BLOG: How To Keep Things Hawt By Habit
WE ARE OUR HABITS
Our lives, relationships, and even our sex lives are made up of HABITS that we form, mostly unconsciously over our lifetimes. These habits RUN the show.
- How you talk to each other
- How often and how you flirt with each other
- How often you actually get it on
- What you do when you DO get it on
These are some of the relationship habits that make up your COUPLE CULTURE, the fabric of relating between you and how much enjoyment, satisfaction and connection you get out of it.
Most of what we do day-to-day is run by our UNCONSCIOUS habits and that certainly applies to our relationship and our sex life. For most couples, they just let their relationship, (and sex life), run on auto-pilot.
Run AMOK is more like it, as usually, a relationship will ultimately default to built-up resentments, distance, irritability and infrequent or unsatisfying sex.
HUMAN vs. HELPFUL
Life can be stressful. Especially these days. The LAYERS of stressors and the EXTENDED period of these extra stressors of our time can be HEAVY to hold. We get tired, exhausted at times and resort to our very human, yet NOT helpful habits. Melt downs or relationship fails happen. They can be volatile, toxic, destructive and embarrassing.
It is at times, understandable, maybe even justified to be angry or even just short with your beloved. Putting sex and intimacy on the back burner over time is cliche. There’s NOTHING wrong with your relationship if these things have happened to you. If human, yet not helpful unconscious habits have taken over your relationship, you’re normal, you’re HUMAN. And there IS something really worth it that you can do to turn the tide too!
HEALTHY, HAPPY & HOT
A healthy, happy and hot relationship is a wonderful thing. My husband and I like to call it playful, peaceful and passionate or the Love Trifecta. If you have a sanctuary, a playmate and a lover, well, that’s a COUPLE CULTURE that will seriously impact your day to day experience of not just your relationship, but your LIFE!
"Save being nasty for your sex life"
KEEP IT CLEAN TO GET DIRTY
“Save being nasty for your sex life” is one of my husband and my mantras/mottos. Keeping things “clean” between us in the conflict realm so we have an easier-access-onramp to intimacy, getting turned on by each other and actually getting it ON, is a foundational habit.
If you want to get dirty in the bedroom, keep it clean in the conflict department by consciously building your helpful habits. A tawdry, lusty, sexy date night is NOT easy to pull off when unconscious habits rule the day. If you’re going to keep feeling HAWT for each other year after year, it’s likely going to take some attention to ENDING your unhealthy habits and even more importantly, learning new healthy ones too.
"A good sexual relationship is built on emotional intimacy and closeness." - Terry Gaspard
BENEFITS OF HEALTHY HABITS
Healthy habits free your mind and energy up. They bring you and your beloved CLOSER together in a way that gets EASIER and easier and takes less and less effort.
When you build HELPFUL habits around getting hot and heavy, (the good kind!), first consciously and then ultimately unconsciously, the love and sexy time gets better and better, not worse and worse year after year.
- Talking a bath every other Friday for some alone time
- Taking a shower together daily
- Kissing every morning and night and saying HAWT after we kiss
- Making time for US time - even in small ways
- Making time for ME time - even in small ways
- Having date night mean no screens for minimum three hours
- Eating meals together
- Declaring we’ll have the best sex we’ve ever had at least every 90 days and scheduling a quarterly weekend alone to give us space to do it
- Saying our relationship vision / Marriage Mantra to each other daily
- Doing a couples workshop annually
- Doing new things together
- Surprising and initiating with each other.
- Addressing little things early on and openly
- Proactively meeting weekly, monthly about our time, budget and goals
- Insert yours here. What are you healthy habits you want to continue with? Any new ones here to lean into?
"Couples who schedule time to connect with each other have healthier, happier relationships." - Chris Kraft, Ph.D.
COSTS OF UNHEALTHY HABITS
Unhealthy habits trip you up again and again. They get in the way of what you want and pull you away from your beloved. They kill connection, intimacy and any hotness between you. The dynamic between you erodes over time until one day one of you says ENOUGH and ends it. Most relationships end from “death by a thousand papercuts” than do from big one time conflicts that happen.
- How familiar are any of these unhealthy relationship habits?
- Working too hard / being exhausted all the time
- Being too busy for US time
- Eating meals over our computers rather than together
- Being too busy for ME time
- Watching TV every night
- Being on your phone in bed or on a date night
- Putting your relationship/sex life on the back burner / Saying it isn’t important
- Waiting for the other person to initiate or to be in the mood
- Being on autopilot with your relationship and sex life
- Letting little things pile up between you
- Insert yours here. Admit it so you can take action!
ANATOMY OF A HABIT
- Cue - Trigger
- Routine - Actual Behavior
- Reward - Benefit / Payoff
This is a CYCLE. When if you can change the CUE, you can change the rest of the cycle right where it starts. Change the cue and you change the habit. That’s why he suggests that the best time to change a habit is when you’re in a new environment, like when you go on vacation.
YOUR WAY TO CHANGE A HABIT
What I love about Gretchen’s work is that she says there are MANY ways to change a habit. We are NOT all the same. What works for one person might alienate another. Example: My husband does great to remove something completely from his diet. For him, maintaining a goal or a new habit at 100% is easy, but to say he will do it 90% of the time is really hard. When to say yes, when to say no, it all gets stressful for him. With me, I am the rebel. If anyone, even myself, tells me I can’t EVER do something, I want it! So I do great with saying I’ll do something 90% of the time, but feel a lot of distress when I commit to something at 100%. I feel restricted and limited.
Find YOUR way to shift a habit. Just be conscious and intentional about your habits or your relationship will drift into the default of being dull, depressing or even getting disastrous.
SELF ASSESS, NOT PARTNER OBSESS
When you lean into Loving Better, it is tempting to see all YOU are doing and not think your beloved is doing much. Just don’t expect that you or your beloved learn or grow in the same ways. We’re all so different!
Growth and changing habits must be based on AUTONOMY and CHOICE. Don’t should on your beloved. Focus on how you think YOU can grow and what habits YOU want to change.
Remember if you change the CUE, you can change the routine and the cycle stops. It only takes ONE person to change a cue.
BEFORE THE SEDUCTION, BEFORE THE DEED
Investing in intimacy starts well BEFORE the seduction does. Examining your current habits and learning into Loving Better by taking on NEW habits now will not only support you and your beloved in the seductions being easier and more enjoyable, the actual getting it on part can be that much hotter too.
Don’t settle for the dull default dynamic or succumb to the story that best-ever-sex is behind you. You do NOT have to end up being lonely, even when you’re together. You CAN stop the passion between from getting slowly poisoned by toxic interactions or even microaggressions.
That nightmare does happen, A LOT, but not to you!
Instead, lean into Loving Better by cultivating what you crave well in advance of any seduction. It is the day-to-day behaviors you engage in, the pro-active approach that will create the feel-of-the-fabric and quality of experience of your relationship. Set yourselves up to live and love HAWT BY HABIT!
DON’T GIVE UP - GET IN ACTION
If you want to enjoy more cheer and delight together or even mind-blowing sexy-time and miraculous intimacy, don’t give up! Those triumphs ARE possible and For Better Love is here to make them easier and more fun to get to!
For other tips, tools and techniques on How to Keep the Sex Dirty BEFORE, click HERE or watch our Quick Tip Video Clip "HAWT BY HABIT" and consider what new habit's YOU'LL lean into next.
1. Review the list of healthy habits for keeping things HAWT in your
A. Ask yourself - What am I already doing as a habit? Acknowledge your
B. Ask yourself - What would I like to turn into a NEW healthy habit?
2. Review the list of unhealthy habits for keeping things HAWT in your
A. Ask yourself - What am I doing as an unhealthy habit that I am
committed to STOPPING?
3. Write down, schedule reminders, post prompts and put into
A. The new habit I will take on
B. The old habit I will stop
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