Having sex with your partner is an obvious way to feel close. But you can also make a point of doing lots of sexy little things outside the bedroom, in order to strengthen your bond. Not only will it keep the spark alive between the sheets, it'll also help you stay connected in the day-to-day.
Because let's face it... it's pretty common to take a long-term partner for granted, and let a boring routine trickle in, as time goes on. As you fall into a groove of seeing each other all the time — and getting up, going to work, and repeating the process all over again — it's easy to let romance fall by the wayside.
But according to Isadora Baum, CHC, a certified health coach, you can maintain your initial spark by paying more attention to how you interact throughout the day, as well as by adding more special moments into your lives.
Instead of stalking past each other on your way to the coffee pot each morning, for instance, you might stop for a quick kiss. And instead of only sending texts about who's up next to buy almond milk, you might slip in a sext or two.
It's all about making small adjustments to your relationship and how you interact, in order to keep things fun and loving for years to come — both inside, and outside, the bedroom.
1. Kiss First Thing In The Morning
Acknowledging each other in a sexy/sweet way when you first wake up — whether it's by kissing, cuddling, hugging, or all of the above — is a good habit to get into. Same goes for sending a quick "good morning" text. Both will start your day off on a good foot.
2. Talk About Sex
If you don't already talk about your sex life, including fantasies and new positions you'd like to try, why not start peppering it into your everyday conversations? It's admittedly awkward to talk about sex at first, but the more you do it the easier it'll be — and your sex life will definitely benefit.
3. Reimagine Your First Date
Remember your first couple of dates? When you couldn't keep your hands off each other? Bring back that chemistry and take time to flirt with your partner, Michelle A. Roberts, MA, a life coach, tells Bustle, just like you did in the early days of your relationship.
You might even want to recreate what you did and where you went by eating the same meal, or watching the same movie. It can be a huge turn on, and it can also remind you why you fell in love in the first place.
4. Leave Love Notes
If you have a busy schedule, you really, truly might not have time to be as loving as you'd like to be. And that's OK. There are so many quick things you can do to remind your partner how much you care, like simply leaving a sticky note on their bathroom mirror that says "I love you."
5. Take Walks
Nothing beats holding hands and taking a quick stroll around the block, either in the morning, after dinner — or whenever you have a spare ten minutes. It's the perfect time to not only be a bit romantic, but to catch each other up on your lives. And that's a super important habit to have, if you want to stay feelin' close.
6. Touch Each Other More Often
Another way to get flirty outside the bedroom is by making a point of touching each other more often. This might mean quick kisses, hugs, sexy arm grazes — whatever feels right. Again, it's something lots of couples do when they first meet, but forget about as time goes on. So why not bring it back?
7. Send Sexy Texts
Roberts also recommends sending sexy texts or photos to playfully tease your partner outside the bedroom. Of course, if it's been just one date or so, you'll probably want to hold back until you're more comfortable around each other or established as a couple. Yet, if it's all good, go ahead and make your partner want you, bad.
8. Tell Your Partner You Have A Surprise Later
Roberts says that being explicit, and saying you can't wait to see your partner later because of a special surprise (wink, wink), will build excitement into the day. Do this when you want to be flirty and feel close while apart — perhaps while you're at work — and then enjoy reuniting later in the bedroom.
9. Initiate Sex Outside The Bedroom
If you've started having sex only in the most predictable moments, like on Friday nights or Sunday mornings, try mixing things up by being flirty on a random Tuesday evening, and seeing what happens.
"If you're both at home lounging on the couch and zoning out on your phones, try sending a flirtatious text to surprise your partner," Sarah Hunter Murray, PhD, a sex and relationship therapist, tells Bustle. "Perhaps a kiss or winking face emoji or, if you're feeling bolder 'wanna make out' or even 'meet me upstairs.' The element of surprise will break you out of your familiar routine and add some spice to an otherwise uneventful weeknight."
10. Exercise Together
You might not think working out, and seeing each other drenched in sweat, could lead to romance. But it totally could. There's something sexy about getting your blood flowing, increasing your endorphins, and helping each other do crunches. Not to mention, it's offers the perfect excuse to take a shower together afterward.
11. Share A Hot Bath
After your shower, why not hop in the tub and take a warm bath together? You could make it extra sexy by adding candles, music, and maybe some red wine into the mix. It doesn't have to get sexual right in that very moment, but it's still a nice way to reconnect.
12. Use More Eye Contact
When you're not in bed, maintain that eye contact. That means looking into each other's eyes when speaking, sharing breakfast or a meal, or whenever you feel the urge to connect and show appreciation. Plus, using eye contact means you're attracted to the other person, so it'll help you both remember just how into each other you are.
13. Watch Porn Together
If you and your partner watch porn together, it might just help move things to the bedroom, or at the very least spark some good ideas for different positions, role play scenarios, or fetishes that you might be interested in trying. Just be sure your partner is on board before cracking open your laptop.
14. Read Erotica
Similarly, you can shake things up and get a little kinky by reading erotica together. There are so many choices and themes to be found online, from audio erotica to short stories — and everything in between. Who knows? You might land on a sexy story and get inspired to try something new.
15. Cook A Meal Together
By cooking a meal, you're learning something new, practicing working together, and essentially going an adventure — even though you aren't leaving the house. Plus, you can always enjoy a bottle of wine (or two) for romance and playfulness, too. And before you know it, you'll be tumbling into bed.
16. Lick Your Lips
While it sounds weird, occasionally licking or casually biting your lips can be super seductive and really turn your partner on when done outside the bedroom. Plus, you can do this any time of day and in public. (Which is even more sexy when you think about it, right?)
17. Give Each Other Massages
Take turns giving each other massages to really bond and get that sense of touch, even when you aren't having sex. You can bring out the oils, music, candles — whatever romantic gestures might help foster that intimacy and connection.
18. Split Up Your Chores
Believe it or not, helping each other out around the house — by splitting chores, offering a little extra help, etc. — really does impact your desire in the bedroom. "Acts of service [...] can show your partner that you care, and be a major turn on because you've been helpful," Dr. Donna Oriowo, LICSW, M.Ed, a sex therapist, tells Bustle. When you're done washing the dishes and putting them away, feel free to hop into bed.
19. Play A (Sexy) Board Game
Playing board games together doesn't exactly scream "sexy," unless you put a twist on the rules. "A game of monopoly can be much more fun if you lose clothes and money," Oriowo says. "Spicing up game night to learn more about your partner's sexual likes and dislikes, with the challenge of trying them out in the game, make sitting around the living room that much more fun."
20. Give Regular Compliments
Taking the time to show appreciation, and to express just how attractive you find your partner to be, can really be beneficial. "Giving your partner compliments throughout the day not only makes them feel desired, but also strengthens your relationship," Rhonda Milrad, LCSW, a relationship therapist, tells Bustle. A simple, "That dress looks so hot on you," or "You were amazing last night," will do the trick.
If you're looking to keep that spark alive in the bedroom, make an effort in other areas, too. Because it's all connected.
Isadora Baum, CHC, certified health coach
Michelle A. Roberts, MA, life coach
Sarah Hunter Murray, PhD, sex and relationship therapist
Dr. Donna Oriowo, LICSW, M.Ed, sex therapist
Rhonda Milrad, LCSW, relationship therapist
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