Dating can be extra exhausting at this time of year and regardless of your relationship status, you might need new ways to spice up your love life. Good thing intimacy expert Shan Boodram is here! You might've seen her on YouTube as Shan BOODY. She's also a clinical sexologist who wrote "The Game of Desire" and has surprising tips to help you get in the driver's seat of your love life.
1. Don't Just Be Yourself
Shan says, "If someone came to you and said 'I'm at the back of my class right now in X topic. What should I do?' you wouldn't say 'Just be yourself.' It's better to research ... Try reading new books or try doing your hair in different ways. See if that makes you feel any different!"
So don't lie about who you are, but change up how you're presenting yourself if what you're currently doing isn't getting you the results you're looking for. (Unless you've got the boo of your dreams in which Shan says, "keep it up.")
2. Know Your Love Language
The advice "communication is key" is important, but so is knowing what you're saying AND how you're saying it. Whether it be physical touch, acts of service, quality time, words of affirmation or gift-giving, Shan says knowing your love language and that of your partner helps you get on the same page. "It gives people a template on what to actually talk about," Shan says.
3. Initiate Consent
Maybe you're looking to take the next physical or emotional step with someone. Shan's advice: ask for their consent. "You've probably heard the corny phrase before that 'consent is sexy' and it is!", Shan says. "It's okay to stop the mood and ask." This simple move is an empowering one for you and whoever you're into.
4. Check In With Your Ex
Yup, you heard that right. Shan's not saying get back together with them but who can speak better on your flaws and failures than a former flame? Reach out to one you're cool with (it can get real awkward otherwise) and have them answer honest questions about how you were as a romantic partner. If you don't have many exes, your friends and close family members could also give you useful insight. You just gotta ask ... and be ready for their brutal honesty.
To get Shan Boodram's full range of tips (and to hear people who actually reached out to their exes) listen to her interview on the Cuffed ISH episode of our YR Media podcast, Adult ISH!