By YourTango for YourTango.com.
Most people (and experts!) would agree that the key to an uninhibited sexual experience with a partner is to know thyself — intimately. In other words, before you can have great sex as a couple, you must first understand what gets you off. What are your turn-ons (and turn-offs)? What fantasies do you want to try? Where do you like to be touched and how?
We asked seven of our awesome YourTango Experts for their most compelling advice on what you can do alone to have more connected, passionate sex together.
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“The next time you go to bed with your partner, ask yourself this question: “What is the feeling, thought, or behavior that is most present within me at this moment?” Perhaps you are experiencing fear, tension or even anger. Don’t be afraid to express these feelings to your partner — and invite your partner to do the same. This will result in a truly intimate moment. “—Bruce Derman
“Did you know what meditation can be used as a solo tool to improve intimate experiences with your partner? When you’re destressed, your senses are more alive, and meditation allows you to become better attuned to the environment around you. To begin, sit in the lotus position and close your eyes. Breathe in and out through your nose. Concentrate on your root chakra: the base of the spine and the genitals. Imagine your energy flow around this area as you breathe. The difference between having sex and making love is that all senses are fully engaged when you’re making love — as in, a person’s heart, soul and spirit.” —Abiola Abrams
“Living in an appearance-obsessed culture makes it difficult for even the most confident woman to feel secure about her body, but learning to love your body is one of the most important things you can do to improve your sex life. Shift your perspective by conditioning your mind. Think to yourself, ‘”I am beautiful inside and out. I am more than my body.” To embrace and love your body, nourish it with healthy and delicious foods, plenty of sleep and enjoyable exercise. Make the best of what you have by wearing clothes that make your body look and feel good. Maybe most importantly, spend time with people who help you feel beautiful inside and out. It doesn’t matter if your body is slender or curvy. What matters is how you feel about your body. When you love your body, that’s a turn-on for men.” —Janet Ong
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“Being fully present in the moment is what makes sex truly enjoyable — so lead with your senses, not with your thoughts. Imagine the following scene: you approach your partner with a softened gaze, speaking gently. Imagine your partner’s body responding with sensual movements. Imagine breathing in the unique scent of this person and tasting your partner with your tongue in ways that surprise and arouse. Bring this sense of sensual aliveness to the bedroom the next time you are intimate together.” —Dr. Erica Goodstone
“When it comes to romance, men and women don’t always like the same kinds of touching. Are you getting the kind of touching that you enjoy most? One way to focus on where you like to be touched is to draw a ‘body map’ of yourself, front and back. Don’t get intimidated if you’re not artistic. Thinking of your partner’s touch, color the map. Body areas you color in red indicate you never want to be touched here, while areas colored in green indicate that you love being touched here. Areas colored in yellow can be situation-based. Now, sit down with your partner and reveal your body map, explaining all your sweet spots and talking about what works and doesn’t work.” —Aline Zoldbrod
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“Find out how what you think is romantic so that you can set the stage for a romantic evening with your significant other. Here are some questions to consider:
Do you prefer someone to be quiet or to be talking during sex?
Do you wish to be complimented on your appearance or not?
Do you want to have the lights on or off?
Is what you are wearing important or do you prefer to be nude?
Do you need to be warmed up during the day with sexy innuendos during the day, or is this not important?
Is it important to share an activity together first, like dinner.
What type of music is preferred in the background, or do you prefer silence?
Is a smell sexy? Do you prefer to smell perfume or is incense an important smell?
What’s most important is creating the perfect atmosphere that induces you to feel sexy. So use your answers to these questions to set the mood and enjoy what follows.” —Sharon Lyn Wyeth
“I want to let you in on a secret about the clitoris: the size of it has great implications for what it takes for a woman to reach orgasm. A woman who has a large, exposed clitoris is able to achieve orgasm more easily than a woman who a small, more hidden clitoris.” —Mary Gorham Malia
This article originally appeared on YourTango.com: 7 Things You Can Do Alone To Improve Your Sex Life.