Growing up, we always had this picture of what independence looks like – doing what we want, when we want, how we want it. However, little did we know of the trade-off that independence requires. Independence means giving up the luxuries we once had with others and learning how to do things ourselves. It means cooking our own dinner, cleaning our own mess, and even suffering because of our own actions.
Independence always looked free and bright, but independence can get very lonely after a while, not to mention also dangerous at times. Being independent requires some kind of responsibility that most of us are still learning, so for all of those who are living alone right now or are planning to live alone in the future, here are some tips that may help keep you safe:
- Keep a List of Emergency Numbers
When living alone, safety is of utmost importance. However, it can occasionally be challenging to keep yourself perfectly fit or safe at all times. Because of this, you must keep emergency numbers of nearby hospitals, police stations, and fire stations to call in case of an emergency.
It also helps to know beforehand the common natural disasters that may happen in your area and learn what to do for them ahead of time. Learning safety measures beforehand will allow you to do something after calling the designated relief operator or in cases when you cannot reach them.
- Update Yourself with Local News
Learning about recent events may seem tedious at times, but this could help keep you safe when living alone. Learning about recent kidnappings, break-ins, possible natural calamities, and the likes will help you stay on top of things and prepare for possible scenarios which may occur.
- Be Nice to Neighbors
This seems like an obvious thing to do, especially since living alone sometimes creates an air of loneliness. Being nice to your neighbors means that they can keep company when alone and help you out when you need something. Moreover, they can also alert you in emergencies, such as a fire in your building or area, a natural disaster, or even theft.
- Installing Locks
Installing locks aside from those originally installed in the house or by your landlord gives you a stronger sense of security in your own homes. However, you may want to check out a lock repair in La Mesa in case of a lockout, or if you would want to change, add, or optimize your lock.
Moreover, avoid giving or lending your keys to others, especially those you are not very close to. It is also not advisable to leave your keys at your doorstep or a hidden spot outside your house if you forget or get locked out. It is better to leave your keys with a trusted friend or relative living close by.
- Stock Medicine
Getting sick is a very normal and expected part of life. However, being alone while sick can be very problematic, especially if you still need to go out and buy your medicines yourself. Keeping some at home for storage will help ease the load of being sick and allow you to recuperate better at home. Some may opt for medicine delivery services like Walgreens, but they may take longer and delay recovery.
It is also advisable for you to notify your relatives or neighbors when you are sick so that they can check up on you or bring you to the hospital if needed.
- Find Hobbies to Bury Yourself In
Living alone can be lonely, which is why finding ways to entertain yourself can be a challenging feat for some. Listening to music, reading a book, enjoying a bath, or watching a movie are some examples of hobbies you may enjoy alone, which are also safe and cost-effective.
Joining clubs that you’re interested in will also help you interact with others who have similar interests as you. Clubs or affiliations with organizations also give common ground to meet new friends or spend time with distant relatives. Examples of these need not be the typical book clubs or volunteer shelters that most people are interested in but could also be outdoor activities like skating and wall climbing. If you’re from San Diego, outdoor activities like skate parks are a great way for you to meet other people.
- Stay in Touch with Relatives and Friends
Sometimes, living alone may lead you to enjoy your time with yourself more than others, but it is also important to keep in touch with friends and relatives, especially since it helps you stay updated with the lives of others. A grand event such as a party or long-distance visit need not be done; scheduling an occasional video chat or call will suffice in helping you keep your social skills intact.
- Follow a Budget
Living alone means that you occasionally have to manage your own expenses. Unless you are some of the select few who could afford to live without worrying about money, it is essential that you learn how to budget and balance the amount of money you spend for essentials like rent, electricity, food, transportation, and for leisure.
It is also important to also keep track of all the small expenses such as coffee, “small” snacks, express delivery apps, and the like. It may seem like a very small purchase at first but may actually add up to be very costly in the long run especially if you buy it every day.