So many of my couples counseling clients seem to have this overall assumption that since they are in a long-term, committed relationship, sex and passion will disappear. “”She used to dress up for me, wear gorgeous lingerie,” “we used to have the hottest sex.” Anytime. Anywhere”. Then, after six months, a year, or five years, things settle down, life happens, and the hot passionate sex of the past fades away.

So, how can we reclaim it? I believe the most important aspect of the response is that you will not. I know, it’s really depressing. But bear with me. Our bodies and brains go into hormone and chemical overload when we first start dating someone and fall in love. “Researchers found that falling in love is similar to feeling addicted to drugs, with the release of bliss, including brain chemicals like dopamine, oxytocin, adrenaline, and vasopressin,” CNN reports.

We can’t spend the rest of our lives stumbling around drunk and strung out on our significant others. We need to calm down and get back to normal. However, this does not imply that all is lost. We may not have as much crazy, silly sex as we did in the early months of our relationship, but I believe we can have something greater. Different, but preferable.

ACCEPTANCE. Acceptance is the first step. You’re setting yourself up for disappointment if you waste your time and energy reminiscing about what she used to be or how he used to act. The acceptance of things as they are is the first step toward growth and change. “Right now, my wife and I have routine, predictable sex”… Now we have a foundation to build on.

CHANGE. Recognizing and appreciating the fact that we, as humans, change and grow! These are all positive things. And, like ourselves, our sexual lives can evolve and become more sophisticated. We become more level-headed and get more insight and perspective as we grow older and mature. Hopefully, we will become less self-absorbed and more self-loving and compassionate. An erotic safe environment can be created by treating yourself and others with compassion and love. Instead of turning away from one another out of fear or a lack of conversation about sex, lean towards one another with love and interest.

CREATIVITY. Then it’s time to get inventive. We have the luxury of exploring and experimenting within the boundaries of a safe and secure relationship without the worry of losing the person. Exploring your fantasies—find out what you like, because if you don’t, your partner will have no idea. Create a sexual/intimacy bucket list with your partner. Explore a sex store together in a lighthearted, nonjudgmental manner. Purchase a book on various sexual positions and try them out. See what you enjoy by immersing yourself in all things erotic and sensuous!

PERSPECTIVE. Last but not least, it’s all in your head! Remember that our brain is our most powerful and largest sex organ. Changing your viewpoint on your current situation might be really beneficial. You may spend the rest of your life having sex with the same person (Glass Half Empty). But keep in mind that every encounter is unique (Glass Half Full). Every breath we breathe is distinct from the one that preceded it. We can begin to experience and relish the fresh delight in each experience by practicing mindfulness (being present in the moment). Continue to examine each other’s body as if they were new to you. Examine your own body; it has altered from the last time you saw it. You can find freshness in everyday life if you approach your love life with fresh eyes (and minds).

It’s critical to work through this problem rather than giving up and accepting that this is how long-term relationships work. Take responsibility for your existing condition and make some adjustments. In sex therapy, I’ve dealt with a lot of couples who say their sex life is so much better now than it was when they first started dating. You and your spouse can have a better sex life now than ever before with a little effort, imagination, and communication.