Making Time To Be Alone is COOL
by sam keeler
In today’s day and age there is such a high expectation of going out and doing things with friends or constantly being surrounded by people you know. It is oh so easy to get trapped into thinking this way, especially with the influence of social media. It’s almost like society has made it out for you to feel embarrassed about doing things on your own (i.e. by societal standards, girls never ever being allowed to the bathroom alone)
To start, doing things alone doesn’t constitute as being lonely. This is an important distinction to make. Doing things alone is liberating. It helps you get to know yourself. In general, it makes you a more confident and self-sufficient person. For the most part, the idea of doing things alone is underrated. Moreover, we underestimate the power of how much we can do for ourselves without having to rely on others.
With all of this being said, if you aren’t used to doing things alone it can definitely be a bit of a challenge at first—it feels a little awkward and embarrassing, especially if you are prone to over-thinking like me. So, that is why I have made this list of things you can to do alone to get yourself used to the feeling of being alone—which, I promise, can be absolutely fantastic:
1. Go to a coffee shop. This is the perfect stepping-stone for someone who isn’t used to being on their own. Coffee shops are filled with other individuals enjoying a coffee, reading a book, getting work done, or just hanging out. Grab a latté, pull out your favorite book/newest work project and enjoy!
2. Go to a concert. If there is a band you really want to see and you can’t find anyone to go with you, don’t let that stop you from seeing the show and go by yourself! Yes, this sounds scary, but trust me it isn’t. I can’t even count the number of concerts I’ve been to on my own. You won’t have to worry about losing your group, you can stand wherever you please, and best of all no one cares that you’re by yourself. A perk of going solo is the opportunity to meet people. I have met some of my greatest friends at concerts that I wouldn’t have met had I been stuck in a comfort-zone conversation with a friend.
3. Go to a movie. This might be the easiest thing to do by yourself but for some reason it sounds terrifying. On the bright side, it’s dark! Meaning, if you are nervous about sitting by yourself for an hour and a half or so, rest assured that it will be a great test of your patience of this new alone feeling without looking around to see who is looking at you. Lastly, there’s no one to mock your “ugly girl cry” at the end of a dramatic scene.
4. Travel! Take yourself on a trip. If you are worried about being alone, start of small and get away for the weekend. There is nothing better than being able to set your own itinerary and not have to worry about anyone else but yourself.
5. Take yourself to dinner. This might be one of the more stigmatized things when it comes to doing things alone, but there is nothing wrong with treating yourself and enjoying a meal with your company being you—it’s quite refreshing actually. Additionally, you’ll have a great place to recommend to other friends/partners/family members on your next excursion!
6. Last but not least, do absolutely nothing…by yourself. By this I mean embrace time alone and relax at home. Take a bath, pour yourself a glass of wine, put your favorite comfy t-shirt on, and watch your favorite movie or read one too many chapters of a new book. This is the best time to unwind and regroup so you can have you brain feeling fresh and ready to conquer the world!
Being able to find happiness in doing things on your own is something that everyone should be able to do. The five points above are how I learned to love being alone that you can too. My advice is to stop stressing and relying on others for your happiness and embrace the power of YOU.
Sam Keeler, Author
Sam is a member of the Gold Hand Journalism Team
Tall, blonde, and slightly awkward, Sam is a creative currently taking a break from living in Portland to spend the summer in New York City. She’s fuelled by music, tater tots, dogs, girl power, and of course caffeine. You can probably find Sam taking photos of her latte art in a cute coffee shop or eating pad thai and binge watching any Shonda Rhymes show.
Hannah Cunningham, Graphics
Hannah is a member of the Gold Hand Graphics Team
Hannah- also known as goose. A silly one who was built to roam. Lover of stargazing and singing in the shower. Avid Dr. Dog listener. She comes in colors everywhere.