How to Enjoy Being Alone

You’re going to make friends in college. One way or another, you’re bound to have some type of acquaintance throughout your time here. I remember watching movies portray college as a huge, social, and fun way to make friends and party all the time. In some ways, it’s true! You’re most likely going to be in a big room full of people you don’t know and you’ll have fun somehow, but what people fail to tell you is that you’re also going to be alone a lot of the time as well. You’ll be alone while you walk to class, studying in the library, going grocery shopping, etc. Being alone is just as sequential as having a lot of friends in college. 

Depending on your background, this might be hard. Maybe you’re used to running errands with your family or  having someone to eat every meal with. Either way, being alone is hard, and it’s not because you don’t like yourself first. It’s because it’s lonely to be alone, and college is just so much better when you have one or two friends or a group of people to be with. Although it’s hard to be alone, you can still enjoy it! It’s a type of self care that’s overlooked, but just as important as wearing sheet masks with your friends on Saturday nights. 

One of the hardest things about being in college is running errands. You have to get the mail, do laundry, and go grocery shopping. It’s hard because it’s now a priority in your life to run errands when your parents were probably doing those things in your house. It’s also one of the most dreadful and annoying things to do for some of you; yet this is the first step to enjoy being alone. While I’m out doing errands, I always have music on hand, and it makes being lonely not too bad. I have headphones with me at all times and while I do everyday mundane tasks, I’m also listening to a dedicated playlist I made especially for doing these errands. They’re upbeat songs that make me feel like I’m being filmed in a music video whenever I do these tasks. I pretend that a video camera is following me as I do these and find myself being the star of my own errands. 

Going to UC Davis, we have one of the greatest spots to enjoy being alone, and that is the Arboretum. I actually didn’t know you could access it on campus, and by some lucky strike I found myself at the Arboretum during my gap between classes. Full disclosure, it’s awesome, and one of the reasons why I chose to write about enjoying being alone. In those types of moments, where nature is right there, I don’t like to listen to music but instead listen to the breeze go through the trees, listen to ducks quack in the streams that run along the Arboretum, and crunch the leaves beneath my feet. We’re students, so we’re most likely on our laptops and phones all the time. It’s important to reserve even the shortest 15 minutes of your time to enjoy being alone in nature. You can sit in any of the tables or benches, or even find a nice patch of grass and just watch your time go by. 

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Working on enjoying yourself is beneficial to not just your life in college but to your well-being. You start to realize that all the finite things you do are indeed enjoyable even in the smallest instances. Being centered with yourself and appreciating life takes less energy than hating the things that are apart of your life and are supposed to be "boring". College is not just meant to be spent making friends, but to find who you are alone.