Eating out with friends is a favorite past-time for most of us. I mean, great food, conversational laughter with people we like, paired with a couple of brews is one of the key ways we relax after a hard day's work. Plus the social connections are an integral part of staying emotionally and physically healthy.

However every now and then you and I may find ourselves without dining company, for one reason or another. Now, many people would simply opt for takeout and heading to the house to binge-watch our latest Netflix obsession. And heck, I love doing that.

But you know what? I've dined out by myself many times either due to my job at the time or travel. Honestly, I've found that it can actually be a nice experience. The first time you do it, it can feel a bit strange, especially if you are naturally extroverted and tend to feel quite singular in an environment where it tends to be primarily groups of people.

I encourage you to try it, however. Bring a book or magazine with you. Write in a journal. Really focus on the environment and savor every bite of your meal. Don't sit there with a strange look on your face. Seriously, if you're sitting there having a nice time looking happy, no one will think much of you eating alone.

There's a sense of freedom you get when you become comfortable doing this. You may even get to the point where you enjoy dining alone from time to time and may even do it on purpose occasionally. Be brave, my friend. ;)

And order dessert. Just to prove the point to others, but mostly to yourself, that you've chosen to dine alone on purpose. It can be quite relaxing to sit and enjoy your meal with your own thoughts.

I always admire people I see enjoying a solo meal at a restaurant. Heck, maybe I'll see you out and we chat over coffee. Or maybe by that point you'll prefer having your coffee time all to yourself.

Enjoy.