If the once hot and steamy passion is slowly fizzling out of your sex life, there is hope for you. One way to bring back some of that fire is to work on your communication skills and self-image. Once you improve how you communicate and start to feel better about yourself, you’ll begin to see the sparks fly. There are some simple things you can start doing today that will help both you and your partner feel more desirable. The Cheat Sheet spoke with sexuality and relationship coach Ariel Nicole to discover how you can keep things hot and sexy.
1. Talk about sex
Before you do the deed, talk to your partner about how you like things done. Where do you like to be touched? How long? Do you like sex to be fast and rough, or do you want it to be slow and gentle? Communicate your desires. Nicole emphasizes the importance of asking for what you want:
[Talk] about sex before you have sex. Some people may expect that a partner will automatically know what they like, what they expect, and even what you don’t enjoy. Sometimes it is hard to be direct and ask for what you need or talk about what you like. Here are a few tips to initiate the conversation:
1. Talk about sex before you are in the middle of it. The mood can change if this conversation is initiated during sex. Try sitting down with your partner and list two or three things that you like, do not like, and would like try. Ask him or her to share this list as well.
2. Find out what kind of touch is pleasurable and where. For some people this may be light paddling on their butt and others may like to be tickled on their toes with a feather. Have your partner lay down and ask them to help guide your hands over their body, or direct your touch with their words.
3. Be direct. If something doesn’t feel good or you are not having fun, say so.
2. Try new positions — and locations
Don’t get lazy. Find new positions to try and different places to have sex. Nicole advises couples to always keep things interesting. Mixing things up a bit will keep your sex life fresh.
“Switch it up; does your partner know the routine of missionary five minutes followed by them on top for three minutes? Try new positions and new places,” Nicole says.
3. Don’t forget foreplay
Maybe you’re ready to go at the drop of a hat, but your partner might need some warming up. Take the time to make sure he or she is relaxed and ready before you jump in and get started.
“Is foreplay just as predictable? Is there any foreplay? Find ways to switch up your foreplay. Don’t rush the foreplay, some it takes up to 20 or 30 minutes to get turned on. Try a massage with hot oil or feeding your partner fruit or chocolate,” says Nicole.
4. Trade fantasies
What’s life without a little frisky fun? Instead of hiding fantasies, share them with your partner. Get over your embarrassment, and let go. Who knows, you may just have some of the same kinks.
“Talk about your fantasies, role play, and even try fun costumes or scenarios,” Nicole suggests. “You can even try going to pick out a sex toy together. The goal is to discover something that may be new, exciting, and fun for all partners. It can be exciting to explore your sexuality together.”
5. Work on your relationship outside the bedroom
Communication outside the bedroom is just as important as it is inside the bedroom. That means you will have to talk to each other while you’re both fully clothed, and work on building a relationship. Each day, look for ways to build a stronger bond. Think of doing nice things for each other, “just because,” as part of your foreplay. Nicole offers these tips:
1. Find ways to connect with your partner. Ask about his or her day, or something he or she really enjoys. The goal is to spark meaningful conversation that will connect you as a couple.
2. Go on a mini adventure like hiking, horseback riding, or maybe even a theme park. During these kinds of activities the level of adrenaline and dopamine increase and can help the partners feels closer to each other.
3. Give your partner compliments, send a sweet/kind text message or leave [love] notes. At some point, we have probably missed a moment to give our partner a compliment or say something kind that may change their day. The goal is to show you care, you’re appreciative, and still find him or her attractive.
4. Surprise your partner. Gifts and experiences go a long way and some feel appreciated by what you give or do for them.
5. Be affectionate: hugs, kisses, pinches on the butt, or whatever you partner may enjoy. Overall, be confident and have fun!