Picture this: it’s Friday night. All your girlfriends are out with their partners going on dates and tucking in kids but you’re not. You’re at home. Maybe with a glass of wine and Netflix. Maybe you’ve got a child you’re tucking in yourself. But either way, you’re rolling solo tonight. Truth be told, you’ve been rolling solo for a while now. And instead of being angry that you’re single or confused or frustrated, you’re content. You’ve learned how to be single even if maybe you don’t want to be single for the long term.
I’ll admit I’m one of those stubborn people who has to learn things the hard way. Give me the path that’s flat with lush grass or the treacherous mountain and there’s a 95% chance I pick the mountain every time. So for years, I lived in the frustrated phase with my season of singleness. Until one day, things changed. And I stopped being angry and realized I was being given a gift.
At this point in my life, I’m old enough to have been a bridesmaid multiple times, watch my friends have children and also watch some of them get divorced. There’s no age or time limit to being single. So today, for all my girls who are frustrated, annoyed and ready to get married, this one is just for you. Let’s talk about how to be single when you don’t want to be single.
Accept That Being Single Doesn’t Mean There Is Something Wrong With You
Someone recently asked me why I haven’t dated in a while. If this question were to come up a few months ago, I would have said I don’t know. Or I’m too busy. Both are accurate answers. But the question behind the question from this particular person was really “what’s wrong with you that you don’t date”. Now it’s also worth noting said person is 90 years old, has dementia and was raised in a VERY different time.
Growing up in the South comes with some amazing perks. The hospitality and warmth you feel here can be incredible. However, there’s also a culture of getting married young and being out of place for not being settled down with kids by age 25.
One of the things I’m most grateful for from my time in film is the escape from this Southern idea.There are so many woman who are focused on their careers and building the lives they want that they don’t think twice about dating. They are happy with what they are doing. And they don’t for one second think something is wrong with them.
Friend, let me tell you. There is nothing wrong with you if you’re single. I can tell you right now there are plenty of people in marriages that wish they hadn’t said I do. They rushed into something they thought they wanted only to realize this life was never the one they wanted to be living. So don’t for one second think you’re broken just because you are a party of 1. Because sometimes those are the best parties.
Learn To Use This As The Time To Invest In Yourself
Every time I see someone post that we have the same hours in a day as Beyonce, I laugh. It’s true. We also don’t all have quite the same level of resources. Time is a luxury we can’t buy or create. It’s a limited run gift that we have to do our best with using. So why would you want to waste such a precious commodity just because you’re single?
You are valuable. Your time is valuable. And while you have the extra amount of it available, why not use it to invest in yourself? Relationships and children are wonderful. But to be truly present and to invest in them, we will always being saying no to something else. Use the time you have now to say yes to the things you might have to say no to later. Take the trips. Splurge on the fancy dinner. Work on building your own nest egg. Build a life you love. Just because someday may include a plus one doesn’t mean you should put your life on hold right now.
DATE YOUR FRIENDS
This one was definitely inspired by a few conversations with friends. But until recently, I never much considered how similar dating and friendship were in my life. You don’t suddenly just become good at dating because you have someone you call your “partner”. Our friends, those in our ride or die tribe, are the ones we’ve spent years dating in one way or another. So why not use your time being single to continue to invest in those relationships?
Your partner isn’t meant to fill every gap in your life. They are a very important part but there will always be a need for your friends. Use your time as a single gal to invest in those friendships that are going to last you a lifetime. Learn how to communicate. Learn how to be intentional with your time together. Focus on building the foundation of an incredible friendship so that when you do find your partner, you’ll be ready to put in the work. And you’ll be so content in your life that you won’t just choose someone because you need them. You’ll choose someone because you want them.
Ya’ll I preach about this all the live long day. Just like I’ve watched friends get married because they felt like it was what they were supposed to do. I’ve also watched just as many settle down because they were scared to be alone. And now they have no idea who they are or what they want.
Finding yourself instead of looking into the mirror the world reflects back at you isn’t always easy. It can be incredibly challenging to get to know yourself when you feel like you constantly need to be keeping up with everyone else. But if you want to truly be happy, no matter whether you’re single or not, it’s time to get honest. It’s time to date yourself.
Whether it’s five minutes or 5 hours, take time to do something just for you. It could be reading a book, seeing a movie or taking yourself for a nice dinner. You could join a club, take a painting class or even go on vacation alone. The thing that matters is you make time to do it. Get to know what you want and need so that when you are in a relationship you can learn to communicate those things better. And instead of needing someone to tell you who you are, you’ll be able to share the incredible woman you’re becoming.
RUSHING A RELATIONSHIP ISN’T GOING TO MAKE IT THE RIGHT ONE
I have a love/hate relationship with dating apps. I’ve had more than one friend find their partner through them which is amazing. But I also think it adds pressure to people who feel like they have to be dating. If you want to be single, be single. And if you want to date, then date. Either way, rushing a relationship just to meet a certain deadline isn’t going to make it right. It’s just going to make it right now.
Sadly, I think we all know how high the divorce rate is these days. I also strongly doubt anyone gets married thinking they will get a divorce. So if you want to be one of those unicorn couples who stays in it for the long haul, be intentional about building your relationship not rushing it. Learn as much as you can about yourself and your partner before adding forever into the mix. And don’t be afraid to be honest about what you need to feel emotionally safe and happy.
The money, the looks and popularity can all go away in an instant. But the partner who walks through life with you in sickness and in health is the one you’re going to need to make it last. Communicate. Communicate. Communicate. And don’t rush the journey. Just like a healthy lifestyle, you’re in this relationship game for the long haul.
I hope wherever you are in your season of singleness today that you know you are perfectly wonderful. Don’t lose hope. You are on no one else’s timeline but your own. Until next time. Xoxo, Savvy
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