How to Go Out and Have Fun Alone
Having fun on your own terms and in your own time is perhaps one of the most neglected and liberating social activities available to us. No matter the objective, an open-ended odyssey into the city's vibrant heart, a weekend getaway or a chance to interact with new people, going out on the lonesome can, and will, be your ticket to personal empowerment.
In this article I will attempt to concisely list the advantages of going out and having fun alone, as I see it. I will also share a subjective take on why it is not only a fun pastime but a healthy one too -- both physically and cognitively.
Things To Do Alone
There is simply nothing you can't get done in comparison to a traditional group setting. As the song goes, anything you can do I can do better. Perhaps the hardest part in heading out alone isn't logic or reason, it is simply coming up with an idea fun enough to get us to get out in the first place. Here is a list of ideas that might just make your day!
- Concerts and music venues - Concerts are very accessible when flying solo. Not only is music a great way to meet new people, you also have something to talk about and a common passion.
- Into the wild - A personal favorite! There's nothing like catching up with yourself. I adore taking time-outs that involve solo camping, hiking and being lost (figuratively speaking) in the great outdoors. It is imperative to let others know your schedule however, in case you do end up getting lost or hurt.
- Going to the movies - If solipsism if what you are looking for rather than a socially charged outing, why not go and see that film that none of your friends want to see?
- Going clubbing - While it isn't something I enjoy too much, there is a very obvious benefit to going clubbing alone. If someone is interested in talking to you, having to contend with a group is usually enough to ward people off. As an individual you are far more accessible.
- Watching people - Another personal favorite. Due to the fact that I live in Rome, a naturally very social and vibrant society, I adore sitting alone at a bar with my coffee for company and soak up the sun. I have met countless people this way and make a point of taking time everyday to make it part of my schedule.
Some Exotic Ideas
Extreme Makeover my edition - Something that I've always planned, but never quite done -- but will! If you have some cash lying about why not combine several outdoor activities such as a hair stylist, a shopping mall or an aesthetician, into a one-off personal makeover day. Not only are you enjoying yourself, you are also improving your image, self-esteem and reducing stress. Why not?
Become a photo-journalist - Fun is a subjective beast. Leaving the house with intent of having it creates an expectation that must then by lived up to. Instead of fun, why not chase accomplishment? If there is a subject you are interested in -- such as art -- why not explore it and document it on your own terms. Wrap the experience up by sharing it with others!
Pros And Cons Of Going Out Alone
Making a habit of treating yourself to yourself is an inherently beneficial pastime.
- You are able to extricate yourself from pre-existing social judgments and alleviate stress. It is almost always a chance for you to take a more objective view of your life.
- You are not bound by social etiquette and do not have to compromise your wants to those of others in a group.
- Putting yourself and your needs first improves self-confidence and self-esteem.
- Often it can be easy to forget that solitude and loneliness are not the same thing. In the words of Private Witt from the "Thin Red Line" when asked if he ever felt lonely, he answered with, "only around people". I find this to be true in many social settings.
However, there are some potential cons to look out for. In order to reduce their occurrence and impact I make sure people know what I'm doing, and what my time-frame should be.
- If you are hurt or lost you cannot count on support. This is especially true if you are quite literally alone in the middle of nowhere.
- Being more accessible can work both ways, you will attract both the good and the bad. Spending a night five feet away from the bouncers is no fun.
- Admittedly, sharing an experience with someone can make it doubly memorable. This is perhaps the only real cost to solo forays into the world, beyond those related to safety.
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