There's a lot of joy and satisfaction to be found when you challenge yourself to do something totally by yourself.

By Maggie Burch
Woman Hiking Alone Near Stream
Credit: FredFroese/Getty Images

We as human beings are social creatures, so it makes sense that most of the fun activities we do in life we choose to enjoy with other people. But there is a certain freedom and pleasure in doing a lot of things totally on your own. Whether it's some feat to accomplish or an activity to experience, it's important to try those things by yourself at least once. You get to be a little selfish by doing only what you want to do and doing it when and where you want to. And you end up learning more about yourself and what you actually enjoy by experiencing things without anyone else's reactions influencing you. They might intimidate you, and some might be things you already do alone, but below are 6 things everyone should do by themselves at least once in their lifetime.

Eat at a New Restaurant

Going out to a restaurant or bar alone can be pretty intimidating—mostly because everyone else there will know you're alone and you might be self-conscious of what they're thinking about the solo diner across the room. Truth is, if they did notice you're alone, they probably are impressed by the confidence you're exuding. So treat yourself to a nice meal at that restaurant you've been wanting to try. Take a book or a crossword puzzle, or just soak up the delicious food without any distractions.

Do a Home Improvement Project

If you're not typically the DIY type, this is a good challenge and way to learn something new. Instead of calling a handyman or enlisting the help of your handy brother for your next project around the house, actually do it yourself. Whether it's painting a room, hanging shelves, or starting a vegetable garden, finishing the task will leave you feeling independent and extremely accomplished—and likely ready to take on more.

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Hike a Mountain

Any physical challenge is very satisfying to master on your own, but hiking also allows you to check out from whatever stress and anxiety you may have in your daily life and just take a break to be at peace in nature.

Go to the Movies

Going to the movies is already a fairly solitary experience (as long as you aren't near anyone who thinks it's okay to talk through the movie) but it's normally something we do with other people anyway. There are some nice perks of going alone though: no compromising on what you want to see, you don't have to share any concessions, and it's a lot easier to find a single seat where you want.

Enroll in a Class

Whether it's a new hobby or a subject you're just interested in learning more about, taking a class is a great thing to try on your own. Take a pottery class, French lessons, a dance class—the options are endless. And even if you're someone who didn't love school, there's a lot of joy to be found in learning something new that you're actually excited about.

Take a Trip

This is a big one that can be a bit scary, but traveling alone can be extremely gratifying. Whether it's a weekend road trip to a part of the South you haven't seen before or a 10-day vacation to Europe, relying only on yourself to do the planning and make arrangements is a worthwhile challenge. And again, getting to be selfish with your plans means only doing the sight-seeing you're interested in. Plus, you never know who you'll meet along the way.