Is there literally any better feeling in the whole world than canceling plans? Maybe, dare I say, canceling plans to STAY IN BY YOURSELF?
Gasp! Just typing those words made me feel more relaxed.
In an age where everything moves 100 miles-per-minute, 140 characters a second, with shared Google calendars, Facebook events, social media feeds and text message groups, getting some alone time to just be is super rare, coveted and special.
If you can get a night in for yourself, you better capitalize, sister. Designing the evening specifically around your interests and comforts is a luxury, and you want to make sure you don't blow it when you have this chance.
Here is how to have the most epic "you" night in.
Zen your place.
And no, that doesn't necessarily mean burn some sage and whip out your crystals.
What I mean is, turn your environment into something it would always be if you lived in an ideal world.
For me, that means mood lighting, a crisply made bed, blinds open to see the sky and my humidifier on. For my old roommate, that meant bright, overhead lighting, loud music and endless amounts of snacks everywhere.
Try to handle any lingering chores beforehand, like laundry, dishes and/or garbage. That way, your place is ready for YOU, and there aren't any distractions laying around to kill your vibe.
Turn your gadgets off. Seriously.
It can be really hard to do, but at this point, there is so much research supporting the fact that technology is ruining our social skills and killing us all slowly, you've just got to believe the science and put down the gadgets.
If your perfect night involves Pinterest, YouTube or Googling pictures of puppies, it's OK to keep your laptop out. BUT! If you can at least turn off your phone, you'd be surprised at how relaxed you might suddenly be.
(Bonus: This will also keep you from compulsive millennial habits like Instagram stalking and impulsive tweeting.)
If you must, text a few people beforehand and let them know you'll be unavailable for the evening and not to freak out if they don't hear from you.
If you could wear one thing for the rest of your life, what would it be? Now go put that on.
When I was 13, that meant my mom's heels and a feather boa I loved. Nowadays it means my dad's Mountain Dew t-shirt and socks with the sticky stuff on the bottom that keep you from sliding on the kitchen tile.
I have a co-worker who puts on a full glam face of makeup just to watch TV because she is good at it and enjoys the process.
Whatever makes you most happy, rock it, sister. It will make you feel empowered, comfortable and confident rocking your couch.
Indulge in your guilty pleasures.
God damn, god damn, do I LOVE trash reality TV. I don't watch it when I have guests over or during the week when life is, like, happening.
Whatever your guilty pleasure is, stock up on that shit and GO HAM ON IT, BABY.
Video gaming, screaming loud opinions at "Dance Moms," dipping french fries into frosting, picking out baby names for your future children, Googling yourself, writing fan fiction... BOY, is it cathartic to turn your brain off of your own life and lean into your personal favorite form of crack.
Remember, tonight is about you. And if your favorite thing in the world is to doodle the face of your old high school enemies onto the bodies of goats, no judgement.
I mean, what? Who said that.
Go to sleep when you want to.
Think about this: When do you ever go to sleep when you want to?
Most of the time, you're either guilted into sleep because you have work or other unavoidable commitments the following morning, or you're pressured into staying up late with either a big to-do list of responsibilities or social peer pressure.
When do you WANT to go to bed tonight? 7 pm? 4 am? Girl, it's your call.
Your zzz's, your rules.
Move your body in a way that feels good.
Take some inventory of how your body is feeling and what it needs. Are you stiff? Sore? Fatigued? Strung Out? Restless?
Address that. You'll thank yourself later. Do some light stretching or exercise, and drink a glass of water (before jumping into booze, if that's part of your dream evening).
Catering to your physical needs will put you in a great mental space with room to indulge in all the pleasures you have lined up for the evening, and take away any guilt of laying low, eating crappy foods or acting for all intents and purposes like a lazy, slob human.
The key is to stay true to yourself across the board. Fold into yourself, unplug and enjoyyyyy.