With so much focus on Valentine’s this month, it’s easy to lose sight of the first love in your life: you.
We all need a bit of ‘me time’ but the idea of taking ourselves out on a date can feel quite daunting. The good news is that the novelty of solo dating is also its strength. Venturing out alone is a great way to meet new people, experience new things and even become a new, more confident version of yourself.
Still unsure? Here’s how to take yourself out on a date, without being awkward:
Take baby steps: A cinema is an ideal place to start because you don’t have to worry about what anybody else is doing. It’s all about starting small and building your way up to more outgoing dates, like going for coffee before reserving a three course meal for one.
Bring a back-up plan: If you’re not quite sure what to do with yourself, bring something to do, like listening to music on your headphones. A book is particularly reassuring because it gives you something to focus on instead of uncomfortably looking around.
Dress the part: Forgive the cliché but you need to fake it before you make it, so take the time to dress up as you would any other date. When you look confident, you start to feel it too.
Don’t overthink it: Despite what you might think, nobody is judging or pitying you. People are too engrossed in their own lives and phones to analyse your every move!
Be open-minded: The essence of solo dating is not being dependent on anybody else to make your own fun, but that doesn’t have to rule out socialising with others. Be open to new experiences and to making new friends. Who knows? They might even join you on the next date.
Ready to take the plunge? Here are 11 ideas for your next solo date:
Treat yourself to a coffee: We’ve all been on the early morning coffee run, but how often do we savour the experience? Romanticise the little things in life by visiting your local independent and taking in your surroundings.
Visit a museum or art gallery: Immerse yourself in culture by visiting a museum or art gallery. It’s the prime spot for people watching, daydreaming and learning a thing or two.
Buy yourself some flowers: Why wait for somebody else to give you flowers when you can just buy your own? But don’t stop at buying a bunch from a garage: visit a farmers market, take a flower arranging class or venture to a lavender field. You deserve it!
Relax at a spa: We think unwinding at an eco-friendly spa is the definition of heaven. A deep tissue massage and a dip in a jacuzzi? Yes please!
Make a restaurant reservation: Wine and dine yourself at your favourite restaurant. If you want to make yourself look approachable, we recommend eating at the bar.
Get arty: If you’ve got a creative streak, why not get hands-on for your next solo date. You could go to a pottery class, bring your paints outdoors or book onto a jewellery making class.
Take a cooking class: Speaking of classes, culinary or baking classes are a great way to learn new life skills - skills you can use on the next solo date, like a picnic.
Sign up to puppy yoga: This one sells itself really. Take the meditative benefits of a yoga class and combine that with the cuteness overload of puppies and you’ve got yourself a guaranteed serotonin boost.
Watch a movie: If you’re looking to shut out the outside world for 2 hours or so, the cinema is the perfect place to get lost in a fantasy world. Nothing beats the smell of popcorn or gripping onto the edge of your seat.
Book onto a boudoir shoot: Who said solo dates didn’t have to be sexy? Boudoir sessions are designed to make you feel empowered in your own skin and celebrate your inner beauty. That’s the textbook definition of self love.
Go traveling: You don’t need to wait on other people to tick off your bucket list, so book that holiday! Whether you’re looking for a quiet weekend away or want to adventure abroad, you’re bound to learn alot about yourself in the process