Losing The Need to Perform

BY LORENZO

I grew up in mid-century Spain during a time when the concept of manhood was deeply rooted in stoicism and misogyny. Young boys and men were not encouraged to be emotional or sensually sensitive, which contributed to me feeling shut down, and like there was no place for me in my very own culture. It felt like there were knots in a rope that was tangled up and buried deep within me. Into my teens and early 20s, I contorted myself into lots of shapes to try and fit the picture of what being a “man” was, but it never worked. It was fitting, then, that I took to acrobatics and the circus as a career. I couldn’t overcome the fear of never fitting into what I now know was a world of toxic masculinity; so, instead, I went into battle with physical fear—and won—each time I went to work and lived to talk about it. 

In many ways, my work as an acrobat was an outlet for self-expression that I hadn’t felt as a child and I loved every minute of it. Then, what feels like a lifetime later, after the dissolution of my 20-year-long relationship with my partner, I could no longer say that. I wasn’t happy anymore . . . I was lost. 

On my quest to find my way, I stumbled upon videos and information about Orgasmic Meditation. I found the practice intriguing and the benefits that they talked about was something I was looking for, so I signed up to learn. 

Despite being an acrobat and performer, when I came to OM, I was painfully shy, especially in speaking to women. I was in my forties but in many ways felt like it was the first time I was getting to know a woman’s anatomy. The practice itself was so simple that I could see, with a sober clarity, exactly where my attention and focus needed to grow. Feeling this way was new and unusual for me and in my first OM, I could acknowledge just how lost I had been. 

One of the things I learned through OM was that it was ok to not know what to do. I had grown up with the pressure of always needing to perform, especially as a man. This made it hard for me to be in touch with how I really felt in the moment, and kept me from being vulnerable and intimate with others. Without the need to perform, I was able to relax and be more present with my partner. This part of the practice dramatically changed my relationship to others. Now when I’m with people, I find it far more enjoyable to deliberately engage with what’s happening in each moment and be an active participant. 

The skills that I learned through OM also helped me with my job as a comedic entertainer. I find that I am more genuinely joyful and am able to use that joy to connect to other people in a deeper way. Another thing I learned through OM is that the only intention during an OM is to feel, there is nowhere to get to, nothing to make happen. This has helped me to be able to be more present with my audience and practice loving others without conditions. I am able to remain steady regardless of what comes up for them. I am happy to say that today, I feel more freedom to express myself.