I’m truly grateful that I’m born at a time when my gender does not limit my opportunities in life. Women have become very empowered and independent. This is why we see an increase in women embarking on journeys alone. The aftermath of the bestselling book turned movie Eat, Pray, Love has been a factor too. I guess! Like many women out there, I have read that book cover to cover and probably watched the movie a dozen times. However, despite the emergence of women empowerment, I cannot deny that there is still a great dominance of social and cultural pressure among women to settle down and have kids especially here in the Philippines.
I’m 26 and I get nonstop questions at different social situations about when I intend to marry and have a baby. I used to get annoyed (a bit!). Who wouldn’t?! But I have learned to laugh it out. Seriously though, please give these people a chill pill because there is so much more to life than just getting married. Every woman needs to embark on a journey alone before dedicating her life to someone else. Don’t get me wrong, I think nothing is more beautiful than giving life to this world but it’s necessary to find yourself first.
These are a few simple things you can do to discover and learn more about yourself:
1. Treat yourself to a fancy restaurant alone or any restaurant of your choice
It sounds super easy but it’s not. Picture yourself inside your favorite fancy restaurant alone and ordering a big meal for yourself. Maybe it won’t matter when you are super hungry but eating alone is a good way to appreciate the joys of being able to buy yourself a good meal. You might even discover your true food preferences without the influence and opinion of another person.
2. Go see a romantic film or a horror movie on your own
Honestly, this is something I haven’t done yet. It’s awkward to watch a romantic film while surrounded by lovebirds. It’s also scary not to be able to hold someone when the creature bursts on the screen. Isn’t that a great test of strength? Laughs.
3. Go on a solo shopping spree
We girls love to go shopping. Many times, we bring our girl squad to help us determine if the dress fits and if it looks good. Trust me, it will be a struggle at first and you will end up asking the sales ladies for opinions. This is a good way to find out which outfits fit best and to discover your own personal style.
4. Buy yourself a ticket to your dream concert
Have you ever wanted to watch Katy Perry, Taylor Swift or Rihanna? Stop thinking twice and spoil yourself. This is an experience of a lifetime. You can meet other girls who might also be going alone so you can sing and dance together. Who knows? You might meet your next BFF there.
5. Make the first move
Is that guy from the other side of the café smiling at you? There’s nothing wrong if you smile back and approach the guy first BUT let’s admit it – it might seem creepy here in the Philippines! When I was abroad, this was much easier and others just didn’t care about your business. No guts, no glory! This will definitely determine how strong your stamina is when it comes to taking initiative.
6. Learn a foreign language
Learning a foreign language is so fun! It can also be difficult and boring. If you appreciate the power of communication, you will realize that every language is powerful. This will test your patience but it’s worth it.
7. The most popular – Yes, go on that Eat, Pray, Love trip!
Are you dreaming of Europe? Have you long wanted to swim in Bali or experience Maldives? Instead of splurging on luxury bags or the latest iPhone, buy a ticket and hop on that plane! In reality though, as a Filipino citizen, you have to get a visa. So take the time to plan your trip. Follow your heart but take your brain with you! It applies both to love and travelling!