How many wolves in your wolfpack?

Why are so many people (especially women) afraid of doing what they want to do alone. Being alone is often confused with lonliness, and this is a huge mistake! Here are some things I think everyone can and should do alone:

Pee: Men often ask me “Why do women go to the bathroom in groups?” and the answer is “I don’t have a frickin’ clue”. On a night out, I don’t bring make-up with me, so I go to the bathroom only if I need to, or if I’m spectacularly drunk and need a few minutes to sort my life out! Women who need someone to “go” with them confuse me as much as they do you, gentlemen. In fact, if I need to use the facilities, the last thing I want is my BFF listening to me from the next stall.

Go to the cinema: The first time I did this alone I was 16 and spending the summer in another country. I hadn’t made friends yet and there was a film I wanted to see, so I did. Above all the rest of this list, this is now my favourite social thing to do by myself; I get to choose the movie, go at whatever time I want, I don’t have to share popcorn and no one whispers their “witty analysis” in my ear as I struggle to focus on the plot. Try it, it’s fun. I promise.

Go for a drink: As I mentioned here, this is much easier for a man. But screw it, if you want to have a glass of wine after work, go for it. Bringing a book might make you feel more comfortable, but it’s not necessary. Last summer, due to some poor planning, I arrived at a weekend destination 6 hours before my friends. I had a choice between sitting alone in a youth hostel or finding new friends to keep me entertained. I opted for the latter resulting in photos like this:

Who's jacket is that? Who are the band? Where are we? Who knows?

Travel: Travelling alone as a woman can be daunting. But if you’re comfortable in your own company [and I really am. I really love me. I’m a great person to spend time with] it can be very rewarding. You have to be careful, naturally, but you get to do whatever you want, whenever you want! I spent a week in Sri Lanka reading, writing, chatting to locals, sunning and visiting tourist spots. The best part was that when I got bored in Hikkaduwa (the beachy part) I just upped and left for Kandy (the mountainy part) without having to discuss, or explain or negotiate with anyone.

They asked if I wanted to see a nearby waterfall. They didn't tell me this required an hour long hike. I thoroughly regretted the denim skirt. I didn't regret the view or the stuff we smoked looking at the view.

 

Go out to eat: Last, and to be honest, least. Of this list anyway. I’m sure there are many, many more things that are fun to do alone that I haven’t thought of or experienced. Going for dinner alone. I do it, but I don’t enjoy it as much as the others for two reasons. 1. Waiting staff: “table for one ma’am?” they ask, with that tone. The one that says they know you’re a loser. “No, please set another place for my imaginary friend JimBob, he’ll be back from the bathroom any second now” and 2. because I have realised one of my favourite parts of going for dinner is the social element – what are you all having? What’s new with you? Did you get the gossip on whatserface? Dining alone, you get to enjoy the food, but that’s it. I still say if you’re in the mood for steak and no one’s around you should go for it, though!

What do you like to do alone? [clean answers, please!] What wouldn’t you do by yourself?

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Comment (13)

  • Iain Mac E| November 18, 2011

    Shopping, especially for clothes but also for food. Shopping for clothes with a boyfriend or friend is a sure way to ruin the relationship. Shopping for food is usually less demanding, but can still be test. I have a very unplanned approach to food shopping, so I end up wandering around the shop for ages considering and reconsidering a lot of things. That would drive a lot of people mad.

  • The Lady Amalthea| November 18, 2011

    Going to a movie by yourself is awesome – I totally agree!

    My favorite thing to do alone is shower. There’s this misconception that showering with someone else is somehow sexy. Really, only one person gets the water at a time while the other person stands there shivering, there’s never enough room for me to shave my legs, the water is always too hot for the other person but not hot enough for me, and I have to explain why I like to shower for 45 minutes. Nothing sexy about any of that.

    • OracularSpectacular| November 18, 2011

      I love this. I’ve been considering doing a post on ‘weekend showers’ by which I mean showers that can go on for as long as you want without worrying about having to dry your hair, do your make-up and get to work within 25 minutes! At the weekend you can just get in and stand for as long as you want before thinking about shampoo, leg shaving or [in the case you describe above] giving someone head!

  • becomingcliche| November 18, 2011

    I love to go to a movie alone. And dining out is a big yes. I don’t share food. Ever. Hands off!

    • OracularSpectacular| November 18, 2011

      JOEY. DOESN’T. SHARE. FOOD. Have you seen that episode of Friends?

      • becomingcliche| November 18, 2011

        Many, many times. And I agree with him. If you’ve got another person there, you’ve got to order more for the table. Don’t touch mine!

  • OracularSpectacular| November 18, 2011

    Ooh I have to say that while I agree with you about clothes shopping, I quite like food shopping with a partner!

  • Meredith (@LifesCrazyJoke)| November 19, 2011

    I don’t like to go shopping with anyone. I like to go alone, take my time, and really enjoy blowing my money.

    • OracularSpectacular| November 20, 2011

      Oh, same! Shopping in groups is a no-go for me, although I make exceptions like this weekend when my friend and I shopped together for a wedding – mostly to make sure we don’t turn up in the same dress!

  • W. R. Woolf| November 20, 2011

    A long walk in the woods, or a run somewhere with very few people.
    It’s funny, when I go to the woods alone, I almost get irritated if I meet someone there, perhaps because when I go to the woods, I really want some time alone…

    • OracularSpectacular| November 20, 2011

      I get you. There was on old ruin of a Norman castle near where I lived as a teenager. If I was really upset about something [reasonably regular occurrence as a hormonal adolescent] I would go there and sit by the river – it would have really annoyed me if someone disturbed my quiet place!

  • Bobsscrapbookandjournal| December 20, 2011

    I can relate of course. It just bugs me when people don’t understand why I want to go to the movies or dine alone.

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