December 4th, 2008
Everyone knows that eating chocolate and wearing fancy lingerie can spice up your sex life, but there are a number of little known ways to make things more interesting that you may not have considered. Whether it's eating the right food, or just getting a handle on your stress level, there are many things you can do to get a better libido. Read on to learn about 100 of these solutions.
Lifestyle & Habits
Take a look at your everyday life to see if you're interfering with sex.
- Relax: Stress can weaken your libido, so stay cool.
- Stop worrying: When your mind is strained, you may have a hard time getting in the mood.
- Stop smoking: Smoking can cause low sperm counts and decrease your virility, so quit or cut down on this habit.
- Establish good hygiene: Something as simple as remembering to floss can help make you feel more attractive and be more attractive to your partner.
- Schedule sex: Although the thought of penciling in intercourse is not particularly sexy, it can help guarantee that you'll be more sexually active.
- Avoid steroids: Steriods can interfere with your hormones and decrease your sex drive.
- Resolve cultural issues: If your cultural beliefs make you feel uncomfortable about sex, resolve them on your own or with the help of a therapist.
- Improve your self esteem: If you're feeling inadequate or just down on yourself, improve your outlook on your own or with the help of a therapist.
- Resolve religious issues: Overcome feelings of guilt and discomfort stemming from religious beliefs.
- Curb your alcohol intake: Excessive drinking can be to blame for low sperm counts and poor circulation, so avoid drinking too much.
- Pay your bills: Avoid nagging worry over your financial situation, and you'll feel more relaxed and receptive to sex.
- Drink plenty of water: Don't overdo it, but drink water throughout the day to promote vaginal moisture and overall health.
- Wear loose fitting underwear: Men should wear underwear that allows for some breathing room in order to promote good circulation to the area.
- Give longer kisses: Kisses that last 12 seconds or longer can reignite your passion.
- Have sex more often: Having sex on a more frequent basis can help get the ball rolling and keep you more sexual.
- Avoid high temperature baths: Although relaxing, hot tubs and saunas can hinder circulation, particularly for men, so they aren't good for your sex drive.
- Don't set your laptop on your lap: Especially for men, laptops can increase the temperature in your groin area, which is detrimental to your virility.
- Avoid sitting for extended periods of time: Sitting for too long, especially for men, can decrease the flow of blood to your sexual organs.
- Stay active: Inactivity can decrease your sex drive, so be sure to live an active lifestyle.
- Eliminate anxiety: Anxiety can be a strain on your libido, so learn to let go better.
- Communicate: Talk to your partner about sexual problems and feelings you may have to see how you can work them out together.
- Avoid arguments: Choose your battles to have more positive feelings towards your partner.
- Think positively about sex: Don't think of sex as a chore, but instead as a fun and loving experience that you can share.
- Spend time together: Get away from the hectic pace of life and just have fun together to get your spark back.
- Show affection: Outside of the bedroom, show affection to your partner, and you'll be more attracted to them sexually.
- Do something new: Introduce a little novelty into your lives together, and you'll produce dopamine, a chemical that helps fuel sex drive.
- Take a vacation: Sometimes the hectic pace of daily life can get in the way of sex, so step out of your usual routine to spice things up.
- Take a deep breath: The scent of your partner's sweat can be a booster for your sex drive.
- Go out on a date: Support your emotional connection by going on a date, and focus on building your relationship.
- Avoid witholding sex: Don't make sex a bargaining chip, or you'll end up having less of it.
- Share responsibilities: If you're not having sex because you or your partner is burned out or too tired, learn to more evenly balance your responsibilities between you.
Your health plays a major part in the way your body craves and responds to sex, so make sure you're in tip top shape.
- Sleep well: A good night's rest can help you feel more energetic and make you more interested in sex.
- Lose weight: Maintaining a healthy body weight can improve your self image, as well as make your body more receptive to sex.
- Get regular screenings for cancer and STDs: Disease can easily interfere with a healthy sex life, so be sure to get checked out regularly.
- Massage: Massage, even when it's not a part of foreplay, can help increase your blood flow and make you feel energetic and virile.
- Treat diabetes: Diabetes can interfere with regular sexual health and desire, so be sure to treat the disease the best way you can.
- Get therapy: Speak to a therapist about your sexuality to uncover any emotional problems you may have.
- Avoid saturated fat: Saturated fat can clog your arteries and prevent good blood flow to your sexual organs.
- Support your circulatory system: Reduce your blood pressure and cholesterol to make your circulatory system more healthy and efficient.
- Deal with physical ailments: Problems including constant headaches, endometriosis, diabetes, and arthritis can interfere with your sexual enjoyment, so get them diagnosed and treated.
- Tighten your PC muscles: For women, exercising the PC muscles can lead to more fulfilling sex, which can increase your desire.
- Screen for anemia: Get checked out for anemia, which can be a cause of low sex drive.
- Talk to your doctor about depression: Depression can cause your sex drive to suffer, so find out if you're affected by it.
- Get treatment for sexual dysfunction: If you're having physical troubles with sex, talk to your doctor about getting it taken care of.
- Gain weight: If you're underweight, your sexual functions may be diminished. This is especially true for women, who may cease ovulation if body fat levels are too low.
- Evaluate your prescription drugs: Talk to your doctor to find out if your drugs are interfering with your libido.
- Ask about hormone balances: Find out if you have a hormonal imbalance, and find out what you can do about it.
Engage in these activities to boost your sex drive.
- Have sex anyway: Even if you're not in the mood, have sex, and chances are you'll get into it anyway.
- Do yoga: Certain yoga poses will help improve the blow flow to your sexual organs, as well as improve your overall health.
- Get aerobic exercise: Improve the blood flow to your sex organs by getting things pumping with aerobics.
- Read a romance novel: Turn on the biggest erogenous zone you have by reading a steamy bodice ripper.
- Stretch: Open up your body and flexibility with regular stretching.
- Do something dangerous: Dangerous activities will trigger dopamine and stimulate your sex drive.
- Role play: Adopt roles to play throughout the day or just out on a date to make things more interesting and set up a promise of things to come.
- Avoid exercising too much: Extreme exercise can lower your testosterone levels, which help your libido, so keep exercise to a moderate level.
- Compete: Being competitive, like in sports, can raise your levels of libido-boosting hormone testosterone.
In the Bedroom
These are a few things you can do with your partner to jump start your libido.
- Use sex toys: Although intimidating for some, sex toys can make sex more interesting and enticing.
- Watch porn: It does not work for everyone, but porn can help get you in the mood, or help you discover new things.
- Be more adventurous: Keep the interest alive by being willing to try new things.
- Get out of the bedroom: Explore new places to have sex, like the kitchen or your neighborhood park to spice things up.
- Talk dirty: Whether you're in the bedroom or out on a date, don't be shy about talking dirty.
- Fight boredom: If you're bored with sex, think of new ways you and your partner can connect.
- Leave the lights on: Toss out feelings of shame and embarrassment, and have more exciting sex with the lights on.
- Explore by touching new regions: Get away from traditional erogenous zones, and touch your partner some place new.
These foods can make you healthier, and foster a better sex life.
- Eat a good diet: Overall, eating a nutritious diet full of fruits and vegetables will help you feel better and more in the mood for sexual activity.
- Drink alcohol: Although drinking too much can have an adverse effect, alcohol, particularly high quality beer and distilled spirits, can improve your overall and sexual health.
- Almonds: Almonds are full of fatty acids that will help with circulation.
- Goji berries: Goji berries will help increase testosterone levels in both men and women, as well as improve sexual stamina.
- Eat healthy fats: Your body needs fat to create hormones, so don't cut fat out of your diet.
- Black licorice: Black licorice can increase genital bloodflow by 40 percent.
- Celery: In celery, you'll find androsterone, which is a hormone that's been known to turn women on.
- Bananas: This phallic fruit can offer a shot in the arm to the male libido.
- Avocado: These delicious gems are full of fatty acids that will support your circulatory health.
- Avoid extreme dieting: Dieting too much or too harshly can leave your body devoid of the nutrients it needs for sexual health.
- Asparagus: This vegetable is a good source for sexual health supporting vitamin E.
- Nutmeg: Indian medicine uses nutmeg for enhancing desire, and its extract has been found to have the same effect as Viagra.
- Chili peppers: Chili peppers contain capasaicin, which supports good circulation.
- Eat protein: Protein offers plenty of energy that will make you more receptive to sex.
- Avoid caffeine: Caffeine can reduce your libido, so do your best to avoid coffee tea, and soda with caffeine.
- Basil: This herb increases your circulation and supports a sense of well being.
- Soy: Eating lots of soy can increase your arousal, as the food's phytoestrogens mimic estrogen.
- Garlic: Although not great for sexy breath, garlic offers allicin, which can improve the blood flow to your sexual organs.
- Avoid heavy carbohydrates: Pasta dishes will put you to sleep, rather than get you in the mood.
- Brazil nuts: Brazil nuts are full of the amino acid arginine, which can boost levels of blood to the genitals.
- Figs: Figs are believed to increase stamina, and are high in amino acids.
- The smell of comfort food: Researchers say that men can be turned on by foods they enjoy, such as doughnuts, pizza, and strawberries.
- Pumpkin seeds: In pumpkin seeds, you'll find zinc, which helps men produce testosterone, and will help support a woman's sex drive.
Talk to your doctor about taking one or more of these supplements to help with your libido.
- Take a multivitamin: Multivitamins can help promote your overall health and sexual wellness, as well as provide specific nutrients that you need for a strong sex drive.
- Choline: Choline can help enhance levels of acetylcholine, which sends sexual impulses from your brain to sex organs.
- Vitamin B: Vitamin B deficiencies can be linked to infertility, so be sure to get plenty of it.
- Iron: Having an iron deficiency can leave you fatigued and out of energy for sex.
- Testosterone: Testosterone is the hormone that is behind your sex drive, so higher levels of it can help raise your libido.
- Manganese: Manganese ensures a healthy metabolism of the hormone estrogen.
- Vitamin E vaginal suppositories: If vaginal dryness is the cause of your low sex drive, it can be treated with these suppositories.
- Muirapuama and catuaba: In Brazil, these two herbs together are believed to increase your libido and support sexual potency.
- Vitamin A: Vitamin A helps support imporant tissues for your reproductive health.
- Zinc: Be sure that you're getting enough zinc, as a lack of this mineral can cause impotence and infertility.
- Vitamin C: Be sure to drink your orange juice, as vitamin C can help boost fertility.
- Vitamin B5: Also known as panothenic acid, B5 is important for the creation of sex hormones.
- Selenium: This mineral helps ensure healthy production of sperm.
June 3rd, 2008
Wanting more from your sex life? Wanting to have a sex life? Maybe you like the sex you are having, but want it to be better. Whether you have been out twice or you’ve been married for 15 years, there’s bound to be something from the following suggestions to help you get what you want in bed. Have fun experimenting with these ideas.
Getting into bed is the first step. Whether it’s the first time for you as a couple or the hundredth, a little romance can get things moving in that direction pretty quickly. Taking the time to set the scene is definitely worth the effort.
- Flowers. Never underestimate the power of flowers. This isn’t just for the girls, either. Many guys like flowers too. Girls, try showing up with a single daisy for your guy and see how he reacts.
- Picnic. Plan ahead by stashing a simple meal, a couple of glasses, some wine, and a blanket in a secluded spot. Take your date to your destination for a surprise (and very romantic) date that is sure to set the stage.
- Lingerie. Women, buy it and wear it as a great surprise. Men, buy it and give it. Ask for help on sizing if you aren’t sure (and if in doubt, buy it too small rather than too large).
- Candles. Strategically placed candles can set the mood for a romantic encounter of any kind. Whether you are having a romantic dinner, watching a movie, or moving on to the bedroom, candles add warmth to a room and make the statement that you put forth an extra effort to create a special place for your partner.
- Music. Nothing can change the mood of a room faster than music. Make your selection thoughtfully, though. If he hates classical music or she doesn’t really care for 70′s soft rock, then keep that in mind when selecting the perfect background music.
- Feel special. Making your partner feel special is a very romantic gesture. Paying attention when she is speaking or telling him how much you like what he is wearing are both easy ways to show your someone that they are special to you.
- Scent. Certain smells can set the mood. Jasmine, lavender, and rose are just a few great aromas for romance. Learn what scents you can use to get things off to a good start with your partner.
- Flirt. Whether you’ve just started dating or you’ve been together for years, a little flirting goes a long way. Smiling, winking, and gentle joking are all great ways of simple flirting without going overboard.
- Love notes. Leave little love notes for your partner. Something as simple as "I’m looking forward to seeing you tonight" on a slip of paper tucked under the car windshield wiper or something more complex as a list of fifty things you love about your partner will show how much you care and can be read and remembered more than once.
- Touch. This idea is a super simple way to spice up your romance. A light touch on your partner’s arm while you are talking, holding hands while walking, and a spontaneous hug are all great ways to show your affection.
Jumping right into sex may have its time and place, but usually, you want to slow things down a little and ease into the act. Foreplay gets you both in the mood and enhances the sex that’s soon to follow.
- Kissing. Kissing on the lips is a very sensual experience. When it’s time for sex, don’t forget about the kissing to keep things impassioned.
- Kissing all over. Moving on from the lips, having your partner kiss all over your body will help steam things up. Ask him or her to try kissing in new places. Also, if your partner is reluctant to perform oral sex, this might help get things rolling in that direction.
- Feet. A sensual foot massage can do the trick for many people. Use lotion or oil with peppermint in it for a stimulating foot rub.
- Hands. Not just holding hands, but playing with your partner’s hands can be very sexy. Try this hand massage for a great way to relax and arouse your partner.
- Ears. Many people love having a lick or tickle in their ears or a gentle nibble on the ear lobe. Try your partner’s ear a try to see how he or she reacts.
- Snuggle. Enjoy curling up together and enjoying each other’s touch. It can start long before you make your way to the bed, so start snuggling your love when dinner is over, in the car ride home, or while you are watching a movie.
- Scalp. Brushing hair, rubbing the scalp, or just running your finger along the hairline are all very sensual ways to stimulate your partner. The multiple nerve endings in the scalp should not be overlooked as an erotic zone. How about washing your girl’s hair? Give this suggestion a try.
- Lips. Move beyond kissing your partner’s lips. Touch them with your finger or tongue for a playful bit of sexiness. Try nibbling or sucking on the lower lip too.
- Talk. Whisper in your partner’s ear what you would like to do with them. The anticipation of the deeds and the sexy whisper in the ear will get both you and your partner excited about what’s to come.
- Explore. Many couples haven’t taken the time to really check each other out. Run your eyes, hands, tongue, even your toes across your your lover’s body. You may find a favorite spot, and so may your partner.
One way to ensure that you and your partner have a repeat performance is by making sure you both enjoy the sex. If you want to make a few changes, here are some suggestions for enhancing your experience.
- Slow down. If things are progressing too fast and finish before you even get started, ask your partner to slow down a bit. Especially for women, taking time in lovemaking is important. Some experts believe it takes women 20 minutes to get fully aroused.
- Make a change. Changing positions can start a new rhythm as well as offer the opportunity to come at the issue from a whole new angle.
- Be a guide. Put your lover’s hands (or other parts) where you want them. Gently guiding him or her to the place where you like it tells your partner where to go and ensures you are getting the pleasure you want.
- Noise. Give a little moan when your partner does something you like. This lets him or her know what’s working for you.
- Lose the stress. Feeling uncomfortable or stressed will not lead to enjoyable sex. Find ways to reduce your stress or leave your worries outside the bedroom.
- Communicate. Tell your sweetie what you like or what you don’t like. This is the most direct and effective way of making sure your sex is what you want it to be.
- Take charge. Passively waiting for your lover to do what you want may not guarantee you get the most out of sex. Take charge for a while to make sure your desires are being met.
- Tantric sex. Learn about this ancient approach to sexuality that prolongs the sex act as well as teaches about enhanced sexual energy. Tantric sex has been around for over 6,000 years, so there must be something right about this philosophy.
- Tantric quickie. Follow these suggestions from Third Age for building up sexual energy without orgasm so that your sexual encounters are more intense and frequent.
- Playful sex. Enjoy playful sex with these five tips. Make sure you partner is on board for this, as certain aspects, such as teasing, might be misunderstood.
For many, orgasm is the ultimate goal of the sexual encounter. It definitely makes the experience more intense. The following list offers suggestions to lead you and your partner to orgasm.
- Kama Sutra. The Kama Sutra is the ultimate guide book to lovemaking. While some of the positions seem just too complicated to do in real life, there are some much easier positions that will guarantee a fulfilling orgasm for both partners. Try these five positions modified for modern day usage from iVillage.com.uk.
- Position yourself. Changing your positions not only spices up the routine, you can also enhance the orgasm for both men and women. Try these positions for a better orgasm for the woman.
- Oral pleasure. Both men and woman enjoy oral sex. If you and your partner are both comfortable with it, use oral stimulation to enhance the actual act of intercourse. For men, hold off on orgasm so that you can still have some fun after oral sex. For women, the oral orgasm will often lead to a more intense vaginal orgasm.
- G spot. Much has been made about whether or not women have a magical G spot. However, most agree there is an extra sensitive spot in women. Follow these instructions to find and stimulate the G spot.
- For men. Don’t forget that men can enhance their orgasms too. These seven tips will help guys enjoy their climax even more.
- Practice edging. Edging relies on stopping or slowing stimulation just before climax in order to then experience a more intense orgasm. This technique can be used for both men and women to enhance the orgasm.
- Kegel. Kegel exercises work to strengthen the pelvic floor. Usually, women are told to do these exercises during pregnancy or after menopause when the pelvic floor naturally weakens. However, practicing Kegel exercises tones the vagina, which intensifies sex for both partners. It also increases blood flow to the vaginal area, thus making the entire region more sensitive. Men can do Kegel exercises, too, for prolonged sex and a more intense orgasm.
- Antioxidants. Eating foods that are high in antioxidants such as blueberries helps boost dopamine production in your brain, which is exactly what sexual enhancement medications do.
- Creams for women. Some over-the-counter topical creams for women can enhance their stimulation, resulting in a more intense experience. Find out how these creams work here.
- Lubrication. If you haven’t used lubrication for your sex, give it a try. Added moisture and the enhancements available can help bring about or intensify an orgasm. You can choose a basic lubricant, something with scent or taste, or one that offers a warm tingle. With such a wide range of products, there is much to sample.
As much as you may enjoy sex, it can sometimes use a boost, especially if you and your partner have been together for a while. These ideas offer lots of fun options to recharge your sexual battery and and help you get exactly what you want.
- Games. Incorporate a few games into your sex life. Move beyond the cliche Strip Poker and take these suggestions or come up with some of your own.
- Toys. If you haven’t already, discover the joy of toys in sex. This article offers both sides of enjoying and being reluctant to try sex toys. Read it and decide if this might be a new trick for you.
- Position. If Missionary Position is your standard, break out and explore more options. Try some of the suggestions for new positions from the Climax section above.
- Location. Move out of the bed. Finding a new place to have sex can be exciting and pushes your creativity. Also, don’t feel that you have to keep it in your house. Experiment with the back yard or that unisex restroom in the hallway outside your favorite restaurant.
- Time of day. If you are used to having sex just before bed, explore other times to play. You may be surprised to discover how much more energy or excitement you can generate with sex first thing in the morning or during lunch.
- Fantasies. Almost everyone has sexual fantasies. Bring some of these secret thoughts to life by acting on your or your partner’s fantasies. Read about the top ten fantasies for women and men in this article. (Click on the woman for her top ten and the man for his.)
- Surprise. The element of surprise is a great way to spice things up. If you or your partner have always wanted to try something but never have, surprise him or her with it and you are sure to have a fun experience.
- Talk dirty. Make sure this is something your partner might like before using it. It could be a turn-off if your partner feels degraded.
- Role play. Play out a fantasy or use some of these tips on ways to get some fun in your sex life. Use this costume coupon code to get a deal on your wildest dreams.
- Massage oil. Massage oil can be used as a sensual aid to giving and receiving massages. Often it is scented with an essential oil that also works to stimulate your sexual energy.
May 27th, 2008
Food is love. Many people are passionate about their food and for good reason. Many of the foods that civilizations have enjoyed for hundreds of years share strong connections with love and desire. The following 25 foods all have a rich history of stimulating romance. Read about what makes these foods special, and then select some to share with your partner tonight to see where they take you.
- Almonds. For centuries almonds have been given as gifts representing fertility and romance. These little nuts pack a powerful nutrition punch, too. They are high in calcium, help lower cholesterol, and are a great antioxidant. Blancmange, an old French dessert, is traditionally made from almond milk. Give it a try and see where it takes you after dinner. Here’s a recipe to get you started.
- Arugula. This salad green has long been used to get couples in the mood. Fresh arugula has a bright green appearance that just looks so appetizing, too. This simple arugula salad recipe is sure to please you both on the palate and in the bedroom. Try it as a first course for your dinner.
- Asparagus. Not only does asparagus look sensual, it has long been purported to be an aphrodisiac. Asparagus is easy to make either steamed or grilled and tastes delicious as long as you don’t overcook it. Try this recipe for roasted asparagus with a creamy tahini-peanut sauce. You and your partner can have fun testing out the power of these lovely green spears.
- Avocado. The sensual avocado makes a wonderful food to set the mood. Read about why this food is so sexy and get a great recipe, too. A delicious salad idea is to serve slices of avocado alternating with slices of fresh mango. You don’t even have to put a dressing on this yummy meal opener.
- Basil. When you think of basil, Italian food comes to mind. Fresh basil in tomato sauce or basil, garlic, and salt pureed finely into a delicious pesto will make any dinner taste delicious. Maybe those Italians were on to something–basil has been reported to raise the libido and produce feelings of well-being. Serve an Italian feast to your partner tonight with basil as the star and see what happens.
- Cardamom. Anyone who has enjoyed a cup of chai tea or an Indian dish made with garam masala has probably enjoyed cardamom. In the Middle East and in India, cardamom has long been used as a tonic to enhance male sexual performance. If you want to feature some cardamom in your future, try this masala chai recipe from Confessions of a Cardamom Addict. Order Indian food in and follow up with a cup of chai to set the mood.
- Carrots. Another vegetable that’s shape alone may bring thoughts of romance, the carrot has a history of being used in the Middle East to stimulate desire. Whether they work or not in the bedroom, they are delicious and healthy. Give this carrot and coriander soup a try to start out your dinner.
- Caviar. Who knows if it’s just the lure of enjoying an expensive treat or if it’s the zinc in caviar that helps get things moving, but caviar has traditionally been known as a romantic food favorite. Caviar comes from the sea just as the Greek goddess of love, Aphrodite, was born of the sea, so maybe she has lent some of her power to this delicious food. Put a dollop of caviar atop watercrackers and cream cheese for a simple appetizer to start the evening off right. Serve with champagne and you will be setting the tone for an evening of romance.
- Cayenne pepper. This spice is full of vitamins, aids in digestion, and is great for circulation and the heart. Maybe it’s because it works to get the blood flowing, but cayenne has been used for years to inspire passion. Whip up this batch of cayenne peanut butter cookies and serve to your love to set the sparks flying.
- Chocolate. Ah…the food of the gods. Nothing says romance like chocolate. When consumed, the cocoa in chocolate releases the same chemical in our brains that we feel when we are in love. Serving chocolate to your sweet is easy to do, but one of the simplest ways to enjoy this romantic food is to buy a high-quality bar of chocolate and break off the squares to feed to each other. Romance is guaranteed to follow.
- Coriander. This seed of the herb, cilantro, has been used as an aphrodisiac since ancient times. If you don’t enjoy cilantro, don’t worry, coriander has a completely different flavor. You can prepare the carrot and coriander soup from above, or try this soup made with chickpeas, ginger, and coriander.
- Figs. Used by the ancient Greeks as an aphrodisiac, figs have a long history of being a sensual food. The shape of the fig is supposed to remind men of the shape of a woman. Enjoy some fresh figs together. Or try this fig tart recipe from The Delicious Life. It incorporates basil, honey, and pine nuts–all foods from this list.
- Honey. The word "honeymoon" may well have originated from the traditional wedding gift of enough mead (honey wine) to last for a month. You don’t have to be on a honeymoon to enjoy the romantic possibilities of honey. Give this romantic honey lavender brioche recipe a try to feed to your honey. If cooking is too much work, just enjoy sharing the sweet treat spread on toast.
- Lobster. This is another food that carries the mark of extravagance. The high price for lobster is well-deserved, however, as this luscious food is both delicious and romantic. While you can share a lovely lobster dinner at a restaurant, it’s even more fun to steam or boil two lobster tails at home and serve with some drawn butter. Keep the silverware put away and use your hands to enjoy this sensuous dinner together.
- Mango. Maybe it’s the shape of the mango as has been reported to resemble a virulent male or maybe it is the incredibly luscious flavor of a fresh mango, but this tropical fruit is commonly known as a fruit for romance. Of course you don’t have to do anything special beyond cutting and peeling it to enjoy this fruit. However, you could try making this mango ice cream for a special dessert. Maybe top it off with fresh mango?
- Mustard. Known to increase desire, mustard is a great spice to set the mood. Mustard enjoys a rich history throughout the world and has several customs attached to it. Read about this fun food’s history, then try a recipe like this one for oven baked mustard chicken curry. The ingredient list contains plenty of foods from our list, so this dish is sure to set the mood.
- Nutmeg. The aphrodisiac qualities of this spice have actually been studied by scientists and show a link between low doses of nutmeg and increased sexual desire and potency in men. In China, it was given to women to increase desire, and in India, soft-boiled egg mixed with honey and nutmeg is served as an enhancement to performance. Read this romantic blog post about love and nutmeg, then try serving the nutmeg donut muffins to your love.
- Oysters. Possibly the most famous food associated with sex is oysters. There are many ancient stories of both men and women benefiting from a dinner of raw oysters. Aside from the romantic properties, oysters are high in zinc, iron, and protein. Learn how to serve oysters on the half shell to your partner here. Pair with some white wine and the mood is set.
- Pine nuts. These nuts enjoy a long history as an aphrodisiac. High in zinc, they help promote male potency. Roasted, they are a delicious topper to pasta dishes. Finish off your meal with these delicious Italian pignoli (pine nut) cookies from Food Blogga.
- Pineapple. Not only is pineapple full of vitamin C, it has long been used as a cure for impotency. Couple this fruit with one of the other romantic foods to ensure a mood-setting snack. Try pineapple lightly sprinkled with cayenne pepper or dip a chunk of pineapple in honey. Want something a little more hearty? Try this simple recipe for pineapple chicken.
- Pomegranate. This fruit’s bright red color and many seeds just scream passion. The ancient Greeks believed this food a symbol of Aphrodite. The classic Indian book of lovemaking, the kama sutra, even recommends pomegranates as an aphrodisiac. Learn about the amazing qualities of the pomegranate in this article, then serve a dish of pomegranate, oolong, and dark chocolate truffle for dessert. This dish even looks sexy.
- Strawberries. This sweet fruit almost looks like a heart. Sharing a few strawberries with your love is sure to set the mood. Not only are these fruits fun for couples, they are also high in vitamin C. Try making some chocolate dipped strawberries together, then enjoy the fruits of your labors.
- Sweet potato. Supposedly, eating a lot of sweet potatoes stimulates women’s libido. Maybe that’s why sweet potato pie is a staple dessert in the south. Give this recipe from Coconut & Lime a try and see what it does for you. It’s sure to finish off any dinner on the right note.
- Truffles. This delicacy has been used as an aphrodisiac since ancient times. Perhaps it is the highly fragrant odor that supposedly stimulates desire, but whatever reason, they are worth serving to you partner as part of a mood-setting meal. Black truffles are found in France and must be cooked, while the white truffles from Italy can be served fresh or cooked. Truffles are expensive and difficult to find, so try a dish like truffle infused mushroom tagliatelle that uses black truffle oil instead.
- Vanilla. This seductive food has a rich lore full of stories about love. The scent is enough to arouse some lovers, but vanilla itself boosts adrenaline production, so that surge of passion really does have a cause. There are several ways to enjoy vanilla. Try adding the whole beans to a glass of lemonade or champagne. Or create a delicious tangerine vanilla seafood sauce to go with those lobster tails.
May 12th, 2008
A failing sex drive can be frustrating, but there are a number of things that you can do to make it better. Some of these sure-fire methods include exercising, eating well, and being healthier in general. Here, we’ve listed these and many other easy and natural ways to get your spark back. Emotional If your mind is not open to sex, your body just won’t follow. Try these strategies for effective ways to help get in the mood.
- Build self-confidence: Improve your interest in sex by feeling good about yourself.
- Rid yourself of stress: Stress will weaken your libido, as worry keeps your mind off of sex and on other things. Try relaxing with a warm bath or a good book.
- Don’t get caught up in fights: Resolve problems with your partner so that they don’t lead to withdrawal in the bedroom.
- Get your imagination going: Read a steamy novel or watch porn to get your mind’s eye thinking about sex.
- Change your attitude about sex: Don’t think about sex as a chore. Rather, regard it as a fun, pleasurable activity with someone you love.
Physical Take these physical steps to make your body more receptive to sex.
- Be attractive: Even if you’re not naturally beautiful, there are a number of things you can do to make yourself feel more attractive. Whether that means a spa day or a new outfit, do whatever it takes to feel good about yourself.
- Stretch: Stretching offers a low-impact way to improve your blood flow and relax.
- Exercise: Work the muscles that you need for good sex, and you’ll both improve blood flow and feel good about yourself.
- Get a massage: Massages can release the tension in your body and increase your blood flow, which is good for sexual arousal.
- Try yoga: Certain yoga positions will help improve circulation to your sexual organs and increase desire.
- Lose weight: Excessive weight can have an effect on your self-esteem and make you feel less attractive. It’s also possible that being overweight can interfere with blood flow to your sexual organs, so shed a few pounds to help your libido.
Habits Your libido is an ongoing entity, and it’s affected by everything that you do. Try these methods, and consider how you can improve your sex drive with habits from your daily life.
- Quit smoking: Smoking has an adverse effect on blood flow, as it causes a narrowing of blood vessels, including those in sexual organs. Additionally, smoking steals your energy and gives you bad breath.
- Smell good: Your sense of smell can boost your libido. Some scents in particular, like buttered popcorn and baby powder, have been found to turn men and women on.
- Get a good night’s rest: If you’re tired, chances are you’re not going to be in the mood. So sleep well at night and rest up for good health and good sex.
- Drink in moderation: Alcohol may increase desire initially, but can lead to impotence and general unattractiveness if you go too far.
- Touch each other constantly: Touching your partner, whether it’s sexual or not, can help arouse sexual feelings. This can be as simple as holding hands or hugging on a regular basis.
Food Beyond daily habits, the things you eat can have an effect on your libido. Check out these foods to improve your desire for sex.
- Eat aphrodisiacs: Some foods are just great for getting you in the mood. Oysters in particular are good to eat, as they’re full of fertility-boosting zinc.
- Avoid simple carbs: Carbohydrate dishes are likely to have you heading to bed for sleep instead of sex, so avoid pasta, pizza and other snooze-inducing meals.
- Eat protein: Protein will give you an energy boost that will have you feeling good and ready for sex.
- Eat fish: Fish is not only high in protein, it has Omega-3 fatty acids as well, and these acids are wonderful for improving your circulation and sexual health.
- Cut down on saturated fat: Men should be careful to avoid eating too much saturated fat, as it can clog arteries and block adequate flow to your penis. One doctor says that a good guideline to keep in mind is, "anything that’s good for your heart is good for your penis."
Health Your overall health has a profound effect on your sex drive, so speak to your doctor about these issues.
- Look into your hormones: Speak with your doctor about your low libido. Sometimes, the problem lies in a hormone imbalance.
- Consider quitting antidepressants: Many antidepressant medications can have a negative effect on your sex drive, so discuss discontinuation of your prescription or consider alternatives.
- Keep diabetes in check: Uncontrolled diabetes can be responsible for sexual evils like erectile dysfunction and decreased sexual response, so be sure to take care of it.
- Look into adrenal fatigue: Your failing libido could be brought on by a condition called adrenal fatigue. Speak with your doctor to see if you have this condition.
Remedies Finally, you can supplement the actions you’re taking to improve your sex life with these herbal remedies that are believed to help.
- Gingko biloba: This remedy has been shown to improve blood flow to both your brain and sexual organs. It’s also believed to offer an improvement on desire, arousal, and orgasm.
- Yohimbe: This "natural Viagra" has been used in Africa as an aphrodisiac for many years. It’s believed to improve male impotence.
April 30th, 2008
Getting creative in the bedroom isn’t just for Valentine’s Day or honeymoons. If you want to spice up your sex life, you’ll need to lose your inhibitions and experiment with props, positions and different environments all year round. From the vault of articles at Cosmopolitan online to blog posts, games and illustrated guides from Men’s Health, Oprah and more, use these 50 resources to your — and your partner’s — advantage. Getting Fired Up Sometimes getting started is the hardest part. Learn how to break the ice, lose your inhibitions and jump start your libido by following this advice.
- How Do I Lose My Sexual Inhibitions?: Oprah’s Relationships page offers advice from Elle magazine columnist E. Jean Carroll. She recommends having a "goddess day," using blindfolds and role playing.
- Strip Her Inhibitions: Men’s Health publishes this guide to help men put their partners’ nerves at ease and help them get in the game.
- Get in the Mood for Love: This interactive guide offers up tips like adding a mirror to the bedroom, taking advantage of mood lighting and more to help lovers get in the mood.
- Feel in the Mood for Sex (Even When You’re Stressed) Learn tricks for getting aroused even when you’re stressed out.
- Have Sex for Dessert: This clever "menu" is full of foods that act as aphrodisiacs, including red wine, shrimp cocktail, and file mignon.
- Self Esteem, Hot Sex & Peace on the Planet Podcast with Dr. Judy Kuriansky: Watch this podcast to learn how to use Kama Sutra energy to ease stress, raise your libido, and banish "the four uglies:" shame, embarrassment, guilt and fear.
- Top 10 Natural Ways to Boost Libido: Discovery Health lists techniques like taking gingko biloba and experimenting with massage to boost libido.
- Recharge Your Sex Life!: Read this article from Kaboose to find out how you can get more creative and spice up your sex life…even if you’re a busy parent on the go.
- Ways to Enjoy Sex While Helping Your Back: Having a bad back isn’t a valid excuse for skipping sex. Doing yoga with your partner and getting massages will help you get in the mood.
- Sex Over 50: Keeping Your Sex Life Fun and Active: If you’re over 50, read this guide to help get you find new ways to experiment with sex.
Pleasing Her Check out these resources for tips and tricks that will really impress your woman.
- How to Get Her in the Mood for Sex: Learn new ways to arouse your woman with this detailed guide.
- 15 Sex Tips from Women: Sexually satisfied women let guys know what works in the bedroom.
- A Man’s Guide to Knowing Her Sweet Spots: Really get to know your partner’s body by fully understanding a woman’s sensitive spots and how to work them.
- What Your Woman Wants in Bed: Learn new foreplay techniques and more when you check out this sexy article.
- Drive Your Woman Wild: Tips like "communicate" and "take your time" will make you a better lover.
- Give a Sensual Massage: This very detailed guide gives directions for creating the mood for massage, mixing your own massage oils and giving your partner a massage she’ll never forget.
- 10 Foreplay Tips: How to Better Satisfy a Woman in the Bedroom: The title of this piece speaks for itself. Read on for tips like "take your time before undressing her" and more.
- 14 Oral Sex Tips: If you want to mix things up in the bedroom, start by mastering these tips.
- Romantic Ideas: Old-fashioned romance goes a long way. Get simple but effective tips here.
- Signs She’s Faking It: Find out for sure whether or not your partner is faking the big O by evaluating these signs.
Pleasing Him It’s not just about the woman! Wow your man with these fun, sexy tricks.
- 4 Sex Secrets That Keep Any Guy Interested: iVillage’s Michael Jeffrey lists four sexy "musts" that teach women to please their men in bed.
- His 9 Pleasure Triggers: Find out a man’s nine pleasure points by checking out this hot resource.
- Planning a Hot Night: Seduce your man by teasing his senses.
- Striptease 101: Have fun planning out your outfit, using props and choreographing a sexy little dance when you read this article.
- The Oral Factor: Women wanting oral sex tips to please their man can find them here.
- Sex Tips from Guys: Find out what real guys have to say about their favorite off-the-wall sex experiences here.
- 3 Surefire Ways to Please a Man in Bed: iVillage lists dirty talk, using a hands-on approach, and going oral as their top three tips.
- Guys Tell All: Learn about sex from a guy’s perspective by doing some research on this site.
- Foreplay for Men: Men need foreplay too. Check out this guide for help turning on your man.
- 10 Ways to Have Fun With Your Boyfriend–If you Stay Indoors: If you’re sick of watching TV, try out these creative ways to inspire romance.
Creative Ideas From kinky sex to living out your partner’s fantasies, these ideas inspire creativity.
- Cosmo’s Most Creative Sex Positions Ever: From the "Kitchen Encounter" to "On the Level," these creative positions will quickly become new favorites.
- The Art of Kinky Sex: Try out these simple little tips to make a romp in the bedroom full of unexpected surprises.
- The Art of Role Playing: Get ideas for role playing scenarios here.
- Living Out the Top 3 Female Fantasies: If your love life is stuck in a rut, try acting out one of these sexy fantasies in the bedroom.
- 10 New Places to Have Sex: Who says you have to have sex in the bedroom? Try out some of these secretive and taboo hot spots for a change.
- Surprise Sexy Scenarios: From playing hide and seek to surprising your partner with a mid-dinner snack, you’ll find sexy little inspirations here.
- How to Spice Up Your Sex Life: Forbes’ list of the thirteen steps to better sex includes new drugs, exercise, gene therapy and other innovative ideas.
- Play strip anything: If you’re no good at poker or don’t have any cards, turn any chore or activity into a game…that ends up with at least one of you naked.
- Creative Passion: This article is meant for women, but anyone can use these sex tips to wow their partner in bed…or in the rain…or anywhere else.
- Watch a sexy movie with your partner: If you’re squeamish, try something R- or PG-13 rated. Watching a steamy movie will get you in the mood, and you can reenact the scenes later, play by play.
Go-to Guides Use this list to connect to expert advice, ultimate how-tos and online archives full of ideas and instruction that will benefit your performance in the bedroom.
- Spice up your sex life: Doctor G. gives the Miami Herald ten tips for spicing up your sex life, from flirting with your partner to sleeping naked.
- Kama Sutra Positions: This illustrated guide will introduce you and your partner to new, satisfying sexual positions.
- How to Be a More Sensual Couple: This Reader’s Digest article has a lot of great advice for couples who want to add more passion to their lives.
- Cosmo’s 20 Favorite Sex Tips Ever: Get tips for creative foreplay, sensual massages and more here.
- Secrets to a Long and Happy Sex Life: Just because you’re not in your 20s and 30s anymore doesn’t mean you can’t have a fulfilling sex life. This article from Time gives tips to keep the passion alive.
- 18 Simple Rules for Becoming a Better Kisser: Even if you think you’re already a good kisser, review this list to make sure you’re puckering up right.
- Cosmopolitan Sex and Love: Visit Cosmopolitan‘s online website for sex tips, new positions, romance quizzes and more.
- Men’s Health: Men’s Health online has "tons of cool stuff" that guys need to know about sex. Watch relationship videos, read about threesomes and check out the interactive "Position Master."
- Tantric Sex: This guide to tantric sex from the Discovery Health website will take your pleasure to new heights.
- AskMen.com: This website has lots of resources and tips for men wanting to learn more about sex and improve their own sexual techniques and experiences.
April 25th, 2008
When you’re going through a dry spell, and those weeks start to become months and those months start adding up, it can start to feel like it will never end. However, there may be things you’re doing that are hindering your sex life. Making a few subtle changes can be just what you need to getting back on track to finding the satisfaction you desire. Here are some things to consider if you’re not getting any lately.
There’s no way around it– how you look is a big part of making or breaking your chances of getting laid. Here are some ways you could be sabotaging yourself before you say a word.
- You make a horrible first impression. First impressions count for a lot and if you’re making a bad one, it’s pretty unlikely that’s going to lead to anything good. Take care of how you look and present yourself when meeting anyone for the first time. You never know when it could lead to something more.
- Your standards are ridiculous. If you’re not exactly the greatest catch in the world, why are you expecting to only date women or men that look like runway models? If your standards are unrealistic, you’re just setting yourself up for failure and making yourself look like a jerk in the process. Aim for people on your attractiveness level and you’ll have a much easier time sealing the deal.
- You smell weird. This doesn’t always mean you smell like you just finished running a marathon, though if you’re not showering regularly you can probably assume this is a large part of your singledom. Slathering on too much aftershave or perfume can be just as overwhelming and can cause even the most tolerant of dates to hold their breath in your presence. Keep yourself smelling good but not like you just dipped yourself in a vat of eau de toilette.
- You don’t take care of your appearance. You’re not going to impress many members of the opposite sex if you don’t shave, shower at at least attempt to dress like you haven’t spent the last week stranded on a desert island. You don’t have to go overboard, but make the effort to clean up before attempting to get intimate.
- You have terrible dental hygiene. Let’s be honest, teeth are a big deal when it comes to finding someone attractive. You’ll have much more luck putting your mouth near someone else’s if it isn’t disgusting. Chew gum, brush your teeth and get regular check ups to ensure that your pearly whites stay that way.
- You spend too much time on your appearance. On the flipside of not paying enough attention to your appearance is paying too much attention to it, at the price of your date. You don’t need to spend 4 hours prepping for a date and no one expects you to have every hair perfectly plucked. Find a happy medium and you’ll make the opposite sex happier too.
- You’re too superficial. If you’re totally focused on your own appearance and that of others you’re setting yourself up for some superficial encounters as well. Some people thrive on having their egos stroked but others will find you and your attitude incredibly off-putting. Try to see beyond the surface and you may find yourself attracted to and sleeping with someone you never thought you would.
- You draw attention to your flaws. Everyone has flaws and there’s not really much we can do about them. But there’s no reason to make your big nose or awkward gangliness the center of attention. If you focus on it, so will others, so play it off like you don’t even notice.
- You draw attention to his/her flaws. It should be pretty obvious why this is a deal breaker. Even if you only make a joking passing reference to their big ears, this can destroy their confidence and maybe even make them think you’re kind of a jerk. It can also serve to make them too self-conscious to take off their clothes, which is exactly what you don’t want. Even if you’re thinking it, don’t say it.
- You don’t like your body. It can be painfully obvious to people you meet when you don’t feel good about how you look. Self-depreciating comments and attempts to cover up every flaw will make you feel awkward and uncomfortable and won’t give you the confidence you need to make a move. Learn to accept your faults, work with what you have and love your imperfections.
Even the hottest people can drive away potential lovers by having the personality equivalent to nails on a chalkboard. Here are some tips on what not to do if you want to get to romancing.
- You lack confidence. Most men and women will tell you that one of the things they find most attractive in potential mates in confidence. If you’re constantly putting yourself down or seem too shy to make a move, you may be putting off people who would otherwise be interested in you. Change your mindset and your attitude so that you project an air of confidence (though not arrogance) to those around you.
- You don’t seem genuine. Few things are more off putting than someone who seems like a big old fraud. Don’t give over the top compliments or put on a show for the lady or gentleman you’re wooing. Instead, keep your cool, be yourself, and try not to act like you’re selling them something.
- You’re a fraidy cat. No one wants to get rejected, but the fact of the matter is that it’s going to happen from time to time if you put yourself out there. Cowering in a corner and simply looking at other people in the bar isn’t going to get you in anyone’s pants except maybe your own, so stop being a wuss, get up and talk to someone. You might find that it’s much easier than you thought.
- You’re being too nice. This is by no means an instruction to act like a total jerk and treat the women or men you’re interested in like crap. But you should recognize that there is a difference between being nice and being too nice. If you’re starting to sound a little too syrupy sweet, you may be putting out the signal that you’re a pushover and that your date can walk all over you. So be nice, but not so nice you seem like a human Care Bear.
- Your friends aren’t helping you out. This isn’t so much about your own personality as the personalities of those you choose to surround yourself with. You may be a fine, upstanding gentleman or lady, but if you’re hanging out with a bunch of frat boy idiots, you’re likely not exactly setting yourself up for success. Choose who you go out on the prowl with carefully, and try to make sure its someone who’ll be an asset instead of a liability.
- You’re too intense. Ever been on a date with someone who stares you down or seems dead set on professing their love for you at every available moment? Does this sound like something that would be fun? You may be an incredibly intense, tortured soul, but the interest and tolerance that most people have for this kind of attitude wears off pretty quickly and then you just become a creep. Keep the life and death discussions until at least a few dates in to avoid scaring off your dates.
- You’re being someone else. Unless you’re a masterful con artist, chances are pretty good that you’ll come off as a little awkward and forced if you try to be someone else when meeting new people or on a date. Do yourself a favor and just be yourself. Whether it works out or not, at least you didn’t have to fake it.
- You come across as a sleaze. Most dates will know within a few minutes of meeting you whether or not you’re genuinely interested in them or if you’re just trying to make it to home plate. Unless your date is just as sadly desperate as you, this isn’t going to go over well. Keep the sleaze factor to a minimum. This means no taking dates to strip clubs, pinching butts or very clearly trying to get them drunk.
- You’re not honest about what you’re looking for. If you’re truly not looking for a long term relationship, don’t tell women or men that you are just to bed them. This can cause a lot of trouble later, and most people will appreciate honesty up front. Who knows, you may even find someone else who’s just looking to have a good time as well.
- You’re an idiot. While in the long term this simply can’t be helped, in the short term you can help downplay the effects of your total cluelessness by keeping your conversations short and sweet, not saying anything rude and by employing subtle flattery. It may disguise your true identity long enough for you to score some digits or more.
- You seem desperate. If it’s clear you’re eyeing the room like a starving animal, you may be driving all your potential prey as far away as possible. Slobbering on every available person that comes your way isn’t going to win too many hearts, minds or bodies. Relax and let things happen naturally instead.
- You talk about exes. No new girl or guy wants to hear about your ex so shut up about it no matter how fresh it is in your memory. It makes you seem like you’re stuck on the past and not ready to move forward with them.
- You have no sense of humor. Few people like to hang around with sourpuss types who never seem to get the joke and take life as seriously as possible. Lighten up already. You may have serious concerns about the plight of starving children in Africa, and that’s fine, but learn to take and make jokes as well to keep your date entertained.
- You come off as a loser. Still living at home? Unemployed? Publicly shamed? Try to keep these details about yourself on the back burner at least in the short term. Once someone gets to know and like you they may be more willing to accept your imperfections and may not see them as automatic deal breakers.
- You’re creepy. Ever seen a forty year old at a frat party? How about the types who make kissy noises to ladies who pass by? These kinds of people get labeled pretty quickly as creeps and they’re not doing themselves any favors. Act like a normal person, be reasonable with your expectations, and don’t oversexualize yourself and you will likely be fine.
- You’re condescending. Being a know-it-all may be useful in some situations, but dating is not one of them. Acting like you have nothing to learn from your date and that you are infinitely more intelligent than they are probably isn’t going to make them throw their arms around you. No one likes an arrogant person, so cut out the condensation and try to see what your potential love has to teach you.
- You act like a child. Kids can get away with needing help cutting their meat and throwing temper tantrums because, well, they’re kids. No one expects them to be mature. You, on the other hand, are an adult. Acting like a petulant five year old when things don’t go your way is one of the quickest ways you can drive away any interested partners. Learn to act your age, don’t whine and don’t expect your partners to mother you.
- You have annoying habits. Perhaps you laugh loudly after everything you say or constantly tap the table. You may not even notice you’re doing these things, but your date sure will. In the superficial early stages of dating these can be real mood killers. Ask your friends if you have any annoying habits, they’re sure to have noticed, and try to reign them in around the opposite sex.
- You’re needy. Babies, puppies and kittens are needy but totally adorable. If you’re needy, it’s completely unattractive. Most people like independent, confident individuals when looking for a mate. Your potential mate isn’t your parent and doesn’t want to have to bend over backwards to make sure your every need is met. Take care of yourself and the magic will happen on its own.
- You come off as stupid. Maybe you are stupid but that doesn’t mean you have to sound or appear to be stupid when talking up someone you’re interested in. Keep up on current events and don’t pretend to know about things you haven’t got a clue about. Let your date tell you about them instead. It will keep you from sounding like an idiot and make them feel smarter and more special in the process.
If you’ve taken it from the initial meeting stages to a real date there are still tons of ways you could be preventing yourself from taking it any further. Consider these things and your sailing may be a little smoother from here on out.
- You live in the wrong city. Let’s face it, some places just give you better odds at meeting someone of the opposite (or same) sex. New York for example has many more single ladies than men, while the west coast is chock full of single men looking for a lady. You don’t have to move halfway across the country to meet someone, but perhaps a little vacation could be just what you need to skew the odds in your favor.
- You act like too much of a player. Whether you’re a man or a woman, acting like the person you’re on a date with is just one in a long string of mates isn’t going to win their heart anytime soon. When you’re on a date the person you’re with should be the only thing you’re concentrating on. Making them feel special can win trust, endear them to you, and increase the chances they’ll stick around long enough for a little hanky panky.
- You’re trying too hard. Being around someone who is trying so hard to impress and charm someone they’re interested in is one of the most awkward situations possible. It not only makes your potential mate and everyone around feel uncomfortable, but it also makes you look like a sad, pathetic sap. Try to keep your conversations casual and keep things friendly. You don’t have to go out of your way to impress or flatter anyone, especially not right off the bat.
- You’re not trying hard enough. On the flipside, your date is going to be pretty miffed if you show up looking like you just rolled out of bed, you’re late, and you don’t seem to have put any thoughts into plans for the evening. Unless you’re a rockstar, this kind of performance isn’t going to land you any kind of action anytime soon. If your date is making the effort to look presentable and spend time thinking about you, at least have the decency to return the favor.
- You come on too strong. If you’ve made it clear within the first five minutes of the date that all you’re doing is picturing the person naked or figuring how best to get them actually naked, you’re probably not going to have a chance of doing that anytime soon. While in actuality you may be a desperate, sex-starved person, don’t let your date onto this fact and keep the sexual commentary to a minimum unless it’s reciprocated.
- You don’t listen. Your date can tell when you’re not really listening to what he or she is saying. This lack of interest just makes you seem rude and isn’t going to win you any brownie points. Listen carefully. Your recall of details could be key later on to impressing your date.
- You’re not that nice. While conventional wisdom tells us that people love to date those who are huge jerks the reality is that people also love to date people who are genuinely nice. Don’t put down your date, be rude, or act like a know-it-all. You may be acting like a rebel without a cause, but you likely won’t be impressing anyone but yourself.
- You don’t know how to have a conversation. Awkward silences on a date can be pretty miserable and they’re only exacerbated by poor conversational skills. If you don’t have anything to talk about, chances are you haven’t been listening to your date or you’ve bored them by talking too much about yourself. Make an effort to boost your conversational skills in everything you do and to learn about what makes your date tick.
- You’re late. While later on in a relationship tardiness can become an endearing and quirky part of your personality, early on it’s just rude. It makes your date feel like you can’t be bothered to be on time and that you don’t care that much about them. Not exactly the impression you want to make. Give yourself plenty of time before going out to get ready and to get to your destination. The extra effort can definitely pay off in the end.
- You’re not focused on him/her. Guilty of a wandering eye? Don’t think that your date hasn’t noticed, they sure as heck see every time you check out the waitress or cute boys who walk by. Focus your attention on your date and save the browsing for later.
- You talk too much about yourself. It’s fine to tell someone that doesn’t know much about you what you like, where you work and what you do in your spare time but if you’re going on and on about yourself, your date is likely starting to care less and less about what you’re saying. Make a concentrated effort to ensure that both of you are participating in the conversation. You’ll both have more fun and there’s a much better chance of things going further.
- You’re boring. Maybe it’s not your fault. Maybe you work in a boring office with boring people and you live alone and never leave the house. Well, that kind of is your fault. If you don’t do anything you don’t have anything to talk to people about. Get out there, have fun, take up a hobby, read a book, anything that gives you something to talk about that doesn’t bore the crap out of everyone else around you.
- Your compliments are smarmy. Most people love getting compliments but when you’re idea of a compliment is "wow, your ass looks great in those jeans" you may be crossing the line from nice to sort of creepy. Keep the compliments nice, genuine and preferably something you wouldn’t be embarrassed to have your mother hear and save the sexy stuff for later.
- You act like a salesperson. Essentially you are selling yourself, but no one wants to feel like they’re getting swindled by a used car salesman when they go on a date. Keep the sales pitches to a minimum and stick to talking about the basics. If the person is interested, the pitch is unnecessary anyway.
- You use stupid pick up lines. Pick up lines rarely work and if they do its usually because they’re so stupid they’re funny or the person you’re using them on is too inebriated to realize just how stupid they are. Cut out the cheesy lines and just stick to small talk when you’re meeting someone new.
Sealing the Deal
If you can make it to the home stretch but just can’t seem to quite get over that last hurdle, you may be sabotaging your own efforts by doing one of these things.
- You are afraid to make the first move. Everyone has been in a situation where they’re not sure if they should put the moves on their date or not. The thing is, you’ll never know if your date is up for it if you don’t try. If you feel uncomfortable invading his or her personal space you can ask first, but whatever you do, take the initiative or opportunities could just be getting away from you.
- You’re too drunk. If it takes you three beers before you can even get up the nerve to talk to someone you’re interested in, you may be blowing it before you even get out of the gate. Unless your lovely lady or man is also inebriated, your drunken blatherings aren’t going to get you too far. Even if you do manage to bring someone home, you likely won’t make it a memorable experience for them or yourself in your state. So have a drink if it helps loosen you up, but don’t get drunk if you’re looking to score a date or sex you’ll actually remember.
- You make things awkward. Don’t put your date in a position where they feel they have to do things they may not yet be comfortable with. If they don’t feel comfortable with you they’re not going to go out on another date and you’re sure as heck not getting laid. Try to keep the awkwardness to a minimum and don’t put him/her in situations you know might lead to uncomfortable silences.
- You’re rude to his/her friends. One of the quickest ways to blow a good thing is to be a jerk to your potential mate’s friends. If you’re rude to them, chances are you’ll be rude to him/her too and that’s a big turn off. Even if you find their friends to be beyond annoying, keep your thoughts to yourself.
- You’re a slob. Bringing your date home to the disgusting mess you have at home isn’t going to impress anyone, nor will it set the mood for romance. Wash the dishes, pick up your dirty clothes and change the sheets if you think you’ll be bringing anyone home. Even if you don’t, it doesn’t hurt to clean up now and again.
- You’re too nervous. So you’ve finally got the chance to get some and you’re shaking in your boots at the prospect. Don’t let your nerves ruin it for you. Relax and realize there are few things you could do to really mess things up at this point.
- Your timing sucks. It could be that you’ve done everything right but when the time comes (or so you think) to finally get to the lovemaking, your intuition is all wrong and you blow it. Before putting the moves on your date ensure that they’re in a good mood, that they reciprocate your feelings and that the situation isn’t horribly, horribly awkward for them.
- You suck at kissing. Many people base how well you’ll perform in the sack on how well you kiss, and if you’re doing a crappy job of that things are unlikely to go much further. Don’t shove your tongue down their throat, keep the sloppiness to a minimum, and follow your partner’s lead and you’ll be better off already.
- You make him/her uncomfortable. If you’ve gotten an attractive someone to come home with you the last thing you want to do is to make them feel uncomfortable with you. Whether that’s because your apartment is decorated in taxidermied animals or because you’re pushing too hard, making your date comfortable is entirely up to you. Do what you can to ensure they feel taken care of and you’re much more likely to score big.
- You ruin the moment. You’re just about to cross the line from desperately seeking to satisfied when you open your big mouth and say something completely stupid. There’s nothing worse than ruining it at the last moment, so keep your commentary to yourself and make sure you have all the necessary preparations to take it all the way.
- You have no idea how to take it to the next level. While what is comfortable for each person differs individually, in general its not too hard to figure out how to take your relationship to the next level. Just do it. Simple as that. If your date isn’t ready he or she will tell you so.
- You’re most interested in meeting your own needs. It can become abundantly clear to someone that you’re dating that you have no regard for their needs and that you’re only trying to meet your own. You won’t be meeting anyone’s needs if you make this too clear, so ensure that you’re making things enjoyable for both you and your partner. The more fun they have, the more likely they are to return for more.
April 25th, 2008
Love is work, sometimes a lot of work. But finding and knowing love is worth the effort. Sometimes it’s necessary to evaluate where you stand in your relationship so that you can determine what can be done to make it better. Here are 50 tips and ideas to help you become better at loving.
- Listen. Show your partner that you’re engaged by actively listening. Reaffirm what your partner is saying by summarizing what you have heard.
- Talk. One way conversation is not effective communication. In order to show that you are invested in the relationship, be willing to give of yourself emotionally and mentally, by sharing your thoughts and needs.
- Tough it out. During uncomfortable or difficult conversations, tough it out. Regardless of the topic or how much you hate talking about it, finish the discussion. If the problem is not resolved, it will fester in other areas of your relationship.
- Argue Effectively. Two intelligent individuals cannot agree on everything, all the time, no matter how compatible they may be. Sooner or later there will be something that leads to an argument or a difference of opinion. This should not be viewed as a problem. The important thing is how such arguments are handled. Here are a few rules that will help you to deal with arguments in a positive way.
- Keep your arguments private, between you and your partner only. Avoid having arguments in front of family members or friends.
- Never go to bed angry. Settle every argument before going to sleep if at all possible. Stay up late if necessary. It is best to get things settled and not let them fester for days.
- Do not allow arguments to escalate into shouting matches and name-calling. Even if you are in complete privacy, keep the tone natural and as friendly as possible. Consider who you are talking to and avoid any shouting or unpleasantness.
KEYS TO SUCCESS
- Be a friend. The foundation of a good relationship is a solid friendship. A successful relationship has to be founded on the qualities found in a friendship – trust, respect, a desire to spend time with each other, and the ability to lean on each other.
- Know your partner’s needs. Once you know what they are, work every day to meet them. Each day when you wake up, think of something you can do to make your partner’s day better, even if it’s just making his favorite meal or doing a load of laundry so she doesn’t have to.
- Take responsibility for yourself. Don’t focus on what your partner has to work on to be better, look inward and figure out what you can do to make the relationship better.
- Find the positives in your partner. If you remind yourself of all of the good qualities he has, it will be easier to get past the bad times when his less than good qualities are showing through.
- Forgive. In order to move forward, you have to let the past go. It doesn’t mean you have to forget, but forgive your partner so that you can move forward.
- Get away from your partner. Spend plenty of quality time together, but remember to allow each other to have ample time alone. Even though you are a unit, and you will want to spend time together enjoying your favorite activities, or just sit together and relax at home, each of you is still a separate individual with certain likes and dislikes. You both need time alone to enjoy hobbies that you might enjoy, but your partner doesn’t. Don’t think that because you are married, that you are joined at the hip and cannot do anything on your own. You both need equal time alone to think and organize your own thoughts or simply to wind down.
- Evaluate personal traits. Evaluate a potential partner as you would a friend; look at their character, personality, values, their generosity of spirit, the relationship between their words and actions, their relationships with others.
- Respect, respect, respect. Inside and outside the relationship, act in ways so that your partner always maintains respect for you. Mutual respect is essential to a good relationship.
- Teamwork. View yourselves as a team, which means you are two unique individuals bringing different perspectives and strengths. That is the value of a team–your differences.
- Don’t Assume. If you don’t understand or like something your partner is doing, ask about it and why he or she is doing it. Talk and explore, don’t assume.
- Solve problems as they arise. Don’t let resentments simmer. Most of what goes wrong in relationships can be traced to hurt feelings, leading partners to erect defenses against one another and to become strangers, or enemies.
- Learn to negotiate. Modern relationships no longer rely on roles cast by the culture. Couples create their own roles, so that virtually every act requires negotiation. It works best when good will prevails. Because people’s needs are fluid and change over time, and life’s demands change too, good relationships are negotiated and renegotiated all the time. Don’t judge. Listen, truly listen, to your partner’s concerns and complaints without judgment. Much of the time, just having someone listen is all we need for solving problems. Plus it opens the door to confiding. And empathy is crucial. Look at things from your partner’s perspective as well as your own.
- Don’t judge Listen, truly listen, to your partner’s concerns and complaints without judgment. Much of the time, just having someone listen is all we need for solving problems. Plus it opens the door to confiding. And empathy is crucial. Look at things from your partner’s perspective as well as your own.
- Try something (someone) different. If you have not had success finding someone special, then perhaps consider going on a date with someone who you think is not your type. Sometimes opposites attract, with differences complementing eachother.
- Laugh. Successful relationships develop the ability to take a light approach to conflicts. Recognizing that arguments are inevitable and normal versus catastrophic is helpful. One way to do this is to practice taking a step back when involved in a dispute. See if you can view your contribution to the situation with a sense of humor. Perhaps you can even laugh at yourself. You will also be more open and responsive to your partner’s feelings. This approach can help couples that are struggling as well as strengthen healthy relationships.
- Accept yourself. A large part of how we view other people is based on how that person presents him or herself. If you view yourself as sexy, and act that way, then others will perceive you as sexy. Truly look at and appreciate your own body. Sure, it has faults, just like every body does. Accept the faults, and accept yourself as a work in progress, and flaunt what you have. You´ll find that people react positively to your positive self image.
- Encourage growth. Two individuals in a couple are indivduals, and each person grows at a different rate and in different directions. You want to encourage each other to grow, appreciate how your growth helps you both become better people, and your relationship better because of it.
- Body language speaks volumes. Be aware of body language, both good and bad. Eighty percent of communication is nonverbal. Body language can be flirty and fun, but by the same token it can show frustration and annoyance, which can be counter-productive when trying to work through a problem.
- All business. Approach family finances as if you were running a business. Create a budget, track spending, save money where possible and don’t bend the rules whenever it feels convenient.
- Talk about it. Discuss finances when there is no emergency. If you talk about it regularly and when there is nothing to argue about, then you will be better prepared when there is a crisis or misunderstanding.
- One for us, one of you and one for me. Set up one joint account and two separate spending accounts. Men and women spend differently. Instead of having one person who oversees all spending, and will likely not agree with the partner’s spending, have one joint account to pay bills from, and then two individual spending accounts. You will have to decide together how much should go into the individual spending accounts, but there should be less arguing over eachother’s spending.
- Handle debt as a couple. Make a plan to pay off existing debt. Drawing a line in the sand and saying that your spouse’s debt isn’t your problem is not going to work because even if the debt existed before you married, your credit rating can be negatively impacted as well as the bottom line of how much money the two of you are paying monthly in interest charges.
- Make a fitness date. If the couple that plays together stays together, turn play time into an exercise routine that raises your endorphins and makes you both feel good about yourselves and each other. If the gym doesn’t work, try biking, rock climbing or just walking.
- Love notes are under rated. And today you can use technology, leave a voicemail or send a txt message to say "I love you" just because.
- Avoid calendar conflict. Place a "community" calendar in a public place (the refridgerator) to help avoid conflicts and miscommunications. It helps to have individual calendars, but for anything that will affect both schedules, make sure it goes on the community calendar so it can be checked often.
- Get energized. Find a new hobby (that you can do together), plan a vacation, do something you’ve never done before like go skydiving or take a wine tasting tour. Spice up the relationship by adding some energy and excitement.
- Read. Form a book club of two. If you really, absolutely, truly don’t have time to read, then make time. Okay, okay, you could both pick a TV show to watch together. But keep in mind, a book provides the use of imagination, and therefore allows for a lively discussion of your individual thoughts, whereas a TV show is usually pretty transparent.
- Make a fitness date. If the couple that plays together stays together, turn play time into an exercise routine that raises your endorphins and makes you both feel good about yourselves and each other. If the gym doesn’t work, try biking, rock climbing or just walking.
- Start a new project Approaching a procrastination-inducing task together makes it less intimidating, plus you can divide and conquer. And think about it: Making decisions and compromises about a more neutral situation–such as, what color to paint the living room–is great couples therapy practice for when the more serious judgment calls need to be made.
- Get out of here already. It sounds obvious, but many people find it hard to get away for a weekend. Go online, book some inexpensive last minute travel, and drop everything else to go enjoy some time together.
- Make a love list. Ask your partner to write down what makes him/her feel loved and special. Do the same for yourself. Exchange lists. Then, every day, no matter how you feel about him or her, do one loving/caring behavior for your partner!
IN THE BEDROOM
- Redecorate the Bedroom. Spice up your sex life by making some changes at home. Transform your bedroom into something new. Get rid of the piles of laundry, the kid’s toys on the floor, the pile of magazines on the nightstand and add some dim lights, candles, and sexy scents. Make it a place for romance and relaxation.
- Slow down. The fastest, most efficient route is definitely not what you want in the bedroom. Focusing on the destination — and only the obvious parts of the anatomy — is the worst thing you can do. Make sex leisurely and playful, with no definite direction. Explore and take your time, try something new, make it a whole body experience.
- Take a sexual inventory. Write suggested sexual activities on two sheets of paper, then each of you rates them from hot (would love to try) to warm, lukewarm and cold. Add your own, but choose from things like spanking, role-playing, semipublic sex, tie-up games, blindfolding, talking dirty, anal sex and watching or making erotic films. When you’re done, make note of the activities that scored high(-ish) for both of you. Try one every two weeks or once a month.
- Don’t focus on imperfections. If your body is imperfect, don’t let it get in the way of enjoying your sexuality and expressing your desire for your partner. If you find it hard to let go of anxious thoughts about your flaws, you may want to try a few sessions of therapy to work on this issue.
- The most sensitive sex organ: the brain. Sexual stimulation starts with sensory inputs that trigger mental associations. Only then do the other parts of the body get involved. For each person, the sensory inputs that trigger this reaction are different. Seeing an attractive person, feeling loved, hearing a whispered word, experiencing a certain kind of touch, all can set off the human libido.
- Sex and intimacy are intertwined. Many people have trouble feeling sexually interested in someone until they have had time to know one another, learning to trust through words, actions, and nonverbal communication such as facial expressions and body language.
- Make a sex date box. Get together with your lover and each of you jot down a steamy date idea on a piece of paper and agree that each time you go on a hot steamy date, you’ll pick a card from your special sex date box.
- Make eye contact. The eyes are a powerful part of our body language cues and can express everything from sexual interest, to annoyance, to happiness and pain.
- Get busy in the kitchen. Make cooking a team sport. Plan and prepare a gourmet meal together.
- Buy some toys. Sometimes sex can become regular and boring. Explore something new to rev up a mundane bedroom experience. Add some spice by going together to a sex toy store and buy something you might both enjoy.
- Get all dolled up. Schedule a night out somewhere that requires you to get all dressed up, whether it’s a black tie fundraiser or an evening out at a 5-star restaurant followed by the Opera. Looking good often equates to feeling good.
- Do some housework. Do a chore that your partner is typically responsible for. Fill up a gas tank, mow the lawn, fold the laundry – surprise your partner by taking one job off his/her plate for the week.