There is no way to get into this conversation without it feeling awkward. The truth is, no matter how many self-help books we read, there is that one thing that remains to be valid "we have been conditioned to believe that company is always better," but why is being alone so hard?
The fear of feeling loneliness is real!
Not knowing how to enjoy time alone.
We rely heavily on the energy of others.
We feel like losers when alone (judgment from society).
No matter the age, we prefer to talk to others instead of ourselves.
6 benefits of dating yourself
I never really understood when people said, "Dating yourself for self-growth" is a must! Until later on in my life, I realized I spent way too much time surrounded by others and never really took the time to be alone with my thoughts. Spending time alone can be fun, and there are benefits to this grandiose gesture of getting to know yourself…
1. Confidence Boost: You no longer depend on others to make you happy; you are challenged to find joy on your own. There is a particular fearlessness aspect that shakes you up and makes you daring! Not to mention sitting alone speaks highly of overcoming the fear of loneliness.
2. Get to know yourself: Introspectively, when was the last time you took an inventory of the things that excite you or make you happy? The egg story in the Julia Roberts film "Eat, Love & Pray" was something that hit close to home for me. I never knew how much I disliked scrambled eggs until I knew there were other options (that's all my ex-husband ate). I also never knew that food tasting and good music were exciting until I checked it out for myself. There might be some things right now that are non-existent to you until you discover them on your own. Knowing what things excite you and spark joy will help you navigate better through life.
3. No more compromising: Knowing what you want begins at the core of spending time with yourself. I used to say "Yes" to many things until I learned that there were just some things that caused anxiety, and some sparked sheer joy! For example, clubbing and loud music (to the point where you can't hear your thoughts) drive me nuts. I enjoyed those scenes when I was younger, but now I prefer a more quiet environment. The places with great views, wine, and relaxing music (low enough to enjoy conversation). Some of my friends still love to party it up, and while I respect it, it's a hard PASS when I get invited. I have since made new friends who equally enjoy similar experiences.
4. Improve your relationships: You can't pour from an empty cup. A healthy relationship with yourself creates a healthy relationship with others. How can we possibly know what makes us happy if we never take the time to explore ourselves? Setting healthy boundaries in relationships comes from having self-awareness, and that process starts with being alone first. It's the little intricacies about yourself that you have yet to explore that make you truly unique. Understanding yourself is a gift to any future relationships because you won't find yourself compromising in areas that are important to you (like how you like to prefer to eat your eggs).
5. Self-sufficiency: Ever hear the term "I AM ENOUGH!" Trust me; it's not a cliché. Very real and essential to our mental health. Sometimes we clinch on to toxic relationships because we fall into attachment to fill the void and not feel alone. Knowing that you depend on yourself to achieve, conquer, or provide a level of happiness that feels enough will keep you from away from repeating toxic cycles.
6. Step out of your comfort zone: This statement alone will terrify some of you, but fear not, girlfriends! This can be a beautiful beginning to exploring the unknown and finding new passions or adventures that breathe life into you.
How To Date Yourself
Set a date and schedule it in your planner - it's too easy to cancel when you don't pencil it in but don't be the girl that cancels on herself. You deserve this!
Prepare in advance - If this is your first rodeo, I recommended laying out the details before you head out to your adventure. It's no different than a bad date with no plans. Take the time to research experiences that peak your interest, call ahead, make reservations if needed.
Dress the part - It is effortless to get caught up in the "it's not like I'm going to see anyone anyway" mindset. Stop it! Trust the process because you will feel twice as confident when you are doing this for yourself!
Enjoy the moment - Stop worrying about who's watching! Sure it can be a little awkward at first, but you've made it this far! Listen to your thoughts, remember to breathe, smile if it feels good, feel at peace in your own company. Embrace the moment!
Reflect - YOU DID IT! How did it feel? Was it a little tricky, or did you genuinely enjoy it? Reflecting on the emotions of what felt good and what felt off will prepare you for the next time. Most importantly, what did you learn about yourself?
The Bottom Line
If you want to have better relationships, become self-sufficient, boost your confidence, get to know yourself, learn when not to compromise, and step out of your comfort zones, dating yourself is a good first step! I can't guarantee it'll feel the best at first, but I can assure you it gets better with time. There is power in learning how to love and cater to yourself without feeling the pressure of needing company. Don't stop now; pencil in that next date on your calendar! Feel like sharing? or want more self-date ideas? Please email me (I'm here for it) email@example.com.