I am basically a professional at going to parties by myself. There is nothing wrong with showing up solo, but I will admit, it can get a little awkward, especially if it’s your first time doing it or if you’re a shy or introverted person. In any of those cases, you’ll need some survival tips on how be alone at a party and not look like you’re alone at a party – you know what I mean? Maybe there’s a party you really want to go to, but your friends bailed on you at the last minute or you don’t know anyone besides the host (who, obviously, is going to be too busy to be by your side all night), or you go with a friend who ends up ditching you to make out with her crush. What are you supposed to do? Not show up? Stare at your phone and pretend to be texting when really you’re stalking on Instagram? Go home? Nope!
Flaking on a party because you won’t have someone by your side every minute is tempting and easy, but it’s also a one-way ticket to sitting out on a whole lot of life. Are you really going to let a little bit of fear get in your way of having fun? I’ve met some really great friends being at parties all by myself. If you know how to do it right, going to parties alone becomes so much less of a big deal than it probably feels in your brain right now. It’s entirely possible and I have total faith in you… whoever you are. As a
self proclaimed professional at going to parties totally date-less, these are seven key survival tips everybody needs for partying solo.
Join A Group ActivityNo matter what type of party you're at, there's usually a few people doing their own thing, a few people coupling off, and a group of people playing some sort of group activity game, like Never Have I Ever, Celebrity, Heads Up, or Cards Against Humanity. Join in, even if it's an all-pairs game. More often than not, someone will need a partner and you guys can work together. Plus, it's a group - most people aren't total jerks and they actually want others to join. Group activities are instant bonders. They're fun in the moment, and they can potentially give you people to hang with when they're over. Source: iStock
Be Upfront About ItThe best thing I've ever done at parties where I don't know anyone is walk up to someone or a group of people who look friendly enough and say, "Hey, I don't know anybody here. I'm Aliee." Then we shake hands and start talking. Really, it's the best. One of two things will happen: they either don't know anyone either and you'll both be thankful for having a buddy, or they'll feel tasked with introducing you to the rest of the party. Unofficially, of course, and only if they feel like it. You aren't anybody else's responsibility but your own. However, pretending you're fine and you're so okay and definitely know everybody present isn't going to help you at all. Don't be afraid of owning up to your situation. People might want to help you ease the awkwardness.Source: iStock
Hang Out By The SnacksThis age old party stereotype exists because it's true. Ever hear of someone hanging out "by the punchbowl" even though when's the last time any of us were at a party with an IRL punch bowl? It's a euphamism for being a loner hanging out by the snacks. But, hey, everybody is going to snack sooner or later. They're going to want to get a drink. It's a prime spot for intercepting conversations, starting mini interactions with people, and duh - having something to talk about and get excited about. Snacks! Snacks are rad. People want to know where the snacks are? Tell them the host went to get more. How do you know this? Beacuse you're the resident ambassador of snacks. Don't make it weird, but when all else fails... be the snack ambassador.Source: iStock
Skip The Small TalkNobody likes small talk and we all sense it coming a mile away. School is enough of an insular environment where you all already know each other's schedules and who's friends with who. The weather is weather. We're done with it. Small talk exists because it consists of non-threatening topics we all have in common, but you can do better. You don't have to break out some deep conversation or talk about the election or Syria, but talk about something that's happening in the present that you can both have an opinion on. You know what - ask their opinion on something! Make a joke. Small talk? No thank you.Source: iStock
Compliments Are Excellent Ice BreakersBut don't just say something and run! Saying someone has a nice jacket will usually elicit a thank you and thereby end the conversation. There's a trick to compliment ice breakers. Keep them genuine, specific, and open ended. If you recognize the lead from your school musical, tell them they're a great singer (if you truly think that) and strike up a conversation about musical theatre - chances are they're into it and now interested in talking to you because you've just endeared yourself to them. One time a girl showed me how to do winged eyeliner at a party because I complimented her look. Everybody loves a compliment and they open people up, making them more receptive to conversation. Problem solved.Source: iStock
Seek Out Others Who Don't Know AnyoneHint: they're the other people standing alone and refreshing their Instagram, biding their time until they can figure out what to do and who to talk to. It's rare that someone is the only stand-alone at a party. Just based on odds and probability, there have to be more than one of you. Bring it up! Go stand next to them and say something like, "Do you know anybody here? NO? Okay, me neither. Mind if I stand next to you so I feel less weird?" Self deprication is can come off as off putting, but honesty is funny. They're probably in the same situation you are and were maybe secretly wanting someone to come over and strike up a conversation. Look at you, saving the day, forming your own misfit band of loners.Source: iStock
HAVE FUN!Okay, you're alone at a party. That might set you off balance for a bit, but people like hanging out with people who look like they're having fun. So, go dance. Go have the best time at this party by yourself. Nobody is responsible for your good time or happiness but you, right? Enjoy yourself to the fullest extent you can in a way that feels true to you. Feel a little cheesy when you do it? Good. Being cool is overrated. People are attracted to people who are having fun. Fun and cool don't ever need to be the same thing. In fact, it's almost always better when they aren't.Source: iStock
Are you always at parties by yourself? What do you do? Do you love it or hate it? Let us know in the comments!
You can follow the author, Aliee Chan, on Twitter.