Stick your hands up if you’ve ventured out alone before. I’m not talking about taking a walk, grocery shopping, or the like — that’s child’s play. I’m talking about sitting at a bar or restaurant by yourself, a date for one. Sound daunting? Good. The only way to grow as a person is to get out of your comfort zone.
The first time independence is embraced at a bar stool is terrifying. My first time (almost as awkward as another “first time”) was in a foreign land, where I didn’t know the language and where “tourist” was likely printed on my forehead. If invisibility were an option, I would have taken it. It were as though all eyes in the restaurant were on little old me, silently judging my alone time. I wanted to shout, “I have friends, I swear!” to take away all labels of “loner” that may have been thrown at me. Clearly, I was overreacting. As that particular trip continued, I made a habit of going out alone (a girl’s gotta eat after all), met other travellers, and had the time of my life.
When I returned home from my journey, I decided that if I could venture into the abyss of independence abroad, there was no reason why I couldn’t do it in my own town. So I gathered my courage, I packed my bag with a magazine, and I walked with some trepidation to a quiet hotel bar. Tip #1: The best place to feel welcome as a lone bar patron is at a hotel bar, where business travellers often eat and drink alone. Once I got settled, the night was a breeze. I met new people, I got my reading done, and I felt bold and alive.Still not convinced that you should learn to be alone? Read on.
You become more comfortable with yourself
Isn’t the first rule of having a successful relationship being comfortable in your own skin? Before you succumb to co-dependency, you’ve got to know that you can do it alone. A certain level of independence is the key to any healthy duo. Having an air of confidence floating around you is like wearing love potion No. 9 — it’s a draw for business or relationships. To build that confidence up, you’ve got to start challenging yourself.