The other day I was talking to a friend of mine who is newly single, and he told me he was having trouble finding stuff to do on his own that didn’t feel awkward. “I find myself going to movies alone all the time,” he said, “but I’m sure there are other activities for single people who want to go out by themselves!” I asked the rest of The Frisky staff for their favorite things to do solo, and we came up with the following list of activities–perfect for singletons or anyone who wants to spend a little quality time alone…
1. Exercise classes. Going to yoga alone is the best. Most people are there alone, and it’s easier to focus on your movements and find inner peace when you’re not distracted by your boyfriend’s hilarious attempts at bridge pose on the mat next to you. But beyond yoga, other classes like spinning, Zumba, kickboxing, and Pilates are a great place to get an awesome workout and never feel singled out just because you’re alone.
2. Breakfast at the diner. Asking for a table for one at a fancy restaurant is a uniquely terrifying experience. Grabbing a seat at the counter of your neighborhood diner, ordering pancakes, and paging through the Sunday paper? Not nearly as intimidating, and also a really fun way to start your day. Not a breakfast person? Sit at the bar for dinner with a good book and a glass of wine. Bonus points if you pretend you’re a secret agent on a stakeout.
3. Getting a mani/pedi. Sure, it’s nice to gossip with a friend while you both get pampered at the salon, but it’s really nice to just lay back in the massage chair, close your eyes, and enjoy the moment.
4. Hangin’ at the coffee shop. I’ve recently started carving out an hour or two every weekend to just chill at a coffee shop by myself. Sometimes I write, sometimes I read, sometimes I pretend to do those things and actually just stare at the other customers, but hey, it’s always a good time.
5. Volunteering. We all have a cause (or 20) that we really believe in–show your support by offering them a couple hours of your time. A good volunteer coordinator will be able to give you a task that makes good use of your specific skillset, and you’ll quickly feel like you’re part of a time instead of an odd man out. Volunteering is also a great way to meet new people if you’re looking to expand your social circle (or find an altruistic new love interest).
6. Book Readings. Get on the mailing list of a few bookstores and libraries in your city and keep an eye out for visits from your favorite authors. Bookstore events are almost always free, and if you’re a book nerd like me, seeing your literary idols in person is a total rush (I just went to a Cheryl Strayed lecture last night and I’m still all tingly!).
7. Museums. Once you’ve strolled through an art museum solo, you’ll find it hard to go back with other people. Want to spend 20 minutes staring deeply into a solid blue canvas? Go right ahead. Want to skip the impressionist corridor entirely because you’ve secretly always hated it? Be my guest! Plus, art is good for the soul. You’ll leave feeling renewed and inspired.
8. Shopping. Frisky staffers are huge fans of shopping alone. I actually find wandering through the Nordstrom shoe section by myself to be something of a meditative experience. You get to take your sweet time, make your own decisions about what looks good, and don’t have to compare yourself to anyone else. You also don’t have to buy anything–window shopping can be just as fun.
9. Hiking/Outdoorsy Stuff. Go conquer that super steep 5-mile trail at your own pace, or rent a kayak and spend the day paddling around the lake. If you’ve got a little extra energy and a taste for adventure, Mother Nature is always ready to be your date.
10. Getting a massage. Treat yourself! Come on, after all that hiking and yoga and shopping and volunteering, you totally deserve it.
Any favorite solo activities we missed? Please feel free to add to our list in the comments!