J: You're listening to the Vibrant Happy Women podcast episode number 168. We are talking about sex, specifically, having sex every day. Stay tuned.
Hey, friends, welcome back to Vibrant Happy Women, I'm Dr. Jen Riday and I am so glad you're here because we are talking about sex. I've shared the story before, but I'll share it again. I was once at a book club where so many women expressed that they hadn't orgasmed or that they considered sex a chore; and this is more common than we think. And it is my goal that most of you listening can learn to honor your body, give yourself permission to enjoy pleasure and to receive that pleasure with your partner. So we are going to be talking all about that in this episode. My guest is Caitlin Cogan-Doemner and she wrote the book ‘Sex Every Day’. She and her husband have this 3 rule formula that literally helps them to enjoy sex every day. Also, she has a really, really great daily routine that I loved; I so resonated with it. So you're going to hear all of those tips and about her routine which allows her to have time to even enjoy the sexual interaction with her husband, and that's part of the battle, right? So the routine plus the tips, you're going to learn so much. And set an intention now as you listen to be open to receiving new ideas, to be open to the idea of allowing more time for pleasure, for enjoyment, for enjoyment of life in general, and maybe sex will be an extension of that for you.
In this episode, you're going to hear Caitlin's idea of referring to sex as a menu. There are appetizers, entrees, desserts, all the different parts count as sex (and I love that idea), but the goal is connection; some type of intimacy with each other. And sometimes, that might just be a little bit of emotional intimacy that leads to other things. Sometimes, we want just the appetizer or the dessert, but other times, we want the whole menu. So you're going to love this whole reframing of sex, changing how we think about it and allowing yourself to enjoy it more often. I've teased you enough, let's go ahead and jump into this interview.
Hey, my friends, welcome to Vibrant Happy Women and I'm talking with Caitlin Cogan-Doemner, and she and her husband, Michael, met in high school, but they went their own ways after graduation. Well, they reconnected and got married in 2008 with Michael's 6-year-old son as a groomsman. They have been happily married for over 10 years and have continued to have sex every day. So in their new book, ‘Sex Every Day’, Caitlin and Michael share the 3-step process they use to prioritize sex in their marriage. So it's so funny when I read that bio, Caitlin, because my jaw really wants to like unconsciously drop; sex every day…
J: … like, seriously? Wow!
J: Yeah, I think so. And I'm a person who enjoys sex, but every day, that's impressive. Okay, well, welcome to the show, Caitlin, I can't wait to dive in here.
C: Thank you so much, Jen, yeah, I'm excited.
J: Well, let's start with the quote. We'll be more formal, but we know where we're going after that. (Laughs)
J: So what is a favorite quote you want to share with us today?
C: So favorite quote, does it need… okay, I should have asked, but does it need to be in relationship to the topic that we're speaking on or…
C: … could it be anything… okay. So one of my favorite quotes is by G. K. Chesterton, he says, “Angels can fly because they take themselves lightly.” And I love that idea that when we bring joy and focus and just allow things to be a joyful wonderful experience, then we have that sensation of flying. And as I study energy and quantum mechanics and I'm realizing, “Ah, there really is this connection between how we feel about the work that we do and the results that we get from the work.”
J: Mm-hmm, that is so true. So let's say, you know, you have a business, Caitlin, and your business gets hard, how do you approach that part of that quote to stay light, you know? Let's say something icky happens, you're like, “Dang, that launch didn't go as planned, ooh.”
C: Oh, it always goes, right? (Laughs)
C: We call it the break down before the break through. So I will say that as I have become increasingly successful in my businesses, one of the things that I've taken very seriously is listening to my inner voice and really honoring that space when I don't feel like I'm in alignment, my… instead of pushing harder, which I think is usual our instinct (if we need to make it work, we're going to work harder) and instead, I have trained myself to actually take a step back. And this does correlate to what I share in our book, we have this whole resistance clearing exercise that we include in the back; because things do come up, especially around the topic of sex where we have discomfort and negative emotions that need to be processed. And so I've taught myself how to recognize and acknowledge the negative feelings, anger, frustration, fear, sadness, and give myself space to process them. So whether that's journaling or working out or just talking to a girlfriend, and then moving myself incrementally back into a state of gratitude and joy and love. And so acknowledging the amazing gifts that are already in my life, the blessings that God has already put there and just really staying rooted in that space of gratitude, that really, in my opinion, is pretty much the closest equivalent to happiness. If you can't quite get yourself to happiness, get yourself to grateful and that'll be a good substitute.
J: Yeah, get yourself to grateful, that's perfect; thank you.
J: Well, let's go ahead and dive in. So you got married and did you just talk about, “Hey, we're going to have sex every day,”? How do you get to that place?
J: Because I’m imagining you had to set an intention or…
J: … you would have had days when you didn't do it, or maybe you have, maybe you almost do it every day. What's the reality? (Laughs)
C: Yeah, yeah, great question. So I think the first… and we do. So if there's stomach flu or we're traveling or things like that, obviously this is going to be mixed up because, you know, vomiting is not sexy at all.
C: So we really do have to manage that. So what we say is, “This is not a legalistic thing. We're not trying to make you guys feel bad if there's no intimacy that day.” So the first step is, yes, give yourself grace, but then I think the other piece is redefining sex. So I think that a lot of, and I will say women in particular, tend to define sex as intercourse. And, yes, it's almost impossible to have intercourse every single day, that really is exhausting. But one of the tools that we have created in the book we call it the menu, and the menu has appetizers, side dishes, entrees, and desserts. And so it's expanding your palate, expanding what you want to ask for, and that allows you to get… and what we say is the intimacy, the pleasure, that connection with your partner, that doesn't have to be intercourse. But if you are connecting with them and be physically… experiencing physical pleasure with your partner, like allow that to be sex as well.
J: Mm, okay. Does it mean to be arousing physical pleasure to qualify? That's tricky, right?
C: That's a great question; it is tricky. What I find is that if I'm not… and I mean, this happens I think to everybody, but there are days when I've had a long day with the kids and a long day at work and I'm like, “You know, I'm just… I'm really not feeling it.”
C: And so what we encourage you and your partner to do is start with the appetizers. Start with words of affirmation, start with physical touch, massage, just establish that emotional connection and allow that to naturally light the fires. And I think there is this, it's setting the intention. I love that you brought that up and we'll… I'll go back to your original question, “How did this first start?” But I think setting the intention that, “We are going to make time and space for intimacy with each other every day,” and then picking obviously the time of day that works for you; for us, it's after bedtime, after we put the kids to bed. But for each family, just being intentional about scheduling structured time the way you would structure going to the gym every day or whatever daily habits, hygiene, brushing your teeth every day. So making this be just a regular part of your routine, which may sound very boring and not sexy, but I promise that when you make the structure that you're leaving space for the fun and the creativity within those boundaries, if that makes sense.
J: Oh totally. And we do so many other things in routines like eating, which gives you that dopamine hit, so why not sex? It gives you that dopamine hit. So…
C: Oh yes. (Laughs)
C: It’s one of those things where when you first start, it does sort of drain energy. So we always encourage people, “Try this out for 2 weeks, just see what you think.” And usually after 2 weeks of doing it consistently, you'll find that it's energizing, you'll get more energy from the experience and you will want to prioritize it much more.
J: Really? Oh, that's fascinating. Well, I have a… I've set an intention to, you know, give my husband kind of a quick back rub, back scratch. So that counts then as…?
C: Oh yeah.
C: That's actually one of the desserts, uh-huh.
J: Okay. So you can have anything… you don't have to have the whole menu, you can pick an appetizer, just do the appetizer one day, the dessert on another day, really?
C: Absolutely, yes. There are days when I just want 1 or 2 items from the menu and there are days when the full 4 course meal sounds amazing; maybe even seconds. But, yes, you manage your energy using that tool.
J: Hmm, that's awesome, I love that. It makes sense that it would be energizing, you know, to me.
J: Yeah. Well, so tell us a success story of someone who was shocked at the idea and then turned things around. That would be really fascinating.
C: Yeah. And I think that the people that tend to resonate with our message tend to be people who are already pretty happy with their relationship. We say, “This is not going to fix a broken relationship, but having… like putting this on top of an already loving marriage, but you just might have gotten out of touch with each other.” So my friend, Lisa, she and her husband work… have separate businesses and they have kids and they've been married for like 16 years. And when I was sharing this, again, that initial reaction of incredulity, right, “Is this actually possible?”
C: And then walking her through the system and they tried it out for just 2 weeks, and they found it really helped them increase communication, vibrancy, they really were looking forward to seeing each other and making time for each other. And I think that's been a couple of months now since they started and they're still very consistent about it and really enjoying that kind of… the refreshment that came even 16 years into their relationship.
J: That's really great, I really like that. It's funny.
J: Yeah. Well, so tell us how you set the intention to even make that a goal for yourself.
C: Yeah, back to before we start… (Laughs) when all this started. I will say as a kid growing up… maybe not a kid, but… that sounds weird. But as a high schooler, junior high or whenever that was, I think I picked up a Cosmopolitan magazine and I remember reading an article where the author had discovered that her friend had sex every day with her husband, and the author said, “Well, no wonder he lights up when she walks in the room. No wonder he thinks she walks on water.”
C: And I remember even at that early age going, “Well, is it that easy? Like, of course I want my husband to light up when I enter the room, of course I want him to think I walk on water. If it just entails sex every day, I'm pretty sure I can get on board with that.” And so even at a, I think an early age, I had maybe not a conscious intention, but a subconscious desire for that to be a priority in my life. And then I think as when you're in the honeymoon stage of your marriage, it actually is pretty easy to prioritize sex; like that's not a hardship. I think what I realized is we talked about the menu, that was one of the secrets that allowed us to talk about it. Because I'm a very verbal external processor and so I needed a way to talk about my feelings and what I did and did not want. And so the menu helped just have conversations about expectations and what we did and didn't want. And then the other one, the rule number one in our book is actually sleeping naked.
C: And that was something Michael did implement from day one, even though it was uncomfortable, even though we did have a 6 year old sometimes in the house with us. But that made it just a very easy baseline where, when you're already naked, you have to be vulnerable, you're physically there, it saves minutes (Laughs)…
C: … of preparation. But having that skin-to-skin connection on a nightly basis really just makes it very simple to go one more step and be intimate with each other.
J: That is really, really smart, wow. What’s step 2 after sleeping naked?
C: So sleeping naked is number 1, enjoying the menu every day is number 2. So that's where you pick an appetizer, pick an entree or a dessert and really enjoy that connection and its closeness. And then rule number 3 is ‘She comes first’. And I think that one really is what makes this work.
J: It's true, it's true.
C: Yes, yeah. So there are days when I… like I said, when I don't feel up to it, but he puts me first and make sure that I get aroused and gets me to the climax first.
C: And then you better believe after that happens, I am very onboard with whatever he wants from the menu. But I do find that women tend to not prioritize their own pleasure.
C: And that's maybe a deeper principle that I've been promoting through this book is, “Women, make time for you. Make time for your own pleasure. Make sure that you're not putting everybody else first and yourself last,” because I think that's very easy for us to do.
J: Yes. Well, let's go a little deeper on this one. So when you say ‘She comes first’, you mean she orgasms first, would you say, or is it…
J: … further meaning even? Okay.
C: Well, yeah, (Laughs) we say, ‘Clitorally and figuratively’. Yes, we do want her to orgasm first if entrees are being served, and just in general, we want both of you guys to prioritize her in every area of the relationship.
J: Aww, I love that. Okay, well, let's go deeper here. I was once at… I think I've said this on another episode about sex, but it's still intriguing. I was at a book club once and one of the women said, “Ugh, sex, I don't even think I've ever had an orgasm.” And I just stared at her…
J: … and I thought, you know, I figured she'd be the only one. And then I saw all these other heads nodding and then someone else said, “Yeah, my mom taught me it's a complete chore. That's exactly how I feel about it.” And then…
J: … tons of heads nodding again. So what do you have to say about that and what advice do you have for people who think like that?
C: Yeah. So the idea that orgasming can be hard or difficult, I really… I understand and I empathize with that. We do have a whole section in the book dedicated to women who do struggle with that. The first thing I would say is let's examine the inner dialogue that's happening around your sexuality. So I grew up in a very conservative Christian environment and that, there were some stigmas associated with sex. I didn't really even know what sex was when I got married.
J: Mm-hmm, mm-hmm.
C: There were a lot of things that I was simply uneducated about and I didn't really have permission to go educate myself, right, they were all sort of like, “Don't Google certain words.” (Laughs)
J: Yeah, right.
C: And so there's a certain element of, first of all, just acknowledging that your sexuality is healthy and good and beautiful and starting with that as the premise, and then giving yourself permission to explore, “What do you like? What do you not like?” That might be with your partner, it might be separate from your partner. But you really have to make sure that your mindset is in place where you say, “Yes, I'm giving myself permission to prioritize pleasure and to explore my own body, wants and needs,” and then move into, “How does this show up in my relationship?”
J: Mm, I love that. And so sometimes, people are nervous to communicate what they like; that's what I’ve read and heard.
J: Any advice for just going for it and, you know?
C: Yes, “You like that?”
J: “I like that. I like that,” and then you blush, no.
J: “A little to the left,” no.
C: Yes, and I… right.
C: And that’s… that is exactly where the menu came from is I had no way to talk about this with Michael in a way that wouldn't… because sex is so personal and we have so much shame built up in it and kind of wrapped around it. But it can be very difficult to say, “This is what I do want. This is what I don't want,” without offending your partner or… yeah, so there's just so much that is wrapped up in these communications. So we designed the menu as the… it's just an elaborate metaphor, if you will, to really help people start that dialogue. So…
J: Really? That's great.
C: Yes. So the first question we encourage you to ask your partner is, “What would you like from the menu?” and that, it's not a yes or no answer, right? “Would you like sex tonight?” which you can get shut down and so that feels like a scary question to ask. But, “What would you like from the menu?” allows you to come from a place of service that you're going to put your partner's needs first. They have an entire range of options depending on how they're feeling, so there's no right or wrong. And we talk about that a lot, there's no right or wrong, good or bad in your bedroom, there's simply more or less pleasurable. And so just putting everything on the pleasure scale instead of a morality scale or a right or wrong scale, I think really helps take away some of the pressure.
C: The other thing that we encourage our clients to do is to sandwich it in affirmations. So never focus on what you don't like. “Oh, I don't like that,” or, “I don't want this,” or, “I'm not okay with that,” always focus on the positive. And, I mean, this applies to everything, not just your relationship, but parenting and managing employees and everything else. But start with affirmations like, “Oh, you're such an amazing lover,” and then go into a positive solution-oriented suggestion like, “Could you do it a little bit more gently?” or, “Could you move a little bit to the left?” or, “Could you…?” whatever it is…
J: (Laughs) Yes.
C: … and guiding them into a proactive solution-focused solution for what you want and then anchoring again in affirmation and gratitude, “Thank you. You're wonderful. This is so great.” And so just having that affirmation sandwich and focusing on how to solve… and it's not even a problem, but how to improve (Laughs)…
J: Yes, yes.
C: … what's already great, I think is a really good way to think about it.
J: That's fantastic. So I read a book by Tim Ferriss called ‘The 4-hour Body’, and in that book, he has a chapter on female orgasm.
C: The 15-minute orgasm.
C: Uh-huh. (Laughs)
J: Yeah. I learned so much from that. I mean, then I got interested in the fact that, in anatomy books and in medical schools and all over the country, no one has a clue about the female…
C: Clitoris, mm-hmm.
J: … well, not just the clitoris, but these neural pleasure centers.
C: Oh yeah.
J: Like, how many people know the clitoris is actually way bigger than a little button, you know? (Laughs) Things…
C: Oh yeah.
J: So speak to that a little bit how we're growing in that area as a culture, as a world. (Laughs)
C: Yes, absolutely. And I will say, in my research for the book, because like I said, when we started, it was just Michael and I, this is what works for us. But as we've been speaking on stages and to audiences about this, I've done my research and one of the things I discovered was that the clitoris has 8000 nerve endings.
C: The head of men's penises only have about 4000, so we should be enjoying this twice as much as the guys should be enjoying it. But, yes, nobody's talking about that. And then another book, if you're open to it, it's called ‘The Extended Massive Orgasm’. And that book took Michael and I even further, I was like, “Okay, I don't know if I want an hour-long orgasm, that sounds exhausting to me.” But, yes, it was this idea that, one, that you can orgasm without ejaculating was an interesting concept that I had never come across.
J: For a man and a woman or…
C: For both men and women, yeah.
C: And the other one was they argue, we haven't experienced this one, but that you can be in that state of orgasmic levels for up to hours. So we haven't achieved that level, right, there's always room for improvement. (Laughs)
J: Yeah, yeah, that's great. I'll put a link to that book in the show notes, but that reminds me, I'm not naming names but some of my listeners will know who I'm talking about. But I have a friend who she and her husband decided to try to have sex for 8 hours and she said…
J: … yeah. Anyway, they achieved like 39 orgasms in 1 night for her, and I thought, “My gosh, that's fantastic.” So I guess speak a little bit about women being multi-orgasmic or I guess the hour-long orgasm would be about that, right, or…
J: … what do you think?
C: Yeah, yeah, yeah. And I think that there is that ability, and that's one of our gifts, I think. And even for guys, I recognize I've had guys who come up to me and say, “Yeah, once I go, it's going to take me a couple of days to recover,” I like looked at them like, “Huh, I'm increasingly grateful for my husband's stamina.” (Laughs)
J: Yeah, yeah.
C: I think that physiologically, each of us is wired a little bit differently and giving ourselves grace for that. But I do think that this kind of sets… it’s what I want to do is just set a foundation for you guys to enjoy the exploration.
C: So there are going to be people who do want to say, “Yeah, let's see how long we can go, how often we can come,” and that's amazing. I will say we also have like the very practical considerations that we work from home and we've got 4 kids.
C: And so for me right now at this stage of my life, extended massive orgasms feels beyond what I'm interested in.
J: I agree, I agree. (Laughs)
C: I always tell my husband, I’m like, “Hey sweetie, we both came in 12 minutes flat, how amazing was that?” (Laughs)
J: Yeah, that's perfect. Well, so do you ever just have sex for your husband's pleasure and not your own or do you have any rules about you both need to orgasm?
C: Yeah, so that is an interesting point; so many things come up what I want to say about that. I do think that I used to do this more for him. I assumed that guys needed sex more than women needed sex. I had ideas about… yeah, I think it was… it was just an idea that men need sex whereas women just, you know, it's nice for us. But I find that if I go more than a couple of days without orgasming that my body starts craving it…
C: … and I start getting grumpier and I start having really fantastic dreams.
C: But I just realized like, “Ah, no, like this is a mutual physical thing.” The other thing I've discovered in talking to women is that masculine libidos tend to slow down over time whereas many women's libidos tend to increase over time.
C: So I will say that I am much more excited about sex now in my 30s than I was in my 20s.
C: And I think my husband is actually beginning to shift. I mean, he's fabulous and I love it, but yeah, I find that I'm the one who's initiating it even more than others. And I will say that was… it was another thing that surprised me is I began the conversation, and we talk in the book about how it's usually the women who have these mental blocks and reasons that they don't want to have more sex. But what I've been surprised at is how many women are coming up and saying, “No, it's actually me who wants more sex, it's my husband who doesn't want it.” And so we've been coming around to this notion that it's more just sexual incompatibility and it's not gendered. So there may be women who are listening now and you're like, “Oh my gosh, no, it's me, I'm the one who wants more. I can't figure out how to get my husband onboard.” (Laughs)
C: And so acknowledging that that is an equally true experience and it solved very similarly, right, just open communication, acknowledging that this is what you want, facing the resistance what gets in the way, and then set in the ground work for consistency. I think that really does go both ways no matter who's feeling dissatisfied in the relationship.
J: Yeah, I love that, I love that; it's true. I think that hormonally, men's testosterone goes down with age, women’s starts to go up as they're estrogen and progesterone decrease.
J: So it makes sense that women become more…
J: … more higher libidos with age. I find it to be very true.
C: Yeah, mm-hmm.
J: In fact, I've been telling my husband, “You need to work out more and like exercise, that'll increase testosterone. We don't want any problems later.”
C: Yes. In the guy’s side, we say if you're having trouble orgasming, obviously do your research, see if there's any medical conditions that need to be addressed. But, yes, strength training is great, making sure you have enough iron, have nuts. So there are a lot of really very natural holistic ways that you can address that and… and if it… if it is something that you want to increase… because here's the other thing is he could just be all about pleasing you, and that's okay too.
C: But I would say, in general, we don't want there to be too much inequality between who's getting and who's receiving.
C: However that plays out, just make sure that both of your guys’ needs are getting met and working, yeah, towards that goal of both of you being, not just satisfied, but completely excited (no pun intended), excited about the status of your love life.
J: Yeah, yeah, great, great advice there. Well, I'm sure there are so many more tips, I cannot wait to read all the menu phrases in ‘Sex Every Day’.
J: So, everyone, get that book ‘Sex Every Day’ by Caitlin and Michael Doemner.
J: And, Caitlin, I want to talk a little bit about some of your routines.
J: I guess, you know, we might even hear about your night routine. (Laughs)
J: But let's have a quick break for our sponsor and then we'll talk about that.
Okay, welcome back. So, Caitlin, tell us what do your evening and morning routines look like? You know, what do you do in what order? And I guess…
J: … the final step is take off all the clothes and get in bed.
C: That’s a good nightly routine. Okay, so things that I think have been helpful for… because Michael and I have been successful entrepreneurs for over 7 years now and… and we do a lot. I mean, this was just kind of a fun launch that we did as a side project, we've also launched a television show for fun. So I would say we actually are pretty productive people.
C: And I think that starts in the morning. And if you're linking to books, another book that really changed my life was called ‘Miracle Morning’.
C: His first name is Hal, I'm not sure about his last name, but…
J: Elrod, yeah, I think.
C: Elrod, yes, mm-hmm. So starting your mornings is I think the first step to making sure that the rest of your day goes well. So he advocates silence, affirmations, visualization, exercise, reading, and journaling; which I rarely get to. But the silence, the affirmation and the visualization, we do every single morning. So the alarm goes off, we use 5 minutes snooze as our silence time; it's a little bit cheating. But then we go into affirmations, whether it's a YouTube channel or just something that is reminding us to be in a state of gratitude and affirming our strength and our power, our creativity and our potential. And then moving into visualization, “What do we want today to look like?” and that's really helpful for getting us on the same page. So, “Oh, today is the day that we have a podcast,” or, “Today is the day that we have soccer practice,” or whatever is coming up that we need to both talk about, and so we visualize what that's going to look like. When we first started, we used the 5-minute journal, which was very helpful because it says, “What 3 things would make today great?” so we still use that as kind of a premise for, “How do we prioritize and make today a positive experience?” And then usually, the 3-year-old is climbing into bed with us and we would have to start the day and then we get into getting kids ready. And then the routine starts back again pretty consistently by after dinnertime. We lay out kids clothes for school the next day, we make sure that we do lunches. So preparing yourself for a not stressful morning is I think critical. And then once the kids are in bed, yes, I usually will take a bubble bath or a hot bath. If you don't like bubbles, then Epsom salts, lavender oil. And I find that especially for women that this is really helpful, that having some transition time between work mode and mommy mode and then switching back into wife mode, lover mode, for me, that nightly ablution is really helpful in mentally and physically preparing my mind and my body to be sassy. So I'm seeing myself off naked first, I'm rubbing lotion over my own body first, and I think that's a really great transition ritual.
C: And then rituals, when we get into bed, obviously I don't put clothes on afterwards, I just go under the covers. And we do the menu and we make sure that we're connecting and communicating. And I would say if I can be in bed by 9:00 and lights out by 10:00, like that hour gives us plenty of time to connect and build up and warm up, for me to talk (Laughs), for him to listen. Usually it's how it goes because I'm the over communicator in our relationship. And then in the evening, we'll usually go to sleep using some sort of hypnosis….
C: … or evening meditation, just because my brain likes to go-go-go and I need a way to calm it back down, and I'm also kind of a productivity obsessed. So I was like, “Well, if I'm going to be asleep, I might as well be reproving my subconscious at the same time.” (Laughs)
J: Yeah. And does it play all night long?
C: No, I usually just do like an hour, hour and a half. One of my favorites is a gentleman named Michael Seeley on YouTube and we'll just let him play and drift off to sleep, and yeah, so that's our routine.
J: Oh, that's fantastic. So how old are your kids?
C: So the oldest is now 16, he's a junior in high school, Nathan. And then we've got 3 between us; we have a 7 year old, who's our daughter, Cora, and then 5 and 3 are the 2 boys, Jackson and Bradley.
J: Oh, I have a Cora as well, she's 5.
C: Oh, I thought I’d be so original with that name at the time but now it's like super popular. (Laughs)
J: Oh, Downton Abbey, you know, popularized it.
C: Of course, yeah, mm-hmm.
J: Of course. Well, so I'm liking the sound of your routine, it's like really clicking for me personally. So what time are you starting dinner to get all that time in for the bath and everything else? And what time is bedtime? Just curious.
C: Yeah, great question. So dinner is as quickly as I can make it happen (Laughs). So we have structured our days so that usually my work-work is done by 3 o'clock. Michael goes and picks up the kids from school, brings them back by 3:30 or sometimes we have extracurricular activities. But so we usually are spending an hour to just with the family. And then usually by 4:30, I'm talking about, “Well, what do we want for dinner?” and by 5:30, I like us to be cooking dinner. 6 o'clock is my preferred time for us to actually be sitting down and eating and then I want baths started by 6:30. Now, it doesn't always happen, sometimes it gets pushed back later, especially Fridays and Saturdays. But, yes, for the 3-year-old, I’m feeling really great if I can be getting him into his jammies and doing his reading by 7 o'clock. And then I think by 8 o'clock, if I can get their lights out, that's really great for me. I recognize if you have older kids, a little bit harder for teenagers, we've encouraged them like just say, “Hey, yeah, you just have some quiet time in your room. You don't have to go to sleep, but I do want you to be reading in your room by 8:00 or 8:30,” until whenever their bedtime is. And then that gives us time for Michael and I to maybe watch a show, we watched ‘Game of Thrones’ last night, or read or whatever it is that we want to do. So we have our own personal downtime between 8:00 and 9:00 and then our personal time together usually between 9:00 and 10:00. And like I said, it happens, it doesn't always happen. But in an ideal world, that's exactly how it would play out.
J: That's really great, that's great; it matches similar to what I'm doing. So I'm seeing where I could squeeze in this personal time. Thank you.
C: Yeah. (Laughs)
J: You just made it doable now, thank you.
C: Okay, good. (Laughs)
J: I mean, yeah. Anyway, let's talk about some of your favorite things. So your favorite book.
C: Oh, that is the hardest thing for you to ask me (Laughs). I love books so much. And usually, my favorite book is whichever one I'm reading right now. Right now, the book that I'm enjoying the most is called ‘Becoming Superhuman’ by Dr. Joe Dispenza, and it's talking about a lot of these woo-woo concepts that I've… I've liked from spirituality over the years, but he brings a scientific basis to it. But if your question is like, “What book would you read over and over again?” it would probably be G. K. Chesterton's ‘Orthodoxy’, which sounds really heavy, but it is the most hilarious book ever; that's where that quote that I mentioned came from, “Angels can fly because they take themselves lightly.” So orthodoxy is a really beautiful mind shifting idea about the nature of God. But, yeah, oh, I love books so much, so I usually have like 5 or 10 on my nightstand at any given time.
J: And it's G. Q. Chesterton, ‘Orthodoxy’?
C: G. K.
J: G. K.
C: Gilbert Keith. He's a little bit before C. S. Lewis's time, so kind of a…
J: Oh, I've never really heard of that.
C: … early 1900s.
C: Mm, he's amazing.
J: Oh, thank you, I'm going to grab both.
J: (Laughs) What's your favorite easy; favorite easy meal?
C: Tacos. We have… we grew up in Southern California so we do lots of different versions of tacos, but the easiest one is just ground turkey or ground beef with a lot of spices, chili powder, paprika, cumin, salt pepper. We really love to cook so this is a dangerous topic to fall into. (Laughs)
C: But, yeah, so we'll just fry that up, plop a can of refried beans in the microwave, grate some cheese, maybe shred up some lettuce or finely chop some cabbage, and then put those in a burrito or Michael sometimes likes to fry the tortillas, but that takes a little bit longer. But that one's just a great staple and I love it because if I do like 3 pounds of beef, then I still have leftovers and I can make a taco salad the next day for lunch.
C: So there's a lot of really great benefits and I can get that on the table in like less than 30 minutes.
J: Yeah, yummy.
J: And what does it mean for you to be a vibrant happy woman, Caitlin?
C: Oh, I love that question.
C: And I think I really loved the phrase. Like, when I saw your podcast come up, I was like, “Oh my gosh, that totally resonates with me.” Vibrancy really is one of my like life goals, that's one of those feelings that I want to evoke constantly. So vibrant happy woman. So we talked about the happiness that I have been training myself to feel happy through gratitude trainings and meditations and exercises because I will say, most of my life, I was very driven, very ambitious. And so I think from the happiness perspective, it's reminding myself to be absolutely grateful for this moment (exactly the way my life looks right now) and appreciating it even… because I think especially as moms of young kids, I'm sure you can relate, there's a certain part of it's like, “Oh, good god, I would just love it if they were out of diapers.” (Laughs)
C: Or, “I would love it if they’re talking,” or like there's always we're looking forward to the next phase, but reminding myself to love this face and this moment, even when it feels challenging.
C: And then the vibrancy, it's hard to articulate all the different things that evokes for me, but I think it comes back to me living my truest most authentic expression of myself.
C: So I'm an artist, I love painting, I love writing, I'm working on a novel as well right now. But there's so many things that I think are in our hearts that we've longed to do, but usually there's voices that tell us either we don't have time or we're not good enough or this or that. And so I think becoming aware of those… that inner dialogue and calming it down just long enough to say, “I'm going to do this, even if it's not perfect.” And so just, yeah, like if you want to do something, do it wholeheartedly, don't worry about the consequences, don't even worry about the end result, right? When I watched this book, I thought maybe my mom and my friends would read the book, and now it's kind of catching wild fire and taking on a life of its own. But detaching yourself from any expectations of what it's going to do, just doing it because you love the thing itself and giving yourself permission to follow your passions I think is what that word evokes for me.
J: Oh, that's so good; so much more meaning to it now.
J: Well, they have a challenge to our listeners from you.
C: The challenge, I'm going to take it back to the book, if that's alright.
C: I want to challenge… ladies, I want you to really start thinking about where are you not prioritizing yourself, not prioritizing your own pleasure, where you're putting yourself last, either with your family or at work or at different areas of your life, and I want you to really just embrace that you are worth this, that it is beautiful, that you can enjoy it. And really, if that looks like prioritizing intimacy and sexuality in your marriage for this next 2 weeks, I think that's going to be a really great place to start. But honestly, the easiest thing to do is just try sleeping naked for a couple weeks and see how it goes.
J: Yeah, there you go, 2 weeks…
J: … of self and pleasure and nudity; I love it.
C: Mm-hmm, exactly.
J: Caitlin, this was really, really awesome, I have a lot of notes for myself and I appreciate you being on the show. Everyone, get the book ‘Sex Every Day’ and figure out that menu and try this stuff, it sounds so juicy. Thanks for being on the show, Caitlin.
C: Yeah. I was going to say sexeverydaybook.com is the best way to get the book. So we have some free resources that they can download on the website.
C: .com, mm-hmm.
J: Thank you, okay.
C: My pleasure.
J: Thanks for being on the show.
C: Alright, take care, bye-bye.
J: Alright, thanks, Caitlin.
There you go. How many of you listening are committed to 2 weeks of sex every day and to see where that goes from there? Okay, let's do this. I'm going to be on Instagram sharing my experience with this, not in detail, no pictures, but I'm going to be talking about it and I want you to follow me so you can join the conversation. I'm on Instagram at Jen.Riday and I'm going to be using my Instagram story, so look at the Instagram stories and follow this conversation. I can't wait to hear how it goes for you. I hope that like Caitlin, we feel energized, that we feel closer to our partners, that we just feel all around happier and more grateful and glowing with all the good things (Laughs); it's going to be fun. Well, I appreciate you all listening. I will be back later this week with a Happy Bit and I would like to answer some of your questions on future Happy Bits; so ask me anything. All you have to do is email me right now at email@example.com, ask me a question, a question about what to do with somebody in your life that's bothering you, what to do in an area that's you're struggling in, what I would do in X Y [Laughter] Z situation, ask me a question. I can't wait to answer those and I will see you next time. Until then, make it a great week. Take care.