Believe it or not, but an instant attraction doesn't necessarily mean a relationship will or will not work out. There's more to a partnership than immediate chemistry, and you can develop sexual attraction with time, as long as you both connect in other ways, like personality, interests, or communication. If you're worried that you and your love interest are too platonic and are just not in sync sexually, it might be a sign you shouldn't be together; however, it's worth exploring to be sure.
As a certified health coach, I work with clients on finding happy and fulfilling relationships, as having a good social network can improve mental and physical wellbeing. Unfortunately, sometimes people back out of certain relationships too quickly, assuming the worst. What's more, when there's a lack of sexual chemistry, it can make it hard to find reason to pursue. Yet, if you're connecting on other levels and your gut is screaming, "I like this person!" then it's totally worth a shot. Plus, it's actually pretty common to develop that attraction over time, as you both seem to get more comfortable and open around each other. Here are 9 ways to develop greater sexual chemistry in your relationship.
1. Give It A Few Dates
No spark? Give it a chance, especially if you can notice other positive attributes about your love interest, says relationship expert and author of Smoke Drink F*#k, Esme Oliver, over email with Bustle. "Give it a couple dates. Go out and do some fun things. Take a cooking class, go to the zoo or take a day trip. Give it a chance and the chemistry may just evolve," says Oliver.
2. Look For Humor
"The best chemistry is laughter," says Oliver. If he or she can make you giggle or tear up, that's definitely a good sign for developing a more sexual attraction. "Laughter is life's elixir, and laughing will get you through the hard times. If you can laugh a lot with this person, you may just fall in love with them," says Oliver.
3. Try To Explore Their Senses
"If you connect with someone that you see yourself having a relationship with, but the sexual attraction is not there yet, start a journey on exploring your partner's senses, smell, taste... Like hiking, sometimes you have to endure a not so exciting trail to get to a mesmerizing place," says Juliana W. founder of Sex Talk About over email with Bustle. You know the five senses, so look to explore those with your partner and see if sexual chemistry develops. For instance, try their favorite cuisine, touch their ultimate erogenous zones, watch their favorite movies, and more.
4. Discuss Sexual Fantasies
Sometimes it helps to just plant the ideas in your partner's mind, so sharing fantasies and being open about sexuality and adventure can actually create a compulsion to try new moves out, explains Derek Newton, founder of Simpatic.us, over email with Bustle. By using this site and tool to encourage sexual chemistry, you might just speed things up.
5. Have "Date Nights"
According to Kimberly Hershenson, LMSW, over email with Bustle, making time for those "date nights," can help set the mood and create a spark. What's more, having one inside, in a home, could make the connection even more intimate. "Set aside one night a week for 'date night in.' Set the table, put out candles and have a delicious meal together. Turn off electronics and focus on conversation," suggests Hershenson.
6. Physically Touch Each Other
Let's say you're new to dating. You might not see each other all the time, so when you do, be sure to touch (physically) and see if a more physical attraction develops. Yet, if you do live together, "physically touch other at least once every morning and once every night. Whether it's a kiss hello or goodbye, snuggling on the couch or holding hands. Even non-sexual touching builds connection between partners," says Hershenson.
7. Don't Think Sex Is Everything
Sex isn't always the definition of sexual chemistry, says couples and sex therapist from the podcast Simply Great Relationships, Marina Voron, MA, LMFT, over email with Bustle. "Focus more on sexy touch, kissing, massage, and foreplay, not just sex. Sometime sex can be the least sexy part of intimacy and doesn't help build chemistry," says Voron. Slowing things down and really enjoying other forms of intimacy can help build a physical foundation.
8. Share Sexy Media Clips
Sometimes a visual of others can heat things up. "Share clips from sexy movies, tv shows, or even porn with each other and talk about what resonates with you about that clip. Being open, honest, and uncensored can help build sexual tension and chemistry and allow your partner to get to know who you are as a sexual being," says Voron.
9. Do Something Scary Or Risky Together
Need that adrenaline boost in the sheets? Get in first by doing something new and thrilling together. "Doing things outside of your comfort zone or going on road trips can create a bond with someone, increasing the likelihood of sexual chemistry," says Antonia Hall, MA., psychologist, relationship expert, and the award-winning author of The Ultimate Guide to a Multi-Orgasmic Life over email with Bustle. "Always wanted to skydive, bungie jump, or go rappelling? The heightened nature of the experience will help foster deeper feelings with your partner," says Hall.
If you're hoping a relationship succeeds, but the sexual chemistry just isn't quite there, don't give up hope. Instead, try a few of these tricks, and see what happens. You might be pleasantly surprised.