I’m back on the market. But I don’t really feel like being on the market. So what can I do, in between relationships, to “up” my resale value, or just do for myself? I made a list of some must-have experiences for women who are single and have a little time on their hands. Here goes:
To Build Your Confidence…
1. Go to a movie alone.
2. Lift weights. When I bench-press 45 lbs., I feel like the bomb.
3. Try surfing, water-skiing, or some activity you don’t already know how to do. Could be riding a bicycle.
4. Take out the trash, set a mousetrap, do your taxes, build a bookcase.
5. Live alone, or at least move apartments in NYC without the help of family.
6. Train for (and finish) a huge physical test like a half-marathon.
7. Go to a scary doctor’s appointment by yourself. I once dragged myself to a CAT Scan in the dead of winter, all the way over on 1st Ave., post-break-up. I felt like I was made of steel.
8. Quit your job. It feels so good to take a job and shove it (and not be affecting anyone else’s livelihood).
9. Fly to a foreign country by yourself. I was nervous on my first solo trip to Europe, even though I almost always have to travel alone.
10. Learn to stand up for yourself. (If you’re not naturally assertive, may I recommend moving to New York City? It did wonders for me.)
To Be Able to Look Back and Say “I Had Fun”…
11. Witness something once-in-a-lifetime, like Jokulsarlon, a lake next to a melting glacier in Iceland (see photo).
12. Revel in being able to watch all the reality TV you want. I’m pretty sure no man will be able to stand as much Bravo TV as my roommate Erica.
13. Get drunk during the day, just because you can. Attend Santacon, the convention for Santas, or something similar.
14. Go on a date with someone who actually makes you nervous.
15. Go out with an older man who takes you somewhere nice and makes you feel like a million bucks.
16. Go out with a guy who makes you laugh ‘til it hurts.
To Get Perspective…
17. Be a good wingwoman. It’s not always about you.
18. Chill with your widowed and single grandma. She knows “alone”!
To Make You Appreciate the Next Guy…
20. Do at least one Valentine’s Day alone.
21. Attend a wedding (or 15) alone.
22. Date the creeps. You’ll really value the nice guys afterward.
To Make You Feel Sexy and Attractive…
23. Buy yourself some flowers.
24. Invest in a LBD (little black dress) and some sexy stilettos.
25. Sit at a bar by yourself and drink a martini. Cool.
26. Buy something frivolous and expensive that you LOVE wearing.
To Make the Most of Your Free Time…
27. Finish all your schooling if you can. Not that it was ever my goal to go to grad school, but I did, and it would’ve been tough dragging a guy up to isolated New Hampshire and making him sit there in the cold for two years while I studied (and partied).
28. Throw yourself into something time-consuming, like learning a foreign language. You may not have time to do this again until you retire and the kids are off to college.
To Make Yourself a Better Partner in the Future…
29. Make a list of all your faults.
30. Learn to cook well. I’m still working on this.
31. Get some hobbies. Something’s gotta keep you occupied—plus it’ll make you seem interesting.
32. Let your married friends edit your online dating profile. My dear friend Cheryl has caught a few doozies.
33. Get your finances in order.
To Appreciate Being Single…
34. Babysit someone’s baby for an hour.
35. Help a friend through her divorce or a bad break-up.
36. Host a girls-only night. I think some coupled-up women forget how much we need each other.