I believe all the power, insight and charisma we seek is hidden in our shame and that we can mine and transform our experiences and discover all we've been missing.

I help women in STEM, abuse survivors and any human with the courage to step forward find their voice and transform the pain and struggle into empowerment.

The Intimacy Dojo is a place where people can learn, practice and play the art of intimacy.

Intimacy is knowing and relating to one’s deepest nature. Connecting with what is essential and core in ourselves and others. Intimacy can be emotional, energetic, spiritual and/or physical.

The Intimacy Dojo exists on-line for people everywhere, and there is a local San Jose group that meets in person.

Without intimacy, life can be cold, lonely and empty. This is a human condition, it doesn’t matter if you’re gay, straight, bisexual, pansexual, transgendered, vanilla or kinky, skinny or fat, young or old. We all long for connection and warmth.

That which you seek is seeking you. ~Rumi

Most of us don’t know how to consciously nuture and open to intimacy. We don’t know how to invite connection and deep sharing.

I know. I was there. I felt so alone. My name is Cathy and I founded The Intimacy Dojo.

Occasionally, I’d stumble on a connection, and it felt amazing. But I didn’t know how to create or invite those experiences. I thought there was something wrong with me. I decided that the people who had connections were different than me. Almost another species. I thought they had connection because they were funny, charismatic, beautiful…somehow different.

Then I found out that the real difference was skills that allow connection. A slightly different way of being that invited and attracted people. It sometimes still surprises me that it works so beautifully, and adds so much value to my life and the people I connect with.

I want to share those skills and ways of being (all authentic and natural, just buried under a bit of old debris) with you. If you want to learn more, sign up for our free newsletter, and follow us in facebook and twitter.

There will be guest articles and videos from the experts who have inspired and helped me the most. And a page of events and resources to help you connect with people that inspire and touch you.

If you know of events and resources in the San Jose area, or nationally, that are a good fit for this site, please let us know at: support@theintimacydojo.com

I created this group not only to share key skills.

For me, personally, San Jose is a big city and it can be a lonely place. I work a lot, and I don’t have time to spend going on countless dates, or trying to make friends one at a time. I know I’m not the only person who wants to hang out with fun, interesting, cool people who crave authentic, meaningful, and conscious connections. I’m looking for curious, kind people who what to explore connection, intimacy and community. I know there are those of you out there that feel the same. I hope you’ll join us!

And if you have a sense that this is needed in your area, and want to form a dojo in your town, email and we’ll see how we can help!

May Warmth and Connection bring joy to your life.

February 26, 2018


Cathy Vartuli is a PhD Engineer and Research Scientist who loves to geek out about Communication, Relationships and Consent, a best-selling author and educator who presents workshops internationally on relationship skills, body image, trauma release, and releasing shame around sexuality.

She is deeply aware of the struggles people can have with body image, social awkwardness and shyness. After 14 years of not dating because she thought she was too fat and too traumatized, she decided to start living her life now… rather than waiting until someday.

Using her research skills she studied everything she could find that would let “regular” people (the non-extroverted, non-models) have an authentic and powerful dating and relationship experience. And she tested out her understanding and developing theories in real life, on herself and with her clients, to create approaches that worked for the shy and awkward.

Cathy has worked with thousands of clients from 72 countries, has presented at AASECT, Woodhull Sexual Freedom Summit, CatalystCon, Converge Con, Guelph Sexuality Conference, numerous summits, podcasts and radio shows. As a certified Cuddle Party Facilitator, she’s been seen on Bill Nye The Science Guy discussing consent and Cuddle Parties.

She helps people leverage their shyness and awkwardness to initiate and build connection, and grow past limiting beliefs, old hurts and self-sabotage to create relationships that are warm, fulfilling and passionate.

She is working on her next book, Breaking Out Of Your Shell.

Cathy doesn’t want anyone to wake up at the end of their lives and wonder where it all went… Anyone can start living now!

And don’t forget to sign up for our newsletter! The sign-up box is on the top right of this page.

The Intimacy Dojo is an offering of The Joy Connection, LLC.