How Do You Treat Yourself When You Can’t Go Anywhere?

Photo: Flystock, Shutterstock
Photo: Flystock, Shutterstock

When I was growing up, my family used the smallest of achievement as reason enough to go out for a celebratory dinner. Perhaps it was just a cover for my parents’ desire not to cook, but anytime I aced a test — or anybody in the family accomplished something at school or at work — we’d go to a moderately-priced restaurant and call it a celebration.

I wish I could do that now.

I shy away from indoor dining for safety’s sake, and I’m guessing many folks are doing the same right now. Whether you abstain entirely or are just trying to minimise risk where you can, a lot of the things that would otherwise bring us some small measure of joy are no longer carefree pleasures. Concerts. Museums. Having friends over for dinner.

This dilemma doesn’t only apply to the celebration of special occasions, but minor ones too. On the xxfitness reddit, for example, people commonly speak about treating themselves to a massage or a manicure or a new outfit for meeting a fitness goal. They discussed pandemic-compatible rewards recently; one of the more popular answers was that it’s a small joy to buy yourself a houseplant.

So now I ask you: how do you treat yourself without adding to your risk of contracting a deadly virus? Have you switched to celebratory picnics instead of dinners out? If you would normally consider a shopping trip to be an enjoyable indulgence, do you get the same satisfaction from buying things for yourself online?

Here’s one personal example I know is not unique: In lieu of our usual road trip summer vacation, our family recently booked a cabin at a nearby campground. It’s close enough that we won’t need to stop for gas or groceries along the way, and instead of crossing the country, we’ll spend our time paddling the lake and exploring the area’s less-travelled trails. It won’t be what we’re used to, but I’m looking forward to it all the same. How about you?

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