My Mythicality: Isolate Yourself
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I have put off doing this mythicality challenge for nearly three years because it makes me very uncomfortable. Like, I considered renting a hotel room and staying alone just to say I did this but being that I live alone, hiding out at a Motel 8 seemed like a copout (and the start to a really bad Lifetime movie). I have never been a person who thought eating alone in public or going to the movies alone seemed like a great way to relax or unwind. I know people do it everyday because I see you people out in public living your best life ALONE but that is just NOT me! In fact, the very thought of doing either of these tasks makes me want to vomit so that’s what I decided I must do… Eat alone not vomit.
Now, being the well thought out person that I am, I made sure to arrange this comfort zone stretching experiment to my advantage. I decided to do breakfast…less people out. On a Monday…less young people out. At my local Panera…less cool, young people out. I also chose to sit in a tiny corner in which I knew for a fact people rarely frequented. I literally ran through the whole scenario in my head to make sure I had not forgotten anything that may trip me up in this little charade. I would walk in with my bag of paraphernalia…laptop, phone, book, Bible. You never know what you might need. I would order the sandwich I had researched the night before because I never eat a real breakfast but I felt doing just coffee would make an already jittery situation end disastrously. I would sit in my predetermined corner and pray no one noticed me. (Yes, I had a plan B if someone had stolen my corner.) I would then keep myself busy for the one hour necessary to prove to myself that I could do it.
Here’s the thing…I wasn’t miserable in my little corner. In fact, I got a lot of writing done. I sent some emails. I updated my entire squad on how the morning was going because of course they were along for the ride! No one looked at me weird or like a stranger rolling into an old west saloon unannounced. It really wasn’t a big deal. In fact, the hour passed quite quickly and I had to force myself to stop typing because I had other errands to run. If you had asked me to do this ten years ago I would have laughed. Actually, I was at a conference for work ten years ago and ate lunch everyday either in my car or in the lobby of the building we were meeting in because I didn’t want to eat in public alone. It stressed me out to no end. So in a lot of strange ways I am proud of myself. It’s silly but true!
Rhett and Link actually sold merit badges for each task. I think I earned this one!
Does this mean I will do this all the time? No. Does this mean I would feel comfortable dining alone in a crowded restaurant? HECK NO! But hidden away I didn’t mind it and I kind of get the appeal because I was far more productive sitting there than I would have been sitting at home in my PJs attempting the same tasks. In the end, it wasn’t the act itself but the fact that I was willing to step a little outside of that comfort zone that makes the difference. Is it because I’m older? Less afraid? Or just fed up with worrying about others opinions? I’m honestly not sure but I’m glad to experience life from the perspective of you fiercely, amazing independent diners and I salute you!