Why You Need To Date Yourself
What’s the longest relationship you’ve ever had? Take your time, I’ll wait while you sift through your collection of exes or almost exes, the good ones, the f***boys, and yes, the ones you still might be in love with. What’s the common thread of all of these relationships though? They were all temporary. Each of them have a beginning, and life span, short or long, and then they ended. And you were left with yourself, always, before moving on and finding someone else.
So, back to the question. What’s the longest relationship you’ve ever had? The answer might surprise you, it’s not anyone of your exes, it’s the relationship you have with yourself. Unlike the other romantic relationships in your life, the relationship you have with yourself isn’t temporary. It’s permanent. It’s secure. You can’t break up with yourself, although, sometimes you might feel like you want to. So why not spend some time cultivating your relationship with yourself? You’re going to have to spend the rest of your life as you, after all.
I cultivate my relationship with myself by always making time to be alone and have periods of reflection about what I need to sustain myself and keep myself going. “Dating” yourself can be as easy as taking some time in your room journaling, creating, or listening to music. But, it only gets more fun when you take the idea even further and do for yourself what you may, at certain periods in your life depend on others to do for you.
When you’re in a relationship, the person you are dating shows you love through giving you emotional support, providing you with physical affection, and maybe at times, showering you with compliments and admiration.
I’m going to suggest something radical though, and that is, that you can do this all for yourself with the ULTIMATE DATE FOR YOURSELF WITH YOURSELF. Here’s how:
1. Get dressed up in your favorite outfit, whatever makes you feel like a boss b*tch. Take a selfie and tell yourself how good you look. Find one thing you like about yourself to focus on, and really focus on it throughout the day.
2. Do something fun, by yourself. Go to a museum, explore a new part of the city where you’ve never been before, or take yourself shopping. One thing that I often do is go to live music performances by myself. It’s a great experience by myself because I can focus entirely on the performance without having to engage with anyone else.
4. Journal afterwards and reflect on the whole experience. How did it feel to validate yourself, and call yourself hot? How did it feel to be alone in public spaces? To pay attention completely to the activity you were doing rather than people around you.
A lot of people feel uncomfortable being alone in public spaces. I spent six weeks in Thailand by myself one summer and during that time I had to get extremely comfortable being by myself and with myself.
Even though I wasn’t thrilled at first being alone all the time, by the end of the summer I was a lot more confident, and I felt like I knew myself better. I had developed skills like the ability to depend on myself, even in situations where I felt lost or overwhelmed. And, most importantly, I had developed an appreciation for my own abilities to be resourceful, alert, and happy, all on my own.
Dating yourself allows you to develop that type of deep appreciation and respect for you. And while, it is certainly not always easy to love yourself and give yourself the self care you deserve, “dating” yourself can give you space to develop those skills so that when you find yourself alone in the future, or maybe right now, you don’t have to go without love, support, and affection you need. Dating yourself truly is the ultimate DIY life skill.