Here's the scoop, we all know that having a passionate, active sex life is a good idea. Apart from the obvious benefits of feeling good and staying connected to your partner, there is a whole slew of health-related benefits involved. Sex burns calories, boosts immunity, reduces stress, improves self-esteem, relieves pain, helps you sleep better and even leads to a younger-looking you. Does it sound like I'm talking about a new pharmaceutical product? I promise, I'm not.
All of these health benefits happen naturally when someone has a healthy, active sex life, which is great news. You don't have to pop a pill or see a doctor to have a major impact on your life. According to Dr. Oz, "If you have more than 200 orgasms a year, you can reduce your physiologic age by six years." That's amazing.
He goes on to say that you should be having sex around 200 times a year. That breaks down to roughly sixteen times a month or four times a week. Unfortunately, he also says that the average couple has sex just once a week.
Add to this that American women are, all too often, dissatisfied with their sex lives. A recent YourTango sex survey (we're still collecting data) shows that 65.6 percent of respondents are "somewhat satisfied" to "not at all satisfied" with their sex lives. Earlier this year iVillage reported the same troubling stats, with 63 percent of their respondents feeling that they would rather sleep, watch a movie or read than have sex.
Relationship expert Ian Kerner talked to the "Early Show" about the iVillage results:
"You may say you're happy with your sex life, but in the end, if night after night you're consistently picking a book, TV, Facebook, digital networking, any distraction that's out there over intimacy with your partner, in the long run, your relationship could become vulnerable to things like infidelity. So you have to put sex at the center of your relationship."
We completely agree. As with many things, though we know it's good for us, we're still not doing it! From the looks of it, women want more sex and better sex; we just need a little help to get there. That's where our 31-Day Better Sex Challenge comes in—to help us all achieve a little less talk and a lot more action, so to speak.
Given our strong community of experts, we at YourTango are poised and ready to help women have the sex lives they want and need. Who better to learn from than relationship experts like Dr. John Gray (author of Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus), couples therapist and author of Mating in Captivity Esther Perel, eminent marriage and family therapist Dr. Diana Kirschner,and clinical sexologist and acclaimed media personality Dr. Ava Cadell.
Every day throughout October, our experts will share their advice on how to create a vibrant sex life—one that works just for you.
We'll cover such topics as:
• how to keep your sex life alive when you have kids
• how to plan for intimacy instead of waiting for it to spontaneously occur
• how you can reap the deeper health and beauty benefits of sex
• how to help your guy if he struggles with sexual dysfunction
• tips for creating a sexy new you
• how to get your partner in the mood
Each day our experts will offer you their advice and leave you with three to-do items. We're calling them "action steps" because we want help you put advice into practice right away. Action steps will fall into three deadlines: what you can do immediately after reading; what to do within the next seven days; and what to do within in the next 30 days. Our goal is to help you take short-, mid- and long-term steps so you can really see a positive shift in your sex life.
We know life is complicated. We get it. We also know that by taking on a challenge like this, you're investing in yourself, your marriage, your family and your future. Whether you're single or married, this challenge can help you. To get started, I'll share my three action steps with you.
Today I want you to:
One: Commit to this challenge. Believe me, it'll be so worth it! If you're busy one day, don't worry, just catch up as needed, all of the advice will be ready and waiting for you.
Two: Sign up for a free YourTango account (if you don't already have one).When you do this you'll be able to correspond with the experts, ask them questions or connect with them privately offline.
Three: Share this with two or three friends who can act as your wingmen (or wingwomen). We all need support and having a friend or two to talk things over with will keep you engaged and make it more fun.
Within Seven Days: Take 10 minutes to sit down, with no distractions, and identify three areas of improvement you'd like to see in your sex life. When an expert posts on a relevant topic, be sure to ask questions and get involved! If you have a topic you want covered or your curious about, let us know. You can post in the comments section or send me an email directly.
Within 30 Days: Create a plan for yourself to ensure the challenge lasts longer than this month. Set up calendar reminders, add things to your future to-do list and maximize what you've learned so you attend to your sex life each and every week as best as you can.
The goal of the 31-Day Better Sex Challenge is to empower you to create new, healthy habits and perspectives that will help your sex life long after the challenge ends. Even if you're not in a relationship now, the foundation of what you'll learn here will help guide you when you're ready.
Here's wishing you a happier, more inspired sex life!
Are you an expert who would like to be considered for a future YourTango Challenge? We're looking for experts now. Please contact Melanie Gorman by email Melanie@yourtango.com for details.