Sex therapists explain why scheduling sex isn't weird and could actually enhance your sex life

·7 min read
scheduling sex
You should pick an exact time to have sex and mark it on your calendar. Viacheslav Peretiatko/Getty Images
  • Scheduling sex can demonstrate a commitment to your relationship, improve communication, and guarantee quality time.

  • Plus, the more sessions you schedule, the more you might be open to spontaneous sex.

  • Schedule sex on an actual calendar at least a week in advance to ensure you're keeping your commitment.

  • Visit Insider's Health Reference library for more advice.

Putting time in for sex on your calendar doesn't sound very sexy, but it may be just the thing you need in order to prioritize romance.

When it comes to relationships, oftentimes life can get in the way. Busy schedules take priority over the relationship, and your sex life takes a hit. Scheduling sex into your calendar is a way to make sure your sex life doesn't suffer.

Here's how to schedule sex with your partner and the benefits of doing so.

How to schedule sex with your partner

Scheduling sex isn't as simple as sending a calendar invite to your partner. It's important to first communicate about scheduling sex before you dive in and actually do it.

Here are five sexpert-approved tips to get started.

1. Set a goal for how often you want to have sex

Instead of just setting a broad goal of having sex more often, it's a good idea to set concrete, actionable goals.

For example, you and your partner should set a goal for the number of times that you will plan to have sex each week. Coming to a mutual agreement on this number is an important first step, says Jenn Mann, LMFT, author of The Relationship Fix.

Research shows that most couples have sex about once a week. However, this number varies by age. Couples in their twenties have sex 80 times a year on average, while couples in their sixties have sex about 20 times a year.

Just because these are the average numbers, it doesn't mean you have to have sex this often. Have an open discussion with your partner to figure out what is ideal for both of you.

2. Be realistic

When you're starting out, be realistic and set small, manageable goals. This can get the ball rolling and help you to build confidence to reach bigger goals.

"Making a plan to have sex every day when you've been struggling to do it twice a month is not reasonable. It's better you start with small goals and build up," says Mann. For example, work on that goal of reaching two times a month before working your way up to a goal of weekly sex.

3. Clarify your expectations

"Sex" can be interpreted pretty broadly. Therefore, Mann recommends setting clear expectations so you and your partner are on the same page.

For example, is the goal intercourse? Is it to have an orgasm? Does oral sex without intercourse count? "It is important for everyone to be on the same page in order to feel fulfilled," says Mann.

4. Use a calendar

You should mark downtime for sex on an actual calendar, whether it's physical or digital, instead of just keeping mental notes. Schedule at least a week in advance.

This will increase your likelihood of keeping your commitment, and it will give you something fun to look forward to whenever you peek at your calendar.

When determining the times to schedule sex, be sure to take each of your schedules into account equally. You don't want to end up with an unequal balance of who is compromising more.

Questions to help you schedule sex

You should also ask yourself some questions to aid in creating the best schedule for you and your partner. Mann says answering the following questions can help you start:

  • When does each of you ideally like to have sex?

  • Where do you have windows of opportunity for time alone together?

  • If you have children, what time do your kids go to bed?

  • What kind of obligations do you have at different times of the day?

5. Let go of preconceived notions

There's no shame in scheduling sex. It's unrealistic to think that your sex life will be perfect without any effort.

"Release myths of what it means to schedule. Many times that has a bad connotation, but scheduling time for your partner in making your relationship a priority is a positive thing," says sex and relationship therapist Katherine M. Hertlein, PhD, LMFT, a professor with the Couple and Family Therapy program at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas' School of Medicine.

There is no one-size-fits-all perfect sex schedule. This will vary greatly from couple to couple, and that's okay. "An ideal sex schedule would take into account your busy lifestyle but also push you to carve out time for your intimate life," says Mann.

Benefits of scheduling sex

The benefits of scheduling sex are undeniable. Here are five benefits.

1. Demonstrates a commitment to your relationship

Taking the effort to schedule sex and better your sex life as a whole shows your partner that you're committed to bettering your relationship.

Hertlein says this is a way to demonstrate that your relationship is a priority, which will ultimately make your partner feel good and strengthen your bond.

2. Improves your overall communication

As you work on your communication as it relates to scheduling sex, this will carry over to other aspects of your relationship. You'll be working a muscle in your partnership that may not have been as active before.

"Scheduling sex can create a space for future conversations and engagement around things other than sex," says Hertlein.

3. Guarantees quality time

As relationships progress and life gets busier and busier, you might not be putting in as much effort to spend quality time with each other (such as going on dates) as you used to. Scheduling sex is a way to remedy this.

"Scheduling sex is not just about scheduling sex. It is also about carving out focus time with one another which is an important part of maintaining a bond in a relationship," says Mann.

4. Gives you the opportunity to add excitement to your sex life

When you first consider scheduling sex, you might think that it'll take the spice out of your sex.

However, Mann says you should look at scheduling sex as an opportunity to add some excitement into your sex life. She says it can give you the chance to put on sexy lingerie, buy sex toys, or find erotica or porn to share.

"[Scheduling sex] gives you a platform where you can explore your sexuality because you know you have carved out the time," says Mann.

5. Sex leads to more sex

Your main goal is to have more sex, right? Diving in headfirst and having sex will get your hormones flowing, says Mann.

Plus, you might realize what you've been missing throughout the time that your sex life has been lacking, leaving you hungry for more.

"Sex begets sex. The less you have it, the less you want it. The reverse is true too when you have sex, it tends to make you want more sex," says Mann.

Insider's takeaway

Scheduling sex can help save a suffering sex life. Putting in the effort to make positive changes with your partner will result in a strengthened relationship.

If you're both working hard to meet your goals and make positive changes, the benefits of scheduling sex may extend far past giving you a more fulfilling sex life, resulting in better communication overall, more quality time spent together, and a stronger commitment to one another.

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