Monthly Archives: November 2015

Nov 19

5 Steps to Bring Back the Romance When Kids Bring Chaos

By Dustin | Romance

How to Keep the Romance Alive When Kids Bring Chaos (4)Imagine your finger is on a switch.

This “magic” switch will ignite a hot SPARK in your marriage anytime you choose.

At will and in an instant, you could connect like you used to and enjoy deep intimacy.

All distractions of being a parent, an employee and a house manager go away and you experience that Soul Mate connection just like you did in the early days.

The bad news is I don’t have a magic switch for you…

…but the great news is that you CAN recreate this spark in a few simple steps.

5 Steps to Bring Back the Spark Even When Life Is Chaotic

1. Let your priorities be known!

Your kids, friends, co-workers, church associates – everyone who wants your time – needs to know that your spouse comes first (or right behind God if you’re a fellow person of faith).

Getting what you desire in your marriage starts with using your time in a way that’s in line with your desires.

2. Share Couple Time every day

Even if it’s 10 minutes from a remote location, you must devote time to enjoying each other as a couple every day. Not as a parent and not as an iPhone junkie…as a couple.

Once this becomes a habit in your life, the doors to open communication and deep intimacy will be open to you.

3. No excuses date nights

You simply have to date your spouse. This doesn’t mean you have to buck up for a babysitter and an expensive meal out – a date night in after the kids are in bed will work like a charm.

When couples make date night (or day) a reality, romance flows naturally.

4. Take care of yourself

As a busy parent, you constantly put yourself last and sacrifice for your family. While sacrifice is admirable, feeling frumpy and lacking self confidence kills your mood.

If you want to feel great and share a strong sex drive with your spouse, start by taking care of your body and mind.

5. Communicate the smart way

When couples get into a “romance rut” it’s because their communication has broken down. This is not only sucky in the moment, but it’s a dangerous slippery slope towards deep problems.

Good communication takes real skill – but it’s easy to learn and the payoff is, to put it simply, the marriage of your dreams.

Let me read your mind. You’re thinking:

“Super, I believe that this is WHAT I should do. The hard part is I don’t know HOW to actually do it!”

You’re thinking this for good reason. You’re super busy and frankly this sounds tough.

You know it’s worth it, but you’re not sure you can pull it off.

How to Actually Make It Happen

We’ve created a special workshop that leads you, step-by-step through a proven system to bring back the excitement of romance in your marriage.

This training is fun, completely actionable and totally focused on getting you the deep communication and intimacy you crave.

This program is your SWITCH:

Click here to get access to the Bring Back the Romance program

Whether you find this program helpful to you or not, please make the effort to keep the 5 key actions above a consistent part of your marriage.

No matter how busy life gets, keeping these actions in focus will keep your romance and live and well!

 

Nov 16

Should You Have to Talk Yourself Into Sex?

By Julie Sibert | Sex & Family Planning

talking-yourself-into-sexSo let’s say you don’t really like sex in your marriage. You maybe even would go so far as viewing it as a “necessary evil” – something you “have” to do to keep the peace.

But you pretty much hate it.

And you find yourself having to “talk” yourself into sex.   Not surprisingly, a vicious cycle of resentment grows in your marriage. You resent having to talk yourself into sex – and if your spouse knows you’re talking yourself into it, they resent you.

After awhile, you may even wonder if you even should keep talking yourself into it. (Tragically, some people eventually arrive at a “no” and decide to withhold sex completely).

I hope you’re not to that point. I encourage you to try a more humble (albeit, harder) approach.

A better question to ask yourself is, “Why am I having to talk myself into sex?” Until you understand the why (and seek to do something about it), then you’ll never get beyond the resentment dance that has come to define all of your sexual encounters.

Each marriage is unique and I obviously can’t cover every scenario, but the below three situations may urge you toward healthier sexual intimacy in your marriage.

Are you talking yourself into sex because you haven’t healed from past pain?

This is a broad area, I know. Past pain can mean anything from abuse to past promiscuity to abortion to adultery to pornography to a host of other sources of sexual pain.

Past pain can skew sex in our hearts and minds so severely that it may seem almost impossible to see sex as good and holy and worthy of pursuit.

But getting stuck in your pain will sabotage not just sexual intimacy, but all intimacy with the person you married.

Resolve to seek God’s heart through prayer, as well as the countless Christian resources available, including counseling, books, websites and conferences.  It is possible to heal from past sexual pain. You and your spouse are worth it.

Are you talking yourself into sex because you don’t experience sexual pleasure?

God designed sex to be pleasurable for a husband and a wife. Orgasm was God’s idea, His gift to both men and women.

It’s no surprise that if you are not experiencing orgasm fairly consistently when you and your spouse have sex, you likely see it more as a chore than a privilege.

Begin having some authentic conversation with your spouse about what turns you on, what turns them on, what it will take to make sex more pleasurable.

Are these conversations awkward at first? Well, sure. But the alternative – status quo of little or no sexual pleasure – isn’t doing your marriage any good.

A married couple arrives at extraordinary sex through lots of trial and error – through a willingness to enjoy foreplay and to show each other what feels good. Don’t limit yourself to missionary position, which for many wives is often one of the worst positions to achieve orgasm.

If you are a wife who struggles reaching orgasm, you might find some ideas from the many posts I have on this resource page on my site.

Are you talking yourself into sex because you don’t see the benefits of sex to your marriage?

We usually have to talk ourselves into something because we’ve yet to grasp what gain we’re really getting out of it

This is true with exercise too – until we start to see the transformation in our body and health, the thought of getting on the treadmill or lifting the weights sounds dreadful, tedious and boring.

When it comes to sex, the benefits to a marriage are countless. When a husband and wife regularly carve out time to make love, to mutually enjoy pleasure and to understand each other sexually, they begin to reap benefits beyond the bedroom.

Sexual intimacy endears a couple to each other, helps them extend grace, better equips them to do life together, and relieves stress.

There’s a boatload of science that explains all this (endorphins, the power of touch, oxytocin, hormones, etc.). But few people need science to tell them what they genuinely feel.

Truth be told, I don’t just love my husband more because of our nurtured sexual intimacy, I also like him more.  I honestly think the “liking” is the “it” factor that propels marriages beyond mediocre to something quite profound.

It’s just easier to be friends with your spouse if you both are attentive to sexual intimacy – the one form of intimacy that you can’t ethically or biblically go find elsewhere.

My hope for any marriage is that “talking yourself into sex” is the rare exception — not the rule — in your marriage.

Build an attitude into your heart and marriage that enthusiastically proclaims, “We GET to have sex!” – not “We HAVE to have sex.”

For more reading, check out 5 Ways to Be Sexually Playful While Clothed!

Nov 09

7 Romantic Ideas For Struggling Couples

By Debi Walter | Romance

IMG_3617 (1)

Romance doesn’t come as naturally in marriage as one would think.

It’s similar to one in a canoe on the river.

Do nothing, and your relationship will drift.

It takes effort to go against the stream of life and romance your spouse.

Add to this struggles that are common in all marriages, and drift is nearly inevitable.

What can you do to forego it?

The answer is do something–any effort, no matter how small is going to help you keep from drifting apart even during the most difficult seasons.

I’ve compiled a list of struggles that we may or may not face at some point in our marriage. Along with each I’m providing a romantic idea you might consider to get romance in your relationship back on track.

I pray it will be a helpful tool.

  1. Financial Debt>>Plan an at-home date night that doesn’t require money. All you need is the time set aside without distractions.
  2. Illness>>Do something extra special to let your spouse know how much you care for them e.g. make them a hot toddy, diffuse an essential oil to counter their symptoms, fluff their pillow, buy them a special treat you know they’ll enjoy, give them the freedom and space to recover, watch something together on TV you know they’ll enjoy.
  3. Conflict>>Be the first to apologize. Make it sincere and thoughtful. Then, plan an evening of all their favorite things.
  4. Homesickness>>Plan an evening to celebrate all things from back home. e.g. Cook a special dish, watch a movie from their home town, reminisce together asking questions to help your spouse relive special memories, let your spouse know that you understand and care about how they’re feeling. Cheer them up in whatever way you know will make them smile. Plan a special dinner party to help relieve the sadness and build some new friendships.
  5. Parenting Problems>>Sometimes when our kids are causing a lot of tension in the marriage, it’s good to give each other a break. Give them a night out with friends or alone, whichever would mean the most to them. Not all romantic gestures include doing things together. It’s being thoughtful in a way that is special to your spouse.
  6. Job Stress>>Make a big deal of the weekend when it comes! Make a sign and put it in the garage saying “Welcome To Your Weekend!” Have their favorite celebration drinks and snacks available when they walk in the door. Plan some recreational activities over the weekend to help them feel as far away from their normal routine as possible.
  7. Boredom>>Plan a surprise and don’t tell them it’s coming; let discovering it be a part of the fun. Or you could tease them that something is coming, just to help them get out of the rut of boredom. Many times all it takes to get someone out of the doldrums is to blow a little surprising wind into their sails. When I’ve done this, I’ve enjoyed the surprise as much as Tom did discovering it.

The biggest part of romance is knowing your spouse well enough to anticipate their needs.

What is your spouse’s biggest challenge right now?

How could you help carry that burden for them? Once you answer that, then do it!

Your spouse will feel loved, and you can rest assured that your canoe will be heading in the right direction.

Viva la Romance!