Redefining Sexy: The Bare Necessities


Dana Sarhan-Emile Issa- Not retouched-_MG_5343
Dana Sarhan (MSc, MFT) Photo Emile Issa


The word sexy, a derivative of sex, describes an individual, a behaviour or an item that is seductive and alluring to the eye. What is considered “sexy” is subjective, changing across regions, countries, and subcultures. A number of factors have influenced what is viewed as appealing including regional temperature, i.e. hot or cold climates, history, belief systems, gender norms, race, ethnicity, and genetics. A person can be considered sexy in one culture, but not necessarily in another.

Self-Love Campaign    Photographer Joe Kesrouani 

However, what seems to be common cross-culturally is an emotional vibrancy towards certain people regardless of physical attributes. This charisma, or vibrant stimulation, cuts through and leaves people wondering what this person has or why this person oozes effortless sexuality.

Being sexy is a feeling, an emotion. It’s beyond the clothes and the body measurements. It is being connected to your whole self and acknowledging all aspects of yourself; your emotional, mental, and physical parts. This requires a certain level of imagination, curiosity, comfort, and authenticity to self.

Self-Love Campaign   Photographer Joe Kesrouani

Redirecting or re-shifting the focus to a deeper understanding of the dynamics that play into one’s sexual identity, sexy no longer becomes something that you do or something that you wear, but rather something that you feel, a place you go inside yourself with or without another person. It’s an attitude, a feeling, and a relationship to oneself. More specifically, it is an awareness of your body, mind, emotions, needs, wants, desires, limitations, and dislikes. Looking at it through your own relationship to yourself, rather than how you look in the eyes of the other, one begins to question daily choices made. The question shifts to the meaning of what makes you feel this way.

Clothes accentuate a figure. They may enhance visual stimulation and light one’s imagination on fire. The mere fabric of certain items can arouse the senses in an individual. Yet, when it comes down to basics, they have no actual indication of the level of connection to one’s own sexuality or how comfortable one is in their own skin.

Self-Love Campaign  Photographer Joe Kesrouani

Feeling sexy is an ease of movement, awakening your desires, emotions, and imagination, a flow that comes from an internal locus of control. It is an uncontrolled or unlimited sense of personal freedom, and a sense of security that serves as a base, regardless of external circumstances. It feels like confidence, strength, and an inner comfort in enjoying being you. A challenging aspect to learn as adults is not the act of giving, but the act of receiving love and pleasure, both from the self and the other. Discarding or discrediting thoughts and beliefs embedded that prevent one from enjoying the here-and-now and the pleasurable felt sense, may allow the ability to enjoy and accept caring thoughts, emotions, and behaviours throughout the day. When it comes to feeling sexy, the shift moves from the mind to the body. Overthinking it will kill it. Feel it, get out of the head and into your body.

Self-Love Campaign  Photographer Joe Kesrouani

It takes courage to be sexy in your own skin. “We need to stay in our bodies to feel something, but if we hate our bodies, we don’t want to be in them during sex,” as Laura McLaughlin, LMFT, LMHC puts it; “examining internal and external sensations and judgments that you have about yourself, and about what you think others have of you, and breaking those down, allowing you to reframe and recreate that authenticity where only you can feel sexy. Only then can you gain your sense of personal freedom”.

An easy method to distinguish the difference between sex and sexy is that animals have sex. It is procreative and a primary urge. Humans, meanwhile, have a sexual identity developed from childhood. Individuals transform sex and socialize it through their own personal creativity and character.

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6 Questions that can help you enhance your Sexual Connection with yourself & others:

What are the top five primary desired emotions you want to feel throughout the day ?

What would re-shift your focus from outside to inside ?

For instance, what are the thoughts, messages and beliefs you have about yourself that you are hanging on to that are keeping you from feeling those desired emotions ?

What can you ask yourself throughout the day that can help you enhance that felt sense and connection ?

Other important questions to ask include whom you want around you to support and create a safe space for you to feel good ?

Reconsider unhealthy relationships in your life that are making you feel ‘unsexy’ or disconnected from what you really want.

What boundaries are you going to invest in to maintain your sense of wellbeing ?