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Men's Health

What I Learned When I Started Taking Myself on the Dates

Before I entered the relationship with my partner, I used to go on dates with myself. I still do this from time to time. This weekend I took myself out on two dates.

I’ve realized how much I missed myself.

I used to do a lot of things alone — dine out, travel, go to the cinema, theatre, and attend parties. That being said, this weekend my partner is out of town, so I spontaneously went to the opera to see Rigoletto. My partner is not a fan of opera, so I had no reason to wait for him.

As I entered the Uber to leave for the State Opera House, the driver turned to me and asked, “Are we waiting for someone else?”

“No, just me.”

When I arrived at the Opera House, the ticket lady asked, 

“Are you alone?”

“Yes, just me.”

The usherette escorted me to the third floor of my private box. Thankfully it was empty, so there was no need for me to respond to the tedious question yet again.

I enjoyed the opera that evening, especially since I’ve been making a lot of decisions for the last year with my partner. So often, I speak in “we” terms. And “we” have different opinions on opera and on many other things.

I forgot what’s it like to spend some time alone and speak for myself.

I’ve forgotten how much I enjoy theatre, opera, and ballet. Spending time alone helps one find their own opinions and preferences. Having the knowledge and awareness of what you like and prefer can be very sexy.

The next day, I signed up for a fashion and design festival. It was a huge international event. I used to attend these events all around the world before I met my partner.

We had a long-distance relationship for over a year. It worked out great for us. Why?

Because I have never feared being alone.

I enjoy my solitude. Perhaps many writers feel the same. I know how to entertain myself in any situation. The more you practice entertaining yourself, the more you learn what you want in a partner and the more you learn about yourself.

I found that, especially in a long-term relationship, it’s essential to reconnect with yourself from time to time. So often it’s said that our partners make us “whole” — I don’t think so. I believe that our partners are a fantastic sweet addition to us. But they don’t make us whole.

You make yourself whole.

My good friend called while I was at the fashion show.

“I admire you for having the courage to go every day to a different event alone. Tomorrow I will take myself on the date too!”

Being alone can inspire others to feel comfortable doing things they want to do without waiting for company. Some people might think, “A night to myself? What am I going to do?!”

Many of my female friends end up spending the nights alone at home, watching TV, binge eating, calling me on the phone, and then getting bored or even having two or three glasses of wine. These nights do not need to end like that. Once a friend told me, “A night to myself will be very boring. The others will judge me and think of me as a lonely cat lady.”

Nonsense! You don’t live to impress others. You live for yourself.

Trust me — one of the best ways to nurture ourselves is to plan a date night out — alone.

That evening at the fashion show, I got to know a lot of excellent new designers and exchanged contact information with them. I also bought myself some clothing. Going out alone encouraged me to indulge, pamper myself, and acknowledge that sometimes I deserve to be spoilt.

I value my freedom.

What I love about going out on self-dates is that I can choose whatever I want to do. It helps me reconnect with myself and reminds me of who I am, what I love, and that I can feel amazing on my own.

Having time by myself also helps me to slow down. I am spontaneous, and I hate having a timetable and sticking to it. I enjoy my creative chaos. No one is rushing me to be somewhere, and I am not letting anyone down if I change my mind about specific plans.

I’ve learned to adopt a “now” attitude and stop putting things off or waiting for someone to accompany me. The more I started doing things alone, the more I became self-assured, independent, and self-sufficient. If something doesn’t go well, I have no one else to blame, just myself, and I own the responsibility for it.

Being self-satisfied on your own is vital to your sense of self-worth.

You need to realize that you’re okay all on your own. Time alone can be exciting and sometimes necessary for your emotional growth.

Even in a relationship, it’s important to have alone time without your partner and family. It will help you get to know yourself better, which will make you a better partner and family member.

We have all entered this world on our own, but that doesn’t mean that we are lonely.

Mila

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