I'll go along with everything said above. Getting your sails deployed and down again is the biggest headache when you're alone, and an autopilot is the best way to do that.
I know I'll hear a bunch of screaming about this, but if you're going to do a lot of single handed stuff, get the halyards into the cockpit. The less time you spend on deck, the better you'll be. That includes the lines for a 'jiffy reef' in the main.
Next point I'm going put in is to wear a combination harness/life vest (like SOSpenders) and clip yourself to the boat via a nice, heavy jackline. Even on those beautiful days when nothing can go wrong. Because it will. Guaranteed. And if you fall overboard with the autopilot in control, the boat is going to leave you behind. I know I'll hear about this, too, but when I'm single handing, I alway stream a 100' piece of polypropylene line with a spliced-in loop at the bitter end. Something to hang on to if you do happen to go over the side, which I had happen once many, many years ago. I was lucky. I was towing a little 8' pram on a very long painter, and that painter saved me from drowning, since the boat was happily leaving me behind in her wake. That was on a beautiful day, sunny, 10 knots of wind and 2 foot seas. Something made the boat lurch, and over the side I went. When I got back from my weekend at 'The Island', I purchased what was probably the first SOSpenders that the BoatUS store ever sold.
Now, when I'm out alone, my rule is a harness/vest at all times, and I put the tether on if I have to go forward for anything during the day, and at night, the tether is clipped to something in the cockpit. No exceptions. No matter how calm it is, or how flat the body of water.
Next item: docking. You need to set your slip up properly. The very first thing you want to do is get a spring line on. If you're on a floating dock, make sure that when you leave, the eye of the spring is easy to snag with a boat hook. If you're on a fixed dock, you may need to rig a little piece of 1/4" line to hold your spring suspended, but quickly available so you can snag it. Once you've got that spring line on, the boat can wiggle around, but it can't ram the dock.
Never, ever approach the dock at a speed you aren't willing to hit something at. As long as it isn't blowing like H**l, or a huge current setting, dead slow is the name of the game. This is an aside: check your engine and transmission before you head in. Let it idle down and put it in reverse to make sure all is well before you get into the marina. I neglected to do this one time, and when I put the boat into neutral after a long, hard run from Rodriguez Key to Miami, the engine stalled, leaving me moving forward, committed to a turn, at about a half knot. Fortunately, my neighbor across the way was in the yard at the time, so I just let the boat drift into his slip, and I did a quick wrap around a piling with an extra dockline to get me stopped. After the engine cooled a bit (different problem) I was able to back into my slip.
Single-handing is great fun, but you need to think out each move, and practice if you can, preferably with a crew aboard. Eventually, you'll be comfortable with taking care of things when you're alone.
good luck and have fun!
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