Sometimes relationships get a little bit predictable, right? You know each other, you love each other, it seems like you've been together forever - or even longer. You have great sex, but sometimes it gets a little routine. And routine? Well, it's boring. It can be difficult to work up much enthusiasm for even the absolutely most amazing toe-curling sex, if it's exactly the same every single time.

So maybe you want to try something new. Wander into your local sex shop and find some new toys, or maybe try out some role playing, or flip through the Kama Sutra and find a new (or rare) position to play with, or check out some porn and watch it together. Or even try these things alone - sometimes when we're "flying solo" we just leap straight to the same old things that get us off every time and that can be boring, too. Creativity isn't just for when you have a partner.

New things can be scary, though - what if it goes badly? What if it's a disaster? What if it ends in tears, a trip to the emergency room, singed pubic hair, or -worst of all - lack of orgasm? Surely the same old predictable (boring) way is better, since you at least know you'll get off, right?

Wrong. Sex is supposed to be fun. Sometimes fun involves a little bit of controlled risk, or at least the willingness to embrace a little bit of whimsy - like "riding" the shopping cart from the grocery store out to your car. Be unpredictable. Be spontaneous. Sure, there's no guarantee that it will work - but there's no guarantee that it won't either.

Here are seven tips for how to go about trying new things in bed:

1. Brainstorm. Maybe you want to do something new because you realize that you're a little bored, but you don't know what you want to do. That's ok. Talk about it together. Solicit new ideas. Consult your resources - sex manuals, erotica, pornography, or the almighty internet. There's got to be something you haven't tried, right? Or at least something you haven't tried in a long while, or you tried and it didn't work but it still sounds interesting and might be worth giving another go? Do it.

2. Planning is ok. Trying something new and being spontaneous often don't work so well together. If possible, discuss this new idea with your lover first. Make sure they're open to it. Not everybody likes to be surprised by a finger up the ass the first time! If communicating in words is difficult for you, well, a) get over it, and b) try some really super obvious non-verbal communication.

For example, obviously reach for the lube, obviously slick up your fingers, and slowly and blatantly reach back and slide your fingers past their usual locations. Gently probe around the outside. Murmur "Is this all right?" into your lover's neck. Trust your lover to let you know whether you should continue or not.

3. Don't expect that everything is going to go 100% right the first time. Sure, it might be a little bit of a let-down to have to re-enact the sultana/harem boy game you were playing at a later date, but seriously, don't expect perfection the first time. Just remember that role-playing is acting, and even professional actors get the giggles - just watch the outtakes of your favorite TV show. (Acting also involves rehearsals, so cut yourself some slack if it turns out that improv isn't your strong point, and write a loose "script" for next time.)

Let go of the expectation of perfection. You wouldn't expect to get an A+ in a class without a bit of studying first, right? It's ok to need to go over things a few times in the bedroom, too - and who doesn't enjoy that kind of homework?

4. Come to terms with the possibility that disaster might strike. Be prepared with safety scissors, a glass of water, a first aid kit. Even just trying a new position can have unforeseen possible outcomes, like the time I tried to do a position in the Kama Sutra and we fell. It hurt, there were bruises, there was a disappointing sense of failure (on my part at least), and there were definitely no orgasms that night. It has made for a damn good story, though, and now we both laugh whenever it comes up. And one day (maybe even tonight?), I know we'll get it right.

I've said it before and I'll say it again - life comes with do-overs. You don't have to get it right on the first try.

5. Be patient. If this is a new game or idea for your partner, and they don't respond enthusiastically to your suggestion, it might not actually because they hate you. Or even that they aren't into it. Or into you anymore. Maybe you just took them by surprise. Maybe they need some time to think about it. So warm them up; sell it a little. Explain why you think it's a turn-on. Trust me, any decent lover is probably going to be excited by something that excites you. However, if it really is causing conflict, back off. Try something else.

6. Be open. There are eight billion kinks out there - just because you don't have a foot fetish doesn't mean it might not be intriguing to see how well your lover can stimulate your sexy bits with their (clean, well-groomed) toes. And just because the first three ideas your lover brought up were massive turn-offs for you doesn't mean you might not like try some of the other billions of ideas out there. It does mean, though, that the next few ideas are up to you to suggest. Your lover got the ball rolling - now it's your responsibility to help keep it going.

Never say never. If I had a dollar for every time I thought "eww" in junior high, high school, or even college, to something that's turned out to be either fun, tasty, or sexually arousing, I would be a billionaire by now. Just because something doesn't seem like it's a turn-on doesn't mean that it won't be once you give it a go. If it's not repellant, why not try it? What's the harm? Just because something isn't a massive kink doesn't mean you can't derive any pleasure from it whatsoever.

7. Talk. Talk about your new idea before you do it, talk about what aspect of it turns you on, talk about how it went afterwards. Talk about what you want to do next time. There are a ton of books and games out there whose sole purpose is to get you out of your rut and thinking a bit more creatively about sex.

Remember when you first got together, when you first lost your virginity, when sex was all exciting and new? Your first time for different positions, locations, and so on? You can still have that first-time excitement as a grown-up; you just might need to think about it a little bit harder. Shake things up, get out of your rut, and play a little more.

Sex is supposed to be fun, remember? Wanton? Libidinous? Unstrained? You can do that! I have faith in you. (But do some stretching first - otherwise you could fall and pull a muscle.)

(c) 2008 Julianne N. Bentley All Rights Reserved.

Author's Bio: 

Julianne Bentley, the original Wanton Hussy, works with individuals (and couples) who want to bring the passion and joy back into their bedrooms.

Drawing on over fifteen years of experience discussing the ins and outs of sexuality, in all its forms, Julianne brings compassion and energy to the process of supporting you in making the changes you need in order to have the sex life you want and deserve.