The Nuances Of The Three Nos of Naughty
“No” Seems Nasty
Saying or hearing the word “No” can be hard. It can be such a harsh word that many of us avoid it at all costs or simply shut down when we hear it. The word “no” can trigger tough emotions and unhealthy responses.
When it comes to sex, the word “No” has even more weight as we bring our inherited shame, embarrassment, and awkwardness. Most of us just are not comfortable with the word “No” and so we stuff our desires down. We walk on eggshells, try to drop hints, and just dance around asking for what we want - all because we’re so afraid of the two-letter word, “No”.
Error Towards YES
Another relationship expert once told me, your beloved’s “desires mean something good about them.” Because of this foundation, in general, I recommend couples aim to YES each other. It’s great if your go-to reaction is to want your beloved to have their desires met. Of course without sacrificing your own needs, feelings or desires either. Holding YES as a foundation while exploring the nuances of each other’s “Nos'' can build intimacy in a deep and powerful way.
Nuances of “No”
There IS a way to let go of the negative “No” and really explore the nuances of “No” and the wonderful places that word can take you, your relationship AND your sex life.
“No” is a word that builds boundaries and boundaries can be super sexy. Especially Pleasure Boundaries.
Exploring the edges of your own and your beloved’s pleasure boundaries can be exhilarating. When you communicate about your boundaries in a healthy way, you learn more about each other, build trust and can grow closer together.
Edgy & Intimidating
Talking about sex and your pleasure boundaries can be edgy and intimidating for many couples. Being fully expressed about what you want or do NOT want, is not so easy for most.
Bring a little play to your communication about your sex life. Make it safe to make suggestions. Make it safe to hear “No”. Even if what is proposed is a solid “No” now, the WAY you say “No” can communicate so much more. Your “No” CAN actually bring you CLOSER together!
Free & Expressed
Develop the freedom to express your desires and boundaries in a healthy way.
Expressing and fulfilling your desires is a good thing It’s a great part of your Couple Culture to encourage. If you want to both feel vital, vibrant, expressed and excited by your relationship and your sex life, then learn how to explore the nuances of the word “No”.
When you have the trust that comes with the nuanced nos and respecting each other’s boundaries, you can more fully surrender to let your beloved take you to your edge and you can do that for them too!
When you know each other’s “Nos” better, you can more fully receive their YESes as well.
Even when you get a “No” it lubricates your ability to actually explore because you know you have a WAY to explore.
The 3 Nos of Naughty
One night my husband and I were enjoying some sexy time and he asked me to do something we had never done before. It was edgy and uncomfortable for me. My initial reaction was to pull back literally and figuratively. Yet what came out of my mouth very naturally was a coy, inviting, “Nooooooooo”.
Part of me was intimidated, unsure, and even anxious, but there was also a part of me that was definitely wanting to lean IN. At that moment the 3 Nos of Naughty were born.
The SOLID “No”
Before you can understand and embrace the coy “No”, you must first have a solid grasp on the foundational “No”. The SOLID “No”. That “no” means…
- I don’t want this
- I don’t want to talk about it at all
- Take it off the table
- I can't relax and feel safe to enjoy sex if that’s on the table.
- Hard stop - firm no
You will cause contraction and tension just for trying to discuss that topic. Your beloved not only doesn’t want to engage in it, they do not want to discuss it.
Yes, means yes and nothing less. Consent is not only hot, it is REQUIRED. So yes, your desires are important, but if your beloved is ever a SOLID “No”, don’t fight it, support them. Build trust by honoring their boundaries.
The SOMEDAY “No”
Sometimes a “No” is a “not now”. The SOMEDAY “No” is all about letting your beloved know that while you may not want to get into it now, there IS a chance for the future. This is a clear “No”, yet it is still ripe with opportunity for the future.
- It's not never, but it’s not right now
- I'm NOT seeking to be convinced, but there IS an opening later
- Possible, not TODAY, but maybe someday
- The door isn’t closed, but I’m not ready
- Can we circle back to this?
This “No” allows you to stay in the moment together and move past this topic now, knowing that at another time you can return to it and see what would be needed to make it work for both of you.
The SEDUCTIVE “No”
When my husband made that suggestion during sexy-time that night, I gave out an elongated, inviting, and quite coy “Noooooooooo”. What that “No” meant was…
- Wow - I'm more interested than I thought I would be
- I’m not a yes, but I am intrigued
- No not yet, but you're close
- Tell me more. Try a different angle.
- Convince me!
I didn't want to completely scare him off from his suggestion. I wanted him to know I just needed a little more encouragement, support, or convincing.
The SEDUCTIVE “No” is your most mild “No”. It is the only “No” that is actually also an invitation. This can be a lot of fun between you if you learn to build trust and respect the boundaries where and where they emerge.
Edgy Can Be Awesome
Growth happens at the edge of your comfort zone. Not hanging over the cliff-hanging on for dear life, but close to the edge to make your heartbeat a little faster. Keeping your beloved at the edge of their comfort zone is exciting too, but pushing them off the cliff of their comfort zone is NOT exciting. They're gonna clamp up, contract and recoil.
If you want your beloved to surrender, if you want to surrender and to be ravaged, well you can't do THAT without feeling SAFE first so we want to make sure that you've got those boundaries held. When the edges are held, the “Nos” are respected and the beloved can surrender.
When you can hear, listen to and trust each other’s “Nos” you can then REALLY lean into your YESes too!
Check out our Quick Tip Video Clip for The 3 Nos of Naughty HERE!
- In advance, SHARE the 3 Nos of Naughty description with your beloved so you’re on the same page with the language and distinction between the Nos.
- Give EXAMPLES of what you might be a SOLID, SOMEDAY, or SEDUCTIVE no so you get a sense of each other’s calibration of nos. BONUS turn the seductive no example into ACTION at the moment!
- When having some sexy time together, use the 3 Nos of Naughty, especially the seductive “No” to explore the outer edges of your intimate enjoyment.
- Play! Create a Game out of finding each other’s Nos. Make no safe and even playful. Make stretching safe because your no is so so safe.
Your Ally in Aiming for Awesome,
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