I love how you’re always going out alone.
After telling a good friend of mine that I had purchased a ticket to see comedian Jo Koy at Wynn Las Vegas, she praised my willingness to attend the event by myself. She is single and lives alone just like I do, but generally speaking, it’s uncommon for people to go out to restaurants, shows, concerts, and other things by themselves. So, she couldn’t help but to comment positively on how I never let being alone stop me from having the kind of fun I want to have.
I never think about it a whole lot—going out alone. It is something I began doing long prior to my divorce. Sometimes, my ex had work and couldn’t accompany me. Sometimes, he simply didn’t want to go, and I never was the kind of wife who would force my husband to do something he didn’t want to do. Whether it’s a lavish event or simply dining solo al fresco at a favorite eatery, doing things by myself is a significant part of my lifestyle.
Why I Go Out Alone
I go out by myself out of necessity, mostly, but sometimes, well, I just want to. After my divorce, I began making an effort to have solo date nights. Those are the times that I definitely want to be alone.
Oftentimes, however, I go out alone because I can’t find anyone to go with me. For example, I don’t know anyone else who lives in Vegas and enjoys Jo Koy as much as I do. Plus, I spent a couple of hundred dollars on the ticket. I feel uncomfortable asking friends to drop that kind of money, and I don’t have the budget to cover the cost of a second ticket for a companion to join me.
Lastly, it’s pretty challenging to coordinate the schedules of Las Vegas people. That’s just how we are.
For me, I don’t look at it like I’m going out alone. I look at it like I’m taking the opportunity to do something that I really want to do, such as attend a show, go to a concert, discover a new restaurant. I won’t let being single and alone stop me from enjoying life and living in Las Vegas.
Benefits of Going Out Alone
Bonding with Yourself
I love to talk about self care a lot. Like, a lot. The foundation of establishing good self care habits is self love. Like any relationship, romantic or platonic, the relationship with yourself must be nurtured. A big part of that is spending time with yourself to establish a bond and memories.
Just typing that out made me feel silly; so, I know you feel silly just thinking about. Let’s go over that again:
Establish a bond and memories with yourself.
Think about the various relationships you currently have. Isn’t each one different than the other? Don’t you have bonds and memories that are particular to each relationship? These bonds and memories are specific to that person, making that relationship that much more unique and special.
You need to do this exact same thing with yourself. And, if you’re a parent, I urge you to encourage your children to begin this type of habit now. Having a bond with yourself makes you more protective of yourself; thus, you are better able to make smart decisions and avoid making bad life decisions that could have a negative outcome.
Many people struggle with social confidence. I don’t now, but I used to. If you struggle with making a phone call to discuss a billing error, speaking in front of a roomful of people, flirting, and making new friends, I can assure you that nothing builds your confidence more than going out alone.
When you go out alone, there’s no one to speak up for you if your meal arrives incorrectly or cold. You have to speak to total strangers. You have to express yourself without anyone beside you, whether it’s laughing at a comedian onstage or smiling at the bookstore cashier. And… everyone can SEE you!
Confidence is key to pursing those things you want in life, giving yourself permission to pursue your goals, and learning that the world isn’t as scary as you think it is. But, you have to build confidence to do all that. Much like any muscle, confidence needs to be exercised to be strengthened. Making a practice of going out alone is a great way to accomplish that. The more often you do it, the greater your confidence will be.
As I said earlier, the main reason I go out alone is simply because there are things I want to do, experience, and enjoy. If I stayed home instead of going to see Jo Koy just because I had no one to go with me, well, I would be missing out on seeing one of my favorite comedians live, in person, in my favorite city, at one of the most glamorous resorts in existence. Most of all, I’d miss out on the laughter. How could I possibly deny myself of that???
Life is meant to be appreciated and enjoyed. Skipping out on the joy of life just because you don’t have a partner or a friend to go with you is a terrible way to treat yourself. You deserve to experience and soak in the pleasures of life just like couples and families do. We all deserve the thrills that life has to offer.
Tips for Going Out Alone
- Tell someone about your plans. This is for safety. Let one or two people in your family or inner circle know about your plans, and text them when you’re safely home. Even if you’re going out alone during daytime, please still practice caution and inform the people who love you.
- Keep your personal items organized. Make sure you have what you need on you when you leave your home, such as money, keys, and a mask. Know what you have with you, and make sure you have all those things when you return home.
- Don’t drink too much. If you’re driving, please don’t get drunk. Even if you plan on taking a Lyft or a cab, remember, you’re alone, which means your personal safety is all in your hands. There is no one looking out for you but you. If you are alone and get drunk publicly, you’re putting yourself at risk for trouble. Drink in moderation.
- Be friendly with the staff. Restaurant hosts, bartenders, and security people are going to be your allies should you need them. For instance, if I am sitting at a bar and I have to go to the bathroom but don’t want my seat to be taken, I’ll let the bartender know and they always agree to watch my drink (sometimes taking it behind the bar) and seat for me.
- Be aware of your surroundings. Know where you parked (maybe take a photo). Know where the exits are in case of an emergency. (We should all being doing that whether we’re going out alone or with others.) Look to see who and what kind of people are around you. If you feel uncomfortable for any reason, leave. It’s okay to change your mind about your chosen activity. Look, if I got all decked out to eat at a fancy restaurant and then realized there was a birthday party for the KKK at the table next to me, I would promptly exit without hesitation.
- Use your body language. Are you going out alone but open to flirting and meeting people? You can signal an invitation for social interaction simply by smiling, keeping your entire body angled toward the room, and making eye contact with others. Would you rather be left alone? Do the exact opposite. (I want to press this point: it’s okay to go out alone and want to be left alone. You have that right. Just because you’re in public, you are not obligated to be social.)
- Have fun. Make memories. Who cares that you’re alone? Take a selfie! Take photos of your food and post them on your social media. Savor your meal. Shop all you want. Laugh, cheer, and clap loudly. Whatever activity you’re partaking in, have fun! Merriment is not reserved only for those in a group.