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April 16, 2021

Eroticize Daily Interactions: 20 Actionable Tips For Busy Couples

Dr Jess Sexologist & partner Brandon hugging and laughing in a silly way

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How do you keep things exciting in the midst of a repetitive routine? How can adults be more playful (because playfulness is associated with happier relationships & hotter sex)? What simple changes can you implement to make your daily interactions more fun, passionate and erotic — even if you’re super busy?

You’re not a light switch, so you likely can’t get turned on in the blink of an eye. This week to celebrate our wedding anniversary, we share 20+ specific strategies and action items you can use to make your relationship more romantic, intimate and erotic.

Thanks to the fabulous pearl vibrator, OhMyG, for their support of this episode. Save 30% with code DRJESS & be sure to check them out and watch my demo on IG here.

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Rough Transcript:

This is a computer-generated rough transcript, so please excuse any typos. This podcast is an informational conversation and is not a substitute for medical, health or other professional advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the services of an appropriate professional should you have individual questions or concerns.

EPISODE #209: Eroticize Daily Interactions: 20 Actionable Tips For Busy Couples

 (00:02):

You’re listening to the Sex with Dr. Jess podcast. Sex and relationship advice you can use tonight.

Brandon (00:10):

Welcome to the Sex With Dr. Jess podcast. I’m your co host Brandon Ware here with my lovely other half, Dr. Jess.

Dr. Jess (00:18):

Hey, hey.

Brandon (00:19):

How are you?

Dr. Jess (00:20):

I’m feeling good. I’m feeling good, I’m interested in this conversation for the two of us as well. We’re going to be talking about how to make your daily interactions more erotic. What are you laughing about?

Brandon (00:32):

I’m immediately thinking about eating a banana.

Dr. Jess (00:36):

Oh my gosh, because in my presentations I always talk about how to eroticize daily interactions. Because you’re not a light switch. You can’t go from talking about your taxes and your work and your kids, whether or not your dog had a bowel movement on its last walk, to just flipping the switch and being “oh hi tear my clothes off.” And my joke is when I say to eroticize your daily interactions, I don’t mean make everything annoyingly erotic right. I don’t wanna be eating a banana and have Brandon look over and be like “Oh yeah babe. You eat that banana.” It’s really more about playfulness and flirtation and I don’t know all these different ways to be erotic. It doesn’t have to be super sexual or graphic so we’re gonna be getting into that. I guess before we do, I should ask you, do you feel like our interactions are particularly erotic?

Brandon (01:33):

I don’t think that I’m an erotic person. I feel very self-conscious whenever I’m trying to do something that I think is erotic, whether I’ve seen it on TV or a movie somewhere. I feel like a goof doing it, so when I see people who are genuinely erotic and they just exude the sex appeal, I’m like “good on you.” Because when I try that I feel like I look like a goof. Or I sound like a goof.

Dr. Jess (02:05):

No but you are naturally charming. Like flirtation is sort of charming. You may not be overtly sexual about it. I also wonder if you haven’t had to be because people like the way you look so much.

Brandon (02:15):

Well maybe, I don’t know.

Dr. Jess (02:28):

I don’t think that’s entirely true. But I would say that we’ve been getting along really well.

Brandon (02:33):

I would agree.

Dr. Jess (02:35):

I feel like we laugh a lot and we’re playful.

Brandon (02:37):

I mean I’m super funny

Dr. Jess (02:40):

I keep you laughing all day ’cause my jokes are better than yours, and then you just repeat my jokes louder.

Brandon (02:44):

That’s the trick, everyone listening. Just say the joke louder

Dr. Jess (02:47):

And be a man.

Brandon (02:48):

And be a white man.

Dr. Jess (02:50):

And then everyone thinks you’re hilarious. And so yeah, I think this’ll be an interesting conversation to go through and see what we do and don’t do, because I’ve made this list for us of twenty ways to keep the flame burning to make your daily interactions more erotic. And not necessarily to lead to sex all the time. So the reason I feel all of these things lay the groundwork so that sex becomes possible, like it doesn’t make sex automatic. It just means that I can easily get in the mood with you because I like you, because I laugh with you, because you laugh at my jokes really loudly.

Brandon (03:25):

I’m not gonna repeat that, it wasn’t that funny.

Dr. Jess (03:29):

Okay, before we dive into these 20 ways, I’m actually really excited to shout out a new partner, new sponsor with the show the OHMYG by Ioba Toys. So it’s this whisper quiet, internal g-spot massager, and it has this little massaging pearl that mimics a come hither motion so it kind of goes up and down. And so the little pearl, on the curved violator, is about the size of the top pad of my thumb. Can you give me a better sense to size descriptor for that thing?

Brandon (04:03):

Well maybe about the size of a quarter and I mean it’s not that wide, but like top to bottom.

Dr. Jess (04:08):

Yeah that’s right, but it’s longer, like it’s more oblong. So this is the OHMYG by Ioba Toys. And it’s curved really nicely, so you can access the G zone and the pearl works in this come hither motion and kind of goes up and down to vibe against your G zone. And of course it’s FDA approved body silicone, all that jazz, so highly encourage people to check it out. I actually just posted it on my instagram and got a really big response. I actually made a reel, this is my first time. This is how old and far behind I am, but yeah people were very excited by it. And I got some really good feedback. So you can check it on my instagram, or you can head on over to Ioba Toys and look for the OHMYG. And I have a big discount code actually, I have a thirty percent discount code that’s good right now.

Brandon (05:58):

OHMYG!

Dr. Jess (05:00):

Oh my gosh.

Brandon (05:01):

Come on, repeat my joke.

Dr. Jess (05:04):

I only repeat the good ones. So the discount code is DRJESS at Ioba Toys, so check out the OHMYG. And it’s actually designed for internal stimulation I should mention for the G zone area, but I was using it externally as well. It’s very cool and it was created by folks who were trying to solve the problem of kind of louder toys. So it’s really, really, nice and quiet, just like me. Okay, so let’s talk about eroticism and how do weave eroticism throughout your day, because if you only act like roommates or business partners or co-parents or friends all the time, it can be hard to kind of shift into that lover role. This is what I hear from a lot of people do. Do you feel that way?

Brandon (05:54):

I feel that way at times, where I I just have a hard time shifting from “I’m in work mode” or whatever mode, and then all of a sudden we’re going upstairs. And I know that I should be in relaxation and sexy time mode, but I’m not always there. So, I experience it a bit.

Dr. Jess (06:10):

You’re just too busy playing on WhatsApp for cryptocurrency.

Brandon (06:15):

Oh man, don’t even start.

Dr. Jess (06:17):

Well, it’s interesting that you start there, so this wasn’t the first one on my list, but I think we can go to the role ritual strategy. So I’ve talked about this before. So picking a role ritual at the end of the day that shifts from your more public role to the more private or more sensual one that you play exclusively with your partner. So something that maybe helps you to relax and enjoy, or be a better version of yourself. So maybe it’s playing a song, like this song means we’re done with parenting or we’re done with work and we’re just connecting with one another again. It doesn’t mean you have to have sex at all. Just we’re gonna be here and present. It might be mixing a cocktail. It might be changing your clothes. I right now, I find because we’re all wearing our like indoor clothes. We’re in Toronto, so in Toronto, just to give some context, up here in Canada, first of all we’re much further behind on the vaccine versus the States. And also we’re on a, what’s it called? Stay at home order. You can’t leave the house unless it’s to do one of

Brandon (07:23):

77 things.

Dr. Jess (07:24):

It’s 30 actually, it’s very confusing. So yeah, we’re not wearing different clothes. But it might also be just switching your phone off. Like definitely for me once I put my phone down, and I’m trying to do it earlier and earlier, it’s a little signal that, “hey, I’m not working. I’m not thinking about other things. I’m just focusing on winding down for the night.” It could be writing in a journal. It could be that you close your blinds, right? It could be that you stretch. You read a few pages from a book or maybe change the lighting. Maybe you dance and it can be different every night like sometimes we dance but some nights, we don’t do you know what I mean?

Brandon (07:59):

Yeah I I found that the role ritual really had a profound effect when we relocated for a few months to Jamaica. I noticed that at a certain point after dinner I would put my phone into sleep mode or into the nighttime mode, and it took a little while but it certainly helped me shift away because it was like well, I’m not touching my phone anymore. So it means I can focus on anything else. Which might have been having a drink, might have been reading a book, or just relaxing, watching a show. That buffer between that and if you are going to have sex you know, it just made it a lot easier.

Dr. Jess (08:35):

If that’s your thing. So we’ll go with that one as number one. Think about having a role ritual to kind of shift. And then number two, so that’s for nighttime, has to do with the exact opposite. So number two is about starting your day on the right foot, so thinking of something small you can do for your partner that takes you thirty seconds, or a minute to perform an act of kindness. And it can help to reduce your anxiety and obviously make them feel important which makes them more attracted to you. So it might be that you know, maybe bring them a glass of water while they’re on a call. Or maybe it means you put their clothes out, or clean their laptop screen or put a chocolate on their pillow, or hide a note in their underwear drawer, or warm up their socks on the heating vent. What are you laughing at?

Brandon (09:16):

I don’t even know. I’m just thinking about doing all of these things and it just seems funny. Hide a note in your underwear drawer. Let’s play hide and seek.

Dr. Jess (09:24):

No, like a nice note. You used to do that in my suitcase when I go away.

Brandon (09:29):

I would do that. I would write out ten or fifteen different notes and I would tuck them into different pieces of your clothing or parts of your suitcase in the hopes that you would find them, not when you’ve got to the airport before you left.

Dr. Jess (09:40):

I really loved that. So okay, number one was the role ritual. Number two is trying to do something like tiny for them in the morning. I mean you always make me my coffee.

Brandon (09:49):

Yeah, happy to make you a coffee, does not take two minutes.

Dr. Jess (09:55):

This morning you cheated. No it wasn’t a complaint. I just said “hey, the coffee didn’t taste the same.” But he didn’t use the proper espresso machine.

Brandon (10:15):

Are you sure you want to keep talking about this, or do you want to move onto the next?

Dr. Jess (10:19):

Okay. Let’s move on to number three. And this one’s for you Brandon, and this is about taking a dump okay? So you probably know what this is because you’ve heard me talk about it.

Brandon (10:30):

I have and it is not defecating.

Dr. Jess (10:33):

No, it’s a complaint dump. So at the end of your day or at some point during your day, can you just give yourselves two minutes or however many minutes you assign, to complain it all out to get it all out. So that you’re not complaining all throughout the day or all throughout the evening. And kind of shift the conversation away from a focus on kind of perceived negatives to create space for eroticism and playfulness and flirtation. And  I want to be really clear. This isn’t about “be positive, love and light.” Because there are definitely things to complain about. That’s okay, but can you relegate them to a certain time or talk them out in a meaningful way rather than kind of allowing them to permeate throughout your day and into your night and into your bedroom.

Brandon (11:18):

If you set a timer and try to do this, this can be challenging. For me, I got a laundry list by the end of the day man. It’s like, gonna can have to speed talk through these next two minutes.

Dr. Jess (11:30):

You’re not a big complainer though.

Brandon (11:33):

No, not unless somebody wants to trash talk me about putting out the trash.

Dr. Jess (11:36):

What? Oh you mean the neighbours. You do complain about your neck injury a lot.

Brandon (11:46):

Which has since turned to a wonderful acupuncture doctor who’s fantastic.

Dr. Jess (11:51):

So you are complaining less about that.

Brandon (11:54):

I am, yes.

Dr. Jess (11:55):

What do I tend to complain about? Obviously the cold.

Brandon (11:58):

Definitely the cold.

Dr. Jess (12:01):

The good thing is I have full control over the weather.

Brandon (12:03):

The food that we are, or are not eating, depending what we’re ordering.

Dr. Jess (12:07):

Oh ya, if I have a bad meal. So yeah, definitely a complaint dump can be away just to relegate certain negative conversations and also important conversations to a different time. And it doesn’t have to be two minutes, it could be you know, however long you want. And it’s also about taking it out of the bedroom. Okay next on my list I have text playfully. So rather than just texting to update your partner about your day, or ask them to pick up milk on the way home, to think about texting for fun, like to use that medium to kind of cultivate connection and curiosity. So maybe you send them like playful messages, or incomplete messages in the morning. Like a line from a song and you kinda create like a drip text campaign. Or you just send them an image that you think is funny. One thing that I love babe, and even though we’re in the same house and it’s not like a big house, we’re not far away from each other. So at 11:11 I dunno if folks do this. You’re supposed to make a wish at 11:11.

Brandon (13:11):

I know that because I make a wish every day at 11:11.

Dr. Jess (13:13):

But you’re the one who told me so I don’t know how widespread this phenomenon is. Yeah the superstitious thing. So I wasn’t raised with it but I love it, so whenever 11:11 shows up, I make my wish in my head, and I always wish for the exact same thing, and what I find is that it’s this huge reset, because I’ll be stressing about one thing or another or you know worried about one thing with work, but then there’s only actually one thing I wish for and there’s only one thing that I’m really focused on. And so it’s a reminder that whatever I’m worrying about probably isn’t that big. But my point is, you send me a text at 11:11 sometimes just to remind me that it’s 11:11 with like a heart. And I don’t know, it feels good. Even though like today you sent it to me, I was on a somebody else’s podcast so I was upstairs, and you were downstairs and I just like seeing it pop up.

Brandon (14:00):

It’s nice to get the message right, when you’re not expecting it?

Dr. Jess (14:03):

Yeah, so texting like think about how you can text for playful reasons and not just practical ones. Another option is to send kind of sexy photos and it doesn’t have to be of yourself. It could be any erotic photo or video that you like. It could be an incomplete image. It could be a gif.

Brandon (14:19):

Like a sexy turtle or something.

Dr. Jess (14:22):

Yes, the sexy turtle. Well yeah so it could be of other people, not obviously stolen pictures, things that are in the public domain.

Brandon (14:30):

Yeah, like a sexy turtle.

Dr. Jess (14:32):

No, not a sexy turtle. The next thing on my list you made fun of, so I don’t know if I want to

Brandon (14:40):

What is it?

Dr. Jess (14:41):

It’s too late. Like leave them love notes, or playful or sexy notes where you like hide it in their underwear drawer. Because it’s just so easy to get caught up in this day to day, routine of work and personal responsibilities, and so you do, you start acting like roommates. And so I had suggested that you know, people right now, just write down five little one liners for their partner and hide them throughout the house where they’ll find them right at some point. It doesn’t have to be today. It could be like in a week. And so, it could be an email, you could mail it to them even.

Brandon (15:14):

Oh that’s a good idea. And you know I wasn’t making fun of it. I think I again was self conscious. Because I’m not very effusive. I’m not very verbal like my, here we go, already struggling for words. But no, I think I was just a self conscious, but when I did do that, it met with such success that I would recommend to anyone who has a partner that travels, ten little notes. Hide them in a bag, hide them in their suitcase, because when they find them it lets them know that you were thinking about them.

Dr. Jess (15:53):

Especially when you’re on the road. I have to say, as much as I love being on the road and would do anything to get back on the road, it’s lonely and it’s unfamiliar. And I actually like those things sort of, but there’s something about familiarity when you’re on the road. It’s sort of like you know, if I’m in the city and there’s someone from Toronto in that city and we figure out that we’re in the city, we would never get together in Toronto but we’ll meet for a drink in this other city. Because there’s something about familiarities. So, seeing your handwriting, in my bag, I still have a lot of those notes. Yeah you know I’m not a pack rat.

Brandon (16:28):

No, you like to throw everything, throw stuff out.

Dr. Jess (16:32):

But I have a few of those notes you wrote on little tiny pieces of graph paper. And I think I’ve left you notes.

Brandon (16:40):

I have a bunch of letters and cards that you gave me when we first got together, I hang onto.

Dr. Jess (16:45):

What did they say?

Brandon (16:46):

Pretty much that I’m awesome. So I thought it was important to keep them.

Dr. Jess (16:54):

Okay so love notes. Here’s the other thing. We’re gonna give you twenty options, and you don’t have to do them all like if you could just pick one or two that appeal to you I think that’s a great place to start. Our next one is a physical activity that I think is really useful right now, while we’re working from home. And this is just resetting with two minutes of physical connection. Because again, life kinda gets out of control, we forget to take the time to connect, whether it’s emotionally or physically. And this is just a quick two minute activity that can help you to feel more in the moment, more present in your body, more connected. And all you’re gonna do is lie next to each other, or even sit next to each other, and bring your foreheads together and take, I always say 11 deep breaths. And it can feel really weird and distracting and uncomfortable at first, but as you kind of start to slip into that third, fourth, fifth, breath, you tend to feel more relaxed, you tend to feel closer to one another. And there’s this concept of interpersonal synchronization, where your heart and your breath rates start to align, your pain levels start to subside and even your skin conductance begins to sync up. So we’ve done this before. We did this for a video course that we have right?

Brandon (18:10):

Yeah we did. And as you said the first few breaths that you take do feel a little weird, the physical sensation of having somebody else’s forehead pressed against yours is not something that you experience very often, so it takes one or two breaths to kinda get accustomed to that. And I felt a little silly at first but then like four or five breaths in I was like “this kind of works, this is working.” And then by the end of it, you’re like “Okay.” I felt more relaxed, definitely, well connected.

Dr. Jess (18:37):

So moving on. So last week on CBC I was talking about a new study that found that playfulness is super important in relationships. And we already have kind of a wealth of data suggesting the playfulness is connected to all these positive outcomes, in terms of connection and attraction and sex and all of these good things. So I was thinking about, what does that mean? I looked at the research, and there is this massive range of definitions, from playing around like kids, to joking, to bringing levity, to showing curiosity, and so I sort of divided in two different types of playfulness. So starting with physical playfulness, and this is really important for folks who are really kinaesthetic right? Physical playfulness is kind of an obvious route to being playful. So this might be as simple as wrestling around a little. Like maybe when you’re both reaching for the remote.

Brandon (19:31):

That could be Adams thing.

Dr. Jess (19:34):

That’s right.

Brandon (19:35):

Love some wrestling.

Dr. Jess (19:36):

Right, Adam from Moon Tower Counselling. He was on the show a couple of weeks ago. Brilliant, brilliant, funny guy. So yeah, it could be just like physically being playful. It could be dancing. It could be a pat on the butt, it could be kind of a squeeze that’s playful, or teasing or even mischievous, as you walk by them on your way to the kitchen. Or a brush on the thighs or just kind of a you know a little peck on the cheek while they’re on the phone. You do that sometimes. You come by while I’m on a call, if I don’t have the video on, and I’ll feel you kiss like the back of my neck quietly. And I think this is so important, because we aren’t as physically affectionate as I think a lot of us would like to be.

Brandon (20:15):

Yeah I would agree. I mean I’m not a particularly physically affectionate. I like it, like I enjoy when you touch my shoulder or touch my hand. But I’ve noticed that I’m just, I don’t naturally kind of gravitate to do that. I don’t reciprocate as well.

Dr. Jess (20:33):

You know it’s funny, in your sleep you’re always trying to get close to me, even when you’re fast asleep, because you’re a heavy sleeper, if I roll to the other side of the bed you inevitably follow me. Sometimes I test it, because I’m always rolling. You know me, I’m always rolling around. I swear I’m never sleeping. But the more relaxed you are, I noticed the more affectionate you are. And I wonder if that’s more of your natural state, and if you hold back something when you’re awake.

Brandon (21:03):

I’ll have to ask my sleeping self.

Dr. Jess (21:07):

So that’s that’s one piece of it, and then the next one is to also be verbally playful. So that’s just simply joking around. You know maybe being goofy. Maybe messing with puns or sexual innuendo, laughing at yourself. And it can also be kind of inside jokes. So Brandon and I watched Brooklyn 99, and everybody kind of has you know their show they watch. And I find that it always comes up in conversation as a joke.

Brandon (21:32):

Oh my god look out the window right now. It’s a yellow crested warbler.

Dr. Jess (21:37):

That’s the line you went with? Mine is, “you want a piggie?”

Brandon (21:41):

The other day, I think our neighbours think we’re bananas, because you can see into our house from all angles. And I’m pretty sure you rode like a donkey the other day.

Dr. Jess (21:51):

No, it was a pony.

Brandon (21:53):

It was a pony, and it was not sexual at all. You were like, “can I ride you?” I’m like, “Sure, okay.” And I was thinking, like if people looked in, they would definitely think this is a sex game.

Dr. Jess (22:02):

Well only because you tried to buck me off.

Brandon (22:06):

That was after. Because I mean eventually my knees started to hurt.

Dr. Jess (22:08):

You barely even moved around. As soon as I got on,

Brandon (22:11):

What did you want me to do? Run up and down the stairs with you on my back?

Dr. Jess (22:14):

No I just wanted you to crawl around the second floor. Maybe don’t be like us. And then the other piece is playing games. Like another way to be playful is to simply make games. Like I noticed sometimes,

Brandon (22:28):

We threw a frisbee in our living room the other day. We have this chandelier that hangs, we’ve got crystal glasses, this piece of furniture and I’m like  “we should not be doing this.” But we continued.

Dr. Jess (22:41):

We didn’t break anything. So yeah playing games can be fun. Like you know the other thing is, I was outside with my friend the other day, just outside on the porch where we’re allowed to be, and you came out and you were trying to do this thing where you I guess squatted down on one leg.

Brandon (22:56):

A one legged squat you know. It’s a pistol squat, where you go all the way down to the bottom.

Dr. Jess (23:00):

And then I wanted to do it too, so it became a competition.

Brandon (23:04):

We both hurt ourselves.

Dr. Jess (23:05):

Not me, I’m young, I’m a young buck.

Brandon (23:09):

You fell down.

Dr. Jess (23:10):

That was not about age. Another option for playfulness is just to have a routine that feels fun. So another thing we’ve been doing lately, pulling a lot from our lives actually. For once we’ve been following my own advice. We do the spelling bee in the New York Times, where you try and find the pan graham and you try and make as many words possible. And if I don’t get to genius level I start to lose my mind.

Brandon (23:36):

It’d be like eleven o’clock at night, “We cannot let the day finish without getting genius level.” I’m going to bed.

Dr. Jess (23:41):

Sometimes we do the crossword together. So if there’s any sort of playfulness,

Brandon (23:45):

We do not do the crossword. Brandon stands in and gives like five answers to a puzzle with one hundred clues. But seriously, it’s kind of weird. I’m like, “Can I look,” and she’s like “No. No.” I’m like, “I’m just gonna let you do it.”

Dr. Jess (24:03):

I’m on a timer. I’m also a beginning of the week crossword, I love those, because there are a lot easier. They get harder.

Brandon (24:09):

I do the sesame street crossword.

Dr. Jess (24:11):

Big bird. No I actually really like when you do it with me, ’cause I find that a lot of the ones I can’t answer you’re good at.

Brandon (24:19):

I thought you were gonna say “I like when you do it with me, because I feel better about myself, I feel smart.

Dr. Jess (24:24):

Okay, it’s not true. You absolutely contribute to the crossword. I just don’t let you hold the iPad. Okay number ten. We’re moving on. I might have the numbers wrong, this is at least number ten. I think it’s eleven. It’s simply about being more flirtatious. Definitely you know, thinking about just smiling when they walk in the room. I often talk about greeting your partner like a dog. Making a point of stopping what you’re doing, walking over to them, paying attention, wagging your tail.

Brandon (24:50):

Maybe I got some treats in my pocket.

Dr. Jess (24:55):

So yeah just, that’s something I’ve been trying to do. And I’m not always successful at it but when you walk in the room, actually paying attention to you. Another really important piece, I better start moving on these, is to look for opportunities to actually spend time apart. So if you want eroticism, oftentimes there needs to be some sort of distance and mystery. And I think with folks who are working from home, we have to be even more mindful of this than we ever were before. So that may be as simple as going for walks separately, which you do oftentimes.

Brandon (25:32):

Yeah I do enjoy my my walks alone. It gives me a chance to also reset, just listen to some music. Go for a fifteen, twenty minute, thirty minute walk and it helps. I like spending that time on my own.

Dr. Jess (25:45):

Right. I like that. And I like that you’re gone. Definitely another one that I love, this is number twelve or thirteen or fourteen, we don’t know, it’s to stare at their best assests. So I always like to remind people that it’s okay to objectify your partner within the context of a loving respectful relationship. You can honour them and respect them and love their butt. You can really respect their, I dunno, intellect and sense of humour, and you can lust after them. Because love and animalistic lust don’t have to be mutually exclusive. So you know for example, if your partner walked through the door rather than asking about their day or just talking about your schedules, stare at their best assets. Like take a moment to soak in the sex appeal that first attracted you to them right? So stop what you’re doing, focus on what you see in the moment and really look at your partner. Pick a body part you love, focus on it like an animal in heat. Like I always was say, look at them like a piece of meat, or tofu for the vegetarians, and really forget about all their annoying habits and objectify them. Number thirteen, and I won’t belabour this point, because we did a whole episode on it, and that’s on minimizing technoference. Create one space in your home that is tech free, and pick one time every week or every day that is also tech free. This is a really big deal and we spent a good amount of time a couple months ago exploring this one. So you can go back and listen. Number fourteen is to block quality time. So choose a block of time, whether it’s lunchtime during the day or an hour in the afternoon and during that quality time you’re going to ban conversations that relate to the dark triad of topics. So you’re not gonna talk about work, kids, COVID, and if you don’t have kids, it’s like family or friends that you complain about. So instead, you’re going to have questions that you can pull, I have a ton on our website on previous podcasts, meaningful questions that kind of allow you to escape from reality, even just for a few minutes. So for example, if you could grab a drink with anyone from any period in history, whom would you choose and why? Who would you choose, like any time in history.

Brandon (28:00):

I would want to chat with Obama. I feel like he, but I want him to talk openly and honestly.

Dr. Jess (28:11):

That’s a whole other conversation.

Brandon (28:13):

But that would be really interesting. I’m sure there are a bunch of others that I could come up with too.

Dr. Jess (28:19):

For sure, yeah I’d love to talk to him. I’d love to talk to her as well. All right number fifteen involves giving compliments. So and I wanna talk about compliments for a moment. So a compliment is something that you know makes somebody feel good. And I often talk about this on social media, probably not often enough, that the intention of the complement does not make it a compliment. It’s the outcome that makes it a complement. Because sometimes people say things to me that don’t feel good for me right? Like really, kind of sexual stuff from strangers, nd they’ll say “oh, I meant as a compliment.” And I remind them that a compliment is about the person who receives it right? So you saying like “nice tits” to me as some stranger, after I’ve just written what I think is a very thoughtful caption on an instagram post, is not a compliment to me. It actually feels objectifying and degrading. So yeah and I wanna talk about the levels of compliments. This is actually, this is for you Brandon.

Brandon (29:18):

Okay. Let’s do it.

Dr. Jess (29:19):

No, it’s for everyone. So three levels: pleasantly, admiration and lustful, or animalistic. So pleasant compliments, is a pleasantry, or just things you could say to your child, a parent. Yeah, “you’re so sweet” or “you’re very smart” or you know, “you look handsome.” I guess that could also fall into the second category of admiration. So what I really like about you, and can I get really specific? Like I love, your kneecaps in those jeans.

Brandon (29:50):

I  thought you were gonna comment on how funny I am.

Dr. Jess (29:53):

Anyhow. And then the third level of lustful or animalistic compliments, is when we get really specific. Like when you’re in those jeans, I can’t keep my eyes off your ass.” Or you know, “when you bend over like that, it makes me think about how hot you are.” So thinking about, what what are you laughing?

Brandon (30:14):

I thought you were gonna say something like, “when you bend over like that, it makes me think how you need new underwear.”

Dr. Jess (30:21):

Hang on. You did sit in chocolate the other day.

Brandon (30:24):

I did.

Dr. Jess (30:25):

Right in the middle of your jeans, like the seam down the middle.

Brandon (30:28):

And what was most interesting about this fact is that I did not clean it up, for three days.

Dr. Jess (30:33):

I know, and then the next day I see you in the same jeans, where it looks like you’ve pooped yourself.

Brandon (30:39):

It’s funny to me okay. This is funny. I’m like whatever.

Dr. Jess (30:43):

This is what life has come to. But compliments really go a long way. And we have research on the fact that compliments give a boost in confidence and mood, to both the giver and receiver. So I think we can be a bit more specific and a bit more purposeful with our compliments. Next is really about touching your partner when you’re not in the mood. And this is a big one. So one of the most meaningful times to be affectionate is when you’re actually not in the mood. So I’m not suggesting that you do anything against your will, but if you are feeling frustrated or angry or exhausted or even resentful, or stressed if you can just reach out and touch one another, you’ll probably find that reconnecting just physically does something for the emotional connection as well. And all of those kind of negative feelings that interfere with eroticism tend to subside as your bodies respond to one another’s touch.

Brandon (31:36):

I feel this way. I feel again, just more connected when you reach out and touch my hand, touch my shoulder, so yeah I would agree, it works.

Dr. Jess (31:44):

Actually sometimes during the podcast, we do hold hands. Next we have play music in your bedroom. Because music, well first of all, we know that people who listen to loud music apparently have more sex and music can shift your mood. It can kind of boost your confidence, it can help you to relax. And all of these things actually heighten the erotic connection, so kind of thinking about what kind of music you want to hear. Do you wanna feel powerful, than you wanna listen to heavy bass apparently. If you want to feel like kind of loving and playful, they say to pick songs from your early days of dating. If you need to destress or decompressed, they say a more kind of mellow melody is good for you. And if if you’re familiar with the concept of core erotic feelings, which I have spoken about on the podcast before, and I’m going to do a whole new podcast on it because it needs an update, but your core erotic feeling is the feeling that you require in order to get in the mood for sex. Think about what kind of music makes you feel that feeling. And you can play it in the bedroom, or you can play it in the kitchen as you’re cleaning up. And then I have a game for the next one, from my book, The Ultimate Guide to Seduction and Foreplay. This one is called Netflix and Strip. And the book is co-authored by Marla Renee Stewart. And I can’t actually remember whether she came up with this or me, so I wanna make sure she gets credit too. You know we Netflix and chill, but Netflix and Strip is a little bit different. You agree to remove a piece of your partner’s clothing or yours whenever you hear a specific word when you’re watching television. And you can agree on a word together or you can kind of secretly have a word and they have to figure out what that word is. So I can have my own word and then you have to kind of figure out what it is as it goes along.

Brandon (33:38):

That’s cool, have some fun while you’re watching Netflix.

Dr. Jess (33:41):

I like that. And then another really important one, I’m pretty sure we went over twenty, is using the 99 rule. And again if you follow my work, I’ve mentioned this one before, but it’s so important to just ease tension. And it’s not that this is gonna lead to sex, but it lays the groundwork so that sex becomes more possible. So the ninety nine rule is simply thinking about whether issues or arguments or points of contention or stress will matter to you when you’re ninety nine years old. So if you’re fighting about something, if you’re feeling frustrated over a disagreement, if you are you know even stressed about work, does this matter to me? Is this something I’m even going to remember when I’m ninety nine years old? And I also think about that three-pronged approach of does this affect my livelihood, like my security? Am I gonna lose my house and end up on the street? And does it affect my health, and does it affect the love in my life? And if it doesn’t affect those, why would I want to let it adversely affect my health via unnecessary stress?

Brandon (34:42):

l’m glad that you brought up over thinking about the ninety nine rule during work, because I do think about it during work especially when getting really worked up, or something’s bothering me. I remember that ninety nine rule, I’m like, “yeah, this doesn’t really matter.” It’s not that I’m not going to deal with it. It’s not that I’m not gonna fix the problem or whatever the issue is, but in the grand scheme of things it’s not worth me losing sleep or being upset, or bringing that home to my partner or to you. And yeah I find it really, really, helpful.

Dr. Jess (35:12):

And then last but not least and I think this one so important, is to set a little time aside to daydream together once a week. To think about what you’re gonna do when you retire, or what you’re gonna do when the travel restrictions have been lifted. Or what, I don’t know, your dream vacation is, or what you would do if you won the lottery. Just kind of these hypotheticals that give you a sense of escapism. Because when we think about eroticism, so it’s definitely about intimacy and connection and the physical, and it’s also about the playful and curious. And these things come together. So I don’t think daydreaming means that we’re gonna hop in the sack immediately, no. If we were to talk about fantasies right? Because I’ve kept these kind of non sexual, right, because not everybody wants to be sexual all the time. If we were to talk about fantasies, there’s a good chance it’ll lead to the bedroom.

Brandon (36:05):

I would agree.

Dr. Jess (36:07):

So if you’re in the mood for that, you could also talk about your your sex dreams or anything you’ve seen that’s turned you on. But this escape from reality is really helpful. Especially when you’re feeling stressed out right? I remember when we were young, long, long time ago.

Brandon (36:21):

We aren’t that old.

Dr. Jess (36:22):

No but I remember like twenty, right when we met. We would talk about what we would do if we won the lottery. Do you remember? And we would go deep down the rabbit hole as though it was real. I’d be like “no, no, no, but we can’t do that” and then you’d almost forget that you weren’t having a real conversation.

Brandon (36:37):

I remember being young and buying a ticket and I don’t even wanna check the numbers. I just wanna keep daydreaming. It’s more fun to buy the ticket and daydream than it was to check the ticket, because you’re going to be disappointed right?

Dr. Jess (36:50):

Right. So yeah, so as I kind of walked through these twenty ways to make daily interactions more erotic, obviously what I’m reminded of is that it’s way too much right? You’re not going to do all of these things all of the time. But what you’re doing is you’re laying the groundwork so that you can make sex possible.

Brandon (37:10):

I also think if you push through and commit to them, like if you choose one or two or three and you don’t expect fireworks the first day that you do them, but you know that over the course of a week you know three, five, ten, twenty days, it will contribute. And then I also notice when you do these things for me, I want to reciprocate. And I want to do them back for you. So it builds this wonderful snowball effect where, I’m happy to make you coffee, because I know you’re going to make me lunch or you’re going to, and I don’t expect it, but this wonderful back and forth of trying to do nice things for each other.

Dr. Jess (37:45):

Out nice each other. I guess it brings me to the question that I will inevitably receive, because you’re saying “oh, when I do something, you want to reciprocate.” What do you do when you have a partner who just takes and takes, because there are people who are more givers, there are more people who are more matchers, and there are people who are more takers. And I don’t know if folks have read Adam Grant’s Give and Take, and it’s more focused on business. But obviously there’s a relational element in all areas of our lives. So what do you do, if you are doing these things and your partner isn’t reciprocating?

Brandon (38:20):

Take pleasure in the ability to do it. Know that one day, if you couldn’t do it you would be happy to do it. And I don’t think this means that you should take pleasure in doing every single thing for that person, you know what I mean and not expect anything at all in return. But I always remind myself that one day these things that I regard as chores, or things that I wouldn’t necessarily want to do. I will long to do them.

Dr. Jess (38:46):

You mean like if you couldn’t?

Brandon (38:47):

If I couldn’t mean.

Dr. Jess (38:49):

You mean when I start traveling again?

Brandon (38:51):

There will be days when you travel again, where I’m like “geeze, I miss making you a coffee in the morning.”

Dr. Jess (38:56):

I think the other thing is, if your partner isn’t first of all, you’re not doing this for them to reciprocate. But if this is more of a pattern in your relationship, in which you are giving a lot and they’re taking and maybe not showing appreciation or not as open to doing things for you. I think it’s an important conversation to have, to let them know it would feel good, “I would feel really good if you could try this,” or “when you do this it makes me feel really loved” right? Back to that you know starting with the positive, trying to understand through an inquiry and then making your requests. So again, I think so many of us say things like, “you never text me” or “you never call me” instead of, “hey you know anytime I get a text from you, I love to see your name on my screen.” I’m really of the belief that it’s okay to say what you like, to say what you want, but don’t be, you can’t have it both ways. You can’t say “oh I want them to just know: right? That’s something I hear, they’re like “well if I have to ask them, it doesn’t feel as good.” And I hear you, but sometimes people have no clue what you enjoy. And what makes you feel loved. And what makes you feel valued. And this notion that they have to read your mind is inevitably going to lead to let down. So definitely speak up.

Brandon (40:07):

It reminds me of the the soul mate thing right? Where it’s like, well that’s my soul mate, everything should be easy. And it’s like well, but if you don’t have a conversation they may just never know right?

Dr. Jess (40:18):

And compatibility isn’t about sameness. We are very, very, different. So I if I were to do for you the things that I want, you may not even like them. And that’s why no one’s inherently a great partner or inherently a great lover, like we have to just keep communicating. So I will leave it at that. Hopefully you find one or two things from our list of, I don’t know, I think it was twenty two, I’m going to have to go count them, and you can try something new or just probably something you’ve already done and you just needed the reminder. Like even as I go through this list, it’s a really good reminder to myself that I don’t have to do it all, but there are some things where I could step it up a little. So thanks for chatting with me.

Brandon (40:57):

Yeah, thank you.

Dr. Jess (40:59):

And I want to say thank you to the OHMYG Toy because it’s a lot of fun. And as I said, whisper quiet, has this little massaging pearl that mimics that come hither motion, and you can use code DRJESS to save at http://www.iobatoys.com, but really the easiest way to get it is from the show notes or from my instagram. And I’ll be putting up another demo, because I hear they’re sending me a brand new toy that’s similar concept, but for a different body part coming up soon.

Brandon (41:26):

I was just looking at that, and you could pleasure anybody with that.

Dr. Jess (41:32):

You mean you’re making it about yourself.

Brandon (41:34):

I’m definitely making that about myself.

Dr. Jess (41:36):

Where do you want it?

Brandon (41:38):

You know what, maybe we should make that…

Dr. Jess (41:41):

You don’t want to say the body part?

Brandon (41:43):

No, I was just thinking…

Dr. Jess (41:44):

Is this because you can’t say penis?

Brandon (41:45):

I can say penis.

Dr. Jess (41:46):

I’m just kidding. I’m wrapping this up here. Thank you to OHMYG, do check them out. We’ll find out what body part Brandon used it on next week if he can say it. Folks, wherever you’re at, have a great one.

(42:04):

The Sex With Dr. Jess podcast. Improve your sex life, improve your life.