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Wednesday, August 3, 2011

SEX-KILLERS TO SLAY THEM


Need a boost in the bedroom? Here are five issues that could be killing your sex life, and how to address them.

A good long-term relationship certainly has its ups and downs where your
romantic life is concerned. But you don't have to let your chemistry fade and your sex life get boring. Here are five enemies to banish from your bedroom - and how.

Stress

The recession, parenting teens, the hit your retirement plan's taken lately, the leaking roof - let's face it, stress is pretty much a constant for most of us. But your body's response to stress can be a big factor in a low libido. You may also be more likely to snap at a partner, or miss his or her overtures in the bedroom. And if your sleep is impacted, you may also just be more tired out.
The good news is that sex can actually be a stress reliever. Studies have suggested that sex can lower your blood pressure and the amount of cortisol (a hormone related to stress) in your blood. But how to get there? Try these techniques:

Deep breathing: Set aside 5-10 minutes a day to sit on the floor or at your desk and breathe deeply. As an added bonus, try to visualize a relaxing place or experience.
Go for a walk: If you just walk around the block when you get home you may find that it's easier to set aside the stress from your day. Walking also helps your body disperse tension.
Massage: Touch and massage can help to lower stress. It can also be a great prelude to a romp in bed. (Trading backrubs for nookie is a time-honoured tradition for a reason.)
Address your stress: Ultimately the best way to handle stress is to reduce it. This isn't always possible of course, but it is something to aim for.

Bedtime routine

Remember the start of your relationship when you tumbled into bed after every date, movie, dinner, phone call...believe it or not some of that chemistry may have been habit. But life has a tendency to intervene and even long after the kids put themselves to bed or your book club has folded you may have lost the habit of checking in on your relationship before you go to sleep.

Relationship conflicts

If neither you nor your partner have figured this out yet, here's the scoop: There's nothing sexier than shared chores, if it means both partners are working as a team and each feels his or her priorities are important to the other. But if you're arguing about money, kids, chores or anything else of course it's going to impact on your chemistry in bed. How can you address it?
  • Behave "as if" - you know the one? If only he would not leave the table right after dinner to turn on the television, then you would be more in the mood. Treat your partner as if you're in those early, heady days.
  • Stop talking about your relationship. It's counter-intuitive but check out this approach before you give up on your spouse.
  • According to Sue Johnson, it's all about attachment in your relationship. 
Fatigue

Being too tired for sex isn't a just a cliché - it can be a serious reality for women at midlife. Hormonal changes, night sweats, and hot flashes can mean chronic sleep deprivation for many women at midlife. For the full scoop on sleep check out our downloadable sleep guide, but some things to try include:
  • Good sleep hygiene: Try a solid bedtime routine that includes some "wind-down" time away from electronic devices, a clutter-free bedroom, set bedtime and set waking hour.
  • Keep temperatures cooler in the bedroom and wear pyjamas that will absorb sweat if you do have a night sweat.
  • Avoid caffeine and alcohol during the day.
Lack of couple time

A 2001 UK-based survey found that a third of people interviewed whose partners worked more than 48 hours a week said the long hours culture had a negative impact on their relationship. And that's before you add in aging parents, herding teens to activities (and through life's ups and downs) and girlfriend crises. If your closest relationship is suffering, maybe it's time to set some boundaries and carve out time together. Here are some ways to make time for you:
  • Forget romantic dinners: Try breakfast or brunch. If you have a teen who loves to sleep in on weekends, you may as well make the most of that time to set the table nicely, brew a pot of coffee from the good beans, and catch up on each other's weeks.
  • Sign up together: Being together for an exciting new experience can actually stimulate the same feelings as being newly in love. So if you've never kayaked or have always wanted to learn Spanish, see if your spouse won't come along for the ride. Who knows what might happen after class!
  • Pitch in: Doing chores or running errands together might not increase your efficiency, but it can make you feel more like a team. And we all know teams score!

By: Jennifer Gruden




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