Once you've figured out what you want out of life, how can you get it? That's the million-dollar question, isn't it? It's also the really meaty part of the coaching process - coming up with a game plan to get you the pay raise, the fantastic career, the sexy body, the smokin' hot love life.

Short answer: you have to take a risk.

Scary, huh? Making changes to your life always is.

But look at the challenge from a different perspective: what happens if you don't do this? Nothing changes and you'll stay where you are, forever discontent.

We're quite comfortable with the status quo and changing things is risky. Risk is scary and we're taught that we shouldn't take risks from the time what we're small children - we might fall down and go boom. Which makes sense; I know I have the scars to prove it. Yet at the same time, the people we are encouraged to admire are the ones who do take risks, the people who become movie stars or singers or athletes or politicians. Those aren't safe life choices! Yet taking those sorts of risks is a quality that we admire.

We don't do that so much when it comes to our own lives, though. It's scary. What if it turns out badly?

It might. I've certainly made a lot of decisions which I later realized weren't the best. But I try to take the perspective that if I learn something, then nothing is a mistake, no matter how badly it goes. Making a change, any change, is better than continuing to do something you know doesn't make you happy. If it doesn't turn out well? Change it again. You have that power. Keep changing it until you get what you want.

Ok, so now that I've convinced you that taking the occasional risk is worth it, how do you find the courage to actually do that, to take a leap of faith and make a change to your life?

One positive step is to find some role models. Identify the kind of people you admire, the sort of person you want to become. Focus on and seek out success stories, both with popular media figures and the individuals you see at work or church or the grocery store. Think about them, about what qualities they have that you admire. Pay attention to what risks they took and how that worked out for them.

Look for the positive examples around you. A coworker who got some children's books published and talked to me in detail about the process gave me the courage to start writing. A guy I met at a workshop at a pagan convention gave me the push I needed to see that what I wanted to say about sexuality and how I wanted to help people could be an actual career. My friend dyeing her hair blue gave me the courage to dye mine purple!

Courage is contagious.

I had a client who needed to work on body image. We met for five months and worked on several different methods for seeing her beautiful body, her sweetheart, and her life in general in a more positive way. Other people have commented to me socially that she's a much happier person, more easy-going, and more likely to look on the bright side than the doom-and-gloom side.

Another pair of clients ended a marriage, coming to the decisions to let go, rather than forcing a relationship to work that was making them both unhappy. Over a year later, they're both so much better off - they made the right decision. Taking that risk in spite of the questions and self-doubts like "What if I'm alone forever?" "I gave up too soon," and "What if I'm never happy again?" have all been refuted. They focused on the positive flip-side, asking instead, "Will I be happier if I stop trying to force him/her to change?" And the answer was a resounding "Yes!"

Most people who make radical changes to their lives don't say "Wow, I'm so glad I stayed in that crappy situation for eight years." Usually they kick themselves, thinking "If I'd known that I could be this much happier, I'd never have stayed that long!"

So let me tell you that you can be happier, you can make these changes, you can make it happen. You just have to believe in yourself.

It's awfully easy to feel beaten down and burned out, but take a moment and try to remember what it was like to be a kid, before your world got so damn serious. Spend a moment at your local park and watch the children play, if you don't have any of your own. It's in our nature to laugh, to play, to be hopeful. To hope for better. To ask for what we want. Can we have ice cream? Can we have great sex? Yes! We can! (Maybe not every day with the ice cream, but maybe - who knows. If you can make that work in your diet, awesome!)

Another way to get started on making big changes to your life is to start with small changes, baby-size risks. Once you start training your brain that it's acceptable to take risks, that it pays off positively, it becomes easier to take other, bigger risks.

Shake up the status quo, turn it upside down. Take a class somewhere, on a subject that you never thought you would -Italian language, belly dance, welding. Do something that's a tiny bit out of your comfort zone, but not too terribly far yet. Listen to some new music. Meet a person that you've chatted with online for coffee. Leave a comment in a blog. Start talking to people wherever you go - the bank, the grocery store, the coffeeshop. Be friendly. Flirt.

Make some visual changes to the world around you - rearrange your furniture. Change how you look. Part your hair on the opposite side. Wear an unusual-for-you color shirt. Get a new watch. Buy some sexy undies!

All of these little things prompt you to make changes and keep changing. They re-train your subconscious that it's all right to take risks. To be friendly. To go for what you want in life. Make a list of ways you want to change, things you want to do. Things you wish were different about your life. Find some small ways to begin.

What does all of this have to do with being Wanton, with Getting the Sex Life You Always Wanted?

Well, a lot of sexy energy comes from putting yourself out there. From being Wanton and Flirty and Bold and Uninhibited. Taking the risk of looking foolish in the pirate captain costume. Gambling that your partner will be interested in trying out some light bondage. Having the balls to bring up sex in a conversation, to tackle the challenges you face and figure out a way to make it better.

Courage is sexy. Confidence is hot.

Remember, you don't have to be a victim of inertia. Make a change. You're not alone - I'm right here, rooting for you, believing in you. Cheering you on. Ready with a first aid kit in case you stumble and a kiss of congratulations for every success you have.

And trust me, you don't want to miss out on that kiss!

(c) 2008 Julianne N. Bentley All Rights Reserved.

Author's Bio: 

Julianne Bentley, the original Wanton Hussy, works with individuals (and couples) who want to bring the passion and joy back into their bedrooms.

Drawing on over fifteen years of experience discussing the ins and outs of sexuality, in all its forms, Julianne brings compassion and energy to the process of supporting you in making the changes you need in order to have the sex life you want and deserve.