Most of you know that flying the coop with your girlfriends does wonders for your sanity, but did you also know it’s beneficial to your relationship? As a licensed professional counselor, I’ve found that a sure way to clear your head, re-energize your spirit and make you feel like the sexy beast you are is to take a night out with your besties. You come home to your partner feeling (and acting) like a new woman. That’s good stuff for sure. Almost magical. Here are the five reasons behind the often-experienced yet seldom-documented Girls’ Night Out Effect:
1. You get to take off your ‘mom hat’ for an evening.
Being a mother is amazing. It’s fulfilling. It’s the hardest job you’ll ever love, right? Right. But when covered in sticky hand prints or other people’s snot, most women don’t feel their sexiest. Before a Girls’ Night Out (GNO), you get to sneak off to the bathroom one hour before go-time, hose off all remnants of little people, don your adult equivalent of a princess costume, with all the nice smells and sparkle that go along with it, and get back in touch with your inner woman. And it feels damn good.
2. Speaking of sparkle, you feel prettier after a GNO.
Let’s face it, our girlfriends notice things that the men in our life don’t. Added bonus: They actually comment on those things. Are you trying a new mascara? Your eyelashes are longer than a Kardashian’s. Love those wedges—you have to tell me where you got them. You added another color to your highlights, didn’t you? Your hair has an extra little Breck Girl glow, girlfriend. They notice the cobalt blue polish on your toes, the extra shimmer in your earrings and the radiance of your new moisturizer. You leave the GNO feeling like a supermodel…because you are. Your husband might have told you that, but often he just forgets to.
3. You process and purge all of your woes.
When men have something on their mind or are working through a dilemma, they tend to think through their issues internally, in their own head. (Not all men, mind you, but a large portion of them.) Women, on the other hand, tend to be external processors. We like to talk through our worries. We’re not necessarily looking for a solution—just the act of sharing makes us feel better. Anyone out on a GNO will encounter an airing of grievances that rivals the grandest of Festivus celebrations. You and your girlfriends get to bitch, whine, moan and share about everything and anything. You come home with a clear head, ready to relax.
4. You laugh. A lot.
Look over at a table of ladies at a bar or restaurant and you’re going to see a whole bunch of giggling and smiling. It’s unavoidable—get out with your girlfriends and the humor starts flowing. If you are in a group of four or more, you’re bound to have a homegrown comedian in the bunch who makes it her mission to get everyone laughing until they ugly cry. All of the guffawing produces endorphins, relaxes your nervous system and makes you feel more positive about yourself and the world.
5. You come home with a buzz.
If you’ve designated a driver for the evening or called up an Uber, you’ll probably come home with that silly little buzz that only a good draft beer or glass of sparkling rosé can provide. But that isn’t really the buzz I’m referring to. I’m talking about the carefree lightheadedness that you gain from a night out with your posse. Remember those chaotic slumber parties you went to in fifth grade, filled with nail polish, crank calls, movies, and giggles? You went home exhausted but exhilarated the next morning.
Same thing with a GNO. You may miss out on a little sleep, but you feel recharged and reconnected with your feminine energy and power. Waiting at home, your mate will be greeted by an electrified, goddess-like She-Woman walking through the door. Time it right, and you might just be able to channel this energy into an extra happy ending for your evening. That is, if you don’t pass out first. You’re still a mom after all.
Of course, some of these benefits might be cancelled out if the mood is excessively catty or if you have one lady in the group who’s dominating the evening with never-ending stories about her brilliant toddler. But if the atmosphere is light, the benefits will bring you and your partner delight. Let’s make an effort to drag each other out on GNOs at least once a month. It’s self-care and relationship-care that everyone, even the guys in our lives, can buy into.