Going on self-dates (or doing recreational activities on your own in public) isn’t sad or shameful, but a form of self-love. From flying solo at the art gallery to loving yourself in the sheets – here are some of the best self-dates you should make part of your self-care routine.
There’s a certain stigma around self-dates or doing things single – that they are sad or shameful – but when you change your outlook and just lean into them…they can be a pretty great time.
There’s an episode of Friends where Rachel struggles to go to a restaurant to eat by herself. “It’s a really good thing to do”, Monica tells her. But she feels self-conscious, which isn’t helped by Chandler going, “I must say, I totally judge any women I see eating alone”.
When Monica asks what’s wrong with a woman dining solo, he replies, “Well, obviously something; she’s eating alone”.
This stigma in pop culture can be found in society at large too, where someone (especially a woman), doing something singly is somehow weird or sad.
But here’s the thing: eating alone is great. In fact, doing lots of things alone – going to the movies, on a hike or having a spa day – can be great and an act of self-love and care.
Plus, it’s much easier to enjoy a good bowl of spaghetti when you’re not having to try and make small talk, or think about topics of conversation.
So, here are some ways to treat yourself to a self-date…
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Solo hike or bushwalk
Getting outdoors and in nature is good for both your body and your mind. A walk in the wilderness will help to clear your head, centre yourself and get the blood flowing. So, slop that sunscreen on and head on a hike.
Australia is full of bushwalks to go on: which you can find on this Aussie Bushwalking’s map. You just need you and the wildlife (and maybe some passer-byers).
Grab your sun hat, towel and sunscreen for a solo day at the beach. Bring plenty of snacks, a good book, perhaps even a gratitude journal, and get to work relaxing oceanside. There’s nothing like getting in some quality R&R with some natural sea breeze nearby.
Self-care night at home
Treat yourself to an over-indulgent self-care night in. Run a bath and read while you soak then pour a wine and snuggle into the couch for a murder show.
You can even go all out and order yourself a self-care box to be delivered to your door. Hampers With Bite do one with chocolate-covered raspberries, shortbread and plenty of tea to help you spoil yo’self.
Go to a gallery
Set your own viewing itinerary as you go a local gallery or exhibition. With no one around, you won’t need to pretend to ‘get’ a particular piece and can just cut to the sections you want to see. And hopefully, they’ll also be wine there.
Go to Farmer’s Market (and buy yourself some flowers)
Don’t have weekend plans yet? Why not head to your local Farmer’s Market and pick up some fresh produce and seasonal goodies. While you’re there, why not get yourself some flowers to take home, too. Who needs a bae when you can buy your own damn daisies?
Take yourself to the movies
Seeing as the worst part of going to the cinema is having to share the popcorn, why not remove the problem and go solo? Grab a wine, nestle into your chair (maybe even go Gold Class?) and watch the latest rom com or thriller.
I mean, honestly, what’s the point of a movie date anyway when you’re just sitting in silence next to each other anyway?
Read at a café
Your local café has a latte with your name on it. But instead of taking a date, take yourself and a good book. My hot tip here is you want something relevantly easy to read – no one likes to jump when the waiter comes over to ask if you want another coffee – so save the horror stories for when you can crawl under the covers and opt for something like Grown Ups by Marian Keyes or Such a Fun Age by Kiley Reid.
Take a cooking class
Ever wanted to learn how to make the perfect macaron or sushi roll? A cooking class will teach you some nifty skills in the kitchen while serving up a entertaining evening.
Red Balloon has many cooking classes on offer, including the likes of dumpling making, hands on Italian cooking, French-inspired duck cooking (with wine) or cocktail making classes.
Get a mani-pedi
Book in for an appointment at your local nail salon and indulge in a manicure and pedicure. Splurge on some French tips, shellac or treat those feet to a medical pedicure. Then walk out doing a hair toss, checking those nails and feeling good as hell.
Get busy in the sheets with a vibrator
I mean, let’s not beat around the bush here; the ultimate self-date has to involve a vibrator as your plus one. After all, no one knows more about what you like than you do. And a Vush Majesty 2 or Womanizer X Lovehoney Clitoral Stimulator is only here to help. Sexual self-care is part of self-care, baby.
Marnie Vinall is a freelance writer from Melbourne. You can find her tweeting about Taylor Swift and AFL games here and posting some B minus selfies to the ‘gram here.