Written by BounceBack Dating Expert Samantha Scholfield
After a break-up or any other sort of change in your life, how you feel about yourself is one of the things that can take the biggest pummeling. To start putting power back in your piggy bank of self-esteem, try any (or all!) of the things on this list. You get bonus points for doing something you haven't tried before or that you're slightly nervous about, because every time you successfully do something outside of your comfort zone, you're reminded that you CAN do it and that you're a capable, kick-ass human being.
If you're feeling like flying solo to a class, retreat, trip, whatever, you get the added benefit of putting yourself in a situation to meet some great new people, which is always a plus when you feel a hole in another part of your life. If you're feeling social, bring a friend or five along and get reminded of the good things: great friends, laughter, sunshine. When you go away for a weekend and immerse yourself in something, it's a chance to leave all the BS you're dealing with at home and just fly free for a weekend. It doesn't take a lot of money, if any. Sometimes just grabbing a friend, driving to a new place for a day and exploring can fatten up your piggy bank.
So here they are - 10 things you haven't thought of yet to make this weekend awesome.
1. REDECORATE: Move stuff around, wallpaper or decal your bathroom, frame some new pictures - anything that will make your home feel like a new place. Ending a relationship might be the end of a chapter, but you've got a new chapter just starting, full of promise. Buy some new throw pillows and rejuvenate your living space. Make it as comfortable and as you as possible.
2. WORK THE RIGHT BRAIN: Go buy a canvas and some paint from your local art store, dig out that camera and shoot (or anything else creative that floats your boat) and have at it for the weekend. Focusing entirely on creativity for the weekend can bust you out of the funk in no time.
3. GET FREAKY: Find a pole dancing studio and start taking classes. Almost all the studios will do a home-based class where they bring a couple poles for you and 5 friends, and teach you hot moves for a couple hours. Not only is it a blast, it's an incredible workout. If you like it, invest in some classes. I've yet to find a workout more fulfilling, challenging and fun than pole dancing.
4. SPICE IT UP: Go all Julie and Julia on yourself and try 10 recipes in 48 hours. Have a potluck to share them.
5. PITCH IN: Volunteer at your local animal shelter. They're always in search of volunteers to play with the animals to get them used to kind human contact. Sometimes all it takes is a fuzzy critter to cheer you up.
6. VIVA!: Go salsa dancing with your girlfriends. Wear something hot and if you don't know how to salsa, go to the free-to-cheap dance lesson prior to the club opening. Salsa dancing is one place where everyone is just there to have a good time and it doesn't really matter how good you are as long as you're having fun. Same goes for line dancing, except bring your cowboy hat.
7. SPLURGE WITHOUT SPLURGING: Plan a shopping weekend with a great friend. Create a route to hit all your favorite thrift stores/craft fairs/swap meets/garage sales to find some cheap, one-of-a-kind treasures.
8. GET OUT: If you feel like adventuring in nature, check out REI or a local outdoors supply store for their weekend events. They'll often lead hikes, camping trips, river rafting, kayaking, scuba diving trips, etc. Doing some active, adrenaline-rush-inducing and challenging for the weekend is an excellent perk-me-up. Plus, because it's an adventure, you'll bond with everyone else in the group and meet some cool new people.
9. BECOME A TOURIST: Buy a guidebook for your city and try three things you've never tried before - sightseeing, historical tours, garden/architectural walks, etc.
10. GET EXCITED: Spend the weekend planning your dream vacation. Figure out your budget, things to see, places to stay, ideal guidebooks and itineraries, etc. and then start saving. Planning for the future is a great way to start looking forward.
All of these are about deciding you're going to give yourself a mini-vacation from your life, and doing it. Leave it all behind for a weekend. Don't think about your ex, or your job, or any of the other multitudes of stressors you might have in your life. You'll feel rejuvenated after 48 hours.
Samantha Scholfield is a writer, dating coach and author of Screw Cupid: The Sassy Girl's Guide to Picking Up Hot Guys. Billed as a "considerably hipper author" than The Rules, she is currently working on the guy's version of Screw Cupid, due for publication in February 2011. www.screwcupidthebook.com
More from BounceBack:
Starting Fresh: 6 Tips to Get Over The Past and Find Love Again
When the Ex is Still Around: 6 Ways to Keep Your Cool
Can a broken heart cause actual heart damage? A new study says YES.
BounceBack is changing the way people cope with heartbreak as a result of a breakup or divorce. BounceBack is a place to tell your story, get advice from experts, and share what you've learned with others in similar situations. We're here to remove the negative stigma around being heartbroken - this happens to everyone. And we believe everyone has the potential to bounce back to life and move forward. www.bouncebacktolife.com