Whether you’re single, in a relationship or it’s complicated, it’s always important to treat yourself and get to know yourself a bit better. And the best way to do that is through a solo date night.
Life isn’t all about being in a relationship. Even if you are in one, it doesn’t mean that you change, or that time apart isn’t important too. A solo date night is a perfect way to celebrate all things you. What’s even better, it can be anything you want it to be.
What Is A Solo Date?
A solo date is simply a form of self-care but in the style of a date. Just this time, you’re on your own. A perk of that is that there’s no awkwardness in deciding what to do to please both parties, as you’re the only one in question.
Whatever you do, you do it solo.
It could be going to a cafe with a book and some cake, going out for dinner, a walk or even to the cinema. The whole point is that you treat yourself to something that you love doing. In a relationship, there can be a sense of guilt about doing things apart. You might worry it means you don’t love each other properly and you should be spending every second you can together. That’s really not the case, and it’s actually really healthy to do separate things.
Sure, you probably got together because you have similar interests, but that doesn’t mean that you have exactly the same interests. Going on a solo date means you can enjoy a hobby or activity that the other doesn’t so you don’t have to stop it altogether.
And if you aren’t in a relationship, why should that stop you from all the fun of dating? Going to dinner or bars isn’t reserved for those at the beginning of a relationship. Treat yourself to your favourite dish from a local restaurant, or that cocktail advertised that you’ve been dying to try.
Getting Over The Barrier
What stops a lot of people from doing this is that they think they’ll be judged for being on their own. Whilst you may get the occasional glance or even someone asking if you’ve been stood up, this is very rare. If you make it obvious you’re there with a purpose or even take a book or a laptop as a distraction item, it’s unlikely that you’ll be bothered at all.
Of course, the thought is daunting, but it’s also exhilarating. It’s literally your chance to live out as the main character, instead of supporting in the background. If it’s something you really want to do, then doing it alone shouldn’t stop you.
For the first solo date, go somewhere you’re comfortable with, or where you might see a familiar face. You don’t have to plan something particularly long if the idea makes you nervous. Another way to solo date is to attach it to another activity. Say you’ve gone to a cafe to work — stick around after you’re done and grab yourself some Victoria Sponge and a hot chocolate. No one will bat an eyelid to you if you’ve been there working already.
It is scary, but so are a lot of things in life! Once you do it you’ll be itching to do it again.
Taking Myself On A Date
Just this week, I practised what I preached and booked myself a ticket to the theatre. As a volunteer there, they offered me a discounted ticket and as a lover of musicals, I couldn’t resist. My boyfriend wasn’t fussed on going at all, so I went on my own.
I left straight away work so that I could even get some dinner before the show. I went to my favourite restaurant as it was somewhere familiar and I knew I liked the food. Being a random Tuesday in December, it wasn’t particularly busy so I didn’t feel any confused eyes watching me.
I ate what I wanted. There was no subconscious peer pressure to eat at a certain place or to order a certain thing. In fact, I had two starters instead of the main course, something I might not have done if I weren’t on my own. I finished up without any hassle and thoroughly enjoyed myself, getting to people-watch and look out upon the Christmas decorations in Cardiff Bay.
The theatre is a very safe place for me as I spend lots of time there. Even sitting amongst hundreds of people I didn’t know, I didn’t once feel out of place or uncomfortable. Even when I squeezed through the row to treat myself to some interval ice cream.
Afterwards, I knew I had really enjoyed my experience. There was no forced conversation or deliberation about how to be or what to do. Doing what I wanted, how I wanted and when I wanted was a lot more liberating than I thought it would be.
It doesn’t mean I don’t ever want to go out on a two-person date again, but it really made me appreciate my own company. Solo dating for the win!