The Power of Pleasure: Taking back Valentine’s Day

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I am so excited to introduce you to today’s guest author, Debra Joy. I’ve known Deb for years in many different capacities – as a dear friend, mentor, business strategist, life coach, and spiritual advisor, just to name a few. She has guided me through some of life’s most challenging transitions, always lovingly demanding that I be nothing but true to my most authentic self. (Easy to say, hard to do.) Her teachings have powerfully changed my outlook and behaviors, and made my life much, much happier and more fulfilled. Today Deb shares a piece from her ebook, The Power of Pleasure (which I highly recommend!) with a bonus guided meditation. Enjoy!

It’s that time of year when we celebrate romantic love with aromatic dinners by flickering flames, the touch of warm skin, and the taste of rich chocolate melting on your tongue. It’s a sensuous celebration of appreciation and devotion.

But there’s a dark side to Valentine’s Day. All the hype and build up can make you feel pressured to make it a perfect day. Expectations run high. And even if you do manage to get it all right, the following days can pale in comparison and leave you feeling kinda flat. It’s not unusual for couples to find themselves fighting on February 15th. And if you’re not in a romantic partnership the season can heighten feelings of loneliness and longing.

The good news is that whether you’re in a thriving relationship, happily single, or going through a rocky time, you can own the whole Valentines thing in a way that is wildly empowering.

Forget about one measly day of romance. Instead, dedicate the whole month of February to exploring and appreciating life through all your senses.

Heighten your spiritual nature through the pleasures of your animal body. Each and every day your senses are being stimulated by the world around you and within you, but how often do you actually take in the delights being offered to you? When you see, feel, hear and taste the gifts of life each day, you fill yourself with presence.

When you’re present, all of life takes on a sensuous tone. You find yourself in love with the moments. You move through the world grounded in your body. You talk and touch and think differently. You engage with others from a deeper part of yourself, one that is only accessible through your presence. Life becomes a romance.

If that all sounds like it would take a lot of time and distract you from what you really need to do, let me assure you that it takes no extra time at all, and it will infuse everything you do with a new energy.

There are many ways to live a sensuous life every moment of the day. Here’s just one idea.

Let everything you eat be an offering of sensuous presence by doing any one of the following.

  • Look at your food as if you’re seeing it for the first time. We’re used to looking at things, but how often do we really see them What do you notice about the food you see? Don’t judge it, just notice it. Paying attention is an act of mindfulness and it doesn’t have to take long.
  • Touch it. Feel the texture and temperature on your finger tips. Notice the sensations on your skin.
  • Inhale in the aroma. Wave it under your nose. Feel the air move through your nostrils. Notice how the smell makes you feel.
  • Taste it. Explore the textures, temperature and taste with your tongue and teeth.

You won’t need a hallmark card to tell you how sensuous and sexy you are. You’ll feel it with every bite.

If you do any of these for just one bite of your food you’ll become present in that moment. Do it regularly and eating will become a meditation.

Meditation is simply focusing your mind on some kind of anchor. The smaller the anchor, the sharper your focus. Your mouth is a small moist cavern of potential pleasures. Why not focus there? When you focus on sensations in your body you turn off the part of your brain that worries about the future and relives problems from the past. It creates a peaceful space where you can just be. No judgment. No fear. Just acceptance. That’s pretty romantic!

Here are two more ideas you can try for Valentines Day. You can do them alone, with your lover or with the whole family.

  1. Eat a meal blindfolded. Make a meal that would be fun to eat with your hands. By limiting your senses it will be easier to focus on what you’re tasting. If you do it with others, share your experience as you’re eating.
  2.  Follow this guided meditation. It’s 3.5 minutes. Get a piece of fruit or chocolate. You just need one. Have it in front of you. Then press play. (Though this meditation is totally appropriate to do with the whole family, it can also be a lovely prelude to a romantic night as it will heighten your senses in a most delicious way.

You can keep the sensuous pleasures of Valentines Day going all month or all year by simply tasting one bite of your food in these ways every time you eat. If you do it for a whole meal once a day or even just once in a while, it will slow you down some, but you’ll be amazed how much more you enjoy your food, and how much quicker you sense when you’re full. You’ll find you eat less and savor more. Over time cravings fade. This is a great way to make peace with food, be empowered by it and nourish yourself all in one bite.

These ideas are just a few from my book, The Power of Pleasure. It’s filled with simple ways you can become present, ease stress and experience more pleasure every single day. Learn more.

Power of Pleasure |

Get Deb’s book this month and Save $5!
Use the 
coupon code EatNaked when purchasing The Power of Pleasure here.


Debra Joy helps women realize their authentic self and achieve success in all areas of their life, by embodying pleasure, presence and true power. She holds a Masters in Leadership and Training, is a certified yoga instructor, and has had an award-winning career in socially responsible business, investment management and venture capital. She brings her eclectic and effective blend of business brains and body wisdom to her work. You can find her at



[click_to_tweet tweet=”Whether you’re in a thriving relationship, happily single, or going through a rocky time, you can own the whole Valentines thing in a way that is wildly empowering.” quote=”Whether you’re in a thriving relationship, happily single, or going through a rocky time, you can own the whole Valentines thing in a way that is wildly empowering.”]

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