It is normal to be turned on by certain things and not others. What turns you on may also change over time. Some people are more easily aroused than others. There is no “right” or “wrong” way to feel sexual desire.
Many different things can cause someone to be turned on or not. Here are some examples:
- Visual: seeing something sexually stimulating, such as nudity, a passionate kiss, or a couple engaged in sex
- Physical: being touched in a sexually stimulating way; this could include hugging, kissing, or massaging
- Psychological: thinking about something sexually stimulating; this could include daydreaming about sex, fantasizing about a particular sexual activity or person, or recalling a past sexual experience
- A combination of any of the above
Some people can feel turned on by just thinking about sex, while others may need more intense stimulation to feel aroused. There is no “right” way to feel sexual desire. What turns you on may also change over time. Most people have different things that they find arousing at different times.
What turns you on?
Thinking about anything else can be difficult when you find yourself turned on. You may feel like you need to act on your feelings, or else they’ll become overwhelming. But there are ways to calm yourself down and stop being turned on.
First, try to figure out what’s causing your arousal. Is it a certain person? A type of situation? Once you know what it is, you can try to avoid it.
If you can’t avoid the trigger, you can still do things to calm yourself down. Taking deep breaths, thinking about non-sexual things, and getting rid of any potential sources of sexual stimulation can all help. If you’re still struggling, you may want to try Masturbation or similar activities that release sexual tension without involving another person.
The psychology of being turned on
Sexual arousal is a complex process influenced by internal and external factors. Some of these factors are under your control, while others are not. However, there are certain things you can do to decrease your overall level of sexual arousal.
Internally, sexual arousal is influenced by your hormones, emotions, thoughts, and physical sensations. For example, you may have difficulty getting aroused or maintaining an erection if you feel stressed or anxious. Similarly, if you are not attracted to your partner or have negative associations with sex (e.g., due to past trauma), this can also impact your level of arousal.
External factors that can influence sexual arousal include:
- Your environment (e.g., is it comfortable and private?).
- The type of stimulation you are experiencing (e.g., visual, auditory, tactile).
- Your level of fatigue.
Anything that makes it difficult to focus on the sexual stimulus or makes you uncomfortable can decrease sexual arousal.
There are a few different techniques you can use to stop being turned on:
1) Change your focus: If you find yourself getting too aroused by a particular stimulus (e.g., a certain type of pornography), try to shift your focus to something else. This can be done by thinking about something else entirely or focusing on the stimulus’s non-sexual aspects (e.g., the setting or the people involved).
2) Change your body position: If you are touching yourself in a way that makes it difficult to control your level of arousal, try changing your body position. This can involve moving your hand away from your genitals or adjusting your sitting or lying down.
3) Take breaks: If you are engaging in extended periods of sexual activity, it can be helpful to take breaks every so often. This will allow your body to cool down and help prevent you from becoming too aroused too quickly.
4) Use distractions: deliberately distract yourself from the sexual stimulus by focusing on something else entirely. This could involve counting backward from 100 or thinking about a random scene from a movie. The key is finding something that requires enough concentration to take your mind off of the sexual stimulus completely.
5) Use fantasy control: Many people find it helpful to imagine themselves in different situations when they feel too aroused. For example, if you are watching pornography, making it difficult to control your level of arousal, try picturing yourself in a non-sexual setting (e.g., at work or doing chores around the house). Alternatively, you could picture yourself engaged in activities that would generally reduce sexual arousal (e.g., taking a cold shower).
The physiology of being turned on
What exactly is happening in your body when you’re turned on? According to Clinical sexologist Dr. Sonjia Kenya, being turned on results from “different areas of the brain releasing hormones that lead to physical changes in your body like increased heart rate and blood flow to your genitals.”
These physical changes indicate an inflamed or aroused state, which can heighten sexual desire. “You may feel more sensitive, warmer, tingly, lubricated,” Dr. Kenya says. All of these sensations work together to make sex feel good.
How to stop being turned on
If you’re turned on, you’re feeling sexually aroused. You might think about someone or something that makes you feel sexual desire. Maybe you just had a sexy dream. Sexual arousal is normal, but sometimes it can be inconvenient — like when you’re at school or work and have to focus on something else.
To stop being turned on, you need to avoid any triggers that might cause you to become aroused. This can be different for every person, but some common triggers include the following:
- seeing someone, you find attractive
- thinking about sex
- watching sexual videos or images
- reading erotic stories
- being touched in a sexual way
If you know what triggers your arousal, try to avoid them as much as possible. For example, if you get turned on by watching sexual videos, make sure not to watch them anymore. If you get turned on by thinking about sex, try to think about other things instead.
Dealing with intrusive thoughts
When you’re living with anxiety, your mind can be your worst enemy. It’s hard enough to deal with the constant worry and stress, but when you start having intrusive thoughts, it can feel like you’re losing control of your mind.
Intrusive thoughts are unwanted, repetitive thoughts that can be harmful or just plain annoying. They can be about anything, but they often center on themes of violence, sex, or taboo subjects. These thoughts can be so distressing that they interfere with your everyday life.
If you’re dealing with intrusive thoughts, there are a few things you can do to try to stop them. First, it’s important to understand that just because you have an intrusive thought does not mean you will act on it. Just because you think about doing something doesn’t mean you will do it. Intrusive thoughts are very common in people with anxiety and do not necessarily indicate that you are dangerous or unstable.
There are a few techniques that can help you deal with intrusive thoughts:
-Identify the thought: Recognize when you’re having an intrusive thought and label it as such. This can help to diffuse its power over you.
-Challenge the thought: Once you’ve identified the thought, try to challenge it. Ask yourself why you have the thought and if there’s any evidence to support it. Most often, there is no evidence to support these types of thoughts.
-Distract yourself: If you are fixated on an intrusive thought, try to distract yourself with another activity. This can be as simple as taking a walk or listening to music. The goal is to focus on something else so that the intrusive thought fades into the background.
Intrusive thoughts are very common in people with anxiety disorders, but they can be incredibly distressing and make everyday life very difficult. If you’re struggling to deal with intrusive thoughts on your own, don’t hesitate to reach out for help from a mental health professional.
Reducing sexual arousal
There are several ways that you can reduce sexual arousal. Some people find that they can control their arousal by thinking about something else, while others find that they need to take more physical action.
Some people find that they can control their arousal by:
-Thinking about something else: You may be able to distract yourself by thinking about something else altogether or by focusing on a specific non-sexual image or object in the room.
-Focusing on the physical sensations: Once you become aroused, you may be able to focus on the physical sensations of sex and not get as caught up in the mental aspect. This can help you to become less aroused overall.
-Breathing deeply: Taking deep breaths can help to relax your body and mind and reduce sexual arousal.
-Visualizing a calm scene: Try to visualize a calming and relaxing scene, such as a beach or a forest. This can help remove your mind from sexual thoughts and reduce your overall arousal level.
Some people need to do more physical activity to reduce their sexual arousal. This can include:
-Changing positions: If you are in a position that makes you more aroused, try changing positions or moving around. This can help remove your mind from sexual stimulation and reduce arousal.
-Removing clothing: If you are wearing clothing that is sexually stimulating, such as lingerie or tight clothing, try removing it. This can help to reduce your overall level of arousal.
-Decreasing stimulation: If you are being stimulated physically, such as through touching or rubbing, try decreasing the stimulation by moving slowly or taking breaks.