Three Steps for Tackling Performance Anxiety

We’ve got another Sex and the State guest post! 

Official game balls for NFL football's Super Bowl XLIX sit in a bin before being laced and inflated at the Wilson Sporting Goods Co. in Ada, Ohio, Tuesday, Jan. 20, 2015. The New England Patriots will play the Seattle Seahawks for the NFL championship on Sunday, Feb. 1, 2015, in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Rick Osentoski)

(AP Photo/Rick Osentoski)

Sex is supposed to be enjoyable, but if you feel stressed every time you climb between the sheets, you might struggle to take pleasure in the physical side of your relationships.

Anxiety about orgasms or erections, worries about weight and other such concerns are a sure-fire way to kill the mood. The good news is, there are steps you can take to tackle sexual performance anxiety. This brief guide will talk you through the basics.

1. Understand that you’re not alone.

Many people experience these issues in the bedroom. For example, it is estimated that one in 10 men has a problem connected to sex, such as erectile dysfunction or premature ejaculation. Although these issues are physical, their root can often be psychological. As well as penis function, size can be a cause for concern. In some cases, men become so anxious about this that they develop body dysmorphic disorder. A recent study may help dispel myths about penis size and offer reassurance to men.

Conducted by a team of British researchers and published in the BJU International Journal of Urology, the research looked at more than 20 previous studies involving a combined total of over 15,000 men. It found that the average length of an erect penis is 5.16 inches. The researchers made a graph of their findings, which doctors can show to men who worry about their size.

Sexual performance anxiety is not only a male problem. According to a survey conducted by the University of Chicago and the Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, which was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, 16% of women aged 18 to 29 reported sexual anxiety, while 27 per cent said they experienced non-pleasurable sex.

Getting away from the mindset that everyone else is enjoying carefree sex and you are abnormal because of your concerns is a big part of the battle when it comes to tackling sexual fears.

2. Break the cycle.

It’s easy to get trapped in a vicious circle when it comes to performance anxiety. Having a negative experience in bed can make you more stressed the next time you are intimate with your partner, increasing the risk that things won’t go to plan. There are ways of breaking these cycles though.

For example, if you’re experiencing difficulties getting an erection, you may benefit from taking erectile dysfunction drugs like Viagra. These medicines work by relaxing the arteries that supply blood to the penis. Although this may not be a long-term solution to your problems, it could help you to regain your confidence between the sheets.

Some men find that even simply having the option of reaching for ‘the little blue pill’ is enough to give them their confidence back. You might benefit from speaking to a therapist too.

These experts can help you to identify the causes of your anxieties and should be able to assist you in becoming more comfortable with your sexuality. Highlighting the potential benefits of suitable medicines and therapy sessions, a paper produced by a team from Cairo University and published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine revealed that of 74 men who had been diagnosed with psychogenic erectile dysfunction, all were successfully treated with a combination of drugs and sex therapy.

3. Communicate with your partner.

Another useful tip is to try to be as open and honest as possible with your partner. Discussing your anxieties can take a big weight off your mind and it may bring you and your partner closer as a couple. It also allows you to start thinking of potential solutions to your problems together. For example, perhaps you would benefit from trying new techniques in the bedroom.

This has been a Sex and the State sponsored post! If you would like to submit a sponsored post, please fill out my contact form with an brief outline of what you want to write about.



Gail is a writer, digital marketer and aspiring entrepreneur. Connect with Gail on Twitter: @itsgailnew


  1. delete

    This was not written by Gayle, it was written by an SEO company that she worked for and was then sent across by Gayle on behalf of the companies client. Don’t mislead people.

  2. deletethis

    Gayle never wrote this, her work at the time did as part of their clients link building strategy. Remove the author bio – false information.

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