The Longer I’ve Been Single, The More I’ve Realized These 10 Important Things

I used to feel shell-shocked and kinda depressed whenever I found myself single after being in a long-term relationship. I’d wonder, “What now?” But as time went on and I got used to it, I realized just how kickass being on my own actually is. Here are 10 things I’ve realized after rolling solo for years.

  1. I’m my own happiness ceo. I really don’t need to wait around for Prince Charming or whoever to make me happy. Happiness is always within my control, which is empowering to remember.
  2. There’s nothing to be afraid of. Honestly, I don’t know what I was so afraid of when it came to being single. Was it that I’d be alone or lonely? Well, that’s total BS because I’ve been lonelier in relationships than I have been as a single woman. If I start to feel that I’m getting lonely, I can reach out to friends and loved ones.
  3. Relationships have held me back. Now that I’ve been single for a while, I realize just how much relationships prevented me from being able to chase and achieve my dreams. There just wasn’t enough time for all the things I wanted to do. I’m much more productive as a single woman.
  4. I don’t want anyone’s drama. The only drama I accept is my own! Seriously, I don’t have time to deal with anyone else’s issues, and that’s all I was doing in my last relationship. No thanks! It sucked and drained the life out of me.
  5. I need to know and love myself first. It sounds trite, but it’s true: if you don’t know who you are and what you want and if you don’t love yourself, then you’re going to have disastrous relationships. I used to wait for relationships to make me feel more valuable, but that was such a waste of time. Now that I know who I am and what I have to offer, I can raise my standards.
  6. It’s so great not to compromise. Even if you date someone who meets you halfway by compromising, like when it comes to what you do on weekends, there will still be so much time that goes to your partner or relationship instead of to yourself. Maybe being single has made me selfish, but I like it because for the first time I’m putting myself first!
  7. I don’t want to waste more time. After being single for a long time, I can’t believe all the time that I wasted with the wrong partners. Now that I have more time at my disposal, I don’t want to waste a second of it. It’s mine and a guy will have to be really special for me to share it with him.
  8. I can have my needs met. What do I really need a boyfriend for? If I want to go out and have fun, that’s what my friends are for! If I want support and someone to talk to at the end of a stressful day, that’s what my mom or sister are for. I really don’t need to have a partner because I’m surrounded by so much love. I just have to reach out to make the most of it.
  9. I feel like i’m not in a dating race. When I used to be caught up in relationships, I always felt like I was racing against the clock – I had to find a man, settle down, blah blah blah. But now that it’s just me and I can do whatever I want with my life, I don’t feel like I’m in a mad rush. I feel like I can zone in on the present time and enjoy what life brings my way. This also means I can take opportunities that present themselves to me without having to consider the person I’m dating.
  10. I feel like i’m winning. A therapist once told me that if meeting the man of my dreams was like finishing in first place, then being single but happy was second place so it was still really good. But honestly? I now think that being single and happy is the real achievement! It’s not easy to do and if you can figure it out, then you’re really winning like I am.
Giulia Simolo is a writer from Johannesburg, South Africa with a degree in English Language and Literature. She has been working as a journalist for more than a decade, writing for sites including AskMen, Native Interiors, and Live Eco. You can find out more about her on Facebook and LinkedIn, or follow her on Twitter @GiuliaSimolo.