The LoveLife Blog: guidance on mindful, bodyful, soulful loving!


#278: Stocking Up Your Love Larder - the key to spontaneous sex

Jacqueline Hellyer - Saturday, January 04, 2020



Good sex is like good food. If you want a good meal, you've got two choices.

1) Plan in advance: set a date, go through the recipe books, do the shopping, set time aside for the cooking, start work in a clean kitchen, enjoy the process of cooking, lay a beautiful table, plate the food up well - then you have an amazing meal.

Or, if you want a more ‘spontaneous’ good meal:

2) Have a well-stocked kitchen: plenty of good ingredients in the larder and all the right implements in the cupboards, plus have plenty of practice at throwing things together - then you grab all the right elements to put an amazing meal together at short notice.

It’s the same with sex. If you want a really good encounter you can:

1) Plan in advance: set aside some time, create a lovely environment, ensure you’re not too tired, put some thought into what you might do - then you can have an amazing sexual encounter.

But, if you want a more ‘spontaneous’ good sexual encounter:

2) Have a well stocked ‘love larder’: so that you’ve... read more


#268: It's the Sum of the Small Things

Jacqueline Hellyer - Saturday, October 19, 2019



I’m sitting in bed writing this, having just had breakfast in bed brought to me by my wonderful lover. It was just a cup of tea and toast, nothing flash, but what a difference it’s making to my day! It’s a small thing, but it’s a significant thing.

It’s the sum of these small things that set the quality of your relationship. Equally, it’s the sum of small neglects that stultify a relationship, flat-lining it. When a relationship flat-lines, there’s generally not a lot of sexual desire.

Maintaining sexual desire is a challenge for busy modern couples are so often tired and/or distracted. Couples who find it easy to move into sexual play are ones who keep themselves simmering, so to speak. That is in large part a reflection on how the two of you are relating as a couple. It’s the culmination of all the small things you do to, for and with each other so feel good about each other, appreciate each other and enjoy each others company, that you create a mood in which you want to enjoy each others bodies in delicious sexual play.

A couple I’ve been working with for a while announced at a recent retreat that... read more


#256: Solo Sex: Mindful Masturbation

Jacqueline Hellyer - Sunday, May 12, 2019



I’m going to talk about solo sex. 

That’s right, masturbation, wanking, self-pleasuring, or as they refer to it in the ancient Taoist sexual tracts, self-cultivation. Why is this? Because the ability to self-pleasure is an important aspect of sexual empowerment and sexual development.

Unfortunately, it has had a bad rap over recent centuries. It has been seen as something unpleasant, even sinful, and so done furtively and secretly. I mean, when was the last time you had in-depth conversations with your friends on your favorite masturbatory techniques? Or as an adolescent did your parents encourage you to self-pleasure to explore your budding sexuality? I doubt it. Which is a shame, because it would have made a positive difference to your experience of sex.

It’s never too late, and I encourage everyone to enjoy the pleasures of solo sex. It’s a healthy part of everyone’s sex life, whether you’re single or partnered. People often think it’s secondary to partnered sex, and only something you’d do if you weren’t getting “the real thing”. But solo sex is fabulous in its own right, and when done well can enhance your ability to have better partnered sex.

When I say 'when it's done well' I mean when it's done... read more


#251: Make Your Bedroom A Sanctuary

Jacqueline Hellyer - Saturday, February 23, 2019



What is your bedroom like? Is it a relaxing and rejuvenating place separate from the cares of the world?

When you walk into your bedroom, do you go “Aaahh!” and smile because you feel more restful just being there?

Is your bedroom a sanctuary that you can chill out together in?

If you answered “Yes” to these questions then well done! Your bedroom is as it should be, and because of this you probably find that sex is something you can transition into fairly easily.

If it’s not, then it’s redecoration time! Think about colors and textures, music and lighting. Ban all technology except for your music player. Remove family photos other than happy romantic photos of the two of you. And keep it tidy.

Now it will feel like a sanctuary. You’ll be able to walk across the threshold of your bedroom and leave the cares of the world behind, entering into a peaceful place where you can wind down and chill out together.

Yes, chill out together.

I find that too many people only use their bedroom for sleep and sex, so they don’t go to the bedroom unless they’re planning one... read more


#242: Getting to Sex can be Like Getting to the Gym

Jacqueline Hellyer - Saturday, October 20, 2018



I see a lot of couples who like sex, but somehow they're just not getting around to it.

The higher-desire person is perplexed as to why the lower-desire person doesn’t want sex more often, especially when both parties clearly enjoy it once they actually get around to doing it. And the lower-desire person is confused as to why they find it so hard to have sex when it’s generally not so bad, even brilliant, when they actually do get around to doing it.

And sometimes it's not that there's a higher and lower desire person, they'd both like the idea of it, but it's not happening...

I point out to them that having sex can often be like getting to the gym – you know it’s good for you, you know you’ll enjoy it while you’re there, you know you’ll feel better for doing it, but … it’s still hard to get there in the first place!

There are two principle reasons why it can be a struggle to get to the gym, or to have sex, even though you want to:

  1. Too many competing priorities.
  2. Laziness.
When you’ve got so much on, and... read more


#241: Intensity Repels, Enticement Attracts. Like Chocolate Cake.

Jacqueline Hellyer - Sunday, October 07, 2018




Desire is a wonderful thing. Intensity is not.

When you desire without intensity, when you open yourself to your partner and invite them in, that is enticing. That will attract them.

But, some people have a more direct approach, and that might not always be appealing to the partner. Some people come on too strong right from the first approach, and others try harder and harder if they feel they’re not getting the response they want.

If your partner isn’t responding as enthusiastically as you might hope for when you express your desire for them, it’s understandable that you might try harder. Unfortunately, that tends to come across as intensity and often causes your partner to back further away and be less forthcoming. So, you try harder and harder… until you give up. Then you back off completely and offer your partner nothing. It’s kind of like: “If you’re not going to play with me, then I don’t want to play with you!” Which is about as mature as the childish tone implies.

You’re not in the playground anymore, so you need more mature ways of relating. It’s not either-or. It’s not either I come on strong or... read more


#226: Merge Sex & Love Energies for Potent Connection

Jacqueline Hellyer - Saturday, February 24, 2018




The secret to a strong relationship is that you merge your love and sexual energies within you and share that constantly. This creates a unique vibration between you, like your own radio frequency. It’s a frequency that has the warmth and support of love yet with a zest, a frission of the sexual. It is a potent energy.

This frequency manifests in myriad small ways throughout the day - in looks, touches, comments, tokens (gifts, surprises, services). I’ve described this in other blogs as sharing ‘quanta of deliciousness’, maintaining the 'mmm' factor, and focusing on the 'beforeplay' .

When you keep this frequency strong it creates a depth of connection, a profound intimacy. It makes it both easier to move into genital sexual connection, as you are already so connected it’s not a great jump (important for people who have resistance or difficulty being interested in genital interaction), and paradoxically genital sexual connection becomes less important because you already have a strong sexual energy flowing between you (important for those who have a strong need or urgency for genital interaction).

Rather than sex being an ‘off or on’ dynamic in your relationship, it becomes a sliding scale. I’ve described this elsewhere... read more


#223 How Do I Love Thee? Let me count the ways...

Jacqueline Hellyer - Saturday, January 13, 2018



How do I love thee?

Let me count the ways…

1. I say it with words of love and affection
2. I touch you with love and affection
3. I give you gifts
4. I spend time with you
5. I do things for you

I’m sure that Shakespeare in his wisdom about human relationships would have agreed with these five ‘languages’ of love. It’s actually the modern-day author Gary Chapman who came up with them.

All five languages are important and necessary, but the fact is that we all express love differently and we all receive love differently. It’s important that you know your own style of loving, and equally important that you understand, recognize and appreciate the style of those close to you.

If, for instance, your main language of love is words of affection, and your least strong language is doing things, yet your partner is the opposite, then you’re going to have problems. You’ll be declaring your love with words which will just brush off your partner, or even annoy them: “Huh, it’s just words, it doesn’t mean anything”. While at the same time... read more


#221: Beforeplay Suggestions

Jacqueline Hellyer - Saturday, December 23, 2017



Given how busy and distracted we all are, it's the 'getting to sex' stage that's the most challenging for modern couples. I call this stage of sex 'Beforeplay'. It's the transition phase necessary to remove you from the stresses of the day, and get the two of you connecting, maintaining the 'mmm' factor and building up some of that erotic frission...

  • Lounge around the house in sexy and sensual lounging-round-the-house gear that’s both comfortable and sexy.
  • Take the dog for a walk together in the evening – maybe knickerless...
  • Sit on the back verandah together after dinner drinking wine and looking out at the stars (above dress code applies).
  • Read good quality erotica – aloud to each other. Or any book for that matter, reading aloud is quite sexy!
  • Cook, eat, and clean up dinner naked, or wearing just a robe and nothing else underneath.
  • Hang out in your bedroom together having a cup of tea or coffee and a chat.
  • Play backgammon or do a jigsaw puzzle together.
  • Sit either end of the couch and give yourselves foot massages.
  • Have a bath and have your partner come in and give you a foot massage, or just sit on the bath... read more


#220 Foreplay and Be-Foreplay

Jacqueline Hellyer - Saturday, December 16, 2017



As the famous quote from John Cleese in “the Meaning of Life” goes: “You don’t just go barreling on down to the clitoris! What’s wrong with a kiss?”

Too many people wrongly think that the clitoris is some kind of magical on/off button for women’s arousal. Too mainly people wrongly believe that if you start playing with her clitoris then she’ll be ready for “the main event” (i.e, intercourse).

But genital stimulation is not foreplay.

Personally I refer to any kind of genital interaction as “sex”: oral sex, manual sex, intercourse.

Foreplay is what you do before you get genital... 

In the case of most women, foreplay is what’s required to get her aroused enough to want genital play. That’s right, you don’t touch the genitals to arouse a woman, she already has to be aroused to want to have her genitals touched.

It’s the same for many men, not all men appreciate a grope of the penis as the preliminary for sex. The vast majority of men I speak to - and I speak to many, many, many men - like foreplay (by my definition) as much, if not more, than women.... read more


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