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Do stuff on your own: A girlboss challenge

Okay, so this might sound lame to some of you older and real adult bloggers (tell me your secrets) but I am a college student and many college students are terrified of doing things on their own. The whole culture of college– eating, sleeping, working and constantly being around friends– revolves around not being alone. And since a lot of us are still figuring out this 'adult' thing, it can be comforting and helpful to always have someone to study with, or go grocery shopping with, or drive to the doctor's with.

But on the flip side, the expectation of always being surrounded by friends can make you feel pretty self conscious about being alone. And while I often didn't give into that self consciousness in little ways (I'm a big supporter of sitting on benches alone and studying alone, for example) there are still many things that I feel hecka awkward about doing alone, at college or not.

And if there's anything I've learned in trying to crack the code of being a girlboss, it's that when it comes to being afraid or hesitant, there's only one real answer or piece of advice: just do it.

I want to be a girl who can fend for herself, at age nineteen and age twenty five and age fifty. So I might as well start now. I might as well start doing what I want to do and going where I want to go, without letting the awkwardness of being alone hold me back. (And there's the added bonus of feeling like a total boss whenever you do things alone).

So for all those reasons, I've been challenging myself to do more things alone lately. And by that I mostly mean going to my local coffee shop to work alone, going to the library, and as of yesterday, going to a movie alone at my local independent movie theater.  If this sounds super lame to you, you're just more of a girlboss than me. I aspire to get on your level, girl. But for those of us that aren't there yet, we've gotta start somewhere.

Here are a few things to keep in mind when you're feeling hesitant about going somewhere, whether it's a trip to the store or a full fledged adventure, alone:

Nobody's going to judge you 

One of the biggest things that always made me feel self conscious about doing things alone was the possibility of people I know seeing me and thinking "sheesh Julia must be weird and have no friends, she's at a cafe alone." The truth is, surprise surprise, people don't really think that way. Maybe when you were fourteen, yes. But you're a girlboss now, and you're (practically) an adult. Despite what your self-conscious brain tells you, being alone is a normal fact of life. Even if it might feel weird for college-age kids, it's not weird at all.

If anything, people might think it's kinda cool 

Especially in college, since doing stuff/going places on your own is kinda against the norm, people might even secretly think it's cool if they see you doing something on your own. I wouldn't make this your primary motivator, but it could be an added bonus. Is it always true? Uh, no. But if it helps you girlboss your way into that movie you want to see, you go girl. Let yourself pretend that everyone around you in in awe of your independence. ;) 

Walk with confidence 

One of my favorite feelings is the feeling of walking down the street– head held high, big strides, not timidly glancing away when you make eye contact with a passerby– while simultaneously feeling like a shriveled leaf on the inside. I think this is what being a girlboss is all about: being afraid and hesitant and self conscious and doing it anyways. So do yourself a favor and even if you don't feel confident, walk with confidence. Faking it until you make it isn't just some myth. It's how anybody does anything.

Being a girlboss doesn't mean being mistake-(or awkwardness)-free 

I think, especially as women, there's this idea that confidence comes with being perfect (or at least really good). Once you know you're good and you've proven yourself as being good, of course you're allowed to be confident. This is a flawed perspective though, because you'll never reach perfection. You might never even reach a point where you fully believe that you're "really good" (even if you are). Some young women (like me) tend to be chronically self conscious and always believe that we're not quite good enough. Does that mean that we can't be confident? Do we have to wait to be at least a little bit better before we can be girlbosses who own our lives and go to museums on our own? Heck no. Do it now, fear and all. Make mistakes, be awkward, and get it done anyways. 

So challenge yourself to do something on your own in the next week

Whatever it is, have it be something that puts you out of your comfort zone a little bit. Does going places or doing things by yourself make you feel awkward as heck? Then start small. Walk around your neighborhood and take some photos. Go study in a cafe. Go to your local library, or pop in a few thrift stores. If you're already comfortable with those things, then level up a bit. Go to a museum, or a restaurant, or a movie, or a concert. Be entirely alone and entirely in charge.

Alrighty, this has been your inspirational message of the day. I hope you enjoyed it. Let me know how you've been girlbossing lately! Does it involve doing stuff on your own? Or are you already a doing-stuff-alone pro? 

♡ Julia


  1. I love this post, Julia. It really inspired me to take my life into my own hands and to make myself better. The words were true and raw. Everything I could have ever asked for!

    with love, Jordyn |

    1. Wow, glad you liked it! Thanks for reading

  2. I can so relate reading this! I can be quite an anxious person especially when I have to do things on my own. That's great you was able to go movies on your own, I can help but think someone is always judging x

    LAURA ­| Laura Thinks About

    1. I think that too, honestly. And yeah I definitely understand the anxieties surrounding it. But doing stuff alone can be pretty empowering, if you ever want to try it! ;)
      Julia |

  3. I used to feel the same way, but now I've become my greatest companion. I really cherish the time I get to spend on my own and I feel really empowered when I accomplish something by myself.

    1. Aww I love how you say you've become your greatest companion. I love that! So glad you like to do things on your own, I'm getting there too. :)

  4. This was such a refreshing post to read! Doing things on your own can help so much with confidence, and it really does help you realize that no one is going to judge you for it! Good for you for doing this, it's so brave Julia xx

    Sending light & love your way,
    My Lovelier Days

    1. Aw thank you, Diana! That's so nice of you to say :)

  5. I don't mind doing things on my own at all! Shopping is actually one of my favorite things to do alone since it allows you take your time and make sound decisions!


    1. Ah that's so true. I like shopping alone also, once I get myself to do it!

  6. This is such a lovely post - absolutely beautiful and love the topic too. It's great to have some time to yourself! :)

    Wishing you a great weekend.

    Layla xx

  7. You're truly a doll and you speak from the heart. I can tell you are very true to yourself and that's amazing! Growing up I ALWAYS relied on my older sister for every single thing. Whenever I needed help or an answer to a math question she was always there to answer to it. That all changed the day she went away for university in a new country which I couldn't just go there quickly when I needed her. That's really when I had to grow up and figure things out and do things on my own. Just like you, I was terrified of eating outside alone, going to movies alone, generally being alone in public places because my sister was my best friend and none of my friends were open-minded or adventurous as we were together. It's not until my mid 20s when I started to get use to being more independent, confident, and more fearless. I think you just need to take baby steps and ease your way out of your comfort zone. You will surprise yourself and love that you did things on your own! You said "Nobody's going to judge you" - I agree and also disagree with this. You really need to have your eyes open for who and who aren't supporting you. Even just one comment of putting you down in jealously in anyway is already a red flag. Do not keep that person(s) any closer. Seriously you're amazing girl and don't forget it!


  8. How interesting! I have always been the type of person who needs to be around somebody because I get so lonely or feel awkward. I'm 22 and still feel this way... I like that you've challenged us to feel a little uncomfortable and try something new alone, because you're right, being alone shouldn't be such a scary thing! What a great topic to bring up. Thanks Julia!

    Simply Lovebirds

  9. This article hit me right in the place. I hated doing things on my own. I still kind of do. And it's ridiculous in a way because as a adult now I need to be able to do things alone. But it's difficult for me. I fear and don't feel confident about it. That's why I signed up to volunteer alone (without friends or people that I know that's it) for a camp, I'm also planning to go on a solo adventure soon. Hope that I'll get more confidence and will be a stronger person than I am now :)

    -Leta | The Nerdy Me

  10. Ever since high school I have struggled with being alone because it was deemed as "uncool" and "lame". Attending college has seriously improved my confidence so much that being alone was almost a blessing since I had five other roommates! Really great post that I think a lot of people need to hear and understand that being alone isn't a bad thing! Thanks for sharing!


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About me

About me
I’m a 19-year old college student who’s still very much “in bluhm” (heh) but I’m figuring it out as I go, laptop in hand.
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