You may remember, about a year ago, I had my friend Kelly McDonnell-Arnold, Certified Sexologist, Individual and Relationship Therapist & Masters Level Registered Social Worker (RSW) from Bliss Counselling, come by to chat all about sex, relationships and what to do if you're just too tired! (if you know what I mean!)
To refresh your memory, I've included our chat below!
With Valentine's Day just around the corner, I thought it's be a great time to pick Kelly's brain again.... You know, JUST incase some of you need a little relationship pick me up!
I asked Kelly to share 5 Tips for Relighting the Spark in a Marriage, because as we all know sometimes life gets busy and stress gets in the way!
As always, Kelly has some great practical tips for how to get your groove thing back!
When you’re feeling disconnected from your partner, it can spill over into other areas of your life. You can only ignore those feelings of wanting more before it’s time to take action.
I don’t need to tell you that it takes time and deliberate effort to keep the spark alive. Because sexual desires and expectations are so highly personal, even if you and your partner have a lot in common, you're going to experience some differences that leave you feeling less than “on fire.”
Just like every other wonderful part of life, you can absolutely get your groove back, here are some simple ways:
1| Is it really a spark problem?
You and your partner are the only ones who know what’s right for your relationship and sex life. If you’re worried you’ve lost the spark because of watching some overly romantic or sexy movies, or you just had dinner with friends, and they seemed extremely into each other, it can be easy to think you have a problem. Only you know what you want and what makes you happy. If your best friend is having sex a dozen times a week and it’s making you feel bad about your relationship, you might be making some unhealthy comparisons.
2 | Touch, touch, touch, and touch some more
When you were first getting to know your partner, do you remember how you’d get chills when they reached for your hand, or how they touched your thigh? When we’ve been in a relationship for a long time, we often think we have to go big or go home. Think about all the seemingly small moments of touch that get your heart racing and make it a point to touch your partner a little more each day. Go ahead and act on your impulses when they’re watching a movie or scrolling social media on their phone. The point is to let some tension to build between touches until the time of your next intimate encounter.
3 | Take an active role in your (sex) life
How much time did you spend shopping for the perfect outfit for that party? Or drafting an email to your boss? If you’re finding yourself obsessing over the details of menial tasks but expecting sex to be fiery at a moments notice, you might benefit from a priority shift. If sex is boring, you’re not going to want to engage in it. Imagination is an essential erotic ingredient, so to stay erotically engaged and take an active approach. Put small, daily efforts toward making time for and creatively planning for intimacy and over time, you’ll reap the rewards. The simple act of focusing on your relationship and not necessarily what’s happening in bed will strengthen your bond.
4 | Let go of normal
Free yourself from what society calls, “normal” and lose yourself in a variety of experiences with your partner—they don’t need to be sexual to feel sexy! If you and your partner enjoy a date night at home with takeout, don’t feel guilty that you’re missing out on the hot new restaurant or gallery opening. By honoring your preferences, you can tune out the rest of the world and the opinions that come with it. Letting go completely and allowing yourself to get lost while in the presence of your partner is pretty special.
5 | Hotel sex
Instead of a fancy dinner out, consider swapping that dining out budget for a hotel stay in a nearby town. There’s no need to travel far, and usually, when you’re at a hotel you packed a few special things to wear that you might not normally wear at home. You probably take your time in the shower too, spending just a few extra minutes on your personal grooming to get your sexy on. If an overnight stay at a hotel isn’t in the cards, you can recreate the evening at home. Spend some extra time making your bed, putting on clean and crisp sheets, clearing all the clutter, lighting a single candle, and leave it feeling—like a hotel room.
If you read this far, I hope you got some great ideas to fan your relationship flames. I’m proud of you for reading this—it means you care enough about your relationship that you want to improve it and go deeper. Keep experimenting, stay curious, and also remember to relax and have fun!!!