7 Tips For Going To Events Alone

It may surprise the people that know me, but going to social events gets me all kinds of wound up. In fact, before going out I’m usually a completely anxious mess. As times gone on I’ve gotten better at dealing with it – a far cry from my student days when I would get stupidly drunk before going out so I wasn’t as anxious. Would not recommend.

As a result of Ali’s job he often has to miss events – whether that’s a birthday night out, dinners or family gatherings in the past year and a half I’ve had to get used to going alone. As much as I am independent, it is nicer going to an event with someone you love rather than on your lonesome. It doesn’t mean I enjoy it, but I have my own ways of either hyping myself up or having plans for if I’m not feeling great.

It got me thinking, I’m sure I’m not the only one having to face going to events alone! Whether that be social or otherwise so why not put down what helps me?

Make sure you feel confident and comfortable in what you’re wearing

If I’m going to feel good mentally, I want to feel confident in the way I look. Making the effort to go outside? At nighttime no less? You bet I’m going to look good! I quite enjoy making a fuss of myself getting ready with some good music blasting, taking time to do my make up and generally feeling good about myself. It puts me in a much better mindset.

That said I’ll also think about what I’ll be comfortable in, if I’m going for a big dinner I’m not going to be wearing tight jeans or a fitted dress! Hello skater dresses

Don’t be afraid to let friends know you’re feeling it a little bit

When I went out for my birthday last year I was really apprehensive. To be honest, I really missed Ali, it was my second birthday apart from him and I didn’t know if I wanted to bother. A few friends of mine had to cancel and I just felt down.

I didn’t make a secret of this to my friends. I simply explained that I was missing him, but I wanted to spend time with them, just give me a minute to get in the groove! And it worked!

Give yourself some ‘me time’ before or after

I’m an introvert and navigating parties and such alone can be exhausting! Because of this I try to make sure that I have some time to myself either before (a relaxing shower and pamper session) or the next day I might curl up with a good book and my own company!

Find something you’re looking forward to in each event

It could be that the place you’re going to eat does really good dessert. You might be seeing friends you haven’t spent time with in a while, there will be something in each event for you to look forward to! Focus on those rather than the things you’re feeling anxious about!

If you don’t want to drink, then don’t!

If you’re going out normally people are having a drink or two but sometimes you might not feel like it. And that’s ok!!! I’ve had to learn that just because other people are drinking, it doesn’t mean that I have to!

In the past I’ve drunk far too much when I’ve felt sad or lonely and you know what? It just made me feel worse, not better! Now I can be pretty comfortable to just not drink and mocktails are much cheaper!

Appreciate the time you’re spending with friends or family

I absolutely love my friends and family, when I go out I try to take pictures and remember every detail for later when I can excitedly share my day with Ali.

Going to these things alone can make me feel a little lonely but I’m not going to let that ruin the time I have with other people in my life! They know I appreciate them and their time!

Have an ‘escape plan’

I wondered whether to put this one in, but I want to be honest. There are times when I am struggling and the only way I can persuade myself to go out is knowing that if it gets too much I can leave or step out for a minute.

This might be as simple as popping to the toilet for 10 minutes if I feel anxious or driving myself to the event so I don’t have to rely on anyone else for a lift. It’s giving myself that feeling of having control over my anxiety rather than the other way around.

Is there anything else you’d add? Let me know in the comments below!

Alone time

Last year I spent so much time alone. In halls I could go three days sometimes without seeing anyone, not even my flat mates, I’d cocoon in my room and sleep, study and watch TV and if I felt like eating (which when I felt like this wasn’t often) I’d eat at strange times sometimes cooking late at night because my sleeping pattern was all kinds of messed up. I didn’t like it, I felt miserable, alone and would often just sleep for something to do.

It was a surprise to me this year that I am so busy that I hardly have time to be alone. I live with Ali now and we share a room and even when I’m having an off day he manages to persuade me to go outside, be around people. It’s one of the many things I talk to my mentor about, she says that she always tries to get people with depression to go outside and be around people, one of the worst things for depression is being isolated. I didn’t realise until the other day that last year I worried my Mum, she knew I wasn’t doing as well as I said I was and apparently got quite worried that the only times I was going out of my room was to see Ali or the boys. I didn’t feel that it was a problem then but now I can see that I wasn’t very well last year.

And so today came, after pretty much seeing people every day for about 3 weeks straight I felt a bit overwhelmed, I needed a breather. Tuesday’s are one of my days off uni and so I used today as my ‘recovery’ day as my mentor and I call them. I thought that to get over this I need to keep going, going,going but actually I need rest too. Some things that are easy for people without a mental health condition, like having a group of close girl friends, takes a lot of energy for me, I’ve been out of the loop of those kinds of friendships since I was about 14/15 and being ‘a girl’ worries me sometimes. The girls are incredible about it though, which helps,

So I spent today on my own and it was actually kind of nice, I got stuff done, cleaned and put music on when it all got a little bit too quiet. Many people won’t understand this, hey it’s just being alone! This is all a part of me getting better though and learning new things.

Right now I kind of like the peace and quiet of being alone.

All of me

 

 

Sometimes you give all of yourself to something, only to feel like you’ve failed anyway. It’s the worst feeling in the world, especially when history begins to repeat itself. You question yourself, doubt yourself. If you’re like me you have this constant feeling it must be your fault, even if it’s not. Music is healing for me but because it’s what I want to do with my life it can shatter my heart as if it were made of glass.

If I want to make myself understand something I’ll write a song or sometimes if I’m lucky enough I’ll find one that already says everything I need to say, because I don’t know how to say it myself. you may think this is pretty down but today had, for the majority, been a good day. I love waking up next to Ali, it gives me a boost in the morning, I feel loved. It’s like when I go home I like hearing people in the house, I like feeling like there is someone there, like I’m not alone.

Right now I can’t wait to get out of halls, to leave it and get away. I don’t feel happy in this room, I feel lonely and isolated. I don’t feel like I have anyone to turn to or talk to. I am completely and utterly alone here. It’s sad and I haven’t wanted to admit it but it’s true. I read and listen to music here but that seems to be all. I try and make sure I’m not here, even when I’m tired.

I’ve gotten slightly off topic now. Either way I don’t want to give up, I want to carry on but sometimes it’s the last thing on my damn mind. Today I’m mad, I’m mad at so many things and I just don’t know what to do about so many things.

On a Mad One

Amy has a phrase for whenever one of us gets angry/upset/annoyed and needs to vent until we calm down we go on a ‘mad one’. Now in the last few months there have been various forms of this and today it hit me, big time. I haven’t had a break or a rest since the beginning of January it’s been at least 4 weeks of non stop work, so today my brain just said no. Throw in room issues, bus issues, a disgusting smelling kitchen, arrogant show offs from earlier in the week and generally irritating people and you’ve got how I feel right now. I know people will read this, some may think I’m talking about them and be offended…if that is you think about why you’re offended, then you’ll get to how I feel when I write this. I ended up in the university Starbucks with Amy having a little heart to heart and she just made me feel ok , she reminded me that I am a part of something and going up to Kingston Hill just lifts my mood 90% of the time. 

I hate feeling low, it’s one of the worst things in the world and sometimes a ‘mad one’ is just a part of a low. I’ve tried to be positive today and when I was with Amy it was ok, I didn’t think about everything that was bothering me too much and I just talked it out. The problem is when I’m upset and alone or when I’m surrounded by people who just don’t help. So I’m spending this evening locked in my room listening to You Me At Six and trying to get this assignment finished. What people don’t tell you is no matter how much you love uni (and I honestly do) being in halls is hard work. Not every flat has a magical connection and sometimes you lock horns, not in a big way but when you want to slob out and just eat crappy food all day you feel this pressure, well I personally do. I generally find it quite hard when I’m having a bad day, feeling like someone is constantly looking at what you’re doing. The bottom line, it’s not like you’re at home, you have to think about a lot more, you can’t want around in some of your PJs because they might be ‘too revealing’, you don’t wear make up and people think your ill! 

Sometimes all that compared with a bad day is just a little too much. I’m trying to look forward though, to next year. I don’t know if I’ve mentioned it but Ali and I will be living together so it makes life a little easier. I just feel so comfortable around him, I can do whatever the hell I want and not feel like I have to think about it or discuss it later. I guess what I’m tring to say in this blog post is that honestly I struggle sometimes living with a whole block full of people and not feeling close to any of them and it’s just a part of life. Plus, going from somewhere where you feel like you belong, the band, Hannafords etc to being completely alone isn’t the nicest feeling. Now I’m shaking off this ‘Mad One’ I’m hoping that I can get rid of it and go to uni feeling a bit better about everything and just get on with my work before going out with Amy tomorrow night! 

I’m not a fan of being alone

 

Last Sunday I thought I might be going mad. I had spent 23 hours in my flat without seeing another human being, it was torture. Before I started uni I thought I liked being alone. I would sit in my room and crave that people would just stay out and let me do my thing, then I moved and I found I was alone a lot more than I liked. It’s not that I’m the most social person on the plant but my flat is pretty quiet, unlike other flats I know we’re not best friends. We do get one and there aren’t any major disagreements but we’re very much six individuals who live in the same flat and share a kitchen, that’s about it.

While I was at home this weekend a familiar sense of dread crept in, I’d be going back on Sunday night…an evening of being alone before seeing my friends again. Unlike most students I dread the weekend, there is no uni bus so if I want to see my Kingston Hill friends I need to walk to the station for a bus, most of my other friends either commute or work in shop jobs over the weekend so I spent quality time with myself. I find myself trying to sleep the weekend away because I get bored and frustrated. I don’t want to be surrounded by people but I would like to just have people around me if that makes sense? For reasons like when I’m feeling a bit low I can go and have a conversation and forget what’s on my mind. The other problem is that it gives me time to think and obsess, something I’m working with my mentor not to do, so I get upset and I try to call everyone I know so I won’t start overthinking…it doesn’t always work. Hopefully tomorrow will be ok because I’m getting back fairly late so I can get showered and go to bed.

This may seem like a bit of an odd blog post but I’ve heard the same thing from various friends of mine, especially if you live in a busy house as I do. You don’t miss constant interruptions but you don’t mind the background noise or your dog falling asleep on your feet. At the same time though I do like being able to wander around at 3am and not wake anyone up, so there are some bonus points. It is because of this I’m looking forward to September, Ali and I will be moving in together after  6 years. I’m planning on writing a long blog about it later on about house hunting and all that jazz but for now I’m just getting a little bit excited and a little bit nervous!

That’s enough for the day as I’m enjoying being home and have a few posts to publish that I haven’t already! Harry Potter studio tour tomorrow! I can’t wait to share thee pictures with you all!