When I First Decided to Step Outside My Comfort Zone

It was a Tuesday. I was scheduled to work early the following morning at my new big girl job, but my favorite musician was in town, Butch Walker, at a local venue: Mr. Smalls Fun House in Millvale. All the new adult parts of my consciousness were telling me to stay in and get a good night sleep, but the college mindset that lingered told me to stick it out and brave the ‘past-my-bed-time’ adventure. The important part of this story is who I was attending the concert with…myself.

I had never been to an event by myself, let alone a concert. A concert was something I was used to going to with a group of friends or a boyfriend. In the moment of my decision to go, I reasoned that he was my favorite artist. What if he stopped touring tomorrow and I never got to see him do his famous guitar rips? (A few absurdities I thought up to trick myself into going).

On my way to the venue, I actually got pretty nervous. When I walked in and handed the woman my ticket, the feeling didn’t go away, it only intensified. I walked past the merch stand and decided to pick up a band tee to pass some time before Butch’s set came on. I wandered into the venue. It was small- a renovated old church. The groups of close friends and couples standing around added to my feeling of loneliness. Not to mention my imagination deciding they were all staring at me. I decided a beer could help relieve awkwardness. And then another beer. Or maybe the third would do the trick.

Suddenly, the lights fell low. A guitar rip echoed through the acoustics of the hollow church. A spotlight beamed down onto the man of the hour, and suddenly I had forgotten all the things I had been feeling for the past 20 minutes. There was nothing but absolute happiness and an amazing show left to follow. I started to realize all of the people I was surrounded by had a lot in common with me. We all loved music, and we all loved Butch. Music brought everyone together in such an incredible way, and there was no need for any more beers to calm my nerves. I left with a huge smile and absolutely no regrets. I just might attend another event in the near future with my new favorite date: myself.

 

Tips for attending an event solo:

Get a ride. Although being independent is fun and brave, consider having a family member or friend drop you off at the venue. Concerts often occur late at night, and it’s always better to be safe than sorry!

Don’t be shy. Chances are the people that surround you share a common interest. You both decided to go to this thing, right? Strike up a conversation and look at it as a way to make a new friend! (If it’s a professional event, maybe a connection!)

Put the phone away. Sure it’s cool to snap a few pictures of your event, but you’re there to enjoy yourself. Keep the texting to a minimum; you are there to take in this new experience after all!

Put the bottle down. A beer or two (or three) can help you loosen up at a casual event, but when there’s not a close friend to look after you, much more than that just isn’t a good idea. Not only can you run into a dangerous situation, but also you could create an embarrassing scene!

Do your research. Check out pictures online or the venue’s website to see what you’re getting yourself into. It helps to be familiar with the place to make you feel more comfortable when you arrive.

 


 

Thinking of asking yourself on a date in the near future? Check out the venue we talked about above here!

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