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Last Updated on January 26, 2021

50 Unique and Really Fun Date Ideas for Couples

50 Unique and Really Fun Date Ideas for Couples

How many times can you go out to dinner and a movie? Not that there’s anything wrong with the quintessential date standard, but it gets boring after a while.

Especially if you’ve been in a relationship for any length of time, you’re probably running out of date ideas. You are still going on dates, right. Even long-term relationships need to go on a date occasionally.

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So, for those of you who feel stuck in the “dating rut” here are some date ideas for couples:

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  1. Do a restaurant tour – Pick an area with a bunch of restaurants. Start with cocktails and appetizers at a restaurant with a bar or lounge, head somewhere different for the main course and finish up someplace else with fabulous desserts.
  2. Look for treasure – Browse antique stores, flea markets, second hand shops or yard. You don’t have to buy; just looking is fun.
  3. Movies with a twist – Instead of haggling over drama vs. action and settling on a comedy flick to keep the peace, why not leave it up to chance. Close your eyes and pick. Whatever it is, both have to agree to honor the choice or it’s not fun.
  4. Explore the nearest state park – Pack a picnic. Go for a hike or hit a nature trail.
  5. Rent bikes – Go on a biking tour of your area. There are often organized bike tours or routes already mapped out for you.
  6. Rent a boat for the afternoon – If a sailboat is not your thing, rent a rowboat, paddle-boat, or kayak.
  7. Attend a festival in a neighboring city.
  8. Broaden your dinner horizons – Choose a new restaurant, someplace neither of you have ever tried. Bonus points if it’s a different ethnic cuisine than you normally eat.
  9. Do some stargazing – Get a book on constellations, aim your telescope at the stars see how many you can pick out. Prefer a more professional venue? Visit a planetarium.
    • Ghost tour – If you’re into the supernatural craze that’s storming our country, go on a ghost tour. Many towns now have “haunted houses” open for guided tours
    • Mini Golf – Old-fashioned fun, friendly competition and inexpensive, what’s not to love.
    • Cooking night – Make your favorite dishes together—work as a team on a brand-new recipe.
    • Dinner Cruise – Whether you live by the ocean or near a lake, you can easily find dinner cruises. Brunch or moonlight cruises are also another good option.
    • Have an indoor picnic – Serve dinner on a picnic blanket laid out in the living room. Open a bottle of wine with some favorite finger foods. An indoor picnic can be even more fun and romantic than a traditional outdoor one. It’s quieter and no interruptions!
    • Visit a museum – Nearly everyone has a museum or several within driving distance. Plan an afternoon wandering around the exhibits. If art isn’t your thing, try a history, sport, or cultural museum.
    • Learn a new activity together – Take a dance or photography class or learn how to play shuffleboard.
    • Go to the theater – The Theater is a date favorite. It’s a little classier than a movie and you get to dress up and soak in some culture.
    • Art gallery – A trip to the local art gallery is a wonderful date idea.
    • Try new cuisine – Check out a new ethnic cuisine — something neither of you have tried before. The element of adventure will add some excitement to your date, and, who knows, maybe the two of you will find a new favorite.
      • Be tourists for the day – Go sightseeing around your city. Stop inside places you often pass but never go into.
      • Reawaken your inner child – Stop at the toy store to pick up a few goodies. Try a Frisbee or kite for some outdoor fun.
      • Recreate a memorable date  – Think of a favorite past date, something that means something special to you as a couple; where you first met, your first date together, where you professed your love or popped the question.
      • Take in amateur night – Visit a local bar, club, or coffeehouse and watch the amateurs display their talent. If you’re adventurous, get up there and try it yourself.
      • Bowling – Bowling is an old-school date idea with a casual, relaxed feel. It not only makes a fun date, but also makes a great first date.
      • Be daring – Go rock climbing, bungee jumping or sky diving.
      • Outdoor theater – Think Shakespeare in the park. Theater is so much more fun and relaxed under the canopy of the sky than in a stuffy theater.
      • Bingo – Playing bingo is actually more fun than you might think. Find a local community organization, buy your cards, and get ready to shout “Bingo!”
      • Game night – You don’t have to spend a lot of money to have a good time. Try a play date instead. Pick up a deck of cards and a board game for an indoor date.
      • Go skating – Roller-skating is always fun, even if neither of you have ever done it. Ice skating is a great option as well in the chilly months.
        • Mystery trip – Plan a day or an afternoon and take a trip to nowhere in particular. Just get into your car and drive. Stop when you want to eat or get a closer look at something of interest. Wing and have fun, but you might want to bring your smart-phone or GPS just in case you get hopelessly lost and can’t find your way home.
        • Engage in some friendly outdoor competition – Have a date at the driving range, batting cages, or go-kart track.
        • Take the gaming indoors – Visit a local arcade or gaming center. Don’t know where to go? Just ask some local 13 year olds, they’ll know.
        • Drive-In – Another old- school date idea that’s making a comeback of late. There’s something so cozy about watching a movie at the drive-in. Maybe it’s that you feel 16 all over again or maybe it’s just the fogged up windows…
        • Amusement Park – Ride roller coasters, eat cotton candy, get your picture taken in the photo booth, try your hand at some carnival games, and check out the view from the top of the Ferris wheel.
        • Play sports – Hit the golf course, tennis court, or ski slope for some sporting fun.
        • Dinner Theater – Interactive murder mystery-type dinner shows have become very popular. Good food, lively entertainment, and fun. A perfect date combination.
        • Visit the Aquarium – Aquariums aren’t just for schoolchildren, they’re also a great place for a date. Take a leisurely stroll while you survey the sea life.
        • Go on a picnic – A tried and true, but often overlooked date option. Pack up your picnic basket, add a bottle of wine, and choose a great spot. To make it more interesting, choose an ethnic cuisine, do a breakfast, or moonlight picnic.
          • Take in the sunset – Walk on the beach, sit on a dock, find higher ground, or just choose a quiet spot to soak in the sunset together. While you’re at it, pack some food and turn it into a simple sunset picnic.
          • Visit your local ballpark or stadium – Get tickets to a professional game or cheer for your hometown favorite.
          • Attend a concert – Live music is always a great way to spend a date. Get tickets to a big name act or enjoy a local band in the park, or a local club.
          • Wine tasting – Take an organized wine tour, or visit local wineries on your own (or with another couple.) Just make sure you have a designated driver please.
          • Go to the beach – Lie in the sun, take a swim, or skip some rocks. A day at the beach is a fun date.
            • High-school musical – No, not the movie…attend an actual high-school musical. Most high schools put on an annual musical or play. Tickets are inexpensive and you might just see some budding actors.
            • Go horseback riding – Find a local stable and either take a guided ride, a lesson or rent horses if you already know how to ride. Giddy up!
            • Volunteer – Spend some time at a local shelter or food kitchen or even join a community beautification project. Helping others can actually be a great way to spend time together and do some good in the process.
            • Casino night – Either visit a casino if you have one or go to a “casino night” fundraiser for a local organization. It’s thrilling and fun. Just don’t spend more than you can afford to lose.
            • Up, up and away – Take a hot air balloon ride. Glide over the roof tops pointing out sights of interest or just enjoy floating on air.
            • Factory tour – It sounds kind of lame, but it’s actually fascinating to see the inside of a local brewery or manufacturing plant. You’ll see things you never imagined.
            • Movie marathon – You each pick a couple of movies of your choice, (no arguments,) and cozy up on the couch with snacks and the remote.

            There are so many dating options out there to choose from, depending upon your interests, budget, and location. There’s something for every couple. Remember, whether you’re 20 or 60, dating should be fun!

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            photo credit: Pinterest

            Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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            Royale Scuderi

            A creative strategist, consultant and writer who specializes in cultivating human potential for happiness, health and fulfillment.

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            Last Updated on January 24, 2021

            How to Say No When You Know You Say Yes Too Often

            How to Say No When You Know You Say Yes Too Often

            Do you say yes so often that you no longer feel that your own needs are being met? Are you wondering how to say no to people?

            For years, I was a serial people pleaser[1]. Known as someone who would step up, I would gladly make time, especially when it came to volunteering for certain causes. I proudly carried this role all through grade school, college, even through law school. For years, I thought saying “no” meant I would disappoint a good friend or someone I respected.

            But somewhere along the way, I noticed I wasn’t quite living my life. Instead, I seem to have created a schedule that was a strange combination of meeting the expectations of others, what I thought I should be doing, and some of what I actually wanted to do. The result? I had a packed schedule that left me overwhelmed and unfulfilled.

            It took a long while, but I learned the art of saying no. Saying no meant I no longer catered fully to everyone else’s needs and could make more room for what I really wanted to do. Instead of cramming too much in, I chose to pursue what really mattered. When that happened, I became a lot happier.

            And guess what? I hardly disappointed anyone.

            The Importance of Saying No

            When you learn the art of saying no, you begin to look at the world differently. Rather than seeing all of the things you could or should be doing (and aren’t doing), you start to look at how to say yes to what’s important.

            In other words, you aren’t just reacting to what life throws at you. You seek the opportunities that move you to where you want to be.

            Successful people aren’t afraid to say no. Oprah Winfrey, considered one of the most successful women in the world, confessed that it was much later in life when she learned how to say no. Even after she had become internationally famous, she felt she had to say yes to virtually everything.

            Being able to say no also helps you manage your time better.

            Warren Buffett views “no” as essential to his success. He said:

            “The difference between successful people and really successful people is that really successful people say no to almost everything.”

            When I made “no” a part of my toolbox, I drove more of my own success, focusing on fewer things and doing them well.

            How We Are Pressured to Say Yes

            It’s no wonder a lot of us find it hard to say no.

            From an early age, we are conditioned to say yes. We said yes probably hundreds of times in order to graduate from high school and then get into college. We said yes to find work, to get a promotion, to find love and then yes again to stay in a relationship. We said yes to find and keep friends.

            We say yes because we feel good when we help someone, because it can seem like the right thing to do, because we think that is key to success, and because the request might come from someone who is hard to resist.

            And that’s not all. The pressure to say yes doesn’t just come from others. We put a lot of pressure on ourselves.

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            At work, we say yes because we compare ourselves to others who seem to be doing more than we are. Outside of work, we say yes because we are feeling bad that we aren’t doing enough to spend time with family or friends.

            The message, no matter where we turn, is nearly always, “You really could be doing more.” The result? When people ask us for our time, we are heavily conditioned to say yes.

            How Do You Say No Without Feeling Guilty?

            Deciding to add the word “no” to your toolbox is no small thing. Perhaps you already say no, but not as much as you would like. Maybe you have an instinct that if you were to learn the art of no that you could finally create more time for things you care about.

            But let’s be honest, using the word “no” doesn’t come easily for many people.

            3 Rules of Thumbs for Saying No

            1. You Need to Get Out of Your Comfort Zone

            Let’s face it. It is hard to say no. Setting boundaries around your time, especially you haven’t done it much in the past, will feel awkward. Your comfort zone is “yes,” so it’s time to challenge that and step outside that.

            If you need help getting out of your comfort zone, check out this article.

            2. You Are the Air Traffic Controller of Your Time

            When you want to learn how to say no, remember that you are the only one who understands the demands for your time. Think about it: who else knows about all of the demands in your life? No one.

            Only you are at the center of all of these requests. You are the only one that understands what time you really have.

            3. Saying No Means Saying Yes to Something That Matters

            When we decide not to do something, it means we can say yes to something else that we may care more about. You have a unique opportunity to decide how you spend your precious time.

            6 Ways to Start Saying No

            Incorporating that little word “no” into your life can be transformational. Turning some things down will mean you can open doors to what really matters. Here are some essential tips to learn the art of no:

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            1. Check in With Your Obligation Meter

            One of the biggest challenges to saying no is a feeling of obligation. Do you feel you have a responsibility to say yes and worry that saying no will reflect poorly on you?

            Ask yourself whether you truly have the duty to say yes. Check your assumptions or beliefs about whether you carry the responsibility to say yes. Turn it around and instead ask what duty you owe to yourself.

            2. Resist the Fear of Missing out (FOMO)

            Do you have a fear of missing out (FOMO)? FOMO can follow us around in so many ways. At work, we volunteer our time because we fear we won’t move ahead. In our personal lives, we agree to join the crowd because of FOMO, even while we ourselves aren’t enjoying the fun.

            Check in with yourself. Are you saying yes because of FOMO or because you really want to say yes? More often than not, running after fear doesn’t make us feel better[2].

            3. Check Your Assumptions About What It Means to Say No

            Do you dread the reaction you will get if you say no? Often, we say yes because we worry about how others will respond or because of the consequences. We may be afraid to disappoint others or think we will lose their respect. We often forget how much we are disappointing ourselves along the way.

            Keep in mind that saying no can be exactly what is needed to send the right message that you have limited time. In the tips below, you will see how to communicate your no in a gentle and loving way.

            You might disappoint someone initially, but drawing a boundary can bring you the freedom you need so that you can give freely of yourself when you truly want to. And it will often help others have more respect for you and your boundaries, not less.

            4. When the Request Comes in, Sit on It

            Sometimes, when we are in the moment, we instinctively agree. The request might make sense at first. Or we typically have said yes to this request in the past.

            Give yourself a little time to reflect on whether you really have the time or can do the task properly. You may decide the best option is to say no. There is no harm in giving yourself the time to decide.

            5. Communicate Your “No” with Transparency and Kindness

            When you are ready to tell someone no, communicate your decision clearly. The message can be open and honest[3] to ensure the recipient that your reasons have to do with your limited time.

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            How do you say no? 9 Healthy Ways to Say “No”

              Resist the temptation not to respond or communicate all. But do not feel obligated to provide a lengthy account about why you are saying no.

              Clear communication with a short explanation is all that is needed. I have found it useful to tell people that I have many demands and need to be careful with how I allocate my time. I will sometimes say I really appreciate that they came to me and for them to check in again if the opportunity arises another time.

              6. Consider How to Use a Modified No

              If you are under pressure to say yes but want to say no, you may want to consider downgrading a “yes” to a “yes but…” as this will give you an opportunity to condition your agreement to what works best for you.

              Sometimes, the condition can be to do the task, but not in the time frame that was originally requested. Or perhaps you can do part of what has been asked.

              Final Thoughts

              Beginning right now, you can change how you respond to requests for your time. When the request comes in, take yourself off autopilot where you might normally say yes.

              Use the request as a way to draw a healthy boundary around your time. Pay particular attention to when you place certain demands on yourself.

              Try it now. Say no to a friend who continues to take advantage of your goodwill. Or, draw the line with a workaholic colleague and tell them you will complete the project, but not by working all weekend. You’ll find yourself much happier.

              More Tips on How to Say No

              Featured photo credit: Chris Ainsworth via unsplash.com

              Reference

              [1] Science of People: 11 Expert Tips to Stop Being a People Pleaser and Start Doing You
              [2] Anxiety and Depression Association of America: Tips to Get Over Your FOMO, or Fear of Missing Out
              [3] Cooks Hill Counseling: 9 Healthy Ways to Say “No”

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