By Juli Slattery

 Part of Developing a Healthy Sexual Relationship Series: 


1- Developing a Healthy Sexual Relationship  

2- Intimacy and Sex: How Men and Women are Different — and Why

3- Great Sex Doesn't Just Happen

4- Intimacy Requires Vulnerability

5- Intimacy Requires Effort – and Creativity

 Having sex is a natural physiological practice. People have figured it out on their own since the beginning of time. Without how-to books or online instructional courses, people from every tribe and nation manage to procreate. Because sex is natural, we tend to put it in the category of other natural physical acts like eating and sleeping. You don't have to focus on learning how to master these things – they just naturally happen.


Although sex "just happens," a dynamic sex life does not. Without effort, time and attention, sex can easily and quickly become mundane and predictable and can even turn into a dreaded necessity to place on the "to-do" list.


When couples run into difficulties they tend to give up, concluding, "We're just not that great together." Ironically, they don't expect anything else in marriage to "just happen." They understand that being financially healthy depends on budgets, planning and communication. Even staying healthy requires a proactive approach to food and exercise. Why should sex be any different?


What is the right response to the age-old dilemma of boring sex?

As a couple, have you ever set aside significant time and energy specifically to improve your sex life? Instead of approaching sex as a natural, necessary, physical act, consider approaching it as a gift – an interest and an ability that can be cultivated. You will never be a great cook unless you experiment with new recipes, read cookbooks and practice cooking. You will never be a great soccer player unless you take lessons and play regularly. You will never learn to play the piano without hours of practice.


Don't assume that sex is any different. You won't have a great sex life unless you make it a priority to actually work on intimacy together.

Excerpted from No More Headaches: Enjoying Sex & Intimacy in Marriage, a Focus on the family book published by Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.  © 2009 Juli Slattery.  Used by permission.

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