Monday, September 13, 2010


Whether you bounce back from setback quickly -- or take a tumble and are slow to recover -- you can train yourself to spend less time worried and more time happy.

In day-to-day life, we all cope with challenges that can range from relatively minor stresses, like a bounced check, to longer-term challenges, like job loss, a heartbreaking
divorce, or bad news from your doctor.

These setbacks don't have to set you back for long. Here are six ways to handle these events better so you can move from harrowed to happy faster.

1. Do rely on a supportive network of family and friends.

Jim Stevens, 59, an artist in Wheat Ridge, Colo., discovered what resilience experts say is a sure-fire way to bounce back from adversity: Reach out to others for support.

While serving in the Vietnam War, Stevens was shot in the head by an enemy fighter. Doctors couldn't remove the entire bullet. For the next 20 years, Stevens had severe, recurring migraines.

In 1994, a particularly painful migraine triggered a
stroke and Stevens lost all but 2% of his vision. He was angry. One day, in a fit of rage, he destroyed much of his unfinished art pieces and notes.

In time, he opened up about his feelings to his youngest daughter. "She convinced me I was still needed," Stevens says. "That broke my heart and finally got my attention."

David Myers, PhD, a psychology professor at Hope College and author of The Pursuit of Happiness, tells WebMD, "Self-disclosure can be healing. Talking about our troubles can be open-heart therapy."

2. Don't check out. Do stay committed and engaged.

During their key talk, Stevens' daughter suggested he learn karate as a way to regain self-control. He set a new life mission for himself: to become a martial artist. Its true we need a purpose in life to remain alive otherwise when there are no problems in life we are dead the next day (Klub Psychology).

"I was back on track, looking forward to things again and not behind me," Stevens says.

After four years, he earned a black belt. Today, he is the only legally blind man to win the Martial Arts Tournament of Champions men's fighting competition. He says spectators were unaware of his blindness.

Years ago, when he was deeply frustrated with his situation, Stevens could have quit. Instead, he worked to master his anger and took charge of the situation.

"Control is the opposite of powerlessness," writes Joan Borysenko, PhD, in her book It's Not the End of the World. "It's not about being a control freak or bending people to your will. It means agency-- that I-can-do-it feeling, which leads to effective action."

3. Take Small Steps and Be Persistent.

"Start acting as if you were happier, by doing," Myers says. "Begin with tolerably small steps and do the things that happy people often do: Get out of the house, meet friends, and engage with your faith community."

After two years of studying karate, Jim Stevens' karate instructor suggested he try to work on his art again. He tried and failed twice.

His youngest daughter came to him on one of his bad days and said, "Dad, you promised not to quit." So he tried again. This time, Stevens experimented with different types of visual lenses to help him. He says he slowly started to make quality art again, using the lenses and his sense of touch, and in 2009 was honored by the Kennedy Center for his work.

4. Exercise Regularly.

Don't let a setback bench you. Physical activity may help you handle uncertainty and stress and may help to boost your mood. Exercise has been shown to increase the production of the feel-good chemicals endorphins. Not only exercise, let 2 miles of run a day, make us less fearful and less insecure but makes us able to confront the problems at our own. We can then realize we can overcome our greatest enemy which is fear and not the outside world of enemies and terrorists (Klub Psychology).

If you haven't exercised in a while, check with your doctor before launching a new fitness plan. And don't forget about the other basics of self-care: a healthy diet, getting enough sleep, and tending to any health conditions you have.

5. Don't Take Things Personally.

Try not to blame yourself or others for your problems. Instead, analyze your choices to strive to avoid making the same mistakes twice.

For example, if you've had a nasty breakup, try not to beat yourself up ("I have terrible luck with men/women") or trash your ex ("That liar deserves what s/he gets.") Instead of spending that energy rehashing or ruminating about the things not done in the past, use it to move on.

"Taking things personally leads to guilt and shame, which are disempowering emotions," Borysenko writes in It's Not the End of the World. "Taking responsibility for your actions, on the other hand, can lead to helpful and empowering insights."

6. Be Flexible.

A setback often includes a life-altering change. Experts say many people would do well to be more flexible in handling those changes. When people are not flexible in their ways and ideologies they are not able to enjoy the juice that life offers and the beauty of colorful life they can vie for. Set no right or wrong prior doing any work. Just do it and experiment and experience the truth. This sure would mean a discovery to you. (Klub Psychology)

For example, suppose you lose your job -- but you know the exact job you want next. While on the hunt, you get another job offer -- but it falls short of your dream job, so you don't take it. In being inflexible, you missed a source of income and may have slammed a door that could have led to other opportunities.

"Just knowing you can be more flexible is half the battle," says George Bonanno,PhD,professor and chair of Columbia University's counseling and clinical psychology department and author of The Other Side of Sadness." You can reorient yourself during a crisis and change course as things change. You can say: "OK, I can handle this. What do I need to do now?'"

How to Solve Problems Like the Best

Step back with a cool head and do a little detective work to see if you could handle your setback better.

Charles Figley, PhD, distinguished chair in disaster mental health at Tulane University, suggests asking yourself these questions:

1. What happened?
2. Why did it happen?
3. Why did I act like I did when it happened?
4. Why have I acted the way I have since then?
5. What if something like this happens again?

By answering those questions, "you get the benefit of self-knowledge and self-feedback," Figley says. "But the main thing is to get what is inside out."

By C.M. Gordon
Reviewed by
Laura J. Martin, MD and Klub Psychology

Our motto: One step ahead, everyday

Friday, July 30, 2010

Stress Management In Times of Crisis

When we face everyday stress or even chronic stress, our approach to stress management is different than how we approach crisis stress management. More specifically, everyday stress management is in some ways similar and in other ways different from when we face a major challenge or crisis. We may use similar strategies with everyday stress or crisis-level stress, for example seeking social support or taking a mental break. However, we may be much more intense or focused when facing crisis stress management--rather than talking about our day with a good friend, for example, we may lean on our friends for moral support as well as for practical support with things like cooking meals, help with children, or even sometimes financial assistance. We may seek help from a professional, such as a therapist or coach. We may find a support group. Seeking social support is a strategy for relieving stress that ranges from mild to major, but the level of social support we require can also range from mild to major.

In this way, when we face a crisis, we can use stress management techniques that we already employ in our lives, but in new ways that can help us relieve the greater levels of stress that we may face in a crisis. Here are some suggestions for crisis stress management that include stress management strategies you may already be using, but with a shift.

Social Support

As I mentioned above, when you're having a bad day, you may call a friend for a little venting or support. When you're dealing with the chronic stress of a frustrating job, you may have a group of friends you can talk to about it, or you may seek out support for managing job stress.

When you're facing a bigger crisis, you may take steps for finding greater support and more significant change: friends may bring meals so you don't have to worry about cooking for a while, or they may offer to help in other ways if you just say the word; this is why relationships can be so helpful in times of crisis.

Meditation and Mental Breaks

Eliminating the stress you're experiencing might not always be possible, especially when you're in the throes of a crisis. However, you can give yourself breaks from the stress through meditation and through simply giving yourself mental 'time-out's. Meditation can be helpful not only because it allows you to stop experiencing the thoughts that keep your stress response triggered, but because it allows your body to slow down and relax, and can bring on the relaxation response, which counteracts chronic stress. Long-term meditation can make you less reactive to stress, but in times of crisis, even 5-minute meditations can have a beneficial effect.

Self Care

When experiencing a crisis, stress management can fall by the wayside, and so can self care. However, when we're tired, hungry (or sustained by a poor diet), and sedentary, we can also be more reactive to stress. That's why taking care of our own basic physical needs during a crisis is so important for stress management. In times of everyday stress, it's good to treat your body well; during a crisis, it's essential to focus on healthy eating, getting at least some exercise, and getting quality sleep.


Writing about your feelings of stress can be a good way to release them. Writing about things you can do to affect your situation can help you maintain feelings of hope and greater control in a crisis. Writing about three things for which you can feel grateful at the end of each day can help you stay optimistic, maintain gratitude, and relieve stress during a crisis. Crisis stress management can mean utilizing these specific focused techniques while journaling.

Maintain a Positive Attitude

Often what we focus on can make the difference between feeling overwhelmed and successfully managing stress during a crisis. One way to stay positive is through cognitive restructuring--actively cultivating a mindset that focuses on the positive and downplays the negative. During a crisis, finding meaning may be especially valuable, but many types of discipline in thoughts can help.

Prayer and Meditation

Many people find strength in their spirituality, especially during times of crisis. The support of a spiritual community, as well as the strength of spiritual teachings, can be a great source of comfort and stress relief. If you hold spiritual beliefs, don't forget the beneficial effects of prayer as a form of crisis stress management.

Pare Down Your Schedule

When coping with a crisis, it's important to maintain your energy and reserves. That usually means cutting out activities that drain you, aren't enjoyable or are unnecessary. When in crisis mode, we may have to cut deeper into the schedule, with the understanding that we can always add activities back later. Keep only those activities that are absolutely necessary, or that help you to cope. It can be difficult to know what parts of your schedule to sacrifice, but this article on priorities can help.

Professional Help

If you find yourself unable to cope effectively in a crisis, it's important to seek professional help when necessary. If you're not sure, talk to your doctor. Don't forget to take care of yourself by reaching out for resources when necessary.

Sources: www.

By: Elizabeth Scott

Our motto: One step ahead, everyday.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Cognitive Distortions and Stress

When you think about your life, it is quite possible that your mind is playing tricks on you that can distort your view. Cognitive distortions -- where your mind puts a ‘spin’ on the events you see, and attaches a not-so-objective interpretation to what you experience -- happen all the time. They are especially common in people with depression and other mood disorders.

Aaron T. Beck originally came up with the theory of cognitive distortions in the 1960s, and many therapists since then have helped clients live more positive lives by hunting down their cognitive distortions and correcting them. (It’s one of the tenets of a very successful and fast-working mode of therapy called cognitive therapy.)

When you know what to be on the lookout for, it becomes rather easy to spot the cognitive distortions in others. It may be a little more challenging to spot your own, but it is possible. Doing so usually brings lasting positive change in the way you experience stressors in your life.

An interesting thing to note is that several cognitive distortions, can actually work to your advantage. The key is to know when and how to do so. See this article on traits of optimists for the secrets to cognitive distortion success.

Here are the 10 most common (and officially recognized) cognitive distortions, with examples of how they relate to stress. You might find yourself smiling as you recognize one or two as familiar "friends." If, in the coming days, you look for them and gently correct them, you’ll be well on your way to reducing your reactivity to the stress in your life.

1. All-or-Nothing Thinking

This type of distortion is the culprit when people think in extremes, with no gray areas or middle ground. All-or-nothing thinkers often use words like "always" and "never" when describing things. “I always get stuck in traffic!” “My bosses never listen to me!” This type of thinking can magnify the stressors in your life, making them seem like bigger problems than they may, in reality, be. Don’t be extremist at any context is what is suggested.

2. Overgeneralization

Those prone to overgeneralization tend to take isolated events and assume that all future events will be the same. For example, an overgeneralizer who faces a rude sales clerk may start believing that all sales clerks are rude and that shopping will always be a stressful experience. It’s a sort of presumption and rumination.

3. Mental Filter

Those who use mental filtering as their distortion of choice tend to gloss over positive events and hold a magnifying glass to the negative. Ten things can go right, but a person operating under the influence of a mental filter may only notice the one thing that goes wrong. (Add a little overgeneralization and all-or-nothing thinking to the equation, and you have a recipe for stress.) Pondering over negative things as especially seen in maniac and depressed is a prime cognitive distorter.

4. Disqualifying the Positive

Similar to mental filtering, those who disqualify the positive tend to treat positive events like flukes, thereby clinging to a more negative world view and set of low expectations for the future. Have you ever tried to help a friend solve a problem, only to have every solution you pose shot down with a "Yeah but..." response? You’ve witnessed this cognitive distortion firsthand.

5. Jumping to Conclusions

People do this one all the time. Rather than letting the evidence bring them to a logical conclusion, they set their sights on a conclusion (often negative), and then look for evidence to back it up, ignoring evidence to the contrary. The kid who decides that everyone in his new class will hate him, and ‘knows’ that they’re only acting nice to him in order to avoid punishment, is jumping to conclusions. Conclusion-jumpers can often fall prey to mind reading (where they believe that they know the true intentions of others without talking to them- paranoid ideations) and fortune telling (predicting how things will turn out in the future and believing these predictions to be true). Can you think of examples of adults you know who do this? I bet you can.

Negative Thinking Patterns

There are 5 more cognitive distortions to learn about that happen all the time.

Cognitive distortions and negative thinking styles are common, and they keep us stressed-out and stuck. Page 1 of this feature covers 5 common negative thinking patterns and explains how they contribute to stress. Here are the other 5 negative thinking patterns that you need to look out for:

6. Magnifications and Minimization

Similar to mental filtering and disqualifying the positive, this cognitive distortion involves placing a stronger emphasis on negative events and downplaying the positive ones. The customer service representative who only notices the complaints of customers and fails to notice positive interactions is a victim of magnification and minimization. Another form of this distortion is known as catastrophizing, where one imagines and then expects the worst possible scenario. It can lead to a lot of stress.

7. Emotional Reasoning

This one is a close relative of jumping to conclusions in that it involves ignoring certain facts when drawing conclusions. Emotional reasoners will consider their emotions about a situation as evidence rather than objectively looking at the facts. “I’m feeling completely overwhelmed, therefore my problems must be completely beyond my ability to solve them,” or, “I’m angry with you; therefore, you must be in the wrong here,” are both examples of faulty emotional reasoning. Acting on these beliefs as fact can, understandably, contribute to even more problems to solve.

8. Should Statements

Those who rely on ‘should statements’ tend to have rigid rules, set by themselves or others, that always need to be followed -- at least in their minds. They think absolutely but are not able to act absolutely. Rather they should have thought relatively and acted absolutely. They don’t see flexibility in different circumstances, and they put themselves under considerable stress trying to live up to these self-imposed expectations. If your internal dialogue involves a large number of ‘shoulds,’ you may be under the influence of this cognitive distortion. I am right and you are wrong is what they always stresses.

9. Labeling and Mislabeling

Those who label or mislabel will habitually place labels that are often inaccurate or negative on themselves and others. “He’s a whiner/complainer.” “She’s a phony.” “I’m just a useless worrier.” These labels tend to define people and contribute to a one-dimensional view of them, paving the way for overgeneralizations to move in. Labeling cages people into roles that don’t always apply and prevents us from seeing people (ourselves included) as we really are. It’s also a big no-no in relationship conflicts.

10. Personalization

Those who personalize their stressors tend to blame themselves or others for things over which they have no control, creating stress where it need not be. Those prone to personalization tend to blame themselves for the actions of others, or blame others for their own feelings.

If any of these feel a little too familiar, that’s a good thing: recognizing a cognitive distortion is the first step of moving past it. See this article for tips on cognitive restructuring, the process of moving beyond cognitive distortions.

By Elizabeth Scott, M.S., Guide

Reviewed by the Klub Psychology

Our motto: One step ahead, everyday.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

A healthy sex life — at any age!

No men or women over the age of 50 would argue that their sex life is just the same as it was when they were 20. Maybe it’s better. Maybe it’s worse. But either way, it’s bound to be different.

Just as the body changes with age, so does sexuality. This physical transformation usually includes declining hormone levels for both men and women, as well as changes in neurology and circulation. These shifts often lead to a variety of sexual problems such as erectile dysfunction or vaginal dryness. A wide array of medical treatments are now available to address these and other conditions.

Outward appearances also change with age, sometimes bringing a decline in self-confidence in the sexual arena. Nearly everyone experiences some of these changes. But they don’t spell the end of a sex life for most older people.

Both physical and emotional issues can interfere with a good sex life. Sometimes they intertwine, causing breakdowns in communication and inhibitions that cause sexuality to sputter and stall. But these are not problems you must live with. Instead, treatments are available that can improve if not cure most physical problems.

Self-help techniques and counseling can bring relief to relationship problems. By shifting your focus away from your perceived flaws to your attributes, you can boost your self-esteem and establish your own standards for attractiveness.

Think back on what it was that made you attractive in your younger years. Was it your soulful brown eyes, your crooked smile, or maybe your infectious laugh? Chances are, those qualities are still as appealing as ever. Also, try directing your attention to the experience of giving and receiving pleasure during sex. Non cooperation during sex declines the libido in the counterpart.

One should understand that being satisfied from sex is related to the emotional touch given during the physical sex. This can help you find the confidence to give yourself over to the experience. Great sex is often the outgrowth of a deep emotional connection — something that’s not guaranteed by having a perfect body. A negative self-image isn’t always rooted in your appearance.

Career setbacks or other disappointments can lead to feelings of failure and depression, both of which sap desire. For men, episodes of impotence can undercut confidence in their manhood. Research have correlated that anxiety is directly related to the premature ejaculation, which have every tendency to distract people from the sexual activities.

No matter what its cause, a poor self-image can take a toll on your sex life. When performance anxiety develops as a result, it can spark a downward spiral of repeated sexual failure and diminishing self-esteem. Correcting this problem demands serious attention to its origin.

Many of the physical changes that come with age have noticeable effects on the sex organs and the sexual cycle. Thus, the careful lovemaking of a 70-something couple may bear little resemblance to the lusty pairings of 20-year-olds. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Greater experience, fewer inhibitions, and a deeper understanding of your needs and those of your partner can more than compensate for the consequences of aging. The physical changes of aging can provide an impetus for developing a new and satisfying style of lovemaking.

Sexuality in later life
Middle-aged and older adults no longer accept such myths as “Sex is only for young people” and “Sex isn’t important to older adults.” A study conducted by AARP, “Sexuality at Midlife and Beyond,” illustrates this. These are some of the findings:

1) Five out of six of the respondents disagreed with the statement that “Sex is only for younger people.”
2) Six out of 10 people stated that sexual activity was a crucial part of a good relationship.
3) Only 10% of adults reported that they don’t particularly enjoy sex, and just 12% agreed that they would be quite happy never having sex again.

Review by: Klub Psychology

Our motto: One step ahead, everyday.

Friday, March 5, 2010

365 Nights of Sex: Can It Strengthen a Marriage?

When their marriages fell into the doldrums, two long-married couples decided to find out if having sex every day could boost their relationships.

If you decided to have sex every day, would your relationship benefit?
Two long-married couples decided to find out. When lovemaking fell off their respective "to-do" lists, they ditched the sweats, bought sex toys and books, stepped up exercise, lit candles, and took trips. Then they chronicled their "sexperiment" in two recently released books, Just Do It: How One Couple Turned Off the TV and Turned On Their Sex Lives for 101 Days (No Excuses!) by Doug Brown and 365 Nights: A Memoir of Intimacy by Charla Muller with Betsy Thorpe.

But will daily sex really help a relationship that's hit a rough patch? Some experts say yes; others aren't so sure. As for the two couples who tried it, the Browns and the Mullers, both say the experiment strengthened their marriages in -- and out -- of the bedroom.

Charla Muller had been married for eight years to her husband, Brad, when she embarked on what she calls "the year of the gift" as a way to celebrate her husband's 40th birthday Rather than fixing anything wrong in her marriage, she writes that frequent sex made her happier, less angry, and less stressed.

Doug Brown's wife, Annie Brown, initiated the offer of daily sex after hearing about sexless marriages on Oprah. He had a similar revelation after they started having daily sex. A feature writer for The Denver Post, Brown writes of releasing "an avalanche of flesh pleasures upon our relationship."

"There's a special sense of being desired that only comes from sex," he tells WebMD. "You can be good at your job or at sports, but the daily confirmation you get through sex is a super feeling."
Reversing the Downward Sex Spiral
According to the National Opinion Research Center, the average American couple reports having sex 66 times a year. Newsweek has noted that 15% to 20% of couples have sex less than 10 times a year, which is defined as a "sexless" marriage.

Familiarity, advancing age, work pressures, the challenges of raising a family, and household responsibilities all conspire against regular sex among many otherwise loving couples who feel too harried to get physical.

As according to the researches conducted by Klub Psychology in urban areas like Kathmandu and Pokhara of Nepal, the problem with the urban families, who have migrated from rural background or from other cites to a new city for careers and opportunities, the problem is created due to the two rented room where they live.
They have a family with children who share these two rooms for play, study and living. There are high chances that the couple doesn’t get enough space and time to create a love making affairs. In the long run their marriage and sexual life are both affected. These families don’t have enough economy to lease any hotel or motel room once in a week for their sex (alas the pressurized sex in their room becomes just an ejaculatory mechanism and there is absolute no imtimacy) and also because they have a family with small children to look after and a bigger responsibility to take over. And most couple after few years of marriage are bored with each other because they have nothing to recreate in their sex life.

When Doug Brown and his wife began their experiment in 2006, they were juggling two kids and two jobs. Married for 14 years, they averaged sex three times a month. And he admits he had performance anxiety.

"I felt I had to be a porn star or an Olympic gold medalist. That melted away with [daily] sex. We learned so much about each other. Sex became much more playful and that translated into a more playful union. We regained electricity that wasn't always there before."

They also lost their inhibitions and embarrassment about the subject and gained confidence. "Now we can talk about anything."

The Mullers had a similar experience.
"I didn't realize how much not being [regularly] intimate stressed our relationship," Charla Muller tells WebMD. "I was a bit of a dodger, because I felt pressure to make it fabulous, because who knows when it will come around again? Now I'm not willing to give it up again."
She says an unexpected benefit of daily sex was the kindness it required of the couple.

"I wasn't expecting that. I thought we would only have to be really nice after hours. But we both had to bring our best game to the marriage every day. That was an important part of what went on behind closed doors."

The Science of Frequent Sex
Helen Fisher, PhD, a research professor and member of the Center for Human Evolutionary Studies in the department of anthropology at Rutgers University, says couples trigger sex drive, romance, and attachment -- along with their attendant hormones, testosterone, dopamine, and oxytocin -- with regular sexual activity.

Fisher is an advocate of frequent sex.

She says that in some hunting and gathering societies, such as the Kung bushmen in the southern Kalahari, couples often make love every day for relaxation. Unlike our time-pressed culture, there is more leisure time.

"Sex is designed to make you feel good for a reason," says Fisher. "With someone you love, I recommend it for many reasons: It's good for your health and good for your relationship. It's good for respiration, muscles, and bladder control. It's a fine antidepressant, and it can renew your energy."

Andrea M. Macari, PhD, a clinical psychologist who specializes in sex therapy in Great Neck, N.Y., says the theories presented in the two books reflect sex therapy literature.
"Regular sex actually increases sexual desire in the couple," she tells WebMD. "In other words, the more you 'do it,' the more the individuals will seek it. You develop a desire that wasn't normally there. The act itself is reinforcing."

But she points out that sex doesn't have to be "mind-blowing."

"I encourage couples to have 'good enough' sex. This sets realistic expectations and often lowers anxiety. Sex is like pizza: even when it's bad, it's usually still pretty good. On a scale from one to 10, good-enough sex is between 5 and 7."

Doug Brown admits that he and his wife were tired on many nights. But, he says, "Once we started, we got in the mood. We were never sorry we did it."

Scheduled Sex: Good for Your Relationship?
"The two married couples who document having sex on a daily basis are great role models for other couples who want to take their relationship to a higher level of intimacy," says Ava Cadell, PhD, founder and president of Loveology University and a certified sex counselor.

Cadell's six-week course called "Passion Power" includes a commitment form, a questionnaire, and daily sensual exercises to help couples deepen their bond. "When a couple makes a commitment to explore and expand their sexuality together, they become 100% fluent in the art of love, intimacy, and sexuality. They can stay in lust forever."

But some experts think scheduled sex can backfire.

Pepper Schwartz, PhD, a professor of sociology at the University of Washington in Seattle, says, "Whether or not it works, most couples can't do it. Those who do maintain that kind of schedule have either a sexual appetite of Olympian proportions or have at least one partner who finds that as their most important way of staying connected and the other partner has tremendous grace and goodwill. There are no couples I have ever met that are in that good a mood, or have that kind of energy every day. So this is a model that will appeal to few and be practiced by even fewer."

But, she concedes, staying sexually and emotionally connected on a frequent basis has merit.

"Sexual attraction and sexual arousal bring to bear two very important hormones, dopamine and oxytocin, both of which create bliss and bonding. Even if the lovemaking session started out with only a modest amount of interest, once arousal starts, these hormones create attachment, pleasure, and intimacy. So while everyday sex isn't necessary, frequent sex is a great bonus and even an essential part of most couple's commitment and happiness with one another."

Stress management expert Debbie Mandel, MA, thinks such sex might be a bit "gimmicky" and could lead to dissatisfaction.

"In many cases, abstinence makes the heart grow fonder. You don't have to abstain for a long period of time -- a few days off creates anticipation and eagerness. You might love steak, but having it every night diminishes the gustatory pleasure. Habituate yourself to regular sex, but don't ever let love become a routine, a robotic obligatory habit."

Doug Brown disagrees. He says setting up a period of time -- be it a long weekend, a week, or a month -- is a way to jump-start a sagging sexual relationship. "It should be possible for any couple to do it for a week and for it not to be a chore. It's free and it's fun. Why not plan it and take advantage of it? Anticipation is a big part of sex."

Having sex every day may be unrealistic for most couples, but if you and your partner want to ramp up your sex life, experts offer the following tips for success:

Increase in increments. Muller recommends couples start by doubling their frequency. Then doubling it again in six months.

Re-examine your sex life -- often. Though they now average sex three times a week, Doug Brown says his wife recently told him they need a "tune-up," or a mini-marathon of sex.

Act on your desires. "Whenever you have the urge, says Macari, head straight for the bedroom. The more time [that elapses] between having the idea and following up and you'll lose motivation."
Fake it till you make it. Several experts agree: Even if you aren't in the mood, once you begin, you'll enjoy sex.

By Suzanne WrightWebMD Feature
Reviewed by
Louise Chang, MD
Some features from the researches of Klub Psychology.

Our motto: One step ahead, everyday.