Growing up, I went on many dates. This might sound confusing because I have never had a boyfriend. These events were not with young men but with family and friends. Although not of a romantic nature, these social experiences prepared me for interacting with others and taught me to enjoy myself by relaxing in a new setting.
There are numerous benefits to dates which make them a helpful coping skill. Going out lets you escape from life for a little while. You experience and witness new things with someone you enjoy. A bit frightening at times, dates push you out of your comfort zone while bringing you closer to the other person. Hopefully, the event leaves you feeling joyful, rejuvenated, or more loved.
When most people hear the word “dating,” they think about romantic relationships. Only boyfriends and girlfriends go on dates, right? No, that is not the case. This coping skill can be done with a significant other, but one does not need to be in love with their date. You can spend time with a close friend or family member as well. Do not limit yourself to romantic dates only. Have breakfast at a little cafe with your mother, go on a hike with your father, window shop with a close friend, see a movie with a sibling – there are so many people that you can take on a date.
If you are married, continue to go out with your spouse. Ending enjoyable interaction alone with your husband or wife after the wedding only hurts your relationship. Keep dating each other whenever possible.
This coping skill not only can be done with numerous different people; it also can be done in many ways. Do not let struggles with money or lack of time stop you from going on a date. The main thing to remember with this coping skill is to have fun while with another person. What you do or where you go does not matter as long as you enjoy yourself. Here are a few ideas:
- Take a walk/hike in a park
- Play board games
- Get a movie from the library and watch it
- Do a silly photo-shoot
- Watch a sports game on TV
- Make a meal together and then eat it
- Paint/remodel a room
- Build/fix something
- Shop for something that you need like a car/furniture/etc.
- Do homework/study together
- Go out to eat
- See a play/opera/ballet/concert
- Explore a zoo or museum
- Enjoy an amusement park
- Drive to a new area near you to explore
Hopefully, you will like some of those ideas. If you have an suggestions, please let me know.
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