I love a good date night. But I really love a good evening out with friends. I’ve been blessed with some of the most amazing friendships in the world and when we get together, it’s always fun. With our busy schedules, we’ve learned to make the most of our time together. We have a list of self care date ideas for whenever everyone’s schedule matches up and the babysitting gods are in alignment with one another.
With everyone’s booked and busy schedules, we have to be on ready whenever we can find time to sneak in a moment or two to hang out and have fun. Connecting with people is important to your mental well-being, so whenever you can, add spending time with friends to your self-care list.
Healthline.com suggests several benefits of having friends. Friends can have a positive impact on your mental well-being. Spending time with people who care about you is important. Supportive relationships can help you to be a better you. Don’t discount the importance of valuable companionship.
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Why is it important to plan a date with your friends?
First and foremost, just like taking time for self-care is important, spending time with friends is important, too. It helps to combat feelings of isolation and loneliness and it helps to strengthen your relationship. Humans are social beings. We tend to be happier when we are surrounded by the people we love most.
When we spend time with friends, we tend to be in a better mood. Additionally, our sense of purpose and belonging is increased when we spend time with our closest pals. That time together is a great way to stay connected to your friends and get a much-needed break from the pressures of life.
Think of it as self care for your friendship. It’s necessary and it’s beneficial to all parties involved.
Here are some other benefits of a self care date with friends:
- Time to talk with fewer interruptions
- To support each other during tough times
- To hold each other accountable for making time for self care
- To improve your relationship with your friend
- To increase your sense of belonging
- To prevent isolation and loneliness
- To boost your happiness
- To reduce feelings of stress
- To increase your self-esteem
What are some ideas for self-care dates with your friends?
Planning a self care date is very similar to planning a day of self care for yourself. You want to plan fun activities that both you and your friend will enjoy. Consult with your friend as you plan your date to ensure that you choose something that both of you will enjoy.
Here are some ideas for a self-care date:
Go on a double date
If both you and your friend have spouses or partners, consider going on a double date. Double dates can be fun, especially if all parties are friends. Grab dinner or go to a sporting event together. Have a great couples’ evening away from the kiddos for a while.
Being amongst people you love is a great form of self-care because it helps to increase your sense of belonging and sense of purpose. Enjoy a nice evening out with friends occasionally to combat loneliness.
Visit a coffee shop
A coffee shop offers a quaint space for you to engage in conversation with your friend. Coffee shops are usually small and quiet enough for you to be able to focus on a conversation with little interruption. You and your friend can grab your favorite cup of joe and a pastry and catch up on what’s been going on with your bestie.
Enjoying coffee together allows you to catch up and check on each other. This helps you to stay connected and strengthens your friendship.
Throw a dinner party
If you prefer a more intimate setting, throw a dinner party at your house or your friend’s house. Throwing a dinner party at home can be a good option if you need to indulge in conversations that you don’t necessarily want to have in public.
Your dinner party doesn’t have to be fancy (but it certainly can be if you want it to). You can simply prepare something that everyone will enjoy. Or if you prefer, you can even have it catered. The important thing is that you’re spending time together and enjoying each other’s company.
Go to the farmer’s market
Going to the farmer’s market is a great self care date idea. The farmer’s market is a great place to pick up fresh produce and flowers and sometimes other local crafts and goods.
You and your friend can share recipes or encourage each other to make healthy choices as you plan your meals using the items that you purchased from the farmer’s market.
Visit a local park
Grab your friend and head to a local park for a walk, a picnic, or just sit and have a good conversation. This activity is great because if you’re unable to secure a sitter, you can bring your kids along for the fun.
Get outside for some fresh air
If you and your friend work in an office or even if you’re stay-at-home moms, it might be difficult to get outside for some fresh air during the day. A great self care date idea is getting outside for some fresh air, especially if you’ve been cooped up in a room for most of the day.
Have a movie night
Movie nights are so much fun, and they’re even more fun with friends. Find a movie that both of you have been wanting to see or one that both of you enjoy and plan a night of fun.
Grab everyone’s favorite snacks and make a fun charcuterie board for you to nibble on while you watch the movie.
Go for ice cream
An ice cream date is a fun way to enjoy a sweet treat and some laughs with your friends. You can go to a local ice cream shop or you can create your own ice-cream treats at home.
Visit an amusement park
Remember how fascinated you were with amusement parks as a kid? Plan a trip to an amusement park with your buddies and take a stroll around memory lane.
If you’re like me and would rather skip the roller coasters, find the rides that you know you will enjoy and spend the rest of the time enjoying yummy amusement park snacks with your best buddy!
Host a game night
Games are a fun way to spend time with your friends. Host a game night at home where you can play games, laugh, and spend quality time.
Take a road trip
When is the last time that you’ve had a good jam session in the car while headed on a fun trip? If you can’t remember, it’s time to call your girls and start planning your next getaway.
Visit an animal shelter
Numerous studies have shown that owning a pet can help humans feel better. The Human-Animal Bond Research Institute says that pets can provide relief from loneliness and stress, along with other conditions.
If you’ve considered adopting a pet, ask your friend to go along with you to the local animal shelter and visit a few furry friends.
Do a scavenger hunt
Scavenger hunts can be a fun way to spend time together with your crew. You can create your own scavenger hunt list based on your friend’s personality or you can choose a premade scavenger hunt.
Sip some hot cocoa
You don’t have to be over-the-top when planning a self-care date. Something as simple as sipping some hot chocolate can give you time to engage in conversation and share some laughs together with few interruptions.
Pick out outfits from a thrift store
Dress up is fun for kids and it can be fun for adults, too! Grab your bestie and head to the nearest thrift store and pick out outifts for each other. This is a fun way for you to show just how much you know your friend, spend some time together, and perhaps walk away with a fun new(ish) outfit!
Take some dance lessons
You’ll find dancing on several of the self-care activity lists that you come across. That’s because, in addition to being so much fun, dancing is a great way to get in some exercise and simply have a good time.
Dancing has been known to reduce stress and increase level of serotonin, the feel-good hormone.
Go for a wine tasting
The next time you’re looking for a fun outing, consider a wine tasting. You can attend a wine tasting at a local winery or wine shop or you can host a wine tasting at home. There are resources available online to help you host a wine tasting.
Explore the botanical gardens
If you and your friends love being outside, a great activity is to take a walk through the botanical garden in your area. It’s a great way to get some fresh air and enjoy all of the beautiful plants and flowers that you’ll see along the way.
It may even inspire you to plant some things at home.
Play video games
When is the last time that you’ve played a fun video game? It’s a fun activity that may be outside of your normal go-to activities. Find some classic games that you enjoyed as a youngster and challenge your bestie to few games.
Go to the craft store
Do-it-yourself activities can be so much fun. Maybe you and your friend can try your hand at some crafts that you’ve seen on Pinterest. Or maybe you already have a craft idea in mind that you’ve been wanting to try.
You could even just schedule a trip to the craft store and then decide on a craft that you can complete together.
Take a long walk together
Walking gives your body some exercise and it’s also a great time to connect with your friend. Schedule some time for the two of you to take a long walk together in one of your favorite parks or even in your neighborhood.
The nice thing about this activity is that even if you can’t find a babysitter, you can just bring the kids along for the walk, too.
Play a fun game
Board games are a fun way to spend an afternoon or evening. If you have a favorite board game, schedule a time to challenge your friend and compete for bragging rights!
Take a social media break
Social media can be good, but it can also be overwhelming and full of negativity sometimes. Give yourself a break whenever you have an overwhelming feeling of negativity or frustration as you’re scrolling through your favorite social media app.
For your next self-care date with your friend, be intentional about avoiding social media so that you can be present and enjoy your time together. You could even do a challenge together that extends beyond your time together. Challenge each other to reduce your time on social media.
Look at old photos
Most of the time when you take pictures of something, it’s a moment that you want to capture so you can look back on it at a later time. Grab an old photo album or your phone camera and find pictures of fun times that you’ve shared with your friends.
Attend a sports game
If you are a sports fan, buy some tickets to your favorite sporting event and plan for a day of fun.
Volunteer at a local soup kitchen
When you volunteer, you not only make a difference in your community, but you also make yourself feel good, too. Volunteering together with your someone you care about gives you both a chance to hang out together while doing something meaningful for someone else.
Visit a record store
When is the last time you’ve seen a record store? I bet it’s been a while. If you’re lucky enough to have a record store in your area, grab your friend and head over to take a trip down memory lane.
Go on a train ride
Trains are fun way to travel because the route is often a bit more scenic than a car ride. Plus if you and your friend take a train ride together, you can focus on spending time with each other ran than focusing on driving. Even if you only do a short day ride, it can be a fun activity to do with your pal.
Have a karaoke night
Channel your inner Whitney Houston and show off your singing skills by hosting a karaoke night with your friends. Karaoke is fun and is sure to provide lots of laughter for a memorable night together with your crew.
Take a cooking class
Cooking can be fun. Plan a date where you and your buddies get together and cook a recipe that both of you can enjoy. You may be able to find a cooking class in your local or maybe you can find an online class for you to enjoy together.
Visit a petting zoo
Psychology Today suggests that pets are mood lifters. Spend some time at a petting zoo and experience the mood-lifting effects pets can provide.
Choose an item or two (or three) from this list and plan the best self-care date for you and your friends. This time together will help you to connect and keep yourself accountable for making time to nurture your friendship.