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Let's face it, no matter what is happening in the world, the topic of dating will always produce online clicks and in-person debates. The reasons for this are many, but often boil down to the fear of being alone, which is something that almost everyone experiences at some point in their lives.
Dating can be difficult and time-consuming, especially if you're not interested in going out with anyone you meet. Sometimes, we need to become a bit more comfortable going out socially, especially in the case of late bloomers.
In some cases, we may live in an area where most people are already in a relationship or married. However, being single should not deprive anyone of the joys of life and fun events.
This is where self-dating comes in. Why avoid going to your favorite movie or restaurant just because you are single? Even if I don't have a date on Valentine's Day, I have no problem treating myself to my favorite chocolate and cooking myself my favorite meal.
Why Do You Need a Self-Date?
Get to Know Yourself without Distractions
Self-dating is a great way to spend time with yourself, get to know yourself better, and have some fun. If you are constantly attached to someone – especially from a young age, you may not have taken the time to really know who you are as a person. As we grow older, it becomes more difficult to detach from others and be alone with ourselves.
Once people reach puberty, the focus on impressing the opposite or same sex becomes more prominent in our thoughts. This is the time when we start to lose ourselves in an attempt to gain someone else's approval or attention.
We try out new things, wear certain clothes, and do things that we normally wouldn't do – all in the name of trying to be someone that we're not.
It takes a lot of time and effort to get to know ourselves. It is definitely a process that takes years, and some people may never really know themselves. However, taking the time out for regular self-dates can help you get in touch with your own thoughts, feelings, and interests.
The Importance of Checking In With Yourself
It's so important to check in with yourself every once in a while. Life gets really hectic and it's easy to get lost in the shuffle. Checking in with yourself allows you to take a step back and evaluate how you're feeling and what you need.
Listening to yourself is crucial in this process. For example, if you are someone who gets anxious easily, going to a horror movie by yourself may not be the best idea. However, if you are feeling stressed, soul searching on a nature hike or visiting a botanical garden may be more your speed.
Mental Health and Anxiety
Additionally, self-dates are the perfect way to celebrate mental health days. If you are feeling burned out from work, school, or home obligations, use a day off to recharge your batteries. Spend some time doing things that make you happy and relax.
Remember, it is okay to put yourself first sometimes. Today, more Americans than ever before are struggling with anxiety and depression. So, if you are feeling overwhelmed, it is definitely okay to take some time for yourself.
The Importance of Self Care
It is also important to make sure that you are taking care of yourself. This includes both your physical and mental health. Taking care of your physical health means making sure that you are eating healthily, exercising, and getting enough sleep. Your self-care date may involve sleeping in and ordering take out or going on your first ever hike!
I have one friend that takes one day a month to go to a hotel in her city by herself for a night. She has her favorite wine, watches TV, and her favorite fruit, pineapple. It is one night away from the kids, but it is her way to do self-care and something positive just for herself.
How to Plan Your Self-Date
Now that we have established the importance of self-dates, it is time to talk about how to plan one.
Think Of an Activity You Never Tried Before
Part of the fun of self-dating is that you can do things that you normally wouldn't do by yourself. This is your chance to try something new without worrying about what others think. So, go ahead and try that yoga class or cooking lesson you've always wanted to do.
Check In With Yourself
As mentioned before, it is important to check in with yourself before planning your self-date. Listen to your body and mind and decide what you need. If you are feeling stressed, plan an activity that will help you relax. If you are feeling adventurous, find an activity that will push you outside of your comfort zone. Have your date at home or journey out of your city for the day – it is up to you.
Make a Plan
Once you have decided on an activity, it is time to make a plan. If you are going to a museum, look up the hours and ticket prices in advance. If you are going hiking, research trails in your area and make sure you have the proper equipment. The last thing you want is to be stuck without a plan or feeling unprepared.
Set a Budget
Self-dates can be as expensive or as cheap as you want them to be. If you are on a tight budget, there are plenty of free activities for you anywhere. If you have some extra money to spend, you could treat yourself to a nice dinner or a day at the spa. Just make sure you are not stressing over money when you should be enjoying your self-date.
Don't forget, the most important part of a self-date is to have fun and relax. So, whatever you do, make sure you are doing something that makes you happy. You deserve it.
Now let's check out some specific self date ideas to try!
37 Self-Date Ideas to Have Fun by Yourself
1. Take a Local Walking Tour
Even if you lived in the same town or city your whole life, there is always something new to learn. This tour can be anything from a food tour to a ghost tour. The With Locals site can help you find one.
2. Visit a Museum
Museums are a great way to spend a day by yourself. You can go at your own pace and spend as much or as little time at each exhibit as you want. If you are interested in a particular subject, look for a museum that specializes in it. For example, if you love history, visit a local history museum.
3. Go to a Concert
Concerts are a great way to enjoy live music without having to worry about talking to people. You can find tickets to just about any type of concert these days. Whether you like country, rock, or pop, there is sure to be a concert for you. Use the Concert Near Me search engine to find one.
4. Catch a Play or Musical
If you enjoy live theater, seeing a play or musical by yourself is a great way to spend an evening. You can usually find discount tickets if you are willing to sit in the nosebleed seats. Or, you could splurge and get front row tickets to your favorite show. If you live in New York, Shakespeare in the Park is free in summer.
5. Go on a Day Trip
A day trip is a great way to get out of the house and explore a new place nearby. Choose a nearby town or city that you have always wanted to visit and make a day of it. If you are on a tight budget, consider taking a bus or train instead of flying.
6. Have a Spa Day
Treat yourself to a day of relaxation with a spa trip. You can get a massage, facial, and manicure/pedicure all in one day. Or, you could just focus on one service if you are short on time or money. Spas of America has a list of spa specials to consider.
7. Go Shopping
Whether you are looking for new clothes or just window shopping, spending some time alone at the mall or outdoor markets can always bring new discoveries. If you are on a budget, stick to stores that you know have great sales. Or, treat yourself to something special at your favorite boutique.
8. Get a New Haircut
Stop putting off that new haircut and use your self-date to look good for yourself. You can make an appointment at your favorite salon or try out a new place. Getting your hair done is a great way to relax and feel pampered.
9. Take a Painting or Drawing Class
Have you always wanted to learn how to paint or draw? Taking a class is a great way to explore your creative side.
Many community colleges and recreation centers offer affordable classes. Or, you can chill at home with an adult coloring book.
10. Find a Wine Tasting
If you enjoy trying new wines, attending a wine tasting is a great way to spend an afternoon or evening. You can usually find wine tastings at local wineries or wine bars. This is a great way to learn about different types of wines and find new favorites. Check the Get Your Guide listing in your city.
11. Go to a Food Festival
If you love trying new foods, attending a food festival is a great way to spend the day. You can usually find these festivals at local fairgrounds or parks. They are a great way to sample different dishes from a variety of vendors.
12. Take a Hike
Getting out into nature is a great way to clear your head and relax. If you are looking for a workout, take a hike on a nearby trail. Or, if you just want to enjoy the scenery, find an easy trail that you can take at your own pace.
13. Go Camping
Who says you need a whole group to go camping? Solo camping can be a great way to get away from it all and enjoy some peace and quiet. If you are new to camping, start with a short trip close to home. That way, you can always head back home if you run into any problems.
14. Take a Photography Class
Do you want to evolve from simple iPhone snapshots and selfies? Why not learn some professional techniques in a professional class or workshop? Check out these recommendations for photography classes around the world.
15. Go to a Farmer’s Market
If you love fresh fruits and vegetables, spending some time at a farmer’s market is a great way to spend a Saturday morning. You can usually find these markets in town squares or parks. They are a great place to buy local and seasonal produce.
16. Go Fruit Picking
Berry picking is a great way to spend a summer day. Apples are perfect for fall. You can usually find farms that offer fruit picking near you. This is a great activity for kids and adults alike. Plus, you get to take home a basket of fresh fruit when you are done.
17. Catch a Matinee
If going to a movie alone at night is not your thing, why not catch a matinee instead? Matinees are usually cheaper than evening showings. And, you will likely see others there by themselves at that time.
18. Take a Road Trip
Whether you are driving to a nearby town or taking a cross-country trip, spending some time on the open road never gets old. Make sure you fill your gas tank, have a map, and charge your phone if your day involves going into the unknown. Nationwide has tips for your road trip safety.
19. Yoga in the Park
If you want to get some exercise and fresh air, why not do yoga in the park? You can usually find free or donation-based classes in most cities. Or, you could buy a yoga mat and do some poses at your local park.
20. Visit a Flea Market or Antique Store
If you love to browse, spending some time at a flea market or antique store is a great way to spend an afternoon. You never know what you might find. And, it is a great way to support local businesses.
21. Go Stargazing
If you want to spend some time outdoors at night, why not go stargazing? You can find a spot away from the city lights. Or, you could go to a planetarium or astronomy center.
22. Rent a Lounge Chair on the Beach
Take advantage of beach rentals and enjoy a day reading, napping, and people-watching on the beach. Rent a proper lounge chair and get service from a nearby beach bar or restaurant.
23. Try Perfume Making
If you love trying new fragrances, why not try your hand at perfume making? You can find classes taught by professional perfumers. Or, you could buy a DIY perfume kit and make your own scent at home.
24. Tour Your Favorite Sport Facility
Are you a sports fan? Why not put on your favorite jersey and take a tour of your favorite stadium or arena? You can usually find tours of professional facilities.
25. Find a Famous Local Eatery
Most cities have at least one famous or highly ranked restaurant. Make a reservation and enjoy a meal by yourself. This is a great way to try new foods and experience a different side of your city.
26. Give Yourself a Mani/Pedi
Skip the nail salon and pamper yourself at home. Buy different types of polish, get bath salts, play soft music, and turn your bathroom into a personalized spa.
27. Do a Treasure Hunt
You can create your own treasure hunt or follow one of the many online treasure hunts. This is a great way to explore your city and find new places you have never been to before.
28. Go to the Pet Shop
Even if you don't plan to buy a new fur baby, spending some time at the pet shop can be therapeutic. You can play with the puppies and kittens. Or, you can simply look at all of the different animals.
29. Take a Cooking Class
If you love to cook, why not take a cooking class? You can find classes for all skill levels. And, you will get to take home a delicious meal that you made yourself.
30. Check for Local Art Shows
Most cities have at least a few art galleries. And, many of them have art shows throughout the year. This is a great way to support local artists and see some new artwork.
31. Go to an Open Mic Night
If you are looking for a night of entertainment, why not go to an open-mic night? You can find these at local bars or coffee shops.
You could even sign up to perform yourself. Who knows – you may get the courage to test your humor or practice your slam poetry.
32. Redecorate a Room in Your House
Have you wanted to redecorate a room in your house? Why not use your self-date as an opportunity to do just that? You can move furniture around, paint the walls, or hang new artwork.
33. Revamp Old Furniture
Another home idea is to find an old table, chair, or dresser and revamp it. You can sand it down, paint it, and add new hardware. Paint some quirky designs for extra personalization. This is a great way to give new life to some old furniture and save money.
34. Have a Self-Fashion Show
Make cleaning out the closest fun and have a one-person fashion show. Model different outfits and take pictures of your favorite looks. This is also a great way to get some new ideas for outfits and give away anything you no longer need.
35. Try Weird Hairstyles
Looking for a way to change your appearance – even just for the day? Why not try out some weird hairstyles at home? There are so many hair tutorials on YouTube to soak up. From crazy braids to wild colors to wigs, the possibilities are endless. Make sure you take photos, of course!
36. Go Out in Disguise
Why not pretend to be someone else for the day? This is a great way to people-watch and get out of your comfort zone. You could dress up as a different gender, fake an accent, wear all black, or pretend to be a tourist.
37. Go Fishing
If you enjoy being outdoors, why not go fishing? There are plenty of spots to fish, whether it be in a pond, lake, or river. You may even catch dinner.
Final Thoughts on Self Date Ideas to Have Fun by Yourself
There are endless possibilities to enjoy time by yourself. The most important thing is to do what makes you happy. And, don't be afraid to try new things. But be sure to listen to your body and mind. If you are feeling anxious or stressed, it may not be the best time for a more adventurous activity. But, if you are feeling good, go for it!
Self-care is so important, but sometimes we need to be reminded to take some time for ourselves. So don't avoid self-dates just because you have a loving partner. Even the closest couples may need some time apart. In fact, it can be good for the relationship. It gives you each a chance to miss each other and appreciate the time you have together.
So, go out there and have some fun! Experiment and find what works for you. There is no wrong way to enjoy some time alone. Before your self-date, check out the 8 Self Love Exercises to Elevate Your Mood.