This article was co-authored by Donna Novak, Psy.D and by wikiHow staff writer, Danielle Blinka, MA, MPA. Dr. Donna Novak is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist based in Simi Valley, California. With over ten years of experience, Dr. Novak specializes in treating anxiety and relationship and sex concerns. She holds a BA in Psychology from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and a doctoral degree (Psy.D) in Clinical Psychology from Alliant International University-Los Angeles. Dr. Novak uses a differentiation model in treatment that focuses on personal growth by increasing self-awareness, personal motivation, and confidence.
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While it’s normal for relationships to feel stale after a while, increasing your intimacy can make your relationship stronger and more fulfilling. You can become more intimate with your partner by connecting with them through communication, touch, and acts of kindness. Additionally, spend more time with them to deepen your bond. If you want to improve your sex life, talk about sex more often and try new things in the bedroom.
Method 1Method 1 of 3:Connecting with Your Partner
- 1Tell your partner how you feel about them every day. It’s easy to assume that your partner knows how you feel, but everyone has doubts. Make a habit of sharing your feelings daily through spoken reminders and text messages. This will help you and your partner maintain a close bond.XResearch source
- For instance, tell them you love them every time you part ways.
- Similarly, text them "Good morning my love" or check on them throughout the workday. You might text, "I love you! How’s your day going?"
- 2Show affection through kissing, hugging, and holding hands. You might think of intimacy as having sex, but it also includes things like kissing, hugging, and touching. When you’re with your partner, kiss and hug them. Additionally, hold their hand, sit next to them, and cuddle with them. This closeness will help deepen your bond.XResearch source
- Make a habit of hugging and kissing when you part ways and reunite.
- When you’re watching TV, sit close to each other so your bodies are touching.
- 3Express your gratitude for the nice things they do for you. It’s easy to overlook the favors or acts of kindness your partner does for you. When they do something nice, recognize their actions and tell them you appreciate them. Try to thank your partner for something every day to grow your appreciation of them. This can help bring you closer together.XResearch source
- For instance, you might say things like, "Thank you so much for clearing the table," "Thank you for picking up the groceries so I had time to work out," or "I appreciate your help with dinner."
- 4Listen to your partner’s thoughts and feelings. While physical intimacy is wonderful to have, emotional intimacy is just as important for a strong relationship. To deepen your emotional connection, listen to what your partner is going through. Ask them to open up to you more, and paraphrase what they say back to you so they know you listened.XResearch source
- Encourage them to talk by saying things like, "Tell me how things have been at work lately," or "I’ve noticed you’ve been upset. Can we talk about it?"
- Then, paraphrase what they say with comments like, "It sounds like you’ve been really stressed lately," or "Are you saying that you’re worried we won’t have enough money?"
- 5Perform acts of kindness to show you care. Doing kind things for your partner shows them that you’re thinking of them. Set a goal to do at least 1 nice thing for your partner every week to bring you closer. For instance, you might do 1 of the following:XResearch source
- 6Ask each other deep personal questions to learn more about each other. Learning about each other helps you build emotional intimacy, so ask each other deep questions. Work these conversations into your routine so you’re constantly getting to know each other. For instance, spend a date night having a deep conversation, discuss your answers in the car, or ask-and-answer 1 question a day.XResearch source
- Write your own list or look for one online. For instance, you might ask questions like, "What are the top 5 rules you live by?" "What would you do on your dream vacation?" "How would you spend a million dollars?" "What is something you wish you could change about yourself?" and "What would your ideal life be like?"
Tip: After you’ve been with someone for a while, it can feel like you know everything about each other. Asking each other deep questions helps you keep the excitement of getting to know someone alive longer in your relationship.
Method 2Method 2 of 3:Spending Time Together
- 1Go on an actual date at least once a week. Going on dates creates intimate experiences between you and your partner. Plus, it helps you let loose and have fun together, which is important in a relationship. Invite your partner out at least once a week, and look for fun activities you can do with them.XResearch source
- Watch for flyers or Facebook events that might be fun, like festivals, live music, or holiday celebrations.
- Be spontaneous! For instance, ask them to go to the park after dinner to watch the sunset.
- You could try something new together, like a new hobby.XExpert SourceDonna Novak, Psy.D
Licensed Clinical PsychologistExpert Interview. 8 December 2020.
Variation: Sometimes going out just isn’t an option. When this happens, create a date night at home. For instance, prepare a special candlelit dinner and dance to your favorite songs. If you’re in a long-distance relationship, share dinner and a movie over a video call.
- 2Engage in a playful activity to bring you closer. Playing together allows you to have more fun and to feel relaxed together. This helps you enjoy your time together and get closer to each other. Do playful activities together, such as playing sports, playing board games, going to an arcade, or attending an art class.XResearch source
- Make a list of fun things that each of you wants to do. Include things like going to a theme park, playing beach volleyball, and going bowling.
- 3Create something together. Making something requires you and your partner to work on the same goal. This helps you become a better team and may give you something to laugh about. Invite your partner to create something new together. Here are some ideas:XResearch source
- 4Invent special anniversaries to celebrate. You likely already celebrate the day you started dating your partner. However, your relationship might have other milestones that you could celebrate. Having special anniversaries that only you share is special and may help bring you closer together, so create silly or personal celebration days with your partner.XResearch source
- For instance, let’s say your first weekend trip together took place on the second weekend in October. You might go away for that weekend every year.
- Similarly, let’s say the first time you tried sushi was on your third date. You might record that day and celebrate "sushi virgin" day every year by trying a new type of fish or a new specialty roll.
Method 3Method 3 of 3:Improving Your Sex Life
- 1Send each other flirty texts as part of your foreplay. You probably know that foreplay is super important, but sometimes it’s hard to stoke your partner’s fire. Risque or naughty text messages might help you both get in the mood for sex later. Tell your partner what you want to do to them later or about a fantasy you’re having. If your partner is somewhere they can check their phone discreetly, text them a revealing photo of you.XResearch source
- You might text them, "I’m thinking about what I want to do to your body later," or "You looked so good getting out of the shower this morning. I hope we can recreate that tonight."
- You could also send a photo of you pulling up your skirt or of a bulge in your pants.
Warning: Be mindful of where your partner will be and what they might be doing when you send the texts. It’s probably okay to send them slightly flirty texts while they’re working, but don’t send a nude photo or a highly risque text if you know they’re at work or doing something important.
- 2Experiment in the bedroom to spice things up. After you’ve been with someone for a while, you might feel like sex isn’t as exciting. This can lower your sex drive and make you feel less connected to your partner. Fortunately, trying new things might put the spark back in your relationship. Play around in the bedroom so you and your partner can get frisky.XResearch source
- For instance, get a Kama Sutra book and try out different positions.
- Use toys to enhance your pleasure.
- Try sex dice to spice things up.
- Use handcuffs or rope.
- Eat food off of each other.
- 3Talk about sex during your daily life to stimulate your desire. Make sex a regular topic of conversation between you and your partner. Talk about your past encounters, your fantasies, and the things you’d like to try. This might help you both feel more interested in sex and excited about having it. Plus, it builds emotional intimacy because you’re sharing with each other.XResearch source
- You might say things like, "Remember when we did it in the kitchen. I hope we can do that again the next time the house is empty," or "I had a daydream that you licked whipped cream off of me, and now I can’t stop thinking about it."
- ↑Donna Novak, Psy.D. Licensed Clinical Psychologist. Expert Interview. 8 December 2020.
About This Article
The most important ingredient of a lasting relationship is respect. This means that you understand the value of what that person gives to you, that you know what your life would look like without them, and that you can verbalize it. The other ingredient couples need is each partner having a life outside of their relationship. In order to thrive in a committed partnership, a person has to be confident and feel empowered and strong as an individual.