As the temperature drops and the days get shorter, our lives become busier. It doesn’t help that each year, the holiday stuff shows up in stores earlier, reminding us of the chaos to come. Between family, travel, and gift buying, the holidays have the perfect combination of stress factors to strain your sex life and relationship.
Many of us take things out on those we love the most, and it can be even worse during the stress of the holiday season. This creates tension in your relationship and can make it that much harder to prioritize being intimate. Plus, it’s easy to feel like there’s no time for sex when you’ve got holiday parties, decorating, and beating the crowds at the mall!
It doesn’t have to be that way though! Here are 3 tips to keep the spark alive and survive the holiday season with your relationship and sex life intact:
1. Take care of yourself. Though it doesn't always seem this way, sex isn’t the first thing to go when you get stressed.
What becomes a low priority? Self care.
Long before your sexy time stops, you stop doing the things you love. So, start by taking whatever time you can to practice some self-care.
Here are some of my personal favorites to get you started:
- Enjoying a glass of wine
- Reading erotica or erotic fiction
- Going to my favorite gym class
While taking time for self-care seems counterintuitive to completing your to-do list, being less stressed is proven to help you be more productive and more pleasant to be around.
Action Step: Make a list of all the things that make you feel peaceful, happy, and calm. Include big things and small ones that take just a few minutes and those that require more time. Keep the list handy, somewhere you can see it regularly, like your computer and phone background. When you feel stressed, refer to the list and choose something you can fit in.
2. Schedule regular time with your partner. Schedule at least a half an hour each week to do something together. The ideal activities helps you reconnect and destress. And yes, sex is a great idea!
Now let’s be real - scheduling sex can feel awkward a la “Honey, it’s 9pm - time to go!” It might feel less sexy at first but the important thing is that it’s happening.
Action Step: At the start of each week, go through your calendars together and see where you both have a block of time (15 minutes, 30, a few hours - whatever!). Block that time off as couple’s time and don’t let anything -- other than a true emergency -- cause you to reschedule.
3. Stick to what works. For many people, trying new things is stressful. So give yourself permission to enjoy regular sex, whatever that looks like for you.
During stressful times, it’s more important that you connect with your partner rather than swing from the chandeliers. That being said, for some people, trying new things is exactly what helps them relax and destress. If this is you, then by all means go for it.
Do whatever you know works well and helps you relax, have fun, and enjoy each other.
Action Step: Talk to your partner about what types of things make you feel sexy and in the mood.
For more relationship tips to help you get through the stress of the holidays, check out this post.
The holidays don’t have to mean the end of your sex life or pleasure. Even using one of these tips will make a big difference in keeping your relationship peaceful and your sex life, active. If you do them all, you’re practically guaranteed to sail through the season with true holiday spirit.
Written by Kait Scalisi, MPH, Director of Education and Training, My Secret Luxury