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As a sex therapist and founder of GoodinBed.com, as well as the author of numerous books on the subject of pleasuring such as She Comes First, I guess you could say I have one thing on my mind. Sex is pretty much all I think about and talk about all day (and if I’m lucky, I also get to do it with my wife). Over the years, I’ve learned a thing or two about how to pleasure a woman, so without further ado, here are my 10 “best practices” for being truly good in bed.

1. Think like a “knob,” not a “switch.”
When comparing male and female sexuality, there’s no shortage of adages: “Men are like light switches — just flip them on, and they’re ready to go. Women are like knobs — you can turn them up and down.” Or as Dr. Emily Nagoski writes in the Good in Bed Guide to Female Orgasms, “Men are like driving standard transmission — if you move through the gears in the right order, you will get where you want to go. Women are like baking a soufflé — the outcome depends on the ingredients and the chef, sure, but it also depends on the reliability of the oven, the altitude, the humidity of the day… more variables, more variability.” In short, think of foreplay as a 24-hour experience that happens both in and out of the bedroom. Sex is all about context. And while it may take very little to rev your engine, remember that she probably needs to simmer.

2. When you’re getting it on, make sure she’s completely relaxed and comfortable.
Researchers in the Netherlands have found that the key to getting a woman turned on and to the heights of orgasmic bliss is a deep sense of relaxation and a lack of anxiety. Brain scans showed that the parts of women’s brains responsible for processing fear, anxiety and emotion slowed down the more aroused they became, producing a trancelike state at orgasm. Men showed far less change in these regions. “What this means is that deactivation, letting go of all fear and anxiety, might be the most important thing, even necessary, to have an orgasm,” says the study’s lead researcher, Dr. Gert Holstege.

3. Take the time to figure out what works.
Every woman is different and most women don’t even orgasm the first couple of times they’re with a guy. A woman has to feel comfortable and a guy has to figure out what makes her tick sexually. Some women love wet, sloppy kisses; other women find saliva a total turnoff. Some women love lots of breast stimulation; other women can’t stand it at all. Some women love to be on top in bed; others love missionary style. Some women respond to intense clitoral stimulation; others require very little. Some women have an innate capacity to experience multiple orgasms; others are more like guys — they roll over and they’re ready to go to sleep. Figure out a sex script that works and stick to it. Sure, familiarity can breed boredom, but it can also yield consistent orgasms.

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