The independence that coming to college brings is exciting, but at times also intimidating. Being in a whole new place, and for some people a brand new state or country, means there's a lot of new people you don't know and a lot of places you haven't been.
While this is definitely a little scary, it's also a great chance to learn how to take pride in your newfound independence.
It's a time for growing up and learning how to do a lot of things you used to do with your family or friends by yourself. It's a natural part of getting older and more mature, but sometimes doing new (or old) things alone can feel lonely and scary.
Some examples are going to the doctor, going grocery shopping, driving to a new place, going to the movies or eating at a busy restaurant.
As a junior, it has taken me a lot of new experiences to get me to being as comfortable as I am today with doing things by myself.
Over the summer, I lived in a new town with only one good friend who I had known previously. When she wasn't there, I was in a place eight hours from my hometown and I did most things on my own.
I learned that everyone is so concerned worrying about themselves, that they aren't worrying about you. If you go out to eat and are alone, no one is judging you or making fun of you. It can be easy to feel like the entire world is watching you, but trust me, it's not.
The beauty of doing things alone means you can basically choose whatever you want to do. Always wanted to go to a museum but never found a group to go with? Nothing is stopping you from taking yourself on a museum date. A new movie out that you are dying to see? Go buy the largest popcorn you can and enjoy!
While at first doing things by myself such as going out to eat or going to a movie was scary, now I look forward to it because through school, work and family activities, sometimes it's nice to hang out with myself.
I need time to recharge and get to know myself better, and I encourage you do the same, you may just learn something new about yourself. At the end of the day, you're you, and you're pretty cool, so take advantage of your free time and don't be afraid to stand on your own.