Tuesday, March 22, 2011

How To: Take Yourself On A Date

Ever felt the need to just get away from, well, everyone else?
Artwork by the fabulously talented Abbey McCulloch

I could rave on about the reasons why people who are comfortable spending time alone with themselves are happier, more successful and have deeper and more meaningful relationships with others. I could write for hours about how our society doesn’t cater for our need for time out with ourselves, and get precious about how it’s turning us into a bunch of shallow, unstable, unaware gadabouts. I could whinge about how celebrity culture attacks any want to get to know, like or accept ourselves and grows instead a burgeoning need to want to be like somebody else.

Or I could just tell you what I know as a plain old truth, and that is that making the decision to regularly and purposefully spending time outside of the house doing things by myself was one of the best decisions I have made in my adult life.

Tips and Tricks for Dating Yourself

*Do it purposefully; plan your solo adventure and get excited about it. Write it in your diary and make it a resolute booking. There’s nothing better for the self-confidence than demonstrating that you value your own time.
*Do something you know you’ll enjoy because a) it’s easier to forget about being conscious of your loner-ness if you’re having fun and b) because there will be no other time when you’ll be allowed the selfishness to do something exactly the way you want it.
* In regards to other people: it takes time to realise that other people out there really just are not paying attention to you all the time, even if you are alone. But if you’re not convinced, or the gazes of others, imagined or otherwise, are making you nervous, take five minutes to listen in to the conversations going on around you. Did any of them start with, “Well gee…I think that girl next to us is here by herself!”? No? Of course not. I think that mostly we worry about what we’ll think of ourselves once we’re in a place where there’s no one else to obsess over.
* Wear your favourite outfit. Today you’re dressing for your eyes only, so impress yourself.

Where to go:

Places to Start With, or, Places I’ve Found Easy –

Art Galleries

All of these places are completely great choices for attending solo, there’s no real expectation that you’ll be there with other people and there’s little routine to fit in to, so you can come and go as you please.

Places for a Challenge, or, Places I’ve Found More Difficult –

Small venue art exhibition openings
Public conferences
Antiques shopping

These guys have challenged me in the past. The first three involve situations in which people really do expect you to mingle with them, not such a good way to kick into really getting introspective, and the last I’ve just found depressing when done alone for more than an hour.

What to do:

As I said before, anything that takes your fancy. Want to get icecream as you stroll down the street toward the cheap pedicure place? Do it. Want to go for a beach swim before heading to the local grocer and buying all the things you need for a picnic for one? Why not?


Spending time with yourself is a guaranteed way to give you a little perspective on life, especially if it’s been a bit stressful. Sometimes we can get so caught up in what other people say and want and think that we forget to chill out, think relatively and take pause. Taking a few hours to go out completely alone will give you time to reassess and make sure your life is still headed in the direction you want.

I really enjoy going out alone, I think of it almost as a regular, fun form of meditation. Learning about yourself can be a challenge, and doing anything that forces you to face up to yourself and really observe what’s going on can be scary. But it’s necessary, it’s the only way we can give ourselves permission to carry on with our full blessing. So go on, get out there!

1 comment:

  1. I love it. Glad we are so like-minded. It is very important to learn yourself before going out with others. I look as a way of facing a mirror and directing yourself the appropriate way so when you do go out you will be on point. Thanks for sharing.


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