How I survive going out ‘out’ by myself

out by myself

Survive is the wrong word. (Honestly, I just couldn’t think of anything that summed up the post better). It makes it sound like being out alone is a life threatening thing, which only the thought of it is. Actually doing it can be a piece of cake once you’re used to it. It’s my self confidence that can be a pain in the arse, because some days it makes me feel like I can’t do it, when I know I can.

When I was about 14, I was going to gigs at least twice a month with my friends or my sister. Whenever I’d see someone by themselves in the queue I used to think they were so brave. Like, they left the house and came here to have a good time by themselves? Honestly, it freaked me out a little because damn, I was shy af, so that level of confidence didn’t seem achievable to me.

Then I grew up and somehow managed to push myself into situations that I didn’t think I was capable of. Even the smallest things, scared the hell out of me, like asking to use a changing room in a shop. Bloody hell, the amount of times I’d be too nervous to ask and take home clothes too big and then have to get a friend to return it for me because that was a struggle too.

A lot of things still fill me with anxiety, but I’ve managed to overcome some of my big fears. One of them being going out alone.

Well, it wasn’t like I just went out and literally “faced my fears” and then I was fine. It’s still something I often get nervous about, but I love it at the same time. To the point where I’m going to Prague by myself in less than a week (!!!), which makes me want to scream in both excitement and fear.

It was a very long process of me plucking up the courage to go out out just in my hometown alone, because of worrying what people would think of me, and some days I still struggle with confidence. So I thought I’d share some of the ways I survive going out by myself.

out by myself

Feel confident before I leave the house

Okay so this is technically something I do before I go out but it definitely helps ease me into it. All us girls know how much more confident you feel when wearing matching underwear. I do my best to feel like that every time I go out, but I especially make the effort when I’ll be out by myself.

I’ll spend a little bit longer on my makeup or wear an extra cute outfit to boost my confidence. I like to look in the mirror and think “hell yeah” – that way I feel more positive about myself and consequently I have less fears.

Go late

This took a lot of practice and went against my rule of always being early… Sometimes I can’t help myself and still turn up to places before I need too.

If you’re like me – have to be early, but feel insanely awkward when there’s nothing to do – it’s good to get wherever you need to be at a time comfortable for you.

For me, the only negative about going to a gig by myself is queuing, but I also like to see all the support acts (gotta make the most of it). So I learnt to compromise. Queue for a little while to catch the first band. I add on an extra 10 minutes to whatever time they say the doors open because, let’s face it, they never open when they say they will. And I do my best to get there when the queue is moving or virtually non-existent, so I don’t have to stand around feeling like a lemon.

Go early

Time to contradict myself. When I felt comfortable enough to go for a drink by myself, I soon learnt that my “go late” rule only works for gigs. Popping in for a quick drink about 7pm on a Friday is not a good idea when you don’t want to be pushing through a crowd just to get in the door.

Instead I switched to going about 5pm – 6pm. That way I’d get there while it was still a bit quiet and not so overwhelming.

The same applies to going to events in the day. I absolutely adore finding unique clothes at vintage sales, but sometimes they can get a bit busy. Some events offer an early bird ticket, for an extra £1 or so, to get in an hour before general opening times. I think it’s WELL worth it. Not about being uncomfortable this time, this is just to make sure I get the good stuff, hah!

But if you’re not a huge fan of crowds at those kinda events, that might be a good tip for you.

out by myself

Have a comfort blanket

Even after doing the things I’ve mentioned, I still have moments where I feel anxious. Because of that, I like to have a “go-to” for when I need a bit of help.

My first little comfort was smoking, which I don’t recommend!! I always thought smoking was gross and said I’d never do it. I hadn’t even tried one until I was 18 (I was a good kid) but that was when I started having a few whenever I’d go out with friends. A “social smoker” with the occasional fag before work was all I was.

I could make a pack of 20 last me weeks. But of course, carrying them with me was my safety blanket whenever I needed it when I was out alone and on edge. And that meant that I’d be lighting up one after another until I relaxed, which isn’t the healthiest thing to do.

But the last cigarette I had made me vomit (wow so cool!!) and that’s put me right off again. So for now my comfort is my blog. When I have an anxious moment, I get my phone out and start writing. Even if just for 2 minutes and it’s absolute nonsense, because writing is such an important part of my life, it gives me the boost of confidence I need. Technically a more antisocial alternative but a healthier one at least.

And that’s about it! This was a difficult post to write because it’s really all about personal experiences, so I can’t really give tips that I know 100% work in growing confidence to go out out by yourself, only offer the things that have worked for me.

Hopefully someone will take something useful away from this post though!

7 Comments

    1. Thank you! I’m sorry you were too scared to go, I’ve been there a lot. It’s all about pushing yourself out of your comfort zones in baby steps!! x

  1. I do pretty much everthing on my own, concerts, travelling, shopping, eating out but I don’t think I could ever go out out on my own! That takes a lot of courage!

    And for concerts, going on your own and queuing is such a good way to meet new people who like your type of music! I’ve spent many many MANY hours queuing and I’ve met so many people!

    1. Thank you! I’m the same, it’s actually really fun doing things by yourself, isn’t it?!

      That’s actually a good idea. I used to queue for hooouuurs with my friends for concerts and we’d meet loads of people, but once I started to go by myself, I try to avoid queuing as much as possible. Maybe the next gig I go to I’ll try and queue for a bit longer to meet new people!

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