Thursday, February 10, 2011

Flying solo

Is there anything that you like to do, but will simply not do on your own? For me, that list used to be huge. Eating out, movies, bars, parties, traveling - I never wanted to be alone.

Then, suddenly - I had no choice. It was either do stuff on my own, or don't do anything at all. I'll be honest - it sucked at first. Walking into any situation alone made me feel like I had failed. I felt like the fact that I didn't have a date, or at least a partner in crime, meant there was something wrong with me. 

It's gotten easier, especially in the last few months; and it's really taken off in the last few weeks. I go places with friends - but I spend a lot more time on my own. Me, myself and I have gone to movies and museums and dinner and shopping and road-trips...and we've had a blast. Myself and I are great people for me to hang out with.

I figured that I was the last person to realize that anything you can do with friends, you can also do on your own. Apparently, I'm not, though. I have friends who think I'm absolutely insane when I suggest they do the same. 
Here's my advice: Don't wait until you have to go it solo; do it because you want to. Start with a movie; they're easy, because since you don't talk in a movie anyway, the actual experience is the same when you're alone as it is when you're with a group of friends. While you're there, maybe walk the mall for a bit - on your own - and get a taste of what it's like to hang out with you. Are you cool? I bet you are.

Next up - dining alone. If you're afraid to do the whole "sit at a table" solo - go to the bar. It's full of people just looking for someone else to chat with. When you finally get up the courage to get your own table - you'll find it's not much different. You can eat and relax. No, there's no one to chat with (other than your cute waiter/waitress) - but then again, it's rude to talk with your mouth full, anyway.

A road-trip alone? Sure why not. Crank the radio/CDs/iPod and just go. Pick a destination you love - and bring your camera. The best thing? It's all about your schedule; all about what you want to do. Bummed that you don't have anyone to share the pictures or memories with? 

That's what facebook is for, my friend. Now go. Do it. You'll be glad you did.


  1. I dine out alone regularly, in some cases it's my brief escape from all the craziness of my day, and for once someone is catering to my needs for a little while versus the rest of the day when I'm my clients' bitch... I eat at the bar sometimes, or sometimes get a table. For me it's an hour or so where I can sit and reflect and focus on my enjoyment of my meal, without having to entertain someone else with chatter (or endure theirs).

    Now I'm a social guy and I dine out in groups often... don't get me wrong I like that too... but I am eating at a bar alone probably four nights a week and I am in no way complaining about that :)

  2. Oh and movies alone are a no-brainer. Half the time my date is talking during the good parts, and the other half of the time she doesn't care for the movie I want to see anyways. So seeing a movie alone is almost NECESSARY sometimes...

    And shopping alone... hell I'm worse than a woman I'll spend all day shopping... I HAVE to go alone because I wear out even the most resilient shopaholic...

  3. I think you should give a lecture series. So many of my friends (mostly female) refuse to do anything on their own. They think I'm just making it up when I say I like to go out alone. But I'm like you - I bow to everyone else all day, and just want peace and quiet (and someone waiting on me) when it's done.

    As for shopping, I'm happy to go with a friend if she's shopping for herself and needs an opinion. Or I'll shop with others if it's an outing. But for serious shopping for myself? That's a solo activity. I've never found anyone who shops the way I shop - like it's a sport. :)

    Don't even get me started on movies.

  4. I need shopping lessons from you. :)

    Though I have a boyfriend, he lives in Atlanta, and I, in Florida; so I am constantly finding myself flying solo. This is hard for me because; although I am pretty outgoing, and not really the shy type, I just really can't stand being alone, and not having anyone there to share "moments" with. I just don't find it that satisfying to go out and watch a good movie and not have someone to talk about it after with. And I don't know if I really want anyone trying to befriend me in a theater. That's just a little creepy.

    That being said, I do enjoy going out doing some things solo. *Whispers, "I never thought I'd say that.* Okay, well, no not that. LOL! Seriously, I have gotten better about going out on my own. I go to catch comedy or poetry readings on my own. Hang out at the park with a good book, or at a coffee house. I've even gone to the beach on my own.

    These are big steps for me because I've never had to be "alone" alone before. I don't even need to be alone because my friends always have something going on. However, I've found solace in spending quality time with myself. And you are right, sometimes being alone opens you up to meeting new people and possibly making a new friend. :)

    Awesome blog, Ms. Sue. :)