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Sex Tips for the Rest of Us: Change Your Sexual Routine

Mess with your Sex Life Part 1: Take Random Breaks

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Updated January 12, 2009

This sex tip has had many variations over the years, but the central theme is about disrupting your regular sexual patterns. If that doesn’t sound like that much fun, stick with me, regardless of the outcome, trying this one out usually brings interesting (and sometimes hilarious) results.

Most people who have been in long term monogamous relationships experience a feeling of being stuck at one point or another. For some it’s a steep or gradual decline in sexual activity, for others it’s a feeling a boredom after doing the same thing over and over again. One of the theories about why this happens is that humans naturally learn and habituate their sexual behaviors and sexual response, so once we find something that works for us we simply do it over and over again. Not surprisingly, we can end up feeling like we’re in a sexual rut, as if this is our one and only way of having sex, or getting sexual satisfaction.

But nothing could be further from the truth. We just don’t force ourselves to expand what sex could be like, or explore our own sexual potential, because we quite reasonably are drawn to what’s comfortable and what works.

This sex tip is designed to jolt you out of your comfort zone. The idea is to do things that are completely unexpected and incongruous with your usual sexual patterns. The results may not be immediately apparent, but if you stick with these exercises eventually you may find they inspire new thoughts and desires. The first tip involves breaking up the way you physically have sex.

Take random breaks
Most people start sex play and then follow it right through to a conclusion (usually one person or everyone having an orgasm). This pattern relies on the expectation of where sex will go, and a conscious or unconscious map of how you get there. It’s like a short story with a beginning, middle, and end. But it’s like a story you’ve read a thousand times, so you know what happens just before it starts, you know the clues that it’s about to shift from beginning to middle, and middle to end, and of course you know how it’s going to end.

To try something different, for a week or two, agree that both you and the person you’re having sex with, will randomly stop sex in the middle of it for a short break. The break shouldn’t be so long that you lose your interest or momentum (so probably no more than a few minutes), but it should be long enough that you pull yourself out of the moment. Regardless of what’s going on, how hot and heavy it is, each of you should stop the sex at least twice during a single sexual encounter. Call a break, stop what you’re doing, and just be there together for a few minutes. You may just hold each other while you’re catching your breath, you may take this moment to talk about something, or you may lie there silent. You should stay together physically during the break even if you don’t talk. Don’t feel pressure to say something during the break, just pay attention to what you’re thinking, and what your body is feeling.

At some later point, when you’re not having sex, try to share with your partner what the breaks are like:

  • Do they just feel stupid?
  • Do you notice anything that you hadn’t before about what you were thinking or feeling?
  • Do the breaks change the way the sex feels?
  • What’s it like to not know when the other is going to call a break?

Remember that the point of this is simply to be disruptive and stretch out the possibilities of what sex can be. There isn’t a specific goal of changing your sex life in one way or another. It may seem a ridiculous thing to do (particularly if you’re at a really good part) but you can always make sure you end with a bang, even if it takes you longer to get there.

Read Mess with Your Sex Life Sex Tip, part 2

Have fun!

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