Archive: Relationship

November 9, 2018

Simple ways to start a gratitude practice

I know things are hard for many people right now. I also know that during the month of November there is a lot of talk about gratitude. Some people participate in 30 Days of Thanks and post daily gratitude on social media. Some people have their own personal or family traditions that center around gratitude. For the last two years my daughter and I have created a Gratitude Wreath during the month of November.

gratitude wreath

We start with a large circle and a bunch of leaves that we cut out of paper. And every day we each write down something we are grateful for on one leave and then by the end of the month we have a wreath full of thanksgiving and happy memories!

I know that gratitude doesn’t “solve everything.” Gratitude doesn’t erase pain. Gratitude doesn’t cancel out heartbreak. Gratitude doesn’t make everything better. However, I often feel better when I make space for gratitude. Gratitude can give us perspective and it can also improve our mood or help us feel less hopeless.

Here are some ways you can start a gratitude practice –

  • Do 30 Days of Thanks (or something similar) – name what you are grateful for every day for 30 days.
  • Keep a gratitude journal -

You can do this alone by writing down 1-3 things you are grateful for each day. Or you can do it with your partner. Creating a gratitude journal with your partner can be a great way to highlight what is working in your relationship and your love and appreciation for each other, even when things are hard.

Use a notebook or journal and each taking turns writing something every day. Write about gratitude you feel for your partner or gratitude for your relationship. You can write big things, small things, silly things, sexy things, specific things – anything you are thankful for. On days when you are frustrated or angry with each other, notice if you can still find something you are thankful for.

As you move forward with this, you’ll end up with a large list of things you are grateful for and things your partner is grateful for. If you are feeling sad or frustrated you can read some of the entries to remind yourself of how you have both felt…or on special days or anniversaries you can reread your entire journal.

Start small. Choose one thing you can do every day. Or choose to start with a limited time (one week, 30 days, three months, etc). And notice how you feel as you start to take inventory of the things (or people) you are thankful for!

Filed under: Family, Gratitude, Presence, Relationship, Retreat — admin @ 2:23 pm

October 16, 2018

How do you tend your erotic fire?

How do you keep the romance, intimacy and passion alive in your relationship?

passionate couple

I like to call this energy your erotic fire. It’s that passionate and connecting energy between partners.

And if you know anything about a fire, it needs to be tended. It needs to be fed and cared for, because once the fire goes out completely it takes more energy to get it started again.

The erotic fire acts as a thread between sexual encounters. It can help you and your partner feel connected. If there is no erotic fire in a relationship it can take a lot of energy for one or both partner to show up sexually. Without an erotic fire it can feel like you have to go from zero to sixty when you initiate sex. With the erotic fire there is already warmth and connection there and it’s much easier to create sexual heat.

How do you tend the erotic fire in your relationship?

Do you flirt?
Send a sexy text?
Plan a romantic date or getaway?
Compliment your partner?
Take a class, read a book or go to counseling?
Make out (without the expectation of sex)?
Make time for emotional intimacy?
Snuggle?
Communicate about sex?
Woo each other?
Set aside time for just the two of you?

And what about your own erotic fire? How do you connect to your own sexual energy?

Here are some things you might try to connect to your own erotic energy.

Reading erotica
Yoga or Dance
Get to know your body and what feels good
Dressing in a way that makes you feel sexy
Practicing Sensuality
Using Mindfulness so you feel present
Masturbation
Prioritize Pleasure

Sometimes when we are stuck in the routine of life, or the stress of life, it’s easy to ignore our own erotic energy or the erotic fire in our relationship. Luckily it only takes a spark to start that fire (and then a little bit of energy to lovingly tend it)!


Filed under: Dating, Intimacy, Marriage, Pleasure, Relationship, Romance, Sensuality, Sexuality — admin @ 9:03 pm

July 19, 2018

How do you want to be wooed?

romance and love

What are the things that make you feel special in a relationship?

What feels romantic?

Or flirty?

Or fun?

Or loving?

Are there things your partner used to do to make you feel loved or desired? Are there things you wish your partner would do?

People often put time and energy into wooing and romancing a potential mate as a way to get into a relationship…but then once the relationship is secured they put less energy in.

That is often when we most need that kind of attention. That is when we are dealing with the mundanity of life. We may be overwhelmed with work, kids, bills, heath concerns…that is when romance can help lift us up, remind us that we are loved and desired.

How do you know that your partner is into you or thinking about you?

Do you like -

love letters

a flirty text

a thoughtful gift

a romantic date

to be greeted with a kiss

a special look or touch

a night away

making a meal together

dancing in the living room

going out to an event together

having your partner share a song that reminds them of you

being surprised with a sexy encounter

hearing about how much you mean to them

What makes you feel loved and special? And how do you let your partner know they are loved and special too?

Just because you’ve been together “forever” doesn’t mean there isn’t room for romance or flirtation. After you’ve been together for a while that kind of energy may not always come without a little thought or effort though. That’s OK. It doesn’t mean your partner doesn’t care about you (or you don’t care about them). Life is often complex and full. Create some time and space to communicate about what you both would love and then commit to wooing each other.


Filed under: Dating, Intimacy, Love, Relationship, Romance — admin @ 8:41 am

June 12, 2017

Does your partner know what you want?

relationship romance

Have you told your partner how you like to be seduced?

Have you shared what makes your body sing and your lips part and your back arch?

Do you ask for what you want (in and out of the bedroom)?

I hope so.

And if not, what gets in the way?

Many of the people I talk with share that they shouldn’t have to tell their partner what they want. They say it takes the romance or excitement out of it to have to say it out loud. Or they say it makes it less special if they have to ask for it.

In some ways, I think that we’ve been condition to think that. We see it in movies or read about it in books. We dream of someone who will know our body better than we even know it.

So if our partner doesn’t know how we like to be kissed or what kind of foreplay we like or how to help us have an orgasm…we get annoyed. Or we get critical. Or we shut down. We blame them for not being skilled enough or intuitive enough.

And really it’s not fair.

If I asked you to make my favorite cake but refused to tell you what kind of a cake it was or how to make it, would that be fair?

Your partner can’t read your mind.

If there is something you would like, ask for it. There is no shame in asking.

And if you don’t know what you like or what you want, take some time and let yourself be curious. Explore on your own or with your partner.

(I  also know that some people have asked for what they want and aren’t getting it. Perhaps your partner needs some sex education. Or maybe your partner needs to work on listening or remembering what you like. It’s frustrating when you have been clear about what you want and you aren’t getting it. Check in with yourself about this. Does your partner not know what you want because they aren’t paying attention? Or is it because you haven’t asked for it?)


March 27, 2017

Relationships Need Attention

Man Kissing Woman

One of the things I love most about intimate relationships is that they are a place we can be seen and loved for who we truly are. You don’t have to pretend. You don’t have to prove our worth. You can exhale and just be. It’s wonderful!

Sometimes that comfort can shift into taking a partner for granted. You know what I’m taking about, right?

You’ve had those days where you were cheery at work and provided a shoulder for your friend to cry on and you were extra patient with your child and at the end of the day you are exhausted and cranky and you snap at your partner.

Sometimes the people we love the most are the people who get the scraps at the end of the day.

Sometimes the places we feel most secure are the places we give the least attention.

There is a popular myth that relationships should be easy and self-sustaining. And while I believe that relationships can be easy and self-sustaining at times…most things in life require loving attention in order to flourish.

What about your relationship?

How do you show love and appreciation to your partner?

How do you want your partner to show you love and appreciation?

Sometimes we show love in one way but our partner wants something else. Maybe you use words to express your love, but your partner craves touch. Or perhaps you like spending time with your partner but your partner shows you love by doing things for you. Here is an activity you can do to help you both feel more loved and appreciated in your relationship.

Make a list of 10 things your partner can do to help you feel loved or appreciated.

  • Make sure the items on your list are tangible and executable (instead of “Love me”, write “Tell me you love me every day”).
  • Include a few “easy” things on your list.  (you don’t want 10 items that are similar to “plan our next vacation”, “clean the whole house”, “play a date night” – a few of these are OK, but the harder the items are the longer it will take your partner to do them and the longer it will take for you to feel loved).
  • List things positively (avoid asking for behaviors to stop, instead focus on the behaviors that will make you feel loved.  Rather than “stop spending so much money” try “create a budget with me.”)
  • Include some variety. If you feel loved by having sex then that should be on your list, but 10 items that include sex may be overwhelming for your partner. Are there other things that “count” for you?
  • If there are any hot button topics in your relationship (ie sex, money, etc) you may decide to keep these things off the list all together.
  • You can include things that already happen, things that used to happen or things that are new.

Include things that really resonate with you. What are the things that make you smile or feel warm? What are the things that make you want to tell your friends how great your partner is?

“Bring me flowers.” “Kiss me when I come home from work.” “Leave me a love note.” “Pick up my favorite treat at the store.” “Plan a date for us.” “Go on a walk with me.” “Initiate sex.” “Compliment me.”

Then share your lists with each other. Try not be defensive as you hear what your partner wants. Then post your lists somewhere that you can see them and start using them. When you want to express love, go to your partner’s list. When you feel loved and want to reciprocate, go to your partner’s list. The more love we feel, the more love we have to give.


And if you really want to infuse your relationship with loved and connection and intimacy, check out my e-course Shower Your Partner with Love.

It’s packed with videos, exercises and activities you can do with your partner. It’s also self-paced so you can do it on your own time, at your own speed and in the comfort of your own home. It’s a great way to prioritize your relationship and really show each other your care. Learn more about the course here.

Filed under: Change, Communication, Dating, Intimacy, Love, Marriage, Relationship, Romance — admin @ 9:11 pm

June 21, 2016

Treat Your Partner Like Your Lover

I know things don’t feel the same as they did when you first started your relationship. As time goes on, relationships change. They change in many wonderful ways, and sometimes they feel less exciting, less intimate, less sexy.

I made a three-minute video talking about one small way you can shift your relationship.

Take a moment. Imagine you were preparing for your lover. How would you proceed? How would your routine change? How would your energy change? How would your intention or perception shift?

Our language is powerful. How you talk about your relationship or your partner, can affect how you feel. What you call your partner, lover, spouse, mate, beloved, significant other, or better half can influence how you feel about them.

Try it.

For a week, a weekend or even day, treat your partner like you would treat your lover. Notice how you feel and notice how your lover responds to you.

Valentine Couple

If you would like 6 more tips to help you prioritize your relationship (and sex) - get my free 6-page guide to help you reclaim your sex life!

Filed under: Desire, Intimacy, Love, Marriage, Relationship, Romance, Seduction, Sexuality, Video — admin @ 3:58 pm

February 12, 2016

Valentine’s Day is for Everyone.

Valentine Love

Valentine’s Day is around the corner and I’m hearing a lot of grumbling about it. I know some people think it’s a “Hallmark Holiday.” I know some single people hate it because it reminds them they are “alone.” And I know some partners feel pressure or disappointment on that day.

I love Valentine’s Day.

I love it when I’m single and I love it when I’m partnered. I love it because it is a day that celebrates love. And I love LOVE!

Growing up my mom got us gifts on Valentine’s Day. My grandma also sent us goodies in the mail. I learned that February 14th is a day to celebrate the people you care about. As an adult I’ve had lovely celebrations with romantic partners and some really special solo Valentine’s Days as well.

You see, Valentine’s Day is about your intentions, not your relationship status.

You can be disappointed on Valentine’s Day in a relationship or on your own. You can have a crappy day if you are partnered and a lovely day if you are single. You get to choose.

This Valentine’s Day my daughter and I are throwing a party for some of our favorite people. We are going to gather and eat and drink and celebrate our love and friendship. I also bought her some small gifts and I’m buying something for myself too.

What are your intentions for February 14th? How will you celebrate love this year?

Filed under: Family, Friendship, Holidays, Love, Relationship, Self-love — admin @ 3:33 pm

December 27, 2015

What Turns You On?

aroused

What turns you on?

What excites you?

What warms your body? What makes your breath change and your chest flush?

What arouses you?

We put a lot of attention on desire. I hear from many people who are experiencing low desire. People talk about wanting to feel more desire or experience desire in a different way. What about arousal?

It’s easy to focus on desire and just stop there. I don’t feel the desire to have sex so I’m going to stop thinking about sex. I’m just going to write it off.

Here’s the thing -

If you know what turns you on, you will have a greater desire for sex.

If you know what excites you, you will be more interested in sex.

If you know what arouses you, sex is more appealing.

So what turns you on?

If you aren’t sure, focus on sensuality. What excites your senses? What do you like to see, hear, smell, taste or touch?

Pleasure is also a pathway to arousal. What feels good? What makes your breath deepen or your pulse quicken? What entices you to roll your hips or arch your back? How do you want to be kissed, licked, caressed or held?

If you aren’t sure, spend some time getting to know your body. Or focus on foreplay with a partner, what warms you up and invites you to say, “Yes!”

And know that what turns you on can change. So be curious. Explore. Stay connected to your body, your pleasure and your arousal.

You can also cultivate arousal out of the bedroom. What excites you about life? What turns you on? My post - Turned On Living my interest you.

Filed under: Desire, Intimacy, Pleasure, Relationship, Seduction, Sexual Being, Sexuality, arousal — admin @ 9:16 am

December 22, 2015

Give Experiences, Make Memories

Photo by Jody Grenier

Photo by Jody Grenier

It’s the most wonderful time of the year!

Everywhere I go people are wishing me happy holidays and Merry Christmas. People seem extra warm and cheery. Kids are buzzing with the anticipation of opening presents. And if they are lucky, parents are taking pauses and breaths and soaking it all in rather than racing and and missing it.

Fast forward to a few days after the holiday. The gifts have been opening. The trash can is overflowing with wrapping paper. And you are surrounded by things you may not want or need.

I love giving gift and I love receiving them too. I’m also at a place where I no longer want things just to have them. Can you relate? Of course there are things that make my life easier or bring beauty or tickle me. There are things I value. These days, however, I’m more interested in experiences. It looks like I’m not alone in this. Right now there is so much information out there about getting rid of clutter and simplifying your life. There is also some very interesting research about our brains and happiness and experiences being more meaningful to us (and memorable) than material belongings.

If you are interested in giving experiences this holiday season, here are some places you can start.

Give a Membership or Subscription

A membership to a museum, dance company, rock climbing gym, state park, etc. Every time the recipient uses the membership they will think of you!

Give a Service

You can offer your services (i.e. make a coupon book with various tasks you are offering to do: childcare, help with cleaning or vehicle maintenance, etc). Or you can purchases services. Hire someone to help declutter (this won’t go over very well if the decluttering is more for you than it is for the recipient). Hire someone to help with shopping, cooking or a makeover (If the makeover isn’t on the receiver’s wish list, this could be received as an insult). Give a massage. Choose a service that will make life easier or lovelier.

Give Your Presence

Show up. Tune in. Be present.

Plan a Getaway

Whether it’s just an overnight, or a week vacation; plan a special experience. You will give the gift of anticipation as you approach the getaway, the actual getaway will be a gift and then you get the added gift of the memories you will look back on after the event.

Give an Event

A concert, a night at a special restaurant, a sporting event, etc. Find something that will really resonate with the person receiving your gift. Psst Pleasure in Paris counts as a getaway and an event! And a super special holiday gift!!!

Give Education

A language class, a dance class, a cooking class, etc. You can purchase something the receiver does on their own or you do together. I offer 6 different self-study classes. And they are currently 25% off! Use code – holiday25 – at check out.

If your wish list has a lot of “things” on it, that is OK. It’s also possible to think outside the traditional gift box and asking for some experiences or give the gift of memories.

Filed under: Holidays, Receiving, Relationship — admin @ 8:47 am

June 25, 2015

If sex is natural, why is it so complicated?

uninterested in sex

Sex is natural.

It should be spontaneous.

Sex should be easy.

You should want it.

I hear the above messages in my office and in the world, over and over and over again. We have so many ideas about how sex SHOULD look, that when it strays from that, it feels bad.

If sex is easy and natural, why are so many people struggling with it?

Sex is natural in the sense that animals have sex and it’s a function of our bodies…but it’s more nuanced than that. Talking is natural. Walking is natural. And we still have to learn to do those things. Making sounds might be natural, but stringing those sounds into words that communicate meaning, that takes practice. Sex and connecting in a way that brings mutual pleasure or expresses love or passion, also takes practice. It takes energy. It requires attention and intention. It is nuanced.

Even deciding what counts as sex can be nuanced. Your definition of sex might be different than your partners. If sex was totally natural, wouldn’t everybody do it the same way? (just in case you are wondering, there are plenty of ways to have sex. People have all sorts of personal ideas about what counts as sex).

Two different people coming together with all of their own expectations and histories and ideas about sex might need a bit of negotiation to reach each other. Simply touching genitals or putting an organ into an orifice might not be complicated, but those things might not bring pleasure. What about tempo? Pressure of touch? Foreplay? Arousal? Eye gazing? Coaxing and teasing and encouraging each other to the point of ecstasy?

One of the things that makes sex even trickier is that we get so many messages that sex is easy and people are just walking around bursting with desire. We see it on magazine covers and we watch it unfold on our screens. We see couples spontaneously kissing and tearing clothes off and jumping into bed and then exploding with mutual orgasms without any foreplay (not to mention using lubricant or putting on a condom or struggling with erectile disfunction or difficulties with orgasm). We see sex depicted in a way that is easy and constantly accessible and natural. So if it doesn’t feel that way for you, the message you receive is that there is something wrong with you.

Sex is lovely and beautiful and can be filled with ease. And sometimes it’s messy and frustrating and hard to prioritize. That doesn’t mean there is anything wrong with you. It just means there might be room for you to explore your own pleasure. You might need to work on asking for what you want or add more sexual tools to your tool box.

Instead of telling yourself or your parter that you SHOULD want sex, try asking -

What would make you want sex? What do you like about sex? What would make sex appealing to you? What gives you pleasure? What would make sex easier for you? How can I make our sex a more exciting or pleasurable or loving experience for you?

Instead of looking outside for what makes sex good or normal or hot, look inside. And then share that with your partner.

Sex doesn’t have to be difficult, but it does require communication.

Filed under: Communication, Desire, Relationship, Sexual Being, Sexuality, Shame — admin @ 5:52 am

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