"Fear"

This post was originally shared on February 26, 2013.

“Fear doesn’t exist anywhere except in the mind.”
— Dale Carnegie

I should preface this with, "I know this sounds stupid but...". Here goes.


I went to the movies today. On. MY. OWN! ALONE! 


Sounds pathetic and stupid and lame and weird and common and dumb but I had to share. It's such a little thing, but it meant a lot to me. As I say this out loud, I'm judging myself like crazy. I'm not sure why I have resisted to adventure into this "Perfectly Lonely" lifestyle, but I'd like to talk it out a bit. 


I consider myself a pretty independent woman. Growing up an only child, I always found ways to become self-sufficient spending time and enjoying it. I had plenty of friends who were around when necessary, so I wasn't a hermit, but definitely found comfort in having alone time. As I grew up and went away to college, the amount of alone time decreased. I found myself constantly surrounded by people 24/7, which was fantastic 95% of the time. I loved always having friends nearby just to make mundane tasks, adventures. And adventures, we had! 


But as time passed and I found myself in this huge city full of people who were all "tuned in" (a term that makes me feel old. headphones in, no chatter amongst strangers)I became isolated in my own world. It amazed me how many people were in such a small area and yet, we all are either rockin' out to our constant soundtrack or chatting on the phone. It's rare to find someone who doesn't have headphones in walking down 5th Ave. I take some responsibility to my isolation, because I leave the house with earbuds in, work, and rock all the way home. I've found music to be my everyday companion. But what happens when you actually have to take the earbuds out and talk to someone????


Obviously, those who know me are reading this like "What the hell? Marge, you're NOT shy. You will talk to anyone!" Thanks for that, MOM! Anyone who either knows me for a bit, or has seen me in action at work would easily label me as an "Extrovert". Obnoxiously bubbly, chatty and joyful. (Not much has changed since my elementary school report cards.) But if I'm being 100% honest, I am completely terrified up until the moment that words come out of my mouth. Sometimes, things come naturally. At work, I can always find something to talk about in regards to fashion. That's easy. But in general? If I were to just say whatever's on my mind at the time, I can NOT be held responsible for what I say. That's terrifying. Plus with a friend or someone else at my side, conversations are already there. It's easy. By yourself, you're usually forced to not talk (yikes!) or say something first. Then the panic hits. Who would I talk to? What do I say if someone talks first? Who could I meet? Would the like me? Would they be judging me? Where would I go? Is it ok for me to go there alone? Am I a loner? Am I different than anyone else? Who AM I?


Those questions bogged my mind and would pop up as soon as I even thought about going somewhere solo. Obviously, there are times when you have to do things on your own, running errands, grocery shopping etc, but why are they different than doing something you actually enjoy alone? I'm not sure why I've put so much thought into talking myself out of doing something just because I didn't have a partner to go with. I had a blast going to the movie alone. There was no one there to judge me when I cried (Josh Duhamel crying....duh!). There was no one there to steal my popcorn and there was no one there to stop me from swinging by the shoe department of Kohls for some retail therapy. (It was a sad movie. Shoes make everything better.) 


This adventure today taught me a lot about myself as well as the world around me. Here's the skinny:


A) If you want to do something, just do it. Don't wait for someone else to live your life the way you want to.


B) No one at the Newport Centre Mall really cares if you're going to see a Nicholas Spark's movie at 1pm on a Tuesday. If they do, they have much bigger issues.


C) Enjoy your own company. At the end of the day, you're the only one in your head, and you're pretty cool. Be honored you spent the day with you. 


D) The issues you make up in your head are nothing compared to the real issues out in the world. Suck it up, and live! You never know when it could all be over.


On that note, go do something crazy, or not crazy at all, but something that scares you personally. Maybe it's dinner alone? Maybe it's spending a whole day alone? Maybe it's going to see a movie? Whatever it is, DO IT! And remember to live in the inspired wit moments of life!