How to (Re)connect with your Partner
It can be easy to fall into a routine with long-term partners. The connection or excitement you once felt takes a dip and leaves you feeling more like roommates than lovers. If you can relate, or if you’re looking for ideas that will bring you even closer to your romantic partner(s), try the following tips!
Connect via (quick) moments of intimacy
We don’t always have time for long romantic connections but that doesn’t mean that we can’t make the most of the moments we do have. This week try at least one of the following four activities to boost your intimate connection.
Three to five second kiss
If you’re used to quickly pecking your partner(s) on the lips as you walk in or leave a space, consider elongating one of those pecks with intention. Shifting from a half-a-second kiss to a three-to-five-second kiss can offer an opportunity to settle into one another’s presence and can even inspire a bit of passion (and it literally takes seconds!). If you live with one another, this is a great one to try daily.
Eye gazing (start with 30 seconds to two minutes)
Eye gazing is a particularly great activity if you are seeking to increase intimacy, trust, and connection. This activity can be done completely clothed, in one’s underwear, or nude, depending on comfort level and goals. However dressed or undressed you choose to be, get comfortable in front of one another (sitting or standing) and gaze into one another’s eyes (blinking is allowed!). I recommend trying for two minutes. If that sounds like too much, set a gentle alarm for 30 seconds and see how it feels (some tantric practices call for 20-30 minutes). You can choose to hold hands, touch one another’s legs, shoulders, etc., or look without touching. You might find that afterwards you want to hug, cuddle, or it might inspire some sexy fun. Enjoy!
Hand, foot, or neck rub (start with five minutes)
Our body is covered in nerve endings waiting to be ignited and for many, wanted touch invites connection. While an hour-long full body massage might not be possible for everyone, offering and receiving a massage at a specific part of the body can create an opportunity to reduce stress, increase connection, and wake up/relax the body (depending on the mood you set!). Pick one or two songs you enjoy and offer to give your partner a hand, foot, or neck rub while the song plays. Maybe they will offer to do the same.
Weekly or monthly check-ins
We can learn a lot about others when we take the moment to pause, reflect, and share. Even if you and your partner(s) are regularly in conversation with one another, intentionally checking in about feelings, needs, memories, and gratitude can bring you closer together. Try answering one of the following prompts this week as part of a five-to-15-minute check-in:
- Over the past week, I felt most connected when…
- Over the past month, I felt most frustrated when…
- It would help me feel more supported if you/we could…
- A memory of us that came to mind recently was… (and how it made you feel)
- I really liked/appreciated/enjoyed when you/we….
- I am grateful that you are in my life because…
If you don’t already know the saying that ‘variety is the spice of life’ consider this your wake-up call. Familiarity and consistency, while stabilizing, can also lead to ruts. If you are seeking to reignite interest between you and your lover(s) try:
- Having a quirky stay at home date night
- Going on a themed or adventure-style date night
- Joining a multi-session class where you can grow together while having fun (think woodworking, dance, painting, etc.)
- Try roleplaying, reading erotica, or watching porn together to invite some creativity
- Talk about adding a toy or new position in the bedroom
- Checking out a yes/no/maybe/fantasy sheet and picking some new things that you’d both/all like to try together (you can find a collection of my favorite Y/N/M/F sheets here)
Let us know what you’ve tried and enjoyed!
Yael R. Rosenstock GonzalezSex Educator, Researcher, Author, Speaker
Yael has been engaged in workshop development and facilitation since she joined the New York Civil Liberties Union (NYCLU) as a teen peer reproductive rights educator at 15 years old. Since then, she has served as an educator with children ranging from 10 months old to adults in their 70s with different organizations and communities. In her work as first Program Coordinator, then Director of Programming, and finally Associate Director of the Center for Ethnic, Racial, and Religious Understanding, Yael developed and led events, workshops, and programs with an intersectionality lens.