4 Reasons Staying Single Helps With Future Relationships
There comes a point in most of our lives where we're ready to be with The One and settle down. Although it sounds good to hear, most of us struggle with finding who we want to be with. We end up feeling alone, getting stuck in a cycle, getting hurt or confused, or changing completely as people. Why is that?
I think everyone is so focused on finding love that that focus is what's keeping them from succeeding. The problem is that everyone wants to find the right person, but not many want to put in the time to be the right person, which leads them into messed up relationships or leads them to complete cynicism towards the idea of love. Let's focus on what too many of us good people tend to overlook in that department, and that's being happy while single.
That's right, I said it! I know it's scary, and it takes some time and effort, but I believe that there are many people out there that could use some of these words. Maybe you already know these tips and just need to be reminded. Maybe you don't give a crap, or you think you have it figured out. Whatever the case, hear me out and let's dive into the four reasons why staying single may be the best thing for you to do right now.
1. Time to Recover
Let's say you've gotten out of a relationship and you're feeling a bit lonely. Your first instinct most likely, is to find someone else to be with (normally as a distraction). The only problem with this is more often than not you end up not giving yourself time to recover and heal, which inadvertently leads you to carry on unsolved negative feelings or bad habits to your next relationship. Well, DON'T DO THAT! I don't care who you are, everyone needs at least a little time to recover and reflect.
At the very least, you need time to fully accept what's happened before you move on. It's hard I know. But think about it, was the relationship ending mostly your doing? Highly unlikely I know...just kidding. If so, then focus on what you did wrong and learn from it so as to not repeat those mistakes in the next relationship. Was it mostly the other person's fault?
Then give yourself time to think about what it is you really want from a partner, so that way you won't end up with the same kind of person again and again. Staying single allows you to better analyze your perspective, whilst giving yourself time to gather much needed energy.
2. Focus on You
We've all heard it before on Facebook, "I'm livin' that single life to focus on me..", only to read a post later from the same person, "No one's ever gonna date me, I miss being taken to the movies!" *Insert sad-face *. You need to be true to yourself. If you wanna focus on you, then go all in! Wanna go back to school? Trying to hit the gym more often? Put more energy into a passion or hobby? Want to travel? Or do you just want more relaxation?
Then go for it! You don't need anyone else's approval. Though it is possible to juggle these things and still be in a relationship, staying single allows us, most of us, to increase focus and productivity. Less financial and emotional hurdles to jump over. Also, you'd be surprised at how much time flies for you when improving yourself, and by the next time you're ready for a relationship you'll both be grateful for the effort you put into yourself.
3. Learn About Yourself
Along with focusing on yourself you'll most likely encounter new skills, interests, ideas, and truths about who you are. The more you learn about you, the easier it gets to find another partner because you know more about what you want and don't want in a relationship. Often, others feel that they have no need to change or learn more about themselves because let's face it, they know everything (sarcasm), and refuse to grow. Hey, maybe they don't need to, but for the rest of the 99%, myself included, we have have miles to go on the road to discovering our own potential.
I mean, I believe each of us can spend the rest of our lives learning about ourselves if we cared enough. Now, it's true that you can continue to learn and grow while being in a relationship, but as I mentioned in the previous tip, you're more likely to be more productive as a single act. Maybe you'll have a little more fun too on your solo journey. At the end of the day I just recommend going out and meeting new people or stepping out your comfort zone. Never stop learning about you. Develop your self-awareness as best as you can. Before you know it, your next partner will fall right into your hands, or lap depending on how lucky you are. Just kidding...maybe.
4. Establish More Independence
Now I'm a firm believer in no one person being truly independent. We all depend on something or someone at one point or another, which is totally okay and normal. At the same time, learning how to be happier whilst single is liberating, though somewhat challenging for a lot of us. Just imagine, not needing to gauge your own happiness or self-worth by someone else's standards or expectations.
Being able to rely on yourself first for the love and encouragement you need is probably the most valuable and difficult tip on here. It's so easy for us to doubt ourselves, to down ourselves, compare ourselves to others, to not fully see the impact we have on others. Other people's love still matters of course, we all love and need that support to a degree. But us heavily depending on other people's feelings and love leaves us helpless in the event we're on our own. Our need to please others keeps us from taking care of ourselves like we need to.
When you learn to love yourself more, you end up knowing better what you want/need and can continue the process of self-care. With that perspective, you gain the ability to tell if other people want to be with you because they genuinely love you, or because they're too scared to be alone; which is one of the biggest reasons relationships fail these days, in my opinion. You can discern the difference between love and infatuation.
Let the distractions go for a bit and focus on the steps you need to take to better yourself. As quickly as a lot of people end up in relationships is often as quick as it ends unfortunately. Don't be afraid of being alone, it's not the same as being lonely, which brings me to my Bonus Tip!
Bonus Tip: Alone vs Lonely
So even though I vaguely mentioned this earlier, I feel like it deserves more attention. A big challenge that pretty much all humans face is loneliness, or avoiding it I should say. Humans thrive on interactions and affection. The problem comes in when a person feels like they constantly need outside attention to sustain their self-esteem.
What really stands out, and probably hurts the most, is when said person is around a few or many people/friends and they still feel alone. Remember, loneliness is a state of mind, and it can be triggered when we're convinced that no one around us actually understands us. The first thing you need to do is get a grasp of who are, understand yourself. Then, over time, take care of your wants and needs. Before you know it, you'll start to attract like-minded people. You can't force everyone to "get you". The best thing is to let them come to you. Sometimes having at least one person who gets you is enough, but you have have to see that.
Don't blind yourself, and don't blame others for not getting you. There's no shame in riding solo in fact, I believe the strongest people are the ones who don't rely on others to stand on their own two feet. Try your best to enjoy some alone time. You'll be surprised at how accomplished you'll feel when you're on your own for a while.
Maybe once a day or a few times a week, find an activity that you'd do with someone and do it alone. Set some goals to tackle and handle alone. It can be anything from hiking or shopping, to binge-watching your favorite Netflix show. The point is to enjoy it. The time you'll end up spending with others, especially significant others, will take on a better form of energy because you can focus on enjoying your time instead of thinking about whether or someone understands you. Those people are out there, try letting them find you while doing your thing.
At the end of the day, no one is perfect, but we should strive to be better than we were yesterday. I have my ups, but I still have my downs. There's nothing wrong with being a little selfish with your time, especially when you know it can do good for you and others. Remember, a house can't really stand without a strong foundation so before you try building a relationship with someone else, make sure the foundation is strong, both of your foundations. Otherwise, no matter how big and pretty the house you've built may be, it'll crumble to the ground with a simple shake.
© 2018 Chris Norris