Passion Power Plays
Is your relationship and love life feeling lackluster? Try out these fun, passion-filled activities to get the sizzle back in your sex life.
1. Sizzle in the Kitchen
Most couples spend countless hours together eating meals over the course of their relationship. This is an area full of delicious opportunity! Take a moment alone or with your partner to evaluate how this time is spent in your current relationship. Do you grab
sandwiches on the go and disappear into your respective home offices? Do you plan a thoughtful meal together at least once a week?
Consider the fact that each shared meal is a chance to bond. How would you re-design your life to make the most of these occasions? While you’re mulling that over, think about incorporating some brain-boosting foods to keep your grey matter happy and put you both in a good mood:
♥ Seafood (oysters, clams, sardines, crab, saltwater fish and freshwater fish)
♥ Nuts and seeds (particularly Brazil nuts)
♥ Lean meat (lean pork and beef, skinless chicken and turkey)
♥ Whole grains (whole-grain pasta or brown rice)
♥ Beans, broccoli and other fresh vegetables
2. Shower Power
Take a hot, steamy shower with your partner first thing in the morning. The added company might be just the thing to get you going, especially for men who have the highest level of testosterone in the morning. So he may be eager to have sex in the shower. Don’t
worry ladies, research shows that showering will also give you an increased shot of dopamine that can trigger more creativity whether you have sex or not.
3. Spend the Weekend in Bed
Start by clearing your schedule. The only work you’re going to be doing over the weekend is pleasing your partner between the sheets! Cook breakfast or brunch and then eat it together in bed. Order take-out food for dinner. Spending the weekend in bed should be
both fun and intimate. If you have kids, hire a sitter to take them out and treat yourselves to at least a leisurely morning alone together.
4. Bathroom Bliss
Turn your bathroom into a pleasure palace. Turn down the lights and burn a couple of candles. A bathtub filled with hot water after a long, hard day may be just what you both need to unwind. Invite your partner into the tub with you. Enjoy the evening together and
let the heat of the water and the intensity of the moment work its magic by removing all stress, replacing it with relaxation and sexual desire. Be sure to get out before the water gets too cold and before you get too sleepy as the decrease in temperature signals the brain to release melatonin (a hormone that is part of the human sleep cycle).
5. Unpredictable Quickies
Surprising your partner with sex in the middle of the day or night is a novelty that gets you both out of your routine. It stimulates the reward center of the brain, which releases dopamine and norepinephrine, leaving you both feeling satisfied. It also gives you a bonding “conspiratorial” feeling that you’re getting away with something, which creates anticipation for the next moment of spontaneity.
6. Passion Picnic
Create an outdoor feast! Take out a tablecloth, glasses, cloth napkins and a couple of candles. Include some aphrodisiac foods to increase romance, such as shrimp, asparagus, avocado, arugula, carrots, hot peppers, pumpkin pie and chocolate. Throw lots of pillows and a blanket on the ground and feed each other passionately. This is a perfect date idea for new partners, as the excitement will release adrenaline, the hormone that makes the heart race, mouth dry and hands sweat – so don’t forget to take drinks and towels!
High Peaks and Happy Endings
“Novelty is one of the key factors in driving brain plasticity.” – Dr. Michael Merzenich
The journey of taking a relationship from casual to friendly and all the way to intimate is to discover the best version of ourselves while building great memories together. As we work to build our history as a couple, it’s interesting to consider exactly what the brain
In his book, Thinking, Fast and Slow, Nobel Prize Winner Daniel Kahneman shows us that the brain ultimately remembers only two aspects of an event: the emotional peak and the end. Consider that for a moment. While the minute details may be remembered with some effort, if you quickly recall the happiest moments of your life, don’t you first zoom in on the highest peak of an experience? And isn’t that memory balanced with the way that it ended?
Dr. Kahneman calls this “the peak-end rule” which essentially means that the lasting impression of an experience is most strongly associated with the peak emotional feeling and the final level of emotion at the end of the experience.
For example, perhaps you and your partner made love on the beach during your honeymoon and then picked up a shell to keep as a souvenir. You remember the high peak of making love, and the end gesture of picking up the shell.
Another high peak example might be surprising your partner with their favorite home cooked meal and the positive ending might be when doing the dishes together turns into a make-out session in the kitchen.
We often remember our sexual experiences in terms of high peaks and endings, too. Think back to the last time you and your partner had sex. What do you remember? The way your partner brought you a glass of water after your orgasm and cuddled up tight?
Sometimes we let our sex lives drive on auto-pilot, not being mindful of our responses, our desires, or what really moves us. Examining what the brain is up to before, during and after lovemaking gives us some language with which to start the conversation.