Ask Angry (how to date yourself)

Q:

Hi, I love your posts! Was wondering if you could recommend a good book for me…I am single for the first time after a few relationships (I’m 31 and have been dating since 15) and am trying to enjoy this time but think I could be doing better. Thanks in advance. — Anna

A:

Anna, the thing is I don’t read. I used to be very embarrassed about this. But accepting the whole accepting who you are idea has gotten me to flush that feeling down the drain. Instead, I feed my brain with videos, YouTube, Ted Talks, etc. And usually I’m horizontal when doing so, so I don’t know how much I digest. But my advice to you would be to put information aside and search for knowledge. And by knowledge I mean experiences. Dating yourself can mean a lot of different things to different people. To me, it means leaning into new experiences, everything you didn’t do but wanted to when you were in a relationship. Because you didn’t have time or didn’t want to make it about you, or whatever reason you had. It’s now time to make it about you. Things that excite you, scare you, make you feel alive. Yes, dating yourself means learning about yourself but the way you do it isn’t by burying yourself in books. It’s by pushing your living envelope. Actually ripping it open, making a fucking paper airplane with it. It means leaning into the stretch. And it’s in this stretch there growth and a better version of you is built. Yes, built. Not found. That means there’s work involved, effort, forcing you to get out of your comfort zone.

Ultimately dating yourself means to have a better relationship with yourself. If you don’t know where to start, start with this. A more honest relationship with yourself. Then play out the behaviors that line up with that.

And as empowering as so many try to make it sound, dating yourself can be a very lonely process. I get the whole Eat, Love, Pray thing but we’re not all going to quit our day jobs and travel the world in search for enlightenment. For most of us, dating ourselves means the exact same life but with fresh new underwear and more ice cream. And that’s okay but add some challenges that fall under the stretch category. Most importantly, stay as present as you can. You will want to play shit back. A lot. Just know that there’s a difference between reflecting the past and living in it. One leads to growth. The other straight into quicksand.

Ask me shit at theangrytherapist@gmail.com.