it comes to healthy sexual relationship is desire. There’s desire, there’s pleasure, there’s satisfaction, there’s erotism, but the most important is desire. Because I have to want you to enjoy it. Somebody can put a piece of chocolate cake right now. And I’d be like, great, thanks. You know, I didn’t want it though. I wasn’t I didn’t desire a chocolate cake. But when I’m thinking about a chocolate cake, and I’ve been craving a chocolate cake, man, that chocolate cake tastes so much better. But the thing that makes it difficult with committed relationships with people who have you know, you’re with someone for a while, or you’ve been with someone for decades, or whatever it is, is that the key elements of desire are mystery, distance, you know, the illusion of like, being alert, being able to kind of feel excited, and those things are really difficult to imitate when you live with each other and you sleep in the same bed and you see each other air every single day in your good side and your bad side, and you argue, then you don’t argue. So that excitement that you had when you first got into relationship feels like Man, we just don’t have it anymore. And you have it. It’s just, it is harder to get that emotion again. One of my favorite therapists or psychologists is Esther parabolas, she says that, all around the world, she did some kind of survey and the thing that people need from their spouse to feel desire is universal. And it’s usually space. And it’s usually, like I said, it’s mystery. They say things like, I desire my husband the most when he’s on stage, playing his guitar, or when my husband or wife’s they live on vacation for a week, and I haven’t been able to see them. Or, you know, I see my wife in her her gown, and she’s greeting people at an event and everybody’s like, in awe of her, you know, all of these things, is all about mystery, right? And so how do we recreate this desire in our relationship? And I used to say, you have to remain constantly curious about your spouse, or your long term relationship or whatever, right? You have to remain curious, you are arrogant to think that you know every single thing about your partner, because as humans, we’re ever evolving, and we’re ever changing. One event can change the way we think for the rest of our lives. And if you don’t keep up with that, and remain curious with your partner, you’re gonna miss out on knowing who they are. And so you have to wake up. I’m not literally saying wake up. But you have to, you have to remain curious asking those questions, right? Just because I, I believed a certain thing last year doesn’t mean I believe that same thing this year, things have changed. So if you’re curious of entrepreneur, like you were when you first met them, you will always find something new, something new and exciting, something new that you probably didn’t know, you know, your partner well, but you don’t know everything. And you have to get that ego part out, thinking I actually know this person all the way. So I don’t have to ask her anything that that is a relationship killer. Right? So remain curious, ask those questions. When you ask about your partner’s day, ask yourself, do you really care? Or are you just asking because that’s what you’re supposed to ask. So maybe change the question, they’ll say, how was your day? They say fine, and then move on with your day. Ask questions like, Well, what was the best part of your day? Or tell me something that was frustrating? Or what did you eat today? How did it taste? I know that sounds weird, but it’s different, right? You change it up, and it creates like, oh, wow, I had no idea you liked curry. You know, maybe we should go to some Indian restaurants. And we’ve probably been married for 1520 years. And maybe I didn’t know that in that way. So desire. To recreate desire in a relationship is about curiosity. It’s also about allowing people to be themselves and given them space to be themselves and not trying to shun them for who they are. And, you know, let them go be free. Let them go do what they want to do. If I’m a musician, and I want to play the guitar, and I can’t stand loud music. Okay, well, how about I invest in a studio for you to go practice or get you some lessons and then then I’ll get to see you perform. And in that is translated into the bedroom. Right? If I feel like Man, I’m so excited about what you just told me. It’s almost like you know, you’re in the bedroom, having sexual relations with someone that you’re just like, Man, I feel like I kind of just met you. And it’s exciting. So desire does dwindle in a relationship. And that’s usually the the killer for a lot of men is like, what’s exciting about this relationship, I love her. She’s amazing. I’m still attracted to her. I think she’s an amazing woman. But there’s nothing that’s mysterious about her anymore.
Dr. Richard Harris MD 39:12
That’s powerful. Because in my conversations with men, I’d asked him if it was the same when they traveled. And they said, No, when we travel, we’d go back to the routines that we were like, when we first started dating, whether that was they had sex, you know, three times a week, four times a week, whatever it is, or they fell back into that old routine. And so that just to me, I’d be like, Well, okay, do novel things grow. Yeah. One of the things I see as the enemy to this is, well, they should just love me for who I am. Can’t expect to be the same person all throughout your life. And if you are the same person, 10 years later, you’re doing something wrong. Exactly. Right. So as you grow together and experience new things together, and pull in new things, like you have different interests, pull your partner into some of this stuff right now. Like for me, I’m really interested in crypto right now. And Brittany is learning about crypto. And I think that’s really exciting and really interesting. And I can’t believe she’s taking interest in one of my passions. Yeah, that’s so cool to me. And then we used to travel a lot, you know, COVID got in the way of that. But we’re trying to get back to that, because we love to travel, we love seeing new things, experiencing new things and trying new foods. And so I think, doing that novelty and bringing in new experiences and new ways of thinking and, and new information into a relationship can help rekindle that spark, because then you’re always inventing yourself, you’re always becoming a new version of yourself better. And it’s like, oh, man, I write a better version, I really liked this, I really liked what you’re doing. This is exciting. I really want to go on this journey with you.
Dr. Angela Jones 40:51
Right? And you know, when it translates into the bedroom, again, you want to feel safe when you’re having sex with your partner. So if your partner comes in and is trying something new, you should see that as an investment, like, wow, this person actually thought about this before they did it. But unfortunately, some people’s confidence or insecurities get in the way, where did you learn that from? That or that or that, it doesn’t matter. Because guess what, I want to do it with you. I want to try it with you, you’re the person that I want to do it with, right, and maybe I do explain it or read a article or I saw a video or our friends were talking about this, that’s fine. But you’re the person I want to do it with. And you want to feel free to present new things in the bedroom, and you want to feel free enough to accept them as well, because you want to trust that, you know, they’re not gonna do anything to hurt me. So, yeah.
Dr. Richard Harris MD 41:42
Awesome. Well, the last thing we’re going to cover, and we talked about things from a man’s perspective. Now, we as men often feel like women are this enigma, we just have a hard time. Understand? Yeah, yeah. You guys are complex. But and we’re simple. And so when you’re simple, and you’re trying to understand a complex system, it’s different. And so like, for me, I’m very simple. And Brittany, she thought there was more layers behind it. And I’m like, No, this is just this is. I’m very simple person. But as a woman, what are some of the things that you wish that more men knew about sexual health from a woman’s perspective,
Dr. Angela Jones 42:25
it’s not linear, it doesn’t go like a stairway. There’s not like one step two step three step. When it comes to, even if you like, Googled sexual, different diagrams, like the diagram for the cycle of sexuality, or like for women, compared to men, they look totally different. So for a man, if you look up the thing, you know, it’s like arousal, pleasure, climax, and then that’s it, right. But when it comes to women, the graph is like circular, and it has things like spewing out, because for most women, sex is not just a physical thing. It’s an all encompassing thing, right? I have to feel like I could trust you. I have to feel I can not trust you, like, oh, you won’t take my money, but like, trust you with my body, I have to feel that you are not judging me, I have to feel that you understand my body as much as I’ve allowed you to understand it. And I’m saying that for a reason. And that it takes more for me to have an orgasm in comparison to you. I mean, statistically, men have orgasms within what five to seven minutes. Women, it’s 13 to 17 minutes. So automatically, you guys are going to have an orgasm before we do. So that needs to be known. But we need more, we need to feel all those extra things I was telling you, so we can surrender our bodies to you not that doesn’t mean I’m not I’m just gonna lay there and let you just do whatever. Surrendering is safety. Right? And so we do need more. I don’t like it when people are just like, Why do y’all need so much? I don’t know. But we just do. You know, we might need you to kiss us a little bit and talk to us and all that great stuff. So my my advice for men in regards to women, right? Is after each sex act. Like you just had sex yesterday, from that moment till your next moment of having sex is foreplay. Okay, that means every day is foreplay. Most of you need to have this mindset. But I’m telling you as far as a man, all of it matters. That means that if you have this in my head, like okay, we had sex a week ago, so I want to have sex again a week later. So all week I’m providing foreplay, meaning I’m touching her. I’m doing the love languages. I’m giving her words of affirmation. I’m helping her out or on the house if she needed needs it. I’m giving her a call. compliments are I’m giving her a kiss on the cheek. So you know, I’m walking by her and I put my hand on her waist. So I kind of like ease by her bottom and I touch her or when I kiss her goodbye in the morning, maybe I do it a little more passionately and grab her in and put a little more passion, there’s only a couple more seconds. Everything should be foreplay. And if you men do this, you will notice you’ll have sex more often a lot more passionately. And it’s more enjoyable for each person. So all that time, you’re kind of building up that circle that I was talking about all that safety and all that you’re building that up on a daily basis. So if you want to have like a long sexcapades and have hours of sex, awesome, if you want to have a quickie right before you go to work, awesome. But you’re working at it all day, it will make you not only a better lover in the bedroom, but it’ll make you a better partner. Because if sex is a motivator for you, this is what you need to be doing. Right? You’re investing in it all the time.
Dr. Richard Harris MD 46:06
This has been very enlightening and amazing to have you on the podcast. Angela, I appreciate your your wisdom and everything that you do out there with your clients. If people want to learn more about you and what you do, how can they find out more,
Dr. Angela Jones 46:21
you could go to my website at Angela Jones phd.com. Or you can go to my Instagram page at Dr. Angela Jones. And you know, I update it with videos and stuff like that on there.
Dr. Richard Harris MD 46:32
I appreciate it. Anything you want to say before we close out, I just want people to know
Dr. Angela Jones 46:37
that we are sexual beings. And if you feel stifled in that area, it’s okay to seek help for it by a therapist or even reading a couple of books. You know, looking up different articles, I want you to remain curious about yourself. And that includes your sexuality and your intimacy in your body. And don’t allow people to make you feel shame for your curiosity. It’s our God given right to be sexual. And you just want to do it in a way that feels good to you. So invest in your sexual health just like you invest in your hair, or you invest in your car or you invest in issues, it’s actually more important than all of those things.
Dr. Richard Harris MD 47:19
Thank you so much for your time and your attention today on the strive for great health podcast. To my listeners. You guys got a lot of gyms today. So go back, read, listen, and point out one thing that you can incorporate into your life starting today. Thank you for listening to strive for great health podcast with your host Dr. Richard Harris. Have a blessed day. Thank you for listening to strive for great health podcast with your host Dr. Richard Harris. It’s our mission and goal at the podcast to impact as many lives as possible to empower individuals to take control of their health and live a life full of joy and purpose. You may help us achieve this mission by leaving a five star rating and review on your preferred podcast platform. And by sharing this podcast with anyone you think it may help. If you want to support the podcast, the best way is to invest in your health or invest in someone else’s health through our five pillars of great health lifestyle medicine course. A link to that courses in the show notes. Thank you for listening and God bless