What to Do If I Can’t Focus During Lovemaking?

The physical act of love is usually a wonderful experience. When both partners are fully present, closeness can make a relationship stronger and induce a sense of well-being. Unfortunately, it can be difficult for some people to focus during lovemaking. You might “zone out,” or begin thinking about other things to the point where it seems like you aren’t really there. You might not be able to separate yourself from the events of the day. The problem with this is that you are not in the moment, and your partner might begin to feel like you don’t enjoy being with him or her.

The official definition for zoning out, or dissociation, is a shift of attention from the task at hand. It’s a common occurrence, and all people zone out during day-to-day activities. Psychologist Dr. Ellen Hendriksen explains most people spend up to 47% of the time zoning out. A recent study found that not living in the present moment can contribute to depression.

What Causes the Mind to Wander?

There are many reasons why you can not focus during lovemaking. One reason is that you might feel self-conscious about your body. If you feel like you don’t look good enough for your partner, you might dissociate yourself from the act so that you don’t have to acknowledge those feelings. Another reason might have to do with today’s modern pace.

 It can be hard to focus on close moments if you are thinking about a myriad of tasks that you need to complete later on in the day or the next day. Stress can cause the mind to wander as well. If you are anxious about a problem in your life, then you might have a hard time concentrating on your partner. You might also be unsatisfied with your partner’s performance.

There are some deeper reasons for zoning out during lovemaking. Those who have been forced in the past might have a hard time being present during consensual closeness. Even gentle closeness with a loving partner can remind them of a time where they were taken advantage of.

Get Better!

There are ways to help yourself become more focused with your partner. Amy Levine, a lovemaking coach, reports that the first thing you should do if you find that you are zoning out is to breathe. It might sound too simple, but it works. All you need to do is focus on your breathing to force your mind to focus on the here and now instead of on distracting thoughts. She says that if a distracting thought enters your mind, you can acknowledge it briefly and then let it go. With practice, the distracting thoughts might not enter your mind at all.

If you find that you are letting your mind wander to the tasks that you need to finish, it can help to make a list. A few minutes before you plan to engage in closeness with your partner, write down a list of the things you need to do before the end of the day or what you need to accomplish during the next day. Doing this lets you acknowledge that there is something to be done. Make sure, though, that you don’t start worrying about your list while you are with your loved one!

Another way to be present is to take on a more active role. If you find that you tend to be passive or submissive during the physical act of love, then try to be more engaged by being more assertive. This can be fun for both you and your partner. It can raise your self-esteem as well as you become comfortable being more active. If you have been forced in the past and this is affecting your concentration, you may wish to speak with a counselor.