In our busy schedules, it is easy to have our sex life take a back seat to our other responsibilities. But your mindset about sex can dramatically change your desire and your energy level for sex. If you think about sex as an obligation or a chore, you will be hesitant, avoid your partner, and feel drained of motivation. If, however, you see it as a way to be pampered and given pleasure, many often conjure up the energy to be frisky even in the face of a long day. On other occasions I have spoken about the importance of regular aerobic exercise for maintaining your energy and health, getting proper sleep, learning to reduce stress, as well as the importance of communication to avoid having relationship conflicts from creating anger or resentment. Here are some other practical things to consider if you find that you are often too tired for sex.

The first thing to consider is what you are putting into your body. Diet and water intake directly affect your energy level, and too often they are areas that people ignore. Being dehydrated automatically makes you feel fatigued even if you have a good diet. Remember to drink water throughout the day and to replenish after any caffeinated drinks like soda, coffee, or tea. If you feel thirsty, you are already low on water. The next thing that many people skimp on because of their busy schedules is their diet. Oftentimes, people will skip a meal or two, then have one large meal, or they may eat snacks of easily accessible junk food instead of more nutritious choices. Not only does this leave you without the necessary ingredients to continue with your day, but with that pattern of eating, your body will eat away at your muscle tissue and take up all the energy stored up, but keep your body fat up. This results in low energy reserves and fatigue. Three regular meals of moderate portions is the best way to regulate your body’s energy stores. Since caffeine causes your body to release the energy stored in your muscles, limiting your caffeine intake to one drink (coffee or tea) per day helps your body keep these intact.

Because our diets are usually not sufficient for our stressful lives, most people would benefit from taking vitamins. A multivitamin usually does not provide enough B vitamins for optimal energy, therefore most people would benefit from taking a B-100 Complex, which has 100mg of each of a combination of B vitamins. Our modern diet and environmental factors (such as medications) can leave us with low levels of B vitamins. These are important because they help with metabolism and help normalize energy levels.

One sex tip you can use to combat fatigue is to initiate sex in a place other than your bed. Since your brain already connects being in bed with sleeping, this becomes much more difficult to resist once you are already tired from the day. Once you slide into the covers and you get horizontal, the desire for sleep overshadows any desire there may be for sex. But starting off on the couch or another area of the house may keep those zzzz’s from taking over. You may try talking to your partner about this and start your foreplay or flirtation before you get to the bedroom. Related to that is the time of the night that you or your partner tries to initiate sex. I would recommend that you not wait until bedtime to start communicating to your partner that you want to have sex. This may require some creative planning with your family’s schedule, but can certainly pay off. Instead of staying up watching tv until your lids are heavy, start kissing and caressing early, and maybe forego that tv show for some real live action!

Keep in mind that many women require some physical stimulation before they actually are aware of any sexual desire. If they are feeling too tired, they may not even be able to focus on what the pleasure of sex could feel like at that moment. A tip for these women is to give yourself permission to explore some gentle stimulation, either by your partner or by yourself, before you make up your mind about having sex. This may help awaken a stronger desire for sex, even if it was previously masked by feeling tired. So much of a woman’s desire has to do with what she is focused on, and some actual physical contact and stimulation helps shift that focus.

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