Need some tips to improve your sex life?
If you think you're having problems in your sex lfe, these tips from Relate sex therapist, Paula Hall will help.
We also have some more in depth tips for help with your sex life here.
If you're thinking about sex therapy, you can watch Paula explain what to expect in these videos:
We have lots more videos about Relate's services in our YouTube Channel.
Talking about sex
If you’re serious about improving your sex life, body language isn’t enough and sometimes words are what you need. Discussing sex is awkward for most people so don’t beat yourself up if it’s not something that comes naturally to you or your partner. Instead focus on creating more comfort between the two of you.
One of the best ways of starting a conversation about sex is by saying you want to learn more about how to please your partner. By focussing on their desires and needs it can help to ensure there’s no feelings of anxiety or defensiveness. Make sure you choose a time and place that’s relaxed and private and keep the discussion light hearted and curious.
Learning about each other should be fun and exciting, and remember that like any skill, talking about sex get’s easier the more you practice.
Kicking bad habits
Bad habits are easy traps to fall into, but fortunately they are often much easier to break than we think. The problem with habits is that often we don’t recognise them. So first and foremost, ask your partner if there’s anything you’re doing that might be getting in the way of your couple intimacy.
Top culprits are things like answering the phone or fiddling with your blackberry rather than focussing on your partner, falling asleep during intimate moments, keeping socks on in bed and being lazy.
If some of these are already ringing a bell for you then make a commitment today to stop. And if you’re worried you’ll slip back into the habit again, ask your partner to point out if you do. If it’s your partner who’s got the bad habits, make a respectful request that they stop and explain to them the impact it has on you. And while you’re there, make sure you ask them if there’s anything they’d like you to change that might improve your intimacy.
Difficulty reaching orgasm
Most people occasionally find it difficult to experience orgasm, especially at times when they’re feeling unwell or tired or if they’re not feeling at ease with their partner. But when it happens most of the time it can be frustrating and upsetting.
Overcoming difficulties with orgasm takes time and patience and the first step to take is to ensure you’re comfortable and confident having an orgasm alone. This can be especially true for younger women who may not yet know the precise kind of touch and sensation that they prefer.
One way of resolving that is to become more focussed on your body and your physical sensations when you next have a bath. If possible, treat yourself to a whole evening of uninterrupted pampering and see which bits of your body are most sensitive to your own touch. And what kind of touch you most prefer. Allow yourself to fully relax into the experience and as your arousal grows, focus on the intimate sensations of touching your genitals and identifying the kind of touch you most prefer.
Spicing things up
Sex can become boring – unfortunately that seems to be a fact of life. If we do the same old thing, time after time after time, both our bodies and our brains become less interested. This seems to be especially true for couples in long term relationships, no matter how much they fancied each other in the early days.
Recognising that this is a common reality for most couples can help to ensure that the energy needed to keep a sex life interesting is shared together and doesn’t become a source of conflict. Talking about how you can introduce a new position, a new stimulation technique or perhaps a sex toy into the bedroom might be stimulation enough, but when you get tired of talking about it, putting it into action may be even better.
The biggest block to a fulfilling sex life is not having enough time. In today’s hectic world, many of us find ourselves time starved and while we try to juggle following a career with spending quality time with family and friends and running a home - and perhaps also getting a bit of exercise - our partners often find themselves slipping down our list of priorities.
The most important investment you can make in your sex life is time. Time for yourself and time for your partner. That doesn’t mean that every love making session has to start with hours of foreplay or intimate conversation, but when you spend more time connecting with each other you’ll find that ‘quickies’ are more frequent and intense. The following two tips may help:
- Learn to separate the urgent from the important. If something is truly important such as making a doctors appointment or renewing the car insurance, then it needs to take priority. But make sure you don’t slip into the trap of thinking that everything that’s important is urgent. Yes the ironing needs doing and the car needs cleaning, but it can wait.
- Choose quality not quantity. It may be a cliché but that’s because it’s true. Quality time is more important than quantity so rather than grabbing the occasional few minutes, book long periods of time when you can really relax and connect.
More tips to help with your sex life
If you think you might need more help, but you're not sure what to do, call one of our trained consultants on 0300 100 1234, and they'll point you in the right direction. We offer lots of help for people having problems in their sex lives.
You can try talking live online to one of our counsellors, or find your nearest Relate to talk to one of our sex therapists, who will help you arrive at a solution that's right for you, at your own pace.
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