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How to Keep the Bedroom Alive and Interesting for Both of You

These tips for increasing pleasure are from a handout given out at a recent couples workshop. Read through the list together as it can start an intimate conversation or even a more interesting engagement.

1. Experiment together with different touches, different times and new places to have sex and observe how excited you are. Track what positions, what touches, or what words arouse you. You can write them down. These things make up your arousal pattern, and you want to know what these things are and do them. Ask your partner for them. Don’t stop experimenting until you know what works to get you excited. Having you be aroused in the bedroom is at the heart of having it be special.

2. Sexual arousal is unique in that it takes simultaneous relaxing and excitement. The psyche wants to be relaxed so the body will allow excitement/tension to build. That tension and excitement is a good thing. Arousal is a YES to PLEASURE. Let yourself FEEL pleasure.

3. You have “gates” that arousal triggers have to get past to start the cascade of arousal. Stimulating multiple sensory channels at once increases the chance the gates will open. Physically stimulating the body in two or three places, and using your voice in intimate erotic talk at the same time does this. Adding music and aromatherapy uses even two more channels. In the most delightful sense you want to overwhelm those gates.

4. Be curious about your partner and what makes his/her pulse faster. You are in bed with someone who is different than you. His/her likes, body and attention patterns are different than yours. So is his/her arousal pattern. You can figure it out if you pay attention to what works. Track what works.

5. For women: Own your femininity and make it more real and visible to yourself and your partner. Appreciate that this is what you are sharing, it is not just your body, it is your aesthetic, your motion, your essence.

6. For men: If your woman has a busy mind and is distracted it is OK for you to say to her: “I want all of you here with me. What do I have to do to get all of you here with me?” Then listen closely to her answer and don’t try to add more pressure to the moment. Don’t problem solve. Listen as attentively as you can. If she gets emotional, you stay steady.

7. For men: Use your attention as the powerful agent it is. Get skilled in your use of it and then let your woman bask in it. Your daily attention feeds her as a vital nutrient to her well-being, as well as it can be an erotic additive to sexual moments.

8. For men: When you have positive thoughts about your partner, e.g. the way she looks, the way she feels when she is close to you, how you enjoy watching her move…Say those thoughts OUTLOUD. Verbalize those thoughts. Multiple times per day is not too much.

9. For women: When you dress up, or put on lipstick, or show some cleavage, or wiggle in front of him: LET HIM KNOW YOU ARE DOING IT TO GET HIS ATTENTION. OWN THAT YOU WANT HIS ATTENTION. Keep your dynamic as a couple alive and interesting.

10. For women: Make something happen sexually because you can. Do it because you have that power and can celebrate that power. You don’t have to wait till your body tells you to have sex, and you don’t have to wait for him to start something. You can make something happen anytime.

11. Break the “every time” bedroom habits that you have around sex even if they “work”. Doing new things increases your pleasure and raises the excitement and neurotransmitter levels.

12. Make the bedroom furnishings align with HER (your) sensuality. The colors and fabrics used should be the ones that make you feel the most sensuality and sexually alive. The bedroom creates a physical space that represents how you value your sexual connection. Make yours great.

Click here to read my blog post about how to add femininity into your sexual chemistry.

Women and Sexual Arousal

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When women get in bed with their mates and start touch that leads to sex, they are often starting at a zero Female Arousallevel of sexual arousal—maybe a one or two out of ten. The arousal level exciting enough to lead to orgasm would be a nine or a ten. That is a big jump, and it is a jump you want to know how to make. Finding out how to do this is a process of discovery. Most women I talk to who have low levels of arousal have not spent the time needed to explore what brings them pleasure. They have not discovered what actually works for them. Or, in some cases, they used to know, but their bodies have changed, and they have not re-explored.

Talk about sexual arousal reminds me of what a 33-year old woman said in an evening class I taught. She introduced herself saying that she was there to find out if she could have sex that was something in-between the sex she was currently having with her husband, and the sex in the erotic novel, 50 Shades of Grey. Peals of laughter emerged from all corners of the room as the women in the class could relate.

The remarkable thing about the sex in 50 Shades of Grey, in my view, is not its S and M components; it is that the book displays the benefits of having sex with someone who is well trained in sexual arousal. This level of training is the standout element in this book. The sex in 50 Shades of Grey did not just happen. It was sex with someone who had spent hours paying attention to what is sexually arousing to another person. Christian Grey had invested time, attention, and thousands of dollars on his sexual education and hours spent in practice and experimenting in how to move a woman from a zero to a ten. He learned to identify increases in heart rate, to figure out which pressure of touch got his partner to create faster, which moans indicated she was near her edge.

If the arousal level in your sex life does not match 50 Shades of Grey, don’t be down on yourself or your partner. Don’t think you should already know. If you’re like most of the people who come to see me, neither you nor your partner has had a single class in sexual arousal. You have not had the hours of one-on-one mentoring with uninterrupted focus and no expense spared that the fictitious Christian Grey had.

Most women piece together their education in sexual arousal with the bits and pieces they have stumbled upon from direct experience, or as interpreted through girlfriends, the movies, TV, Cosmopolitan Magazine, and maybe a sister. They hope their partner has had a better education, but this is unlikely.

As interested as men are in getting their women excited and pleasing them, and they are interested in doing that, few are well informed about how to do it. Most likely your partner has had little useful education about sexual pleasure. High school sex education classes cover anatomy and physiology, pregnancy, and sexually transmitted diseases. These classes focus on real problems and risks involved with sexual activity, but they do not educate at all on how to create a good experience or peak of pleasure. His information about your pleasure, most likely, is collected from bits too; e.g. his friends, TV pornography, or other things he as read on the internet, as well as what he has found to work in the past.

Your arousal is at the heart of enjoying sex and central to both you and your partner’s satisfaction. Your arousal is a very good thing. The more you are aroused, the more excited you will feel, and the more likely you are to orgasm. Finding out what kind of stimulation gets you going is essential. What works for you sexually is not something you get to choose, it is something you get to discover. You can’t decide to be aroused by something — you get to try it and see if it does actually work. If you don’t know what works for you it does not mean there is anything wrong with you. Most likely you are sexually “normal”. Don’t think you should already know, and don’t blame yourself. The action for you to take is to experiment! Experimenting is the doorway to finding out.

The first thing to know as you explore what takes you from a zero to a ten is that no two women are alike. You have your own personal arousal triggers. The ideas you see in the movies, or hear from a girlfriend may or may not work for you. How do you find out what works for you?  You experiment. You find out what makes you tingly or hot and what makes you wet.

Be yourself, relax your mind, and feel your reactions. Perhaps a light touch to the side of your ribs is deliciously arousing to you. Or maybe you prefer being lifted strongly into the bed by your partner and aggressively mounted. Or a tender personal, erotic dialogue in your ear during intercourse may be what works to get you going. Is it roses? It is his sexual advances? Is it when he does something on the edge? What gets you sexually excited?

Maybe romance arouses you? If so, don’t judge it; work with it. Read romance novels. Watch movies with swashbuckling heroes or heroines that are swept away by love. Ask your partner to up his romantic moves. Ask to be surprised with flowers, or to have your bed littered with rose petals and an enormous number of candles lit around the room, or dine first by candlelight as a prelude. Perhaps you’d like to role-play with him. He gets to be the Texas Ranger, and you are the irresistible damsel in distress, or vice versa. As you experiment you may be surprised what excites you. Make note of it. You may not choose to do every thing that excites you, but you may want to do some of them.

Watch erotic movies, or read erotic literature. There is a whole genre of material out there that is designed to turn you on – see if it does. In bed try a variety of touches and pressures, different positions, unique places and see how you respond.

When something works don’t keep it to yourself. With your words or your moans, let your partner know you are turned on. You can say: “More there,” “Yes!” “That’s it.”
When things are not working, let him know too. If his hand is slightly off the right spot, move it. If the pressure is too strong, adjust your body or his.   Don’t do it as a frustrated woman, or a stern teacher, do it as a sexy female who is aroused and wanting to be more aroused. You are on the same team, working together to make sex exciting for both of you.

If you don’t know what touch or position you want, but you know what he or she is doing isn’t working, communicate your desire to experiment, “Let’s try here” or “Touch me here.” Take his hand and place it where you can explore. Move it in the rhythm that feels good to you. Small immediate sexy communications that disclose to your partner what is happening inside your body work to keep arousal building.

If squeezing your nipples is more arousing than kissing them, tell him to squeeze them. If you know the kind of passion in the kiss you want, show him. Kiss him the way you want to be kissed. Tell him in your aroused passionate (not angry or critical) voice that this is how you love to kiss.

For examples of women who have claimed their sexual selves enough to share the specifics of their own orgasms go to www.OMGyes.com.  The open talk on this site may reframe things

Don’t take it personally if you have to tell him again the next time. Persist. When he sees what awakens when you get fully excited his memory will improve.

Be direct and positive. A man’s macho self can take it. They can take your honesty. They want you to be excited, so they are more open to change than you think. They don’t know what to do to get you excited, so tell them. If your partner is female, communicate with her in the language that would work for you, whether you are using the language of touch or words. Watch and listen to her responses closely, and adjust what you do. There are two arousal speeds in the room, and you want both of you to get to 9 or 10.

Remember, if you don’t know what works for you it does not mean there is anything wrong with you. Most likely you are sexually “normal”. Don’t think you should already know, and don’t blame yourself. The action for you now is to find out.

For more in depth writings on this subject, click here to buy Fanning the Female Flame-How to Increase Your Sexual Desire.

Women and Sexual Desire: Adding clarity into this mystery

The women I see in my office express a yearning for a deep connection and a big love affair, for a mate that treasures them more than anyone else. They want this passion and excitement in their everyday lives. Preferably they want to have this with their current husband, or partner. They do not want to change husbands to get this, though they may if it seems impossible otherwise.

At the same time that they express this yearning for a deeper and more exciting connection, they speak very highly of their mate. Nine out of ten women who come to my office give high marks to their partners. They deeply love and respect the male or female partner in their lives. They comment on his/her patience, understanding, and willingness to try anything. They talk about kindness and support and goodness. They are attracted to their mate.

And then we come to SEX, the reason she made the appointment in the first place. She says, “Is there something wrong with me, or wrong with my hormones, that I am not interested anymore? Is there a reason I am not into it? Can I change anything? Do I have to accept this as my new normal? Can I get back to the way it used to feel?” Or if she has never been turned on, “Can I ever feel what I hear is possible? It is not him, it is me. I am just not that into it.”

Low desire is the number one complaint women have worldwide. Four out of ten women say they have low libido, and one of those four is distressed about it.

One way to talk about women’s sexual desire is to break it down and talk about the different types of desire. Spontaneous desire is the name we give to desire when a woman herself wants sex. She is interested, she is on the prowl, she is excited. She is not responding to her partner’s advances; instead she is the one initiating the contact, making that first wink. There is also receptive or responsive desire. This is when a woman responds with interest to her partner’s or husband’s approaches. Sex is not her idea. The idea is originating with her partner. He or she does the thing that gets her interested, whispers the personal sweet thighs into her ear, or draws her a bath and lights candles.

Spontaneous desire in women can happen for a variety of reasons. One pattern that gets a lot of floor time in my office is cyclical or biological desire. This is the most common description I hear from women of what desire means to them. If you are still menstruating this occurs mid-cycle for a few days when hormones peak at ovulation time, about day 14 of your cycle. Some women also report an increase in desire right before their period begins or a day into their periods. At this point in your menstrual cycle, the PMS time, estrogen and progesterone are actually at their lowest levels. Testosterone is the only hormone left standing. It gets to dominate the action for a day or two, or longer. This type of desire is hormonally driven by the hormones that drive your menstrual cycles. This cycling drives the acne and irritability before your period too.

The cyclical spontaneous desire that can occur mid-cycle, and maybe at the end of the cycle, is not there after menopause. It is also not there when you block ovulation with hormonal birth control. As you can see women are not simple around sex, and in their beauty and complexity there are many places to look for desire. Occasionally low desire is caused by one thing, like an interfering medication. Sometimes it is hormones, vaginal dryness or sexual pain. Most often it is a variety of obstacles, physical and non-physical.

An important thing to remember: A woman does not have to have a surge of hormonal desire to make something interesting happen in the bedroom. She can create something interesting any day just because she can. 

Click here to read my blog post about women and sexual arousal.

A Body Designed for Sexual Pleasure

There is quite a lot to celebrate about the fame body and how it responds to and is geared for sexual pleasure. It is quite marvelous. When arousal is triggered, cascades of events occur. Neurotransmitters release from a woman’s brain and she gets a nice tingly feeling in her genital tissue. Her nipples become firm, and the clitoris gets erect. Her vulva swells and the labia change from flesh or pink color to a dusky rose or purple. She feels sexually excited. The vaginal walls get suddenly wet. Her clitoris and its two 5 to 7cm long internal legs and surrounding significant vascular tissue engorge with blood. Some muscles contract and heart rate increases. Breathing is fast. There is a sense of tension.

On the outside of a woman’s vulva, women and their partners can see the glans of the clitoris, that external bump of tissue. This glans has the most nerve endings of any place on her body. This is similar to the head of a man’s penis which is thought to be the most sensitive part of the penis with the highest concentration of nerve endings. Both these glans are very sensitive to touch and they can be extremely so. Yet they are not the whole story of arousal and orgasm. Obvious on the male, yet hidden on the female are the shaft and the two internal legs. The shaft and the legs, are what cause the organs, both the penis and the clitoris, to swell when arousal happens. They become erect. That internal swelling can be felt through the upper vaginal Wallin the area we know as the G-spot. When swelling is significant enough and those clitoral legs are impacted by the swelling that surrounds the urethra, an internal orgasm occurs, a vaginal orgasm. There is also an area of the vaginal wall that is deeper inside, referred to as the A-spot or the Deep spot. This spot is in front of the cervix, and when stimulated can lead to orgasm. This is mediated by a different nerve and women report that it feels different than an external orgasm.

The only function of the clitoris and its 8,000 nerve endings is for a woman to experience pleasure, sexual pleasure. The clitoris does not secrete substances or hormones, it does not contribute directly to reproduction or urination, it does not support other processes in her body. It is there for her pleasure.

On top of this awesome genitalia there are the many other erogenous zones in the female body. Her lips, her breasts, her nipples and the skin at the nape of her neck or inner thigh are territories of sensual delight to be explored. Skin can be wonderfully erotic and is packed with nerve endings. Light feathery touch can be scintillating, exploration can be done with your lips, tongue, fingers. There are 2,500 nerve endings per square centimeter in female fingertips, for example, and a lot can be communicated with touch intended to excite and arouse.

Look at the female body and you can appreciate that the physical groundwork for exquisite pleasure has been pre-established. Having this sensitive equipment does not mean women get easily aroused. Many don’t. One has to have one’s arousal triggered for this cascade of events to occur. What triggers arousal is the million dollar question. Arousal is not something you choose – it is something you discover. Arousal can start long before you get in the bedroom, or it can start in the bedroom. It can start with a look, a touch, a smell. If a woman’s arousal is heightened and sustained on enough of her multiple channels, her orgasm happens.

Click here to read my blog post about women and sexual arousal.

Create an environment for an “EVENT”

Women want to have an interesting and compelling time in the bedroom. They want experiences where they melt and merge with their partners, have exquisite sensations, and have feelings that are too big and beautiful to be described in words. If you want to invest in having this kind of a sex life, one practical and physical place to start is to “set the stage.” Believe it or not your bedroom furnishings can support your sex-life being great. Getting started doesn’t have to be difficult. Let’s start first by asking yourself these three questions:

  • Is your bedroom a place that looks like it is ready for a romantic and sexual encounter?
  • Does it inspire you to feel sensually alive?
  • Does the decor support your beauty?

The idea is to make the bedroom a place that turns-you-on…a room that reminds you of your own vibrant femininity and sexuality. You can achieve this by simply changing the feeling of the room through the use of textures, colors, lighting and accessories. Overall the décor should draw your eye to the bed and to the mind of sex and rest. Nothing else. It’s not a home office, Landry-sorting station, or TV room. The bedroom is a place for sex, tenderness, intimacy and sleep. Everything else that is not linked with either intimacy or rest has to go. BE RUTHLESS! Declare this room to be only about the sensual wonder and magic that is possible between you and your partner. Even if you’re not there yet, make the room feel and appear as if you are. Imagine a room decorated to match the most exciting sex life that you want to have.

Start by selecting a theme that makes you feel tender, open and excitable. If exotic places take you there, put in exotic elements. If a romantic style is what revs you up, create that. Maybe clean lines and simple surroundings make you feel most open for love, then keep the room understated. A quick Google search of “exotic,” “romantic,” or “contemporary” bedrooms will give you endless decorating ideas that you can use to radiate romance. I am not an interior decorator by nature, so I either need to see pictures of what others have created, or ask my more visually oriented decorating friends to come over for help. Recognize what works for you, decide on a theme then put your plan into action. By shopping at designer discount stores such as TV Maxx, Ross, and Tuesday Mornings, even second hand shops, each offer great selections and styles while helping to keep costs within an affordable range.

Textures- Use fabrics that invite you to touch them. Create a “want to stay awhile” kind of atmosphere by adding layers of silk, faux furs, mohair, cashmere, linen, and other soft, velvety cottons. May eat delicious for you.

Color- The colors of the sheets, bedspreads, walls, and pillows should be colors that are tens for your eyes, hair, and skin. You are the beauty that those colors are supporting. In this scenario the man’s favorites should not be the focus as we are wanting to showcase you at your sensuous best!

Lighting- Most “women” agree that bright light will kill a sultry mood in a heartbeat. Replace harsh white light bulbs with soft pink ones, even add a dimmer. Candles-it’s a no-brainer! The flickering of candlelight can add to the feel of romance in the room and a gorgeous forgiving glow to your skin. Worried about burning down the house? There are many electronic candles out on the market now that can mimic the same effect! Want to shake things up occasionally? Introduce strobe lights and/or black lights to the mix.

Accessorize- Frame romantic or erotic pictures of yourself with your mate and/or mirror and place them in featured positions. Adding accents of curved vases, sculptures, or anything that suggests a sensuous body will elicit a steamy mood.

If you like music, collect songs or albums on your iPod or player that make you feel sexy. Most of the women I talk to don’t have a list of songs that ‘get them in the mood.’ If that’s you…start listening to music with the question in mind: “What song(s) make me feel sensually alive and excited?” Then create a way in which you can quickly access and play them in your room. If you use oils, lubricants, contraceptives or other devices, find a workable and aesthetic way to store them close at hand. Also, benches, stools, and cushions are handy for different activities and positions and should be included int he furnishings.

Maybe after reading all this you are saying: “But, we’re parents of young children.” Even if part of their bedtime involves a regular visit to your bed, don’t make the room a Kids Zone! Kids stuff, including family pictures do not belong in this adult space. This is your play area. The bedroom needs to reflect an intimate, safe place where you can temporarily remove the “mom” mindset and block out the outside world.

Overall, what’s arousing to you is central to having a great sex life. Your arousal, the feminine person’s, is what we are more often looking to increase. You’re not decorating the most intimate space in your home for anyone else- so have fun, experiment, and try something new!

Click here to read my 12 low or no cost tips on how to keep the bedroom alive and interesting for both of you.