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Before You Date: Dating Yourself

Updated: Oct 15, 2020

Have you ever found yourself feeling flat, empty, and lonely when you're waiting to hear back from your latest date?

I'll speak for myself here: I'd spend hours alone in my old apartment, obsessively checking my phone, hoping to find a text. I'd feel anxious, bored, and full of self-doubt.

It took me a while to realize the truth: I had become an accessory. I only felt real when a guy took me off the shelf to play with me.

And when he put me back, I felt lifeless. I had no life on my own... and when there were no dates on the horizon to look forward to, I felt worthless.

Sure, I had a job, I had friends, I had interests... but I'd toss my commitments to any of those out the window when a guy asked me out. I thought that if I didn't make myself super available, I might not get the chance again... and unless I got plastic surgery for my nose and won the lottery, I was worried that I wouldn't find another guy who wanted me.

I'd put everything else aside... and when the relationship inevitably ended, I'd feel completely empty. I had no life or self to go back to. Just an empty shell I used to house myself between dates.

What I didn't get back then was that having a life full of my own fun and interests was a huge part of finding - and keeping - a quality relationship.

One of the things we'll explore together in session is how to bring back (or find for the first time!) a sense of fun. When you have your own life, you have something beautiful to invite someone else into. Without it, it's hard not to be like my previous self -- needy, anxious, lonely... I don't miss it.

Here's something fun to try at home: Each week, commit to two activities:

- A hobby you already enjoy

- Something you've never done before

Oh... and you need to do it alone. ;)

It can be as simple or as grand as you like. Take an online cooking class that you cook along to. Go rock climbing. Drive to a local museum dedicated to the world's largest ball of string. Whatever it is, go alone, and let yourself be curious and playful. It might be super awkward at first (it sure was for me -- going alone felt weird!), but in time, you'll treasure your fun time... and it'll bring a glow to your life that's incredibly attractive to someone special.

Try it out for a month and tell me how it feels!

Here's a photo of me out on a fall forest walk... nature is so inspiring. :)

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