It's been over a year now of global upheaval, something not lost on our Fred and Far sisterhood striving to continually dig into the journey of self love and self care during a transformative time. We often speak of the stresses, fears, and trauma this last season has carried for many of us—but rarely do we speak of the effects this pandemic has had on our sexual intimacy and ability to connect.
If you've been experiencing a lull—or all out stagnation—in your intimacy, desire and sex life, you're not alone. It's actually a completely normal symptom of what we have all been enduring. But there is hope, and her name is Aimee Batuski.
We recently sat down with Aimee, co-founder of Desire on Fire and highly sought after intimacy coach, to learn more about how we can not only cope throughout this uncertain time, but thrive.
Thank you for joining us today, Aimee! You're an intimacy coach, tell us more about that. What inspired you to coach in this area and how did you get to this point in your career?
Well I can tell you I definitely didn't say "I want to be a sex/intimacy coach when I grow up!" when I was a child! Ha!
I started coaching full time at the start of 2016 and was practicing general life coaching for the first couple of years of my business. In 2017 I dove into transformational work in the realm of intimacy and sexuality because my sex life and love life was hurting. All of the other areas of my life were working well: career, family, friendships, health, etc., but my relationships with men were a disaster. So, I immersed myself in retreats, workshops, and coaching trainings all focused on relationships and pleasure—and my life completely transformed. Through my own growth, healing, and transformation, I became passionate about sharing the tools, practices and perspectives I was learning, with the rest of the world. So I started integrating these teachings into my coaching, and gradually shifted into intimacy being the main focus of my work. Now I co-run my company Desire on Fire, and lead programs with hundreds of women, all centered around these topics—and I watch women transform before my eyes. I love it!
Can you give us a story that exemplifies why you get fulfillment out of the work you do?
Oh my goodness, how do I choose just one?! I have endless stories of miracles my clients have created/experienced in our work together. One story that stands out is of a client of mine who came into our programs at Desire on Fire when she was about to get married. In our work together, she realized how much she was living behind masks in her relationship, and not showing her partner her full/true self. Through our coaching, she got connected with parts of herself she had disowned, shamed, or suppressed and brought her realizations back to her partner. They created a whole different marriage than what they had been planning. Their relationship got 10x deeper, they both shared desires and intimate truths, that they had been afraid to reveal to one another previously, and their sex life got way juicier. She had to break through her "good woman conditioning" as we call it, in order to get to the deeper truth of who she is, what she wants, and how she wants her relationship to look and feel. It was a beautiful thing to witness in its unfolding.
Is there a roadblock you had to overcome to get where you are today? How did you do it?
So many! When I started coaching, I was living in a studio apartment in Venice, CA with 3 friends. That's right... 4 of us in a one room apartment! I was taking my coaching calls from the bathroom and the closet! I didn't even have enough money for Ubers, so I had to take the bus around LA. I had to work through so many limiting beliefs about my age (I started coaching at 23), money, rejection, and failure. So I've had plenty of internal and external obstacles that I've moved through, throughout this entrepreneurial journey, and it's all been for my growth, healing and learning!
Much of your work is aimed at helping women to first love themselves in the process of building intimacy in their relationships. Why do you think it's so hard for us as women to naturally love ourselves and what advice would you give us as we learn to adore the woman we see in the mirror?
I think it's hard to love ourselves because of the messaging we get from society, social media, our families, religion, etc. We have so much conditioning around how we're supposed to look, act, feel, be, etc. It makes it feel almost impossible to do things right! In our community, we have a major focus on APPROVAL. Giving ourselves approval for who we are and who we are not. And then giving other women the same level of permission and approval to be who they are.
"The desire voice gets louder the more you honor it."
The more approval and permission you give to yourself to just be/look/feel exactly as you are, the less stressed, anxious, self-loathing, panicked you'll be.
Through your coaching, you aim to help women live a pleasure-focused life, trusting men, and owning our feminine power. Speak to us about that.
Our culture has a big focus on success, achievements, external validation, etc. So at Desire on Fire, we teach women to look inward and feel what gives you pleasure, what lights your soul on fire, what brings joy to your body and your life. Instead of living from obligation, we invite women to live from their innermost desires. We've found that it's a much more fulfilling way to live.
Our feminine power lives in our bodies. We're so trained to live in our heads and we miss out on the magic and wisdom available through connecting with our bodies, so that's where we focus a lot of the attention in our work.
Trusting men and learning to receive from and adore men, is a huge part of our work, because whether you date men or not, you've got men in your life! And we're so conditioned to be distrusting of men, to see them as pigs, ass holes, greedy, etc. My business partner Ellie Montgomerie and I have both done a lot of healing work around our relationships with men, and have found that the more healed/connected we feel in our relationship to men, the more men show up as geniuses, who want to help, provide, and make us happy. So in our programs, we focus on healing trauma with the masculine, and learning to be loving, appreciative, and receptive towards men.
What advice would you give to a woman who wants to experience more satisfying sex and have deeper intimacy?
I would advise her to listen to my podcast, With Pleasure, and take our Desire on Fire courses!
No but really, deepening your intimate relationships and enhancing your sex takes work. It's not an overnight quick fix type of thing.
If a woman is serious about going on this journey, I would invite her to invest in a program focused on these topics, that involves a community of other women on this path, because community growth work is 10x more effective and fun, than 1:1 coaching (which is also amazing!)
And for a quick tip, I would say start a regular self-pleasure practice.
For those in long-term relationships (and in need of an intimacy/desire jumpstart!), what advice would you give?
I outlined my top 3 tips/practices for couples in a recent With Pleasure podcast episode (Ep 49). It's a lot to share in one answer here but the simplest thing I can say is: speak up in the bedroom! Your partner wants to know what you want, what turns you on, what gives you pleasure. We can't read each other's minds, so we have to be courageous enough to speak up and ask for adjustments/give feedback in order to have the most pleasurable sex. It can feel very scary and intimidating, so I relate to it as a practice, and invite you to do the same. If you can speak up once next time you have sex, great! Twice the next time, and so on. We are responsible for having the best sex of our lives—and we have to ask for it!
In your work, how have you seen this past pandemic year effect people most in terms of intimacy, passion, and drive? What advice can you share as we all try to find our way in this new normal?
The pandemic has affected everyone's relationships. First thing I would say is, if your sex life/relationship has experienced a lull, IT'S NORMAL. You are not alone!
"Diving into your pleasure, will transform your entire life."
I invite people to focus on little things that bring them pleasure, and take the pressure of sex off the table. Focus on what feels good and "in your range" with yourself and/or your partner. Keep your attention on your pleasure and maintain a self-pleasure practice if you're able to—even if that's just five minutes per day where you massage your body.
In your experience, why is self love crucial to a life full of connection and pleasure?
We can only love people and be vulnerable with people to the extent that we love and are vulnerable with ourselves. Our external relationships are a reflection of our inner relationship with self. So our level of self-love massively impacts the potential for our relationships with others!
What advice can you offer to someone who feels like their desire is turned off. What can they do today to change that?
Tune into yourself and your body and find one small thing that you want or would feel pleasurable for you. If you can start with little desires (like what you want for lunch, or what would feel most comfortable to wear to work—not what would be most "appropriate"), you can begin to strengthen your desire muscle. Just asking yourself what do YOU want verse what does everyone else want, or what would make the most sense, or what is the "right" choice, is a way to practice listening to your inner voice and following it. The desire voice gets louder the more you honor it.
What is your message for our community?
Your sexuality is a key part of your self-love journey. If you are shaming or suppressing your desires, your sex, your pleasures, you are suppressing yourself in other areas of life. If you can get free around intimacy, you can get free anywhere! Diving into your pleasure, will transform your entire life.
What are you working on that you want our community to know about?
We have our favorite virtual event happening May 14th to 16th and you all are invited! Our Desire on Fire Experience is a two and a half day event where you'll discover what lights you up from a deeper, more authentic place than you've ever known possible. This weekend is the perfect opportunity to dive into all things desire, intimacy, sisterhood, and feminine POWER! It'll rock your world and shift your paradigm for living, forever. Join us at www.desireonfirelive.com. The weekend is $695 but your community members can use the code "selflove" to get in for only $295!