The Beauty of Being Alone
This is a list of fun things you can do by yourself (or with friends in some cases). I’ve included TONS of links to some GREAT sites that can help get you moving and keep you entertained, so please feel free to share this post with your friends!
So, what are some things to do by yourself? Well, there are a lot of things that you can do, but the direction you’ll want to take might depend on your situation. By the way, there is a big difference between being alone and being lonely. If you aren’t clear on that, watch this amazing video I came across. The message can change the way you look at your life!
How to Be Happy By Yourself
Enjoy Your Day!
Are you looking for a break from a busy daily routine? If so, you might have to actually schedule your alone time. Maybe you’re at a time in your life when you just don’t have very much to do, or people to do things with. Don’t fret. Make the most of your alone time. Maybe learning to meditate or developing a new skill would be more productive than dropping on to the couch and watching TV. What follows are some ideas to get you going. Please feel free to add to the list by leaving a comment!
Relaxing Activities You Can Do By Yourself
- Make an online Spirograph. Do you remember that very cool art tool/toy that allowed even the most incompetent wannabe artist to make amazing doodles? I had a couple of them growing up and always managed to lose at least a couple of the little wheels! Now you can create a work of art at your very own computer. Check it out!
- Learn how to dance. This is a Youtube classic (with over 291 MILLION views). If you’ve never seen it, it’s a must watch! You might want to practice at home before going public with your own rendition.
- Read a book. Give your imagination a workout. When you get into a really good book, you might be surprised at how much more enjoyable it is than watching the same re-hashed plots shown on television. Go low tech with a favorite paperback or download something to a tablet or e-reader (or even your phone). If you don’t have an e-reader, that’s no problem. Check this link to start reading Kindle books WITHOUT a Kindle! Amazon.com – Read eBooks using the FREE Kindle Reading App on Most Devices
- Learn to speed read for free. If you’ve got a lot to read, or you just want to improve your reading comprehension, check out Spreeder. It is a free online tool that teaches you to read faster than the default “inner voice” you’ve been listening to when you read.
- Go for a walk in a different neighborhood. Just getting up and taking a brisk walk for fifteen or
twenty minutes can really change the way you are feeling. It’s a free way to give yourself a power boost and work out built up tension. Going somewhere different can keep things interesting.
- Think better. Quantified-mind.com is a free site that allows you to work toward your peak mental performance. That’s a no-brainer!
- Improve your speaking skills. Have you ever wished that you were a better public speaker? Good news! You can take a free online public speaking course without any pressure to complete a final project in front of the class. This class is offered for free by the University of Washington and you can work at your own pace during your free time.
- Make someone’s day. You could do this a lot of different ways. Think of something you could spend a little bit of time doing that would make a positive difference in another person’s life. This doesn’t have to be expensive or complicated. Maybe you could write a letter or an email to a former teacher or a family member who had a positive effect on your life. We spend a lot of time complaining. Sometimes looking for positive things can make us feel a lot better.
- Take some free college classes. The internet has a lot of potential for good. This is a collection of free college classes and lectures that won’t cost you a dime in tuition. There are over 750 courses available to fill your free time.
- Create a list of the blessings in your life. I know it sounds hokey, but have you ever really tried this? Most of us spend way too much time complaining without realizing how good we actually have it compared to most of the world.
- Cook yourself a really good meal. There are tons of great recipes available for free on the internet today. Try something new. The New York Times offers a bunch of free short videos about various cooking techniques.
- Learn to draw. Drawspace offers an amazing free collection of drawing lessons for anyone who wants to unleash their inner artist. There is also a paid option, but the free material should keep you busy for quite a while.
- Start a flower or vegetable garden. Once it’s up and running, taking care of it can be very relaxing. It will get you out into the sunshine and might even double as light exercise if you make it big enough.
- Watch a movie. I don’t watch that many movies, but I’ve got to admit that I love the whole concept of on demand movies that I can order and not have to return. Sometimes you just want to be mindlessly entertained. This is one of the things to do by yourself that you can also do with a friend without adding any social pressure.
- Start up an aquarium. You can get used aquariums for very low prices on sites like Craigslist. My advice for beginners would be to start with some simple, easy to care for, fish. If you love it, then consider getting in to something fancier. Tropical, salt water fish are pretty, but maintaining that kind of tank requires a LOT more work. If you just want to LOOK at some fish in a nicely set up aquarium, check out this virtual aquarium.
- Give your dog a bath and then take it for a walk to dry it off. You won’t really be by yourself, but dogs are great companions. If you don’t have a dog, consider heading to an animal shelter to get yourself a new friend. Depending on what type of dog you have and your level of motivation, you might even want to give your dog a haircut!
- Watch some birds. I always thought that bird watching was sort of a strange way to pass the time, but when I started to actually look for the critters that were making all of the outside noises around my house, I was amazed at what I had been missing in my rush to get to the next activity. National Geographic has a helpful guide for identifying backyard birds that you might find helpful.
- Volunteer. There are plenty of places in most communities that would love some extra help. This could be its own post titled “things to do by yourself that will make the world a better place and make you feel better about yourself”. Give it a try. Not sure where to start? Volunteermatch.org can put you together with something that matches your interests.
More Things to Do on Your Own
- Try out a hobby. Go back to doing a forgotten hobby or get yourself a new one. If you’re stuck for an idea, check out Amazon’s massive list of “for Dummies” books. There are ton’s of hobby ideas just waiting to be found there (even if you don’t buy the book).
- Learn a new accent. Check out Youtube videos that teach you how to speak with a foreign accent. Go out and try it somewhere.
- Clean a room in your house. Admit it. You know you feel better when you’re not surrounded by filth. This might not the most fun, but at least you’ll get a chore out of the way. If you need some helpful cleaning tips, try this list.
- Do one thing that you have been avoiding. Having unfinished projects around is a major source of stress. Get some things handled and you’ll feel like a weight has been lifted from your shoulders. You should always start the day by getting the worst stuff out of the way. Once that’s done, everything else seems a lot less intimidating. Goal setting master Brian Tracy wrote a book called Eat That Frog that explains this concept, and helps you to overcome that annoying procrastination habit. Unfinished business is extremely stressful.
- Learn to juggle. This is one of the things to do by yourself that you will really want to do by yourself. No distractions. You’ve got to concentrate. I taught myself by using a “for dummies” book. TIP: stand next to your bed while you practice so you don’t have to keep bending over to pick up dropped balls or beanbags.
- Go fishing. Pack up your gear and go fishing for the day.
- Go bowling. Daytime rates usually aren’t too bad, and you won’t have to wait for a bunch of other people to take their turn. Don’t want to bowl? At least check out these AMAZING TRICK SHOTS.
- Get in the car and drive somewhere. If you are feeling adventurous, make it a day trip and visit someplace you’ve never seen before.
- Go shopping. Buy yourself something you’ve been wanting (as long as you aren’t blowing your budget).
- Take some photos. Break out your camera and take a bunch of photographs. Digital photography has made taking pictures and editing them a snap. Have some fun. Create a collage of what you did during the day. Picmonkey.com offers a bunch of cool FREE editing options. I use it all the time.
- Start a blog. Do you have an interest you could share with others? That’s a great starting place. Check out the front page of Example of a Blog!
- Share your message with the world. Make a post on your blog and let people know about it. One of the coolest things about living in this internet age is that you can get your voice heard without getting into any kind of major media. The “little guy” actually has a voice now.
- Start a scrap book. Start with photos and stuff that’s in your junk drawer.
- Comment. Look for an interesting article on someone’s blog and make a quality comment. Feel free to start with this post by adding some YOU do to pass the time on a lonely Friday or Saturday night.
- New tricks 1. Teach your freshly washed dog a new trick that will amaze your friends.
- New tricks 2. Teach yourself a new trick that will amaze your friends. Magic still entertains!
- Start a fantasy team in your favorite sport. There are lots of free leagues out there.
- Google yourself, your family, and your neighbors.
- Be funny. Learn 10 new jokes that you can share with friends. You can find some REALLY good (mostly clean) short jokes right here.
- Wash and wax your car. Get the oil changed too if it needs it.
- Call an old friend. Time can slip by in a hurry. Are you losing touch with old friends? Fix that.
- Start a reunion committee for your high school class. I’m not a big reunion goer, but some people really enjoy these get-togethers.
- Plan a garage sale. List some of your old stuff on eBay. You might make more than a few bucks.
- Basic maintenance. Tighten all of the screws in your house. Change the filters in your furnace/AC.
- Check the batteries in your smoke detectors. Buy them if you don’t have them.
- Treat yourself. Go out and buy yourself a small treat somewhere (or get yourself a giant ice cream sundae).
- Go sit in a park. When is the last time you took some time to just relax on purpose without listing all of the things you need to get done?
- Skip some stones across a pond. This is becoming a lost art if you ask me. What is the most skips you’ve ever gotten out of one rock? Watch this to see how it’s done by the world record holder for the most skips.
- Go to an amusement park. If you are a serious ride enthusiast, head off to a park that you’ve never visited before and go on their biggest and best rides. Check out this list of the Top 100 Coasters.
- Learn to whistle with, your fingers, a bottle cap, a blade of grass, or an acorn lid (or whatever floats your boat.)
- Start getting fit. See how many push ups or sit ups you can do in one minute.
- Go back to high school. Go watch some high school sports. No? OK, watch one of those 80s movies like The Breakfast Club.
- Be artsy. Visit a museum or an art gallery.
- Get a metal detector and start hunting for treasure.
- Rent something really cool for a day from a rental business. I’m thinking sports car, but here is a list of some unusual things you can rent.
- Change your hair style or color. This isn’t right for everyone, but some people like to experience different looks as a way to shake things up and break out of old, boring routines. If you’re a woman and want to try a new look, take a photo of yourself and head over to this Daily Makeover page.
- Start a journal. Tie it to a blog if you like. You’ll probably be amazed at how much you change over a few years.
- Monitor your progress. Start taking one picture of yourself every day. Look for the changes after a couple of years.
- People watch. Go somewhere public and do some people watching. Make up stories about who the people are and what they are up to.
- Feng Shui fun. Totally rearrange the furniture in one room of your house. Get some basic tips HERE.
- Clean the carpets.
- Ride around in the car and sing at the top of your lungs.
- Get caught up. Check out the Khan Academy site to learn things you didn’t pay close enough attention to in school.
- Visit a museum in your area. Go without a tour group so that you can really take your time and check things out.
- Cook something new. Most of us don’t get out of our food comfort zone too often.
- Go for a drive. Take your dream car out for a test drive. Here are some tips for getting behind the wheel even if you are still in the “just looking” phase.
- Sort through old photos. If you have old family photos that are from the pre-digital era, scan them and share them with family and friends.
- Solve Rubik’s Cube. This thing has been giving me fits since the 80s! I remember watching people solve it on a show called That’s Incredible and wondering how the heck they did it. It turns out that the official Rubik’s Cube site actually has instructions with videos to help us out now. Check it here. I still haven’t solved it, but maybe sometime soon.
- Work on a jigsaw puzzle. Personally, these things make me a little crazy, but I know a lot of people reach some sort of zen like state as they look over the pieces and try to find matching edges. If you like these puzzles, they’ll definitely help you to pass some time.
- Go to a batting cage or a driving range. Feeling a little stressed? Go whack some baseballs or golf balls around. It’s a great way to work off the stress of the day. Just don’t throw your back out if you haven’t moved away from your desk in a while.
- Learn how to catch coins off of your elbow. I remember seeing this on an old episode of Happy Days. I practiced and practiced and actually got pretty good at it after a while. Here is the world record of 55 quarters. I might go back into training ’cause I think I’ve got a shot at this!
- Go retro. Visit an old fashioned diner or coffee shop. Think “non-trendy” here. Something that’s family owned and that doesn’t have franchises all over the world. If they have a counter with stools you can sit on, that’s even better.
- Meet an author. Does you local library or book store host book readings? If so, go check one out.
- Send an email to your future self. You can write to the future at this site. Pretty cool.
- Read something unusual. Check out The Onion or Uncyclopedia. They are both a little bit “different” to say the least. Even better, why not start your own satirical blog website if you’ve got a halfway decent sense of humor.
Example of a Blog Home