Working from home has many benefits. From sitting at the computer in your pj's to running a flexible schedule that allows you to get to your daughter's soccer game, more and more women are seeing and experiencing the benefits as they shift into a work-from-home lifestyle.
Despite all the benefits however, working from home can leave you feeling trapped and lonely with little physical or mental space to relax. This is especially true if you juggle your work with motherhood or have lovable yet nosey pets literally pawing their way into your work day. Times like these can leave you feeling depleted and with the blurred lines between home and work, can leave you feeling unsure of where to turn for solace.
When your home is no longer your calm and relaxing escape, what do you do?
The answer: go to dinner alone.
I was surprised to learn that many women do not feel comfortable going out to eat alone. They have their reasons and they are valid. I am here today however, to prove that eating dinner by yourself has rejuvenating properties that out shine the fears of being alone in public.
1. You can daydream.
Really daydream, like when your were a kid. No to-do lists or responsibilities running through your head. Just sweet beautiful images of whatever makes you feel happy - for the sake of none other than feeling...well, happy.
2. You feel like an adult who is in control of their own time.
Isn't it funny how the older we get, we feel like we have less and less control of our own day? We feel trapped by deadlines, client responsibilities, domestic chores, family obligations. But at dinner alone...? You decide when to order, what to order and when to leave. Call me a control freak, but there is something to be said for having the freedom to make your own choices.
3. You can breathe freely.
Have you ever paid attention to your breathing when you have a tight deadline or a screaming child in your face? It's not good. Every yogi master in the world is cringing just imagining it.
4. You can actually taste your food.
I believe that being a modern day empowered woman inherently teaches you to scarf your food in 1 minute flat. We're constantly doing it all, except slowing down. You never know when you'll need to jump up for the next kid meltdown or business emergency. But wouldn't it be nice to actually savor your food? Studies show that savoring your food promotes a stronger metabolism, a better focus on moderation and an overall more enjoyable eating experience.
5. Someone is waiting on YOU!
Ok, I'm just going to say that again. SOMEONE IS WAITING ON YOU.
6. You are eating food you didn't have to cook.
I really, really love to cook, but even I get sick of being the sole producer of hot, cooked food in this house even when I'm just cooking for myself. Taking a break from the stove lets you enjoy your meal as the nice break that it is.
7. No sharing.
Whether it's your toddler, dog, cat or even your partner, someone is always after your food. I'm never one for violence, but sometimes I just want to smack that hand (or paw) away. When you go to dinner alone, I highly doubt the server's going to ask you for bite.
8. You have personal space.
Put me in a crowded tiny cafe in the Houston Heights at a little 1 person bistro table and I guarantee you I will still have more space than I do at home.
9. You can reconnect with yourself.
In a world where we women give and give and give, its nice to put some thought into ourselves for a bit. We are, whether intentionally or unintentionally, get at putting others' needs before our own. Use this time over dinner to assess what you need. You may be surprised what your inner voice has to say when you're willing to listen.
10. You can get ahead on your work...or not.
Get ahead on that nagging task while you enjoy a glass of wine...or maybe just enjoy the wine. The point is when you go to dinner alone, you get to decide.