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How Pleasure Can Enhance Your Leadership

The socially acceptable narrative of leadership often revolves around qualities like determination, strategic thinking, and willpower. However, an overlooked aspect of effective leadership for women is the role of pleasure, and when approached with authenticity and vulnerability, results in lasting change that influences everything from business to the bedroom. 

Pleasure and leadership work simultaneously together, yet very few leaders speak on this concept. As an entrepreneur and Certified Sexologist who’s worked with women all over the world, I can confirm that leadership often lacks a balanced concept of pleasure which reinforces a relaxed, open and loving approach to the evolving landscape of entrepreneurship and business. This article will explain how to begin closing that gap by helping ambitious women embody the tangible benefits that pleasure has on self-expression, authenticity and their personal mission. 

Relaxing into Your Pleasure Potential:

I’ve witnessed a successful woman in a 10+ year marriage reignite her libido and ask for what she really wanted, only to find that her creative spark and bank account had increased too. I’ve watched in awe as a previous client who was also a successful surgeon, decided to leave the corporate world and a dead end relationship; ultimately leading her to discover deeper fulfillment and freedom.

I can confirm that leadership often lacks a balanced concept of pleasure which reinforces a relaxed, open and loving approach to the evolving landscape of entrepreneurship and business.

Both of these women’s stories have one thing in common: The forefront of their process was rooted in and fueled by the guidance and implementation of authentic pleasure. Authentic pleasure is anything that draws your presence inward and promotes a sense of connection with your deeper desires.

Pleasure is a fundamental aspect of the human experience, ranging from unfamiliar sensations and deeply buried emotions to experiences that bring joy, fulfillment and satisfaction. While pleasure is often associated with sensory indulgence, its significance extends far beyond mere gratification. At its core, pleasure represents a state of alignment with your authentic desires and overall sense of being alive. 

Calling on pleasure to be at the forefront of your experience means embracing your unique self-expression in all aspects, including sexually. You may have experienced these feelings of full self-acceptance before; the body lets go of tension, the nervous system relaxes, and the mind feels safe and open to the present moment. Perhaps it lasted 10 seconds or the entire day, but somewhere along the way, rigid fears or the  feelings of not doing enough come creeping back in again. 

By allowing the experience of pleasure, no matter how subtle, to take hold within the body and without inhibition, you begin to cultivate a deeper connection with yourself, others and the world around you. This embodied connection is what transforms the burned out, shy, confused leader into an authentic and confident luminary.

Sexual Authenticity and Communication in Leadership: 

From a tantric perspective, sexual energy is viewed as a potent force for creativity, vitality, and transformation. When you embrace and channel this energy in a mindful and intentional way, you can tap into a source of personal power and inspiration that fuels your leadership effectiveness. 

Unfortunately, we live in a society where willpower is celebrated and pleasure is deemed as less important or distracting. How often do you feel guilt or shame when caring for yourself, or the itch to work harder or longer, even when things are falling into place?.

For example, are you avoidant of intimacy with your partner and almost never initiate sex even when you know it would benefit the relationship? On the flipside, perhaps you launched an offer that you were excited about, but shrank back once it was out there. These are both linked to a fear of rejection or an inability to fully trust yourself.

What’s happening (or not happening) in the bedroom is almost always mirrored in how you show up in the world at large, especially within your leadership. Looking at your relationship to sex and pleasure is one of the easiest ways to observe where you could be blocking yourself from experiencing clarity around your vision and ‘why’.

man and woman in bed
Are you avoidant of intimacy with your partner and almost never initiate sex even when you know it would benefit the relationship?

Begin by observing the common patterns that arise for you in your sex life and your business, then begin locating the common thread that connects the feelings and emotions that are present in both. These commonalities will be linked to different belief systems like “I’m not enough” or “xyz is not available to me”.

Making contact with these ‘golden threads’ is the first step in amplifying your pleasure, ultimately being reflected in your leadership too.

To harness the power of pleasure in leadership, you can adopt several practical strategies:

1). Your Leadership is Like Foreplay: Take time to explore and understand your authentic desires, preferences and boundaries, including those related to sexuality. Pleasure is your responsibility, so whether you place unconscious pressure on a lover to ‘get you there’ or look to your audience for reassurance - it's a mood killer. Instead, when you treat leadership like foreplay you build trust within yourself and your audience, and make it about their experience rather than what you expect to happen.  Reflect on how you can meet your own needs for pleasure by asking for what you want rather than waiting for something to happen. Watch how this subtle shift influences your leadership style and interactions with others. 

2). Make Pleasure a Priority: Allow yourself to experience pleasure in its various forms and make it a priority. Perhaps you’re giving the most attention to your creative pleasures because it feels comfortable and familiar. Although there is nothing wrong with this, notice where you may have an aversion towards inviting more pleasure into other areas too, like sexual or emotional pleasure. By embracing multifaceted pleasure, you inspire innovation by opening to the fullness of your self-expression.

3). Accept The Painful Moments: Not unlike pleasure, physical and emotional pain are signals to the body too. Inviting pleasure into your leadership doesn’t mean rejecting or avoiding the painful or uncomfortable moments. Pleasure ultimately builds your capacity to experience and hold pain or discomfort in a more relaxed, positive way. 

One easy way to build your capacity for pleasure is by asking yourself, “how can I make this moment a 10?”. Notice what shifts within you when the focus is placed on the body. Not only does this take the pressure off the unconscious mind, over time you begin to create presence. This sense of presence conveys authenticity, empathy and a commitment to your desires, making it a no-brainer for others to align with your vision and direction. 

Notice what shifts within you when the focus is placed on the body.

In Conclusion:

Rather than putting the focus on the next business strategy, notice where you can equally place emphasis on the pleasure, joy and satisfaction of doing what you love. Even if seemingly misplaced or inconsequential, in the long run you will begin developing a relationship to your leadership and success that is not separate from a blissful orgasm or connecting with your partner. Pleasure can fill that gap and connect you to the deep resource and current of aliveness already present within you. 


Ava Ashe Pikul with Her Nation Magazine
Ava Ashe Pikul | Flame Within Tantra

Meet the expert:

Ava is an entrepreneur specializing in intimacy coaching and sex therapy. She combines modern-day tools of psychology and hypnosis with ancient practices of tantra and meditation. Her lived experience of uniting purpose, pleasure and success has led her down a unique path of understanding the phenomenon of human desire, and at the root of it all being, connection.

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