Hi, please introduce yourself.
Dr. Cari Oneal from OwningYourSexuality.com creator of the Optimal Sex Pyramid, a comprehensive model for sexual Well-Being.
What is the Optimal Sex Pyramid by definition?
The academic title was: Sex Beyond Function or Dysfunction: Schema of Human Sexual Potential for Optimal Sexual Well-Being.
The idea of a Schema/Map and the words for Optimal and Well-Being were carefully chosen. Imagine sex knowledge where a person can
Discover, Develop, and Revise (Schema or Map)
their sexually related behaviors to get Health, Happiness, and Prosperity (Well-Being).
If a person had access to such a map…that knowledge and resulting sexual behavior would probably yield the greatest degree or best result obtainable under any conditions (Optimal) EVER CREATING sexual DESIRE and EXPERIENCE over a lifetime.
The best possible sex, no matter your age, your gender, your orientation, or your circumstance OVER A LIFETIME?…Now, who wouldn’t want that?!
Why did you create this?
I’ve wanted this knowledge my entire life!
1,000 nights after lackluster sex I’ve stared at the ceiling and wondered “If only I knew the ‘rules to sex’ SURELY I could create a better sex life than the one I had using the knowledge I managed to pick up along the way.”
I wanted great sex, I want great sex over a lifetime, and I wanted to WANT sex under any circumstance throughout my lifetime. Stay juicy, in the game, you know?…
Why is the Optimal Sex Pyramid so important?
Because lack of desire, sexless partnerships, feeling broken or resolving to stay sexually shut down is a desperate and painful place to look yourself in the mirror every morning. That was me.
It doesn’t have to be that way. Sexual expression is LIFEFORCE.
It’s like a bank account flush with money; and it’s got YOUR name on it…but when you’re sexually shut down, for whatever reason, it’s like you’ve got zero interest in learning or using the PIN number to YOUR OWN bank account!
Assets right there…going to waste. You wouldn’t do it with money, why do we do it with our life force? Because of shame. Shame in a thousand different shades.
This model gives a person the understanding of shame as well as pleasure. **If you’re talking sex you need to speak those languages.
Why is the “conventional wisdom” about Sex just plain wrong?
Today the field of Sex is split into two camps. Functional (your genitals are hard or lubricated) “you’re good” says the Dr. “I don’t hear of any problems.” The other camp: Dysfunctional (your genitals are not hard or lubricated) in which case you will get a pharmacology solution and your doctor will send you back home to have a wonderful sex life right? And then you do what I did, and stare at your ceiling another night, that turns into a week, months, and years wondering: “Is this all that there is?…And your relationship to yourself and to your partner dies a slow painful death by 1,000 cuts.”
This medical approach of Function and Dysfunction is solely based on physiological performance and it just doesn’t even begin to satisfy the pain and aches of the heart. People are desperate to know: How to create extraordinary sexual relations; What makes “sex worth WANTING to have?” And how about the characteristics that foster sexual experiences that become “transcendent and even spiritual”?!
As a former mechanical engineer, I KNEW if I could figure out how to create those mythical, magical nights…I WOULD figure out how to make them reproducible. Right? A great design is one you can count on, over and over AND under varying circumstances
The Optimal Sex Pyramid is a comprehensive theory on Sexual Well-Being regardless of age, gender, orientation, cultural background, or sexual proclivity. That’s saying a lot, but the OSP is a map so that YOU can Discover, Develop and Revise YOUR sexuality for optimal results at any stage in your life.
This isn’t “just an idea” I specifically chose to get a Ph.D. because I wanted to find this information if it existed.
What are the common lies, myths, and misconceptions about sex?
That such a comprehensive understanding of sexual well-being over a lifetime is impossible to have derived or that somehow it won’t work for every situation. That’s not true.
The media wants to tell you what your sex ought to be like; religion has wanted to own your sex, and cultures of every kind since humans stopped being nomads wanted to regulate your sex in one way or another. I understand. But now, with the OSP, YOU have a framework of where to put sex information, experience and interest in such a way that you can understand the WHOLE picture of sexual expression. YOUR sexual expression. (Crazy radical huh?…)
The OSP, Optimal Sex Pyramid is the Comprehensive Theory for Optimal Sexual Well-Being AS EXPRESSED in a word-picture. It’s a teaching picture. Today we call them Info-Graphics but it’s a map. It allows the user to sort out sexual information and behavior and gives them a reference to what is possible.
Like a map, it provides direction when you’re stumped. “I’m here but I want to be there.” It illustrates possibility “I’ve never thought of this/that.” If you were in a new town you may not know some features about it until you “read the map.” Like a map, it also gives you that go-to reference for repeated success because you can see how you created what you’re enjoying. Likewise, it also fosters aid when behaviors and beliefs need to be adjusted…as is the case throughout – a –lifetime.
How did you stumble upon your solution?
This is my doctoral work, there was no stumbling. There were 3 major parts to creating this comprehensive theory of Sexual Well-Being.
First I needed the data. What does it take to create sexual well-being? It was difficult, but I found 5 theories that spoke to sexual expression as something other than physiological Function or Dysfunction and yet, none of them directly correlated with the other. Through Hermeneutic Phenomenology of the 5 theories, the core elements that comprise sexual well-being were distilled.
Second, I studied human behavior. How do humans learn, remember, stay motivated and make decisions under risk? Sexual expression is every bit all of that!
Last, I studied modeling theory because I wanted to present the theory as a teaching model. The world doesn’t need another paragraph or 12 bullet point list of good ideas. I wanted to present the theory in a word picture that people would remember in the field.
How do you typically get started with the Optimal Sex Pyramid on a step-by-step basis?
You and the state of your healthy sexual expression are like a weather reading. It’s got a time stamp on it. At any given day you have the awareness that you have, the skill sets and the circumstances that you must function within.
People come to me with a stew pot of stuff. Details, histories, aspirations, and present time problems. I use this model to orient myself and the client within their context of details and dilemmas. Those details, histories, aspirations, and present time problems present themselves in different ways within the model.
I then help the client build skill sets to get them from who they are today to who they want to become.
I will say that the model reads from bottom to top and from left to right based on what I learned from studying human behavior. Meaning that when the core elements to the left and from the base tier up are developed it is much easier to develop the core element to the right and those above it. Said another way, the base tear skill sets greatly help the mid-tier skill sets become achievable and mastered, and mid-tier to upper.
What is the #1 reason most people FAIL to succeed with Sex?
They feel broken or like damaged goods due to traumas in their past. Or they may just be shut down due to past events or people who did not allow them to explore and develop a healthy sexuality. THIS is what I call your inner game for sex, your Sexual Self Concept© and this is the cornerstone of where my work with people begins.
What are some specific roadblocks to watch out for?
Sexual Self-Concept©. It’s the core element in the lower left corner. It’s the gate keeper to all the other elements for Optimal Sexual Well-being. One can hardly cross the finish line of sexual confidence until they pass through the gates of Sexual Self-Concept©. This is where you will find sexual traumas, taboos, and beliefs about sex, beliefs about what is possible and allowed. Get this element in good health and the rest of the elements become just a matter of permission, education, and mastery.
How can you, specifically, overcome these roadblocks?
Yes, I had the same question!
I will tell you when I graduated with my Ph.D. I was grateful the process was over but I was also very sad. I developed this work so that the world could have the map for creating a great sex life their whole life, but I knew 2/3 of the population would never be interested in my work. That was sad for me! The vast majority of people feel too broken, shut down, and damaged sexually to even WANT to try to have great sex so they don’t. They live and die in quiet desperation never having tuned into their full sexual potential. – And that’s energy and creativity. It’s life-force energy wasted.
Understanding Sexual Self-Concept© and how to treat traumas, hidden beliefs and vows we’ve made along the way that keeps us small and stuck sexually has become the cornerstone of my work.
Clients come to me with sexual problems as the presenting issue, but we dig into Sexual Self-Concept© and work through sexual trauma(s), hidden beliefs about power, and early paradigms that have set the groundwork for their sexual behavior. Then, we rebuild.
I am an Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) or Tapping practitioner and I spent a year mapping out the Labyrinth of Pain as I call it. Clients come to me with “voices of pain.” Those voices of pain come from somewhere and there are patterns to them. I use the Labyrinth of Pain and the Optimal Sex Pyramid as the backbone to my coaching practice.
*Can I just add: EFT is called Energy Psychology by the military and they are using it on PTSD soldiers with a near 80% efficacy rate and without prescription medication? I’ve been tapping for 10 years, and when I heard of this success, I knew I had found the therapeutic modality that would deliver those 2/3 of the population to the starting line. I believe that healthy sexual expression belongs to everyone – regardless of your past.
What are some specific action steps that we can take, today?
I coach one on one; you can schedule directly through my website.
I am working on a training program for coaches, clinicians, and other practitioners for this model. Contact me and let me know you are interested so I can notify you when that becomes available
I also am willing to teach/workshop with groups of people on the model. Find me at Owningyoursexuality.com
What if you got started today with the Optimal Sex Pyramid… what would your life look like in 30 days, 90 days, or a year?
Grounded, confident, and at peace with knowing who you are and what you can achieve; not just sexually but as the powerful human being that you are.
Sexual expression is life force. When you are sexually confident you bring that energy to everything you do. Change your sexual confidence, and you will change your life.
What additional resources are available to help ensure success?
Contact me at www.DrCariOneal.com and I will be glad to send you a summary of the model with each of the core elements described.
Regarding the groundbreaking work of EFT/Tapping/Energy Psychology work with vets:www.stressproject.org look for the videos.