Women blessed with “emotional intelligence” – the ability to express their feelings and read those of others – have better sex lives, research shows.
Those most in touch with their feelings have twice as many orgasms as inhibited sorts, the study found.
The finding could lead to new ways of counselling the 40 per cent of women who find it difficult or impossible to enjoy sex fully.
Researcher Tim Spector of King’s College London said there were definite advantages to being a touchy-feely type.
“These findings show that emotional intelligence is an advantage in many aspects of your life, including the bedroom,” he said.
Professor Spector questioned more than 2,000 female twins, aged between 18 and 83, about their sex lives.
They were asked to rate their ability to reach orgasm on a seven-point scale, ranging from “never” to “always”.
They also filled in a questionnaire designed to gauge their emotional intelligence and covering traits such as self expression, empathy and contentment.
Those most in touch with their feelings had the most orgasms, the Journal of Sexual Medicine reports.
Lead author, psychologist Andrea Burri, also of King’s College, London, said: “Emotional intelligence seems to have a direct impact on women’s sexual functioning by influencing her ability to communicate her sexual expectations and desires to her partner.’”
Emotional intelligence may also make it easier for women to fantasise while in the bedroom.
Relationship expert Dr Pam Spurr said it was difficult, but not impossible, for women to lose their inhibitions.
Dr Spurr, whose books include Sizzling Sex and Fabulous Foreplay, said: ‘It is not easy, the way we express ourselves is very habitual and affects our relationships and sexual relationships.
‘It is not about waving a magic wand, it takes someone who is committed to learning new ways of communicating, to being open to intimacy and to putting their emotional self out there.”
Other research has concluded that foreplay adds little to a woman’s overall enjoyment of sex.
The main event itself is far more important, the study found. The recent finding contradicts traditional bedroom etiquette, which dictates that men must take it slow.
More than 2,300 women were quizzed about their sex lives for the study, with questions covering the division of time between foreplay and intercourse, and how often the women had an orgasm.
“In contrast to the assumptions of many sex therapists and educators, more attention should be given to improve quality and duration of intercourse rather than foreplay,” the Scottish and Czech Republic researchers stated.
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