Living Alone Is Actually Awesome (Even Science Agrees)

In his book Going Solo: The Extraordinary Rise and Surprising Appeal of Living Alone, sociologist Eric Klinenberg explains why people who live alone are the most socially and communally engaged of household units. "In fact, compared with their married counterparts, they are more likely to eat out and exercise, go to art and music classes, attend public events and lectures, and volunteer," he writes. This may come as a major surprise considering that the word "alone" signifies all sorts of bleak sentiments like loneliness, alienation, and insularity.

But as Klinenberg explains, it's worth considering how solitude has the capacity to be liberating and soothing, too. In fact, according to this study from the University of Michigan, living with someone who engages in risky behaviors has slipover effects, and an anxious roommate can make you more on edge while a happy roommate won't necessarily have a positive influence on your mood.

After living with a stranger-turned-friend as well as a group of close friends, and then a high school acquaintance followed by a now ex-friend, I can say with certainty that my experience of living on my own has been (unexpectedly) my best. Since I know the ups and downs firsthand, I decided to come up with a list of tips for first-time solo dwellers as well as some anecdotes that reveal all the benefits of living alone. Get the full details below so you can decide if it's the lifestyle choice for you.