Do you want to increase your feelings of self-worth? Do you suffer from that negative feeling of “not good enough?”
Here’s the best little tip I’ve received: Take yourself on a date.
I read this advice a few months ago. While the article I read was geared toward helping writers cultivate creativity, I’ve noticed that this practice largely applies to overall wellness, stress management and self-love.
I’ve been taking myself on dates once every week or 2 since the beginning of the year, and I have to say I’m a pretty good date! I don’t talk too much, spend too much or do anything I don’t feel like doing. But sometimes I flake out and cancel on myself…gotta be better about that.
Though once I mark my self-dates in my planner, I really start looking forward to them. They’re a fun reward at the end of the workweek. I realize though that this might sound weird if you’ve never done it, and many of us people-pleasing gals can think it’s too self-indulgent to even consider. So, let me explain the benefits of dating yourself and how to do it right.
Why You Should Take Yourself on a Date
When I started dating myself in January, I had set out to enhance my creativity as a writer. But I’ve seen so many perks to this practice outside of my writing and creativity that I can’t help but share. Here are a few things that happen when you take yourself on a date:
Increased feelings of self-worth
Do you ever come across something that looks really fun to do, but you don’t give it a second thought because your spouse/boyfriend/friends/family/pet would never want to do that? No more depriving yourself – you’re worth it to do things that you enjoy!
When we deprive ourselves of things we want to do, we back-handedly tell ourselves we don’t deserve it. We’re not worth it. How can we possibly go do that for ourselves when we need to be doing this for someone else?
Making a practice of doing something for yourself reaffirms that you are valuable, you are deserving and you are worthy.
Most people are terrified by the idea of going out to eat or to the movies by themselves. They think they’ll feel like a loser, or they’re afraid of being alone in general. If you’re depressed or consumed with negative thoughts, I totally get the struggle.
But that’s when you need to get out and enjoy yourself the most. Go do something you truly enjoy and see how much fun you can have all on your own. And it doesn’t always have to be fun that you aim for – being content is often all we need.
As you go out alone more often, you become more comfortable with yourself. You can start losing reliance on others to find enjoyment. Slowly but surely, you’ll build more confidence.
I love scheduling my self-dates for Friday. Knowing I have this to look forward to pushes me to work hard and keep going throughout the week. I’ll likely cancel on myself if my work isn’t done, (I don’t recommend canceling on yourself!) so this date keeps me focused in my work ahead of time.
Time to yourself is incredible for finding peace and relaxation. We’re so busy between work, family and our social lives. If we don’t make time for play or rest, all that bottled up stress can make us physically sick. Making time for a self-date ensures that you get a breather and hopefully do something fun and enjoyable.
How to Take Yourself on a Date
The point of taking yourself on a date is to let go of the rules and have fun, but there are still some rules! Do the following to make it effective:
- Schedule it.
- Do it regularly, at least twice a month.
- You must be by yourself! Unless what you truly enjoy is going to see someone or going to a group thing, but the point is that you don’t depend on someone else to make the date happen.
When brainstorming your self-date, think of:
- What you truly enjoy doing but don’t do enough of.
- What you want to try doing.
- What you used to love to do but don’t do anymore.
- Something you love doing but no one will do it with you.
I particularly love going to a coffee shop and enjoying a coffee and pastry while reading a book. That is my ultimate self-date. And given my experience with binge eating disorder, doing this once in a while is helpful for eliminating feelings of food restriction.
Sometimes it’s going to a yoga class, taking Yoshi for a hike, even sitting at home with a glass of wine and a coloring book (Disney Princess poster-size coloring books are the best!). And today, I’m taking myself shopping! Woot!
Go Date Yourself
Everyone can benefit from time to themselves, but why not make it a date? Take some time out of your week to treat yourself. Do this regularly and you’ll see improvements in your stress levels, confidence, and, most importantly, self-love and acceptance.
What will you do on your self-date? List in the comments what you want to do on your date and when you’re going to make it happen. Take a self-date selfie and share it over on the Naturally Ever After Facebook Page!
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