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1. Create date night for yourself at home. Turn off your phone and shut down your laptop. Draw the curtains, light a few candles and do whatever you like. Read a book, watch your favourite film, take a long bubble bath — or all three! Or do something you'd feel silly doing in front of someone else. Blast your favourite tunes and dance your way around the house. If you're not the type to go out and party, bring the party to you. Dress up in your finest party gear, experiment with a different makeup look and try a crazy hairstyle. Don't judge yourself — just go with the flow and have fun.
2. Take a day trip somewhere you've always wanted to go. Arrange the day the way you would a date with someone else by deciding on a departure time and itinerary. Pack a camera, a book and your lunch if the prospect of eating alone in a café or restaurant is too nerve-wracking. It doesn't matter where you go — it could be a secluded beach somewhere or a beautiful park. The goal is to take yourself somewhere different — because you don't have to wait for someone else to do it.
3. Step out of your comfort zone. Does the thought of going to the cinema or a museum on your own fill you with dread? Try it. Start with an art gallery, the perfect place to get used to solo dating in public: quiet, peaceful and with plenty of interesting things to occupy your eyes and mind. Lots of people work their way around an exhibition on their own, even if they're there with someone else, so nobody will think twice about the fact you're going solo. It may be more unusual to go to the cinema alone but, once you're safely ensconced in your seat, you'll forget all about it. Let's face it the only thing anyone else is interested in is the movie. Personally I think solo cinema dates are the way forward. Who wants to chat through the film? And you don't need to share your popcorn with anyone.
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1. Go to an outdoor concert. The combination of being outdoors and listening to live music is a wonderful mood-booster. You'll be surrounded by like-minded people who're all there to appreciate the music. The beauty of going on your own is that you're completely free to lose yourself in the experience. Take a blanket and a basic picnic and promise yourself you'll go, no matter what.
2. Take a dance class. Even the most outgoing of people would struggle to go to a nightclub alone but a dance class is a great alternative. You'll get the chance to show off your moves while learning a skill and meeting new people. Whether it's salsa, jive or hip-hop, a dance class could be the solo date that opens up a whole new social circle to you.
3. Be a superstar for the day. Book a session with a professional portrait photographer — it's way more impressive than a selfie. Use your imagination and dress up as your alter ego or, if you're feeling daring, strip off and pose for a sexy nude shoot. The finished product should take pride of place in your living room, of course.
FYI, you can solo date even when you're in a relationship. Why stop a good thing just because you're coupled up? Solo dating reminds you that you're a whole person, that you don't need someone else to complete you and gives you lots of interesting stuff to talk to your partner about.
Be inspired by a quote from Carrie Bradshaw at the end of Sex and the City: "The most exciting, challenging and significant relationship of all is the one you have with yourself."
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