Thursday, February 4, 2010

Welcome to Julie's Comfort Zone Challenge

I have to admit, I was shocked by how many of you responded to my previous post about doing things out of my comfort zone.

Seems like I'm not the only one who stays safely in the confines of her quiet little life!

So I'm going to grab the proverbial bull by the horns and as Nike would say...JUST DO IT.

I've decided to challenge myself to do something that takes me out of my comfy little boring world and makes me slightly, if not massively, uncomfortable.

(And no, OHN, it will not start with wearing a bathing suit in public!)

There are plenty of things I'm fine with doing alone. I can go to the bookstore, the coffee shop, shopping, anything like that by myself. I could go to a museum alone (although I never do).

I think f8hasit said it best..."I like being alone sometimes, but not doing social activities alone".

That's my problem.

I have an aversion to doing things solo that most people tend to do coupled up.

Like dinner out. A movie. Going to a bar and listening to a band. See a Broadway play. Go to a concert.

But the thing is, there are a lot of movies I want to see! There are a lot of places I'd love to go for dinner! And there is many a Friday night (most of them actually) that I really want to get out of the house and do something, but because I don't have a date, I stay home and watch TV.

So I've decided, that in light of my 49th birthday being right around the corner (March 22nd, in case anyone wants to send presents), this year I'm going to stop missing out on things just because I'm single.

This year, I'm going to live the life I love.

This year, I'm going to love the life I live!

Tomorrow night, I am going out to a local bar, one that I go to with friends every few months, and I'm going to pull up a bar stool, have a couple of drinks, and listen to some live music.

BY MYSELF.

Next week I'm going to go to this great Mediterranean restaurant that I've been dying to try.

BY MYSELF.

The week after, I'm not sure what exactly I will do yet, but something. Whatever it ends up being, it will be...

BY MYSELF.

I'll be blogging about my solo adventures, so I hope you will continue giving me your feedback, and ideas on things to do!

Wish me luck tomorrow. I'm gonna be pissed if someone slips a Rufie in my drink while I'm in the bathroom though.

Well, unless he's hot, of course.

30 comments:

Tiffany said...

I think thats awesome. And if you ever feel like you can't do it, just think of all of us backing you up. Waiting to hear what happened. I read books all the time and I love how some have strong women who do things ALONE all the time. And I always wish I were that brave. I'm too self conscience and always think people are staring at me. I hate even going in a restaurant alone to just pick up a to go order. Make me proud Julie. I feel ya. Not really cuz then I'd be a lesbian but... you know.

Apryl said...

Good for you!

I have gone to bars by myself, ones I am familiar with where I sort of know people.

BUT the BIGGEST event I did solo was I took myself to a Red Sox game, because I didn't want to miss the chance to see it and no one could come.

I thought it would be awkward, but I am social, I talk to people, and I had a ball!

Can't wait to read abotu your solo adventures ;-)

http://aprylsmindshowers.blogspot.com/

Danica said...

I'm so proud of you!!!

You can do this. I have faith in you. :-) And you'll have fun doing it and you just may meet some new friends.

Becky the Design Lady said...

You can do it!
I go to the movies by myself all the time (once I was the only one in the theater... it was like a private screening just for me)
I went to see Phantom of the Opera alone because no one would go and I didn't want to miss it.

Going places by yourself makes you more available to the people around you. When you're with friends, everything is within the group. Alone does not mean that you're pathetic and sad. It means that you are adventurous.
Go for it! I can't wait to read what you do.

Did you ever find someone to build you a blog button? If not, drop me an email.

Margaret (Peggy or Peg too) said...

Yeah! I am so excited for you.
I bet this turns out so well that you'll be saying, "what the hell have I been so afraid of?"

Try a matinee movie - it is filled with 1's. When I was 23 I started with doing it during the day before I graduated to evening movies.

I can't wait to hear what a great time you had at the bar!!!

Vegas Linda Lou said...

Julie, I am SO INCREDIBLY PROUD of you!!! If you need a boost tomorrow night, read my "10 Steps to Self Confidence" post again, or just call me and I'll talk you through it. I'm a pro at going out alone--and I know you'll enjoy meeting new people.
YAY for you!!!

Liz said...

Go Julie! I think it's terrific you're getting out of your comfort zone. Are you doing Gatsby's tomorrow? If so, there's ALWAYS people there who will just strike up a conversation with you! Have fun, just don't drink too much as you are the dd for the night! LOL :)

My Aimless Infatuation said...

Look at it this way,women are always alone in movies when their dream guy finds them. I'm keeping my fingers crossed for you Julie.(before you say it I know I'm a dreamer but I love happy endings).

LeeAnn said...

Good for you! I think it's great. I'll get thinking good thought about you tomorrow night.

CJDehner said...

Good for you! I travel for work often and have gotten to the point that I LIKE eating alone at the bar. The bartender always talks to you and there are usually several other lone diners or drinkers there too. I don't feel like a social outcast when I sit at the bar. One thing I do as a safety net is bring a book just in case I find no conversation.
Enjoy your time with yourself.

LeeAnn said...

Oh, and I put your cute little button on my blog, too! It's very nice.

LT said...

Julie, I've been a silent lurker of your blog for some time now and just had to comment on this post. I think you're awesome! Its so hard to step outside of our comfort zones and I'm totally impressed that you're willing to do so. Have one hell of a fantastic time!!

dana said...

In my last marriage, I found a lot of comfort doing things alone and my FIRST thing was to go to the movies. Oh shit I felt weird. I swear that when the lights went down, ONE stayed on ME so that everyone had the choice of watching me, or the movie.

And I looked around and saw OTHER women there alone!! gasp!!!

Then I went out to eat alone after the movie. I was the only non-couple there, so I asked for something to read. The waitress took giant pity on me and got me something so I'd look like I was KEWL!!

Afterward, I realized that I had ENJOYED it.

The bar? I'm not so sure about.......just don't READ while sitting on a barstool. That's NOT kewl.

Anonymous said...

"Going to a bar and listening to a band."

That's how I met my husband, he was in the band.
Cassie

Christiejolu said...

Good for you! I don't mind going to the movies alone, but I am not sure about the eating at a restaurant by myself! You are way braver than me. I mean I would eat at a McDonalds by myself on break from work, but not a real restaurant. I did go to a bar alone once or twice, but I was meeting someone there usually.

Secretia said...

It is nice to hear you say that this year you will do the things you want to. I like that!

Secretia

Janel said...

A crazed fan here! I concur on the single again, getting out and doing it all over, again. and. again. yeesh.

One thing that helped me to "get" out there again, was to travel by myself to another country. I have been to Mexico, Canada, Hawaii and 10 countries in Europe. I have met and made the most amazing friends from all over the world! Seriously, if I can survive being thrown off a train in Italy, in the middle of NO WHERE, with a HUGE suitcase that somehow arrived with NO HANDLES, by myself, you can too! It taught me that I can survive on my own, I am resiliant, and I am brave!

I'm turning 46 on March 15th. I'll take you up on the challenge, and go to a bar by myself, and listen to some good old blues! Maybe we'll both get lucky!

Janel said...

Oh, and if you want to try a new place to eat, go early. It's less painful on the ego if you go when the senior citizens are out.

Just sayin.

Blissed-Out Grandma said...

Good for you! When I first dined out alone I was self-conscious, but then I started a little role-playing game. I'd imagine I was a highly successful executive, or actress, or whatever, and kind of pretend that I looked and felt totally glamorous and self-confident. Once you do it a time or two, you find that you ARE more comfortable and more confident. So you will have not just left your comfort zone but expanded it.

Anonymous said...

definitely do the movie thing and I go to the matinees plus they are cheaper....believe me, no one cares!! and I get he popcorn and soda ALL TO MYSELF..no sharing!! LOL....I dont know about eating out alone, but maybe try the bar because you can always order food at the bar...if you get uncomfortable, ask for a "to go" container and leave. I would try just getting a drink at a bar (but make sure it is a nice bar) that way you are only there for one drink and if you feel weird, again, you can just leave, but if you start to feel comfy, then stay but dont drink to much, we dont want to see you start doing your blog from jail, LOLOL>....

now if only I could take my own advice.....

Jill (and newly single) in NY

STILLMAGNOLIA said...

You Go Girl! I am proud of you. I met my sweet Frank doing something totally by myself....and there he was! BTW....I still have an aversion to going OUT to dinner by myself and going to the movies alone. Maybe that will be MY personal comfort zone challenge for this year.

Chocolate Covered Daydreams said...

I love those ideas. I wish I was there so we could be alone, together, ya know? :)

Can't wait to hear about it.

gayle said...

You are probably at the bar or will be soon...can't wait to read about it...post tomorrow!!!!

alice said...

I think it's totally cool! I can't wait to read about your adventures... maybe it will inspire me to get out of my house when my two kids aren't with me for the weekend and I don't have a date. I'm sure you'll have some great stories, as well as some great times.

Jazzy Cazy said...

Yaay good for you!! I definitely recommend going to the cinema by yourself. I used to do it, I went to the Simpsons movie coz no one else wanted to go and had a great time. Honestly, no one will even think to wonder about you, I promise.

Best of luck with the bar escapade.

xjcx

Ginger@When Ginger snaps... said...

I'm looking forward to reading all about your solo adventures! It sounds like it's going to be fun.

I was single for four years and I learned to go out alone. Sometimes it sucked, sometimes it was incredible and a few times I met some people I would have never met otherwise.

But I survived and so will you! Keep your chin up, and keep on blogging!

Oz Girl said...

I like your CZ challenge. I decided YEARSSSS ago that I better start doing stuff by myself or I might miss out on a lot of life. So while I was still single, I would often go out to eat, usually on Sunday afternoon, and usually to a Mexican restaurant where I could sit on their patio with a margarita and a book or magazine. I began to look forward to my little Sunday afternoon trysts with myself. I enjoyed them immensely. Then I began going to movies by myself. Same thing... I got used to it, and actually enjoyed going by myself!

Soooo, good luck with your CF challenge, I look forward to reading about some of your adventures.

And I really don't think that shoveling the driveway counts. LOL Hope your back is finally feeling better!!

Toni said...

Just found my way to your blog & I love it!
Glad you are stepping out of your comfort zone. I just recently got married (at 34 years of age). I was always doing things by myself if I didn't have my kids with me. Now stepping out of my comfort zone has to do with including my husband in things I'm used to doing alone.
It's a struggle but I'm trying!
Best of luck in your independent endeavors. :)

Chris said...

Hi Julie

Good luck with your challenges. When you do them, I'm sure you'll feel why didn't I do this before. Have a great meal next week and remember, being single doesn't mean you have to miss out on things you want to do and try.

I'll have to check out your previous post to see your other challenges.

I'm also going through challenges at the moment, as I've just turned 40 and thought, god, why ain't I doing the things that I want to do.

So far I've being doing fine and I feel happier.

laura said...

Dear God, I should give you lessons! Listen up! On a Monday or Tuesday (yes, you read that right!), go to a restaurant that's adjacent to wherever visiting out of town businessmen go (show up around 6:30PM). Take a NY Times crossword puzzle with you (or just some mindless busy work that you can yank out of your purse, after all you had a really stressful day!). SIT AT THE BAR!!! Use your intuition; if no one is there, have a quick drink and leave. If some prospects are there, order a light dinner along with your drink. I can't tell you how many bizarre, fun, boring, crazy, and wild evenings I ended up experiencing (and in a very small city, I might add!) on these nights. And you have to understand that there was a time in my life when I wouldn't even go out to breakfast by myself.
Go for it! And I want to read about the results.