Candia Raquel Founder of Centro De Poder Postural Presence Expert and Jamie Catto in the Cover of The Sensual Sessions 17 Reclaiming Sensuality From The Shadows

#17 Reclaim Your Sensuality From The Shadows — James Catto

Sensuality may be hidden in the shadows as a treasure, along past experiences of shame. In the pursuit of other people liking ourselves we wear masks that lead to disconnection.

In The Sensual Sessions #17, Jamie Catto, shares his extraordinary view on intimacy as showing up as we truly are to reclaim sensuality from the shadows and experiencing the life of pleasure and creativity that is your basic human right.


WATCH To Reclaim Sensuality From The Shadows:


Are You Afraid Of Being a Mess Upfront?

We are societally educated on getting our shit together and fixing our mess and being like our best version and become enlightened.

So I invited Jamie Catto to tell us how to be comfortable with being a mess so we can reclaim our own sensuality from the shadows.


How To Be Comfortable Being A Mess?

Well, I didn't say it was always comfortable. But I will say that it's always giving us the deeper connection and intimacy which we want. If we can all agree that we all desire a deeper connection and intimacy with the other humans.

Then we look at our lives and this superficial belief that I have to look beautiful the time I have to look strong. I have to have it together. That's the way people will love me.


Will People Only Love You If You´re Beautiful And Strong?

No, it's a totally false belief. And because we have this belief and as in our childhood, you know people say Don't cry, show your best, be everything. You can be all this stuff.

And everybody on Instagram has a different filter to hide their wrinkles or their spots or whatever. This culture of hiding the truth is that a human being all of us, we have confidence, sometimes insecurity other times.


What It Means To Be Human

We look beautiful some days. We look terrible, other days, or at least we think we do. We are generous. Sometimes we are creating, other times we are secure. Sometimes we are needy. Other times. This is being a human.

It doesn't matter if you're a guru or if you're a thief, or if you're artists or if you're a businessman or a mother or a dancer, every human being has this spectrum of humanity.


The Spectrum Of Intimacy And Authenticity

And my belief is we come to hit Planet Earth to have a full experience of that spectrum and to share with each other in intimacy and authenticity, transparency, all these different colors of the rainbow that we have.

Now if as we agreed at the beginning, we really want a deeper connection and intimacy with each other. It is going to reduce that possibility a lot.

If I only show you A B C D E, but I never showed you F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S you know if I constantly make an edit to show you the brochure of Jamie the shop window selling myself to you and I'm insecure about that then you will never really meet me you will meet my mask.


How Trying To Like Others Can Be Manipulation

My superficial idea of what I think you will like which is also a manipulation which creates even more distance between us so it doesn't take a lot of courage to realize this and also realize that yes, some days I can cry some days I can be a mess.

Some days I can want to hide.


How Showing Your Mess Radiates Permission

Some days I'm available to show you all of it and I want you to show I feel more intimate with the people. I trust the people that show me their mess. And they're less obviously attractive sides. I trust those people more and it creates permission if I am if I'm radiating permission, which I hope I do if I'm radiating even without directly saying it.

If I'm radiating the fact I don't need you to edit yourself for me. I don't need you to pretend to be fine. I don't need you to do anything except be exactly as you are today.

The oxygen that comes into the space and therefore I'm radiating permission and when I am like that with myself, and I'm not wearing masks.

It creates a field of energy it creates an environment where everybody feels like that, it's infectious.


Let´s Create A World Where We Are Not Fake!

So we are creating a family through all of our work and our music and films and workshops and books and all the people that I love that we work together, which is a lot of 1000s of 1000s.

A lot of people who feel this way. It's creating a new world where we're not fake, we're not superficial. We're not shallow. We are intimate, and sometimes it's not comfortable. But it's it's real and we don't try to fix each other.

We're not trying to make it nice when it's when it gets difficult.

We hear ah, I can sit with you and breathe when it's not so nice. When it's not pretty. I don't need to quickly clear up the mess. I just be with you in the mess and I know that next week, you will be with me in the mess and therefore we will have the deeper connection and the intimacy which we all want.

It feels really, really obvious to me like when I say that's like my job is to go around the world stating the obvious which everybody I mean, I haven't said anything that you and me and everybody listening already knows.

And I don't see why it has to take real courage because we imagine Oh no, I couldn't do it.

But actually anytime that you do, do it, show yourself really.


Be Discerning To Protect Yourself

I mean not to everybody, but to most people. Of course you have to be careful who you expose your vulnerability to it's not everybody in the world. You have to be sensitive. And look after yourself.

Every warrior has a sword, but every warrior also has a shield and there's a time to have a shield. But with most people can people in your life people you get you know you could show a lot more and they would probably really love you in it and welcome you and it's not such a risk. As everyone imagines.


How To Avoid Putting Yourself At Risk

Can you give us like some keys or recommendations for for the shield part. Well if you're with somebody new or dismissive. So you have to you have to be discerning. Yeah. You have to be discerning.

Well, I mean, you can't ever fully know of course there are some difficult people out there. One thing is from their history.

You know, my mother gave me some great advice, which was when you first become close with someone look at how they are talking about the other people in their life, and how they're treating the other people because soon that will be you.

So don't trust people who are really nice to you but shitty to to other people. You know what I mean?

The other thing is to live and you're lucky if you're a dancer, you already have this but anybody can do it is to live quite an embodied life. So you're not only in your thinking and deciding and busy, busy.


Breathe Into Your Heart And Womb To Know The Truth

You breathe into your heart you breathe into your belly into your womb. And usually if you really place your feelings, into your belly into your, when you look at somebody you can you know, most of the time, you know, and you I think it's probably true for you and maybe other people listening.

When somebody does betray you or somebody does talk shit about your to whatever. There's always a little part in your brain. That's like, I fucking knew it. I didn't listen to myself. Yeah, I play the part. That betrayal. I didn't listen to myself.


How To Open Safely

I like a lot what you say of having the sword and the shield. Having that openness without losing your discernment.

Yeah, I'm not saying we should go from zero to 100. I'm just saying. We could go from you know, now we're like 15. We could go from 15 to 19. We could just do a little bit and if 19 Feels good, go to 22 I just think we can expand a little bit more than where we are.

Are You Keeping People In The Dungeon? Don't decide somebody is not positive it's not possible to connect, just because once they were shitty, I'm shitty. Sometimes you're shitting like we have people in the dungeon. We all have a little you know our own dungeons inside different levels of forgiveness or lack of forgiveness.

I have people in my dungeon who were just annoying one day once and often we decide somebody is an asshole just from one thing which happened with that. Now maybe they were having a bad day. Or maybe they got bad news that day or they were tired. Like if everybody judged me on how I was that one time, I'd be fucked.

So like also as well as be careful.

Also, don't be so careful that you keep people in the dungeon too long.

Like we have a game on one of the workshops where you take the keys and you walk through your own dungeons. And you see who's in there and maybe if there's anybody who could possibly be let out.


How To Use Difficulties To Strengthen Connections

Restore the connection because also in through by going through the difficulties is that just strengthen connections because having gone to through an argument or through a difference.

And yeah, going to the other side means that you together found a way to integrate the difference of the other and not just be friends with people that are more to like you or tell you say yes to everything that you say because that's like, like narcissistic. And I also like you say if we have a disagreement, and we work it out or whatever, the fact that we took the risk to go there to bother, you know to go that shows is a way to say I value you otherwise if I don't value you why do I need to do the work and try but if I if I'm trying harder to create peace together or to repair something and that means I value you and it's a good affirmation of strength of a relationship.

You know, they say in a couple or in a relationship. It's not how often you fight. It's how quickly you repair and the repairing is the is the grace, shows that after the trigger has gone down after the drama is not so hot.

Hey, I realize I'm sorry. I was I didn't mean to say that. I didn't mean it. Or I'm sorry. Or can you please be careful that really hurt when you did this or, you know you get to the adult conversation after the children have calmed down inside? Yes. And it has to do with precisely showing up as you are with your mess with your bitchiness pickiness. Yes if I follow him in denial as my shadows, always trying to hide them and I don't want you I don't want you to know that I am greedy, needy, angry, scared, whatever. And I will keep fighting. No, I didn't. I didn't say that. No, you know, I will keep giving you denial because it's a technique to try and keep something hidden in the shadows.

But if I'm willing to allow you to see some of my shadows, then I don't need to deny everything I can go Yeah, I was being a bitch. I'm sorry about that bitch was coming through me. It happens sometimes.

Not rather than getting up every day to to proclaim I'm never a bitch course I am sometimes so are you. So it's really cool to date. So yeah I have things hidden away in the shadows.


Why Shadow Doesn´t Mean Dark

Shadow doesn't mean dark. Shadows are not my dark things. The shadows are my hidden things hidden away in the shadows when no one can see them because I feel ashamed of them.

So it's important to not think everything in the shadow is dark.


The Beauty You Hid In The Shadows

Because we have hidden away some beautiful things that shatters our comfort to be sexy and sensual. For many people is hidden away.

So their sensuality and sexuality is in the shadow, our comfort to be excited to share my new idea. A lot of people very well I don't want to sound arrogant. I don't want to take up space, hidden away in the shadow.

So many beautiful natural creative said sexy, important parts of us are hidden in the shadows, not just greedy, angry scared needy, those of our two because no one no one thinks those are attractive either.


Reclaiming Your Sensual Treasures From The Shadow

But there's a lot more than that in the shadow hidden away and my job is to work with people and play with people to reclaim that treasure to reclaim the sensuality and the sexiness to reclaim the permission to tell you my excited idea to reclaim my permission to cry and not feel ashamed to reclaim the permission to be strong some days vulnerable other days.

These are basic human rights and without them. How can you live a a good human life? It's impossible. This is a priority!

This isn't just an extra little bit of self help, because I want to get enlightened. This is like the basics of being a person to me. I think it's like the center of life.

Looking at these things, yes, it's welcoming the reality as you are the total mess and really being unbound.


A Practice To Reclaim Your Sensuality From Your Shadows

Yeah. Only with people that you really really trust.

Starting alone, one thing you can do which can be very tender is to to think if there was ever a time where you felt a little ashamed of your sensuality, maybe your aunt caught you kissing a boy and told yourself and you felt everyone in the family.

You felt ashamed or maybe even younger. You were on watching TV and sort of pulling parts of yourself. You know, like little kids. They just like touch themselves. Often maybe a grandmother came in and went, Oh, stop that it's dirty.

Or so you know, like everybody has.

Maybe one thing they can remember where their natural naked sensual self was suddenly not safe or was shameful.

And when you tune into that feeling, it's almost like you can find this little frozen five year old 10 year old 15 year old who lives inside.

And you can go on a little journey breathing gently to find them.

When you just by feeling the taste of them. Maybe you will feel your throat close a little bit.

You go oh my throat Hello. Well, maybe in your solar plexus or in your belly somewhere. You find that they go home here I go. Oh, hi. breathing gently. Can you just say hi. And there's two of you.

There's you the lovely, wise kind adult. And then who's been sitting afraid in the corner? Somewhere in your body? And you first of all, it's a very, very big step even just to do that and welcome them and just say hi, that's all just Hi. I'm here. I'm here to feel your feelings with you. There's nowhere else I would prefer to be than here with you right now.

Just that first thing is huge.

If you want to go even deeper, you can say what happened?

What happened that made you feel you're have to hide over here. Was there anything unjust? or difficult or unfair? That happened? Painful? Where is the pain in your body? Can we breathe air together and feel it maybe have a little cry?

And then you say to them hey, I know you think it's 1997 But actually, it's 2022 now and we're safe. We have good friends who are also essential. No one's going to laugh at you anymore. No one's going to tell you you're dirty. It's not the 90s You're not 13.

Would you like to come and be with me today and join the present moment where it's safe.

And every day you go and say hi to them and eventually like the fox in the footprints. They will come and hold your hand and you can go for a walk and have an ice cream you don't have to do anything really essential.

Well, they can have a bath with you and listen to some music and enjoy the fact that you have a lovely grown up bathroom. And little step by little step. Maybe they might join you on a date in a few weeks or a few months.

If you depends on the speed. And the most important thing with these parts inside us is that we're not in such a hurry that we like looking at our watch thinking it should be quicker.

Well if a man treated you that way suddenly you would be like me too. You know not okay. You must not treat yourself like the patriarchy.

We must treat ourselves so that every vulnerable part not just in sensuality in all the parts we do these games. It always has to be consensual so if you for example, have a little part that is scared to go to the party. You don't go no I have to go to parties. I can't sit at home all the time. Come on, let's go. You don't push little children to these places. You ask them hey, look, I really want to go to this party. Is there any way we could do this that will feel safe or safer for you?

And you listen, everything's always about listening, curiosity, listening. Yes. And you listen in his silence. And then you hear a little voice say, could we leave early if I don't like it? Yes, of course. If you don't like it, we'll leave. Okay. And then when you go to the party, it's consensual and the little part knows that you care about their feelings and their boundaries, its consent, all these kinds of things, just to treat these places very slowly, very gently, very lovingly, with curiosity, no rushing and they all want to come home.

The natural part of the natural state of a human is to be in a state of healing and coming back to wholeness. So you don't need to create some big scientific formula. It's not complicated.

You just need to open the door and say hi. Would you like to come? Just like dealing with a small child? We don't carry them. You encourage them, you smile. And yes, it's not a complicated thing.

And it doesn't really take a lot of courage is actually very tender and beautiful. And once you've done it once you can. I've got a whole family of little children inside me from different places in my life. I need to go and get all of them and bring the bring bring the team bring my family back when they forgot forgotten aspects of ourselves in the shallows, but that they remain there like still operating and that they will just they will from the other side of the curtain. They will make you turn left. Not right but you won't know why.

That's why it's good. To go there. Because if you don't, then you won't know why. You don't want to go to the party. You'll just feel tired. They're very sneaky. Why am I feeling tired? I've no reason to feel tired. I slept okay last night. I've haven't had a busy day. I'm tired because part of me is like thinks it's protecting me. It was quick. Make her feel tired. Yeah, that tiredness comes from 20 years ago. I think comes from strategy today to protect you from risking going to the party because that part of you imagines that it's risk. It was so it's bringing all of yourself to the present and to the slowly very slowly, very gradually. Very respectfully. Beautiful. So that's something you can do. Yeah.

That's another nice thing essentially, when you find one of them and you have a little contact you don't go too far system.


About Jamie Catto

Jamie Catto is an author, film-maker and musician running transformational workshops and events to reclaim all the treasure we edited away into the shadows and facilitate everyone daring to be more real, more fallible, more tender, more intimate.

His mission is to create a world full of ‘walking permission slips’ where we all lighten up and enjoy the unpredictable human path together with humour, playfulness and a healthy dose of irreverence. Jamie’s workshops and 1-1s provide a refreshing approach to inner work with the right dose of playfulness and depth.

He facilitates these professional, personal and creative breakthroughs by drawing from his own processes in ground-breaking film production, philosophy voyages and music career. Evolution and enlightenment happen a lot quicker and easier when we treat the whole process as entertainment instead of ‘working on ourselves’.

“I’ve noticed longer lasting, healing trajectory changes happen when we curiously snorkel around the edges of our edges, not over-boldly plunge ourselves into deep cold water.

Patient, caring and tending heals more sustainably than heroic pushing. I believe in making every step consensual with my fragile inner characters.

I believe in the treasure of low-hanging fruit and heart-opening, playful intimacy, not stoic reverence and unworthiness before ‘more advanced beings’ dressed as faux-humility.

The huge, sexy river of creativity and wisdom is available to everyone in every moment - even this one right now - but it's through melting and opening not generating and do-ing. It's not a Yang act of will. It’s our yielding Yin that allows us to be guided and filled by Life’s Genius.

The core of melodrama is based around something being 'at stake’ but with our awakening there is literally nothing at stake. There's nothing to do but listen and open and be moved - our souls are plotting our pathways, and we are mostly passengers. That's what 'letting go' is all about. Trusting that river is real. Do you?

Genuine healing changes happen when we remove the over-importance or agenda to transcend this glorious, messy human experience and instead, be thoroughly entertained by our fallible, slapstick genius, tripping over our heart strings and spilling the wine, falling on our arses again and again as a given and each time treating it as one of our most illuminating and liberating spiritual practices.

This is how we make friends with our shadows and share that safety and peacefulness with others.

Some of the Artists Jamie has collaborated with and Directed in his projects to date include:

MUSIC: Bono, Michael Stipe (REM), Alanis Morissette, Dido, Robbie Williams, Daniel Lanois, KD Lang, Brian Eno, Neneh Cherry

FILM/TV: Dennis Hopper, John Cusack, Carrie Fisher, Billy Connolly, Tim Robbins, Susan Sarandon, Stephen Fry.

OTHER: Kurt Vonnegut, Noam Chomsky, Bob Geldof, Tom Robbins, Douglas Coupland.

Working With Jamie Catto

There's a thing called Game Changer which is a six month journey with us a closed group, beautiful like a family. You make new family with people doing you know talking about like this as a teacher training to facilitate this stuff. There is a thing called the lovely gathering twice a week, which is a free group just to come and hang out and read poems and talk about the mess and how we're doing. Sometimes there's other events or workshops.

To learn more, visit Jamie´s website:


What´s Next?

Go To The Sensual Sessions #18: How To Open To Pleasure

Learn More With The Resources On: Sensual Confidence

Discover: Ecstatic Breathing