It would be nice to go through our whole lives with someone by our side for everything we do, but there are some times when it's best to do something alone, especially if it will help us learn or grow. There are a number of experiences every woman should have by themselves that can help us feel independent and even more comfortable with who we are. They might feel challenging, but they can have profound effects down the line, and they might even be more revealing than you would realize.
"It's important for women to have experiences on their own because it helps them figure out their interests, values, and opinions," says therapist Kimberly Hershenson, LMSW over email. "It is important to be able to be comfortable and confident with yourself in order to be an effective partner and friend."
Even though it's nice to have company, sometimes it's necessary to push yourself out of your comfort zone and try your hand at something alone, no matter how daunting it might seem. And who knows, you might be inspired to do some other activities by yourself because of it. Here are nine experiences that every grown ass woman should have alone at least once in their life.
"One should not be haphazard or careless, but it is a fabulous feeling to be able to travel alone," says relationship expert J. Hope Suis over email. "There is a complete sense of self and doing what you want and getting the rest or excitement that will feed your soul. You are not encumbered by another's schedule and can focus on the world ahead of you. You will meet new people, engage in delightful conversations, and explore your surroundings with a completely different viewpoint when you do it alone."
2Dining Out At A Restaurant
Many people fear dining at a restaurant on their own, but this time can be ideal for connecting with your thoughts. "I’ve done this a lot while traveling and have recently started eating out alone in my home city of Vancouver," says life coach Sarah Wall over email. "I love to bring my journal and sit and people watch. Eating alone allows me to eat slower and to focus on my food, as I don’t need to talk to anyone else at the table other than the waiter."
It's okay to experience some pleasure by yourself — in fact, it's encouraged. "Knowing your own body and what brings you pleasure allows you to communicate better with your partner about what brings you to orgasm," says Wall.
Meditating can not only give you some much needed alone time, but it can also help you connect to yourself as well as relieve some stress, and everyone deserves some self-care. "Meditation helps to settle my mind, to manage my emotions, and approach life openly in a positive way," says Wall.
5Making A Big Decision
Most of us tend to rely on people like our friends or parents to make many of our major decisions, but there are times when you can benefit from making choices on your own. "Which car to buy, what apartment to rent, whether you should move to a new city or stay where you grew up — making these types of decisions alone seals the deal on your 'adult” status," says life coach Samantha Siffring over email. "It’s so intimidating to make a huge decision alone. We worry that we will make the wrong choice, but by making these choices, you will learn that in most of life, there is no such thing as a right or wrong choice."
6Negotiating A Contract
It's important for women to feel comfortable when it comes to talking about money. "Whether you're asking for a raise, buying a car, or remodeling your home, women owe it to themselves to gather information, ask questions, compare choices, and then make an informed decision — all by herself," says Suis. "We do not always need another person to validate our choices."
7Trying A New Hobby
"Have you always wanted to learn to play guitar or learn a new language?" says Hershenson. "While in a relationship or caught up with an intense work schedule, you likely do not focus on figuring out what you enjoy doing or may have not had the time to engage in activities you find interesting or have wanted to do. Now is the time to get to know yourself better and find things that interest you."
You don't have to kick your roommate out if things are going well, but if you ever find yourself in a position where it makes the most sense to jump on that one bedroom, go for it. "I think that there are few things that boost confidence more than having to be the one fully responsible for making sure repairs in the home are taken care of or figuring out what that bump in the middle of the night was by yourself," says psychologist Joy Harden Bradford, Ph.D. over email. "Additionally, I think living alone can teach you to enjoy your own company and help you get better in touch with your authentic voice."
9Figuring Out Your Finances
"We do not all have to know everything about everything, but no one else should be able to dictate our financial future," says Suis. "We should all understand our debt to income ratio, spending habits, saving habits, and have a solid financial plan. Talk to an adviser who can help wade through the sea of insurance policies, 401K and retirement plans, and any other questions you may have to feel confident with your money matters."