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How To Be A Good Kisser

How To Be A Good Kisser

When you stop for a moment to ponder it, kissing is on a short list of things we’re never actually taught. In fact, no one besides the people we choose to “practice” with can teach us diddly squat about kissing. This is why I will give you a short list of mental tips to try that’ll hopefully help you give smoother smooches.

Fun fact before we begin: kissing is not only really fun, but really important too!

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According to The Science of Kissing: What Our Lips are Telling Us, 66 percent of women and 59 percent of men reported ending a relationship as a result of poor pecking. If that’s not enough pressure, ladies and gentleman, Butler University psychologist John Bohannon found that the majority of us can remember nearly 90 percent of the details involved in our first romantic kiss.

Alright, no more lallygagging. Here’s a short list for each sex that will make out of mediocre makeouts magnificent ones.

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For the ladies:

  1. Open your mouth more: I’m not talking about the Marianas Trench here, but give us dudes something to work with. There’s nothing more frustrating than trying to use your tongue like a car jack to pry those jaws open. Open up so you may explore the inner works of each others mouth.
  2. Be aggressive: This is all encompassing. Be more aggressive initiating the kiss. Be more aggressive in the kiss with your tongue and lips. Be more aggressive with your hands. Rubbing. Grabbing. Groping. Don’t be afraid of anything at any moment during a kiss. Be fearless within reason, because dude’s dig that. Don’t hold back.
  3. Alternate lips: You have two of them, so don’t be afraid to focus on one or the other and alternate. There’s actually well over 100 times more nerve endings in your lips than on your fingertips. Apart from that, alternating lip focus with a partner is not only extremely sexy, but it also makes you feel like you’re in a movie! Don’t believe me? Try it.
  4. Mindful mouth: This isn’t what it sounds like, but it’s extremely important for both men and women. Be very aware of what you’ve recently eaten, or, for the ladies, what you put on your lips. Lip balm, gloss, stick, whatever. All of that stuff does something you might not be aware of. It activates sweetness receptors in your partners mouth sending yet another sense into overdrive. If you do this, also be mindful of the clothes you chose to wear that night or day. He may get a bit too passionate.
  5. Do the A-Frame: This, according to Cosmopolitan Magazine, which I’m told is a monthly women’s almanac, is when you and your lover are kissing with your hips apart thus creating an “A” figure from a side view. Do you see it there? Doing this is a safe and secure way to “feel him out” and invite him in with the hips later in the kiss.

For the gentleman:

***I listed the ladies first because, well, you should always do that. But heed the information up there, boys, because we have the most learning to do in this department. Besides the lip gloss/stick recommendation. Only try that if you’re really into that sort of thing.

  1. Your tongue + her esophagus = you’re doing it wrong: There’s no easier, or more creative, or catchier way to say that. Just don’t do it. Your tongue is not Mike Tyson’s right arm throwing quick, energetic jabs. At the same time, your tongue is also not a dead, dank fish, either. Give it some life, but be aware of what she’s doing with hers as well. I’ll be surprised if this shocks anyone, but this is always the first complaint women have about bad kissers. You’re kissing her, for goodness sake, not performing a tonsillectomy.
  2. Timing is key: Especially with that (somewhat) startling statistic above about first kiss impressions, this is important to remember. Don’t kiss her at that all you can eat fish fry. Instead, wait until you drop her off at her place when you walk her to the door. Have mints on deck and at the ready. The same goes for subsequent kisses after the first. Always be aware of the setting and her comfort levels with PDA (if applicable).
  3. Use your hands: HOLD ON. Hold on just a second. There’s two very essential and important ways to do this, and I don’t recommend deterring much from either, especially if it’s among the first couple kisses. First, when initiating the kiss, pick her chin up lightly with your hand. When you begin to kiss, lightly place your hands on her cheeks. Run your fingers through her hair. Lightly. Second, lightly place your hands on her lower back (not her butt, perv) and draw her hips lightly towards you. Much like the “A-Frame” technique mentioned above, bringing the hips together will increase desire and drive dramatically.
  4.  Go 90% of the way: Any Will Smith fans out there? Hitch said it best, but I’ll give it a try. Often guys are far too aggressive when kissing a women. This is exclusively true for the first couple kisses. Why? Because dudes get nervous. No offense ladies, but it’s often the man in the equation that is responsible with initiating the kiss. It can be intimidating. So, as Hitch encourages, do 90% of the work and let her come the other 10%. If she truly wants you, that’s very little effort to give. And if she doesn’t:
  5. Listen to her: Not only the words she speaks, but also listen to her body. Listen to her breathing. Listen to her cooing. Try to find some subtle hints that what you’re doing is right, or something she’s enjoying. If you’re unsure, sincerely ask her when you’re not in the middle of getting down to business. Does it sound lame? Maybe. But both men and women are brilliantly wrapped enigmas that are more or less uncrackable. Listen. Also, kiss her on the neck. Rumor on the street is women love that.

Kissing can be overwhelming, but don’t let it overcome you. Kissing can make you nervous, but don’t lose your cool. Kissing can be scary, but not as scary as the idea of doing it completely wrong and disappointing your lover. Don’t let it get you down. Don’t second guess yourself. Don’t hold back (within reason).

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Because we all want to be loved, we all want to be held, and we all, so desperately, want that fireworks kiss.

Go get yours.

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Featured photo credit: Kissing / Huffington Post via i.huffpost.com

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The Gentle Art of Saying No

The Gentle Art of Saying No

No!

It’s a simple fact that you can never be productive if you take on too many commitments — you simply spread yourself too thin and will not be able to get anything done, at least not well or on time.

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But requests for your time are coming in all the time — through phone, email, IM or in person. To stay productive, and minimize stress, you have to learn the Gentle Art of Saying No — an art that many people have problems with.

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What’s so hard about saying no? Well, to start with, it can hurt, anger or disappoint the person you’re saying “no” to, and that’s not usually a fun task. Second, if you hope to work with that person in the future, you’ll want to continue to have a good relationship with that person, and saying “no” in the wrong way can jeopardize that.

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But it doesn’t have to be difficult or hard on your relationship. Here are the Top 10 tips for learning the Gentle Art of Saying No:

  1. Value your time. Know your commitments, and how valuable your precious time is. Then, when someone asks you to dedicate some of your time to a new commitment, you’ll know that you simply cannot do it. And tell them that: “I just can’t right now … my plate is overloaded as it is.”
  2. Know your priorities. Even if you do have some extra time (which for many of us is rare), is this new commitment really the way you want to spend that time? For myself, I know that more commitments means less time with my wife and kids, who are more important to me than anything.
  3. Practice saying no. Practice makes perfect. Saying “no” as often as you can is a great way to get better at it and more comfortable with saying the word. And sometimes, repeating the word is the only way to get a message through to extremely persistent people. When they keep insisting, just keep saying no. Eventually, they’ll get the message.
  4. Don’t apologize. A common way to start out is “I’m sorry but …” as people think that it sounds more polite. While politeness is important, apologizing just makes it sound weaker. You need to be firm, and unapologetic about guarding your time.
  5. Stop being nice. Again, it’s important to be polite, but being nice by saying yes all the time only hurts you. When you make it easy for people to grab your time (or money), they will continue to do it. But if you erect a wall, they will look for easier targets. Show them that your time is well guarded by being firm and turning down as many requests (that are not on your top priority list) as possible.
  6. Say no to your boss. Sometimes we feel that we have to say yes to our boss — they’re our boss, right? And if we say “no” then we look like we can’t handle the work — at least, that’s the common reasoning. But in fact, it’s the opposite — explain to your boss that by taking on too many commitments, you are weakening your productivity and jeopardizing your existing commitments. If your boss insists that you take on the project, go over your project or task list and ask him/her to re-prioritize, explaining that there’s only so much you can take on at one time.
  7. Pre-empting. It’s often much easier to pre-empt requests than to say “no” to them after the request has been made. If you know that requests are likely to be made, perhaps in a meeting, just say to everyone as soon as you come into the meeting, “Look guys, just to let you know, my week is booked full with some urgent projects and I won’t be able to take on any new requests.”
  8. Get back to you. Instead of providing an answer then and there, it’s often better to tell the person you’ll give their request some thought and get back to them. This will allow you to give it some consideration, and check your commitments and priorities. Then, if you can’t take on the request, simply tell them: “After giving this some thought, and checking my commitments, I won’t be able to accommodate the request at this time.” At least you gave it some consideration.
  9. Maybe later. If this is an option that you’d like to keep open, instead of just shutting the door on the person, it’s often better to just say, “This sounds like an interesting opportunity, but I just don’t have the time at the moment. Perhaps you could check back with me in [give a time frame].” Next time, when they check back with you, you might have some free time on your hands.
  10. It’s not you, it’s me. This classic dating rejection can work in other situations. Don’t be insincere about it, though. Often the person or project is a good one, but it’s just not right for you, at least not at this time. Simply say so — you can compliment the idea, the project, the person, the organization … but say that it’s not the right fit, or it’s not what you’re looking for at this time. Only say this if it’s true — people can sense insincerity.

Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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