7 Reasons to Date Yourself
If the concept of dating yourself seems a little pathetic then you, my friend, are in the right place because you are missing out on so much love!
Taking yourself out on a date may be the step you need to improve your relationship with yourself. A sign that you may need a better relationship with yourself is that you fear being alone. While fostering relationships are important, and encouraged, you also want to make sure you are giving yourself the much needed love and attention that you deserve. Although there are many more, here are 7 reasons to date yourself:
There may be times when you are with other people and just being around them consciously, or unconsciously, changes how you behave. Dating yourself provides you with the chance to be more authentic. You don’t have to pretend to be someone that you’re not because there’s no one to impress. Push past any initial discomfort you may feel about going places alone by thinking about what you’ll gain through the experience. Dare to be the person that you are when no one else is around.
The best thing about dating yourself is that you’re always doing something that you want to do. You won’t get any unsolicited opinions about why it’s not someone’s “thing.” You can wear that “just in case” outfit that sits in the back of your closet or go somewhere where costumes and bare feet are considered appropriate attire. Dating yourself can be fun and exciting as you anticipate it throughout the week or upon spontaneous declaration. Take charge of your next adventure.
When you date yourself, you get to know yourself better. You may be too saturated by the busyness of life to be introspective but spending time with yourself allows for a deeper connection with, and understanding of, your identity. As with dating anyone, dating yourself may expose certain parts of you that you’d like to forget about or keep hidden. This is your chance to be honest and work on those areas in your life that could use a little TLC. Be vulnerable and be kind to that vulnerability.
If you’re a person that constantly puts others before yourself, this is your time of nourishment. In order to be there for other people, you need to be your best self or you will soon feel emotionally depleted. Taking yourself out on a date every now and again can recharge your energy levels and fill up your emotional bank account. Pour into yourself so you can pour back into others.
Have you ever wanted to go somewhere and you sent out a group text to see if anyone else wanted to go? An ideal response is, “I’ll be there!” and they actually come. What you may get instead is a string of responses, or lack of responses, that leave you in the same situation as before you sent the text. Would this stop you from going? When dating yourself, you only need to make time in your own schedule. Whether you are intentionally spending time with yourself or it becomes your last resort, make the most of it!
Your relationship with yourself is the most important relationship there is so if you feel that you are struggling to love yourself, then it is likely affecting your relationships with other people. As you develop a better sense of your own interests and dislikes, you can more effectively communicate those things with the people in your life. If you don’t take the time to find out more about you, other people will fill you with them. Give yourself your undivided attention.
Dating yourself enhances your love for you. As you get to enjoy your own company without the influence or distraction of other people, you have the chance to recognize who you are as a person and accept that person as a friend. Self-love allows you to stay in tune with yourself and embrace the qualities that make you unique. Increased self-love correlates with an increase in overall joy. Don’t deprive yourself, or the world, of your joy.
Make a list of all the places that you would like to go on a PERFECT date. Do you want to have a bonfire at the beach? Do you want to go hiking and bungee jump off the highest cliff? Do you want to get all dressed up and go to that swanky new restaurant? Do you want to solve puzzles while trapped in a room full of strangers? Whatever your ideal dates consist of, write them on bits of paper, place them in a jar/box, and pick one at random on your scheduled “date night” or on an impromptu, “I’m-too-sick-to-go-to-work-cough-cough” type of day. Love yourself more one date at a time!
Shavonne James, LCSW is a licensed psychotherapist and the founder of Paper Cranes Counseling. They have openings for individuals that are working through issues of identity, multicultural experiences, intrapersonal/interpersonal effectiveness, and difficult life transitions. Contact them at www.papercranescounseling.com