Society has historically viewed the single life as sad, scary, and something to avoid at all costs—especially if you’re a woman. While we all know that it’s better to be single than be in a miserable relationship, most people don’t realize that, at any given time, being single is a blessing. Here’s why you shouldn’t knock the idea of riding solo, at least until you’ve tried it.
- You can focus on your own goals. When you’re in a relationship, it can be very difficult to prioritize and pursue your own goals. Even with a loving and supportive partner, relationships involve compromise and blending your life with someone else’s, so of course there are times when you’ll have to miss out. When you’re single, you can focus on your own ambitions in a way that might seem selfish if you were to do it in a relationship.
- You build a sense of independence. Though some people find the single life stressful, it can help you to build a sense of independence. The more you have to go places on your own and do things by yourself, the easier it becomes. And independence is an essential life skill for everyone. Most people end up being single, whether that’s through a divorce or being widowed. It’s important to know how to just be by yourself. Many people who have always been in a relationship never get the opportunity to develop this crucial ability.
- You might be healthier. There have been endless studies into the effects of being single vs being in a couple. While the results tend to be mixed, research has shown that being single can make you healthier than being married. One study showed that single people were more likely to be fit and healthy than their married counterparts. Women who have always been single also tend to take fewer sick days and have fewer doctor visits than married women.
- You don’t risk relationship heartache. Relationships can be great, but let’s face it: they can also bring a lot of heartache. Even when you’re with a decent person and you do everything right, relationships can still be painful. They can also be stressful, time-consuming, and hard on your self-esteem if they’re toxic. The beauty of being single is that you don’t have to worry about any of that. While you might miss out on the potential good consequences of a relationship, you also skip the crap.
- You don’t waste your time on someone who doesn’t deserve it. When you’re single, you know for a fact that you’re not wasting your time on someone who doesn’t deserve it. You will always be worth your own time, investment, and energy. One of the hardest parts of breaking up from a long-term relationship is the realization that you gave so much of your precious time to someone totally undeserving.
- You are free. In most cases, being single also means being freer. Not that a relationship is a ball and chain, but there will always be more considerations when someone else is in the picture. You can’t just decide on a whim that you want to go on vacation and take off the next day. Healthy couples work as part of a team which often involves mutual planning and discussions. But when you’re single, there’s no one to answer to. Dobby is a free elf, so to speak.
- You can flirt with whomever you like. As a single person, you’re also free to flirt and date as you please. There’s always the chance that your next magical first date is just around the corner. You never know where or how your night might end up. And while some people crave the routine and security that comes with a relationship, the unpredictability element of single life can also be very attractive.
- You can nurture other important relationships. One of the best things about being single is that you can nurture other important relationships. You might not neglect everyone else when you become part of a couple, but it does tend to get harder to keep up with everyone. You’ve only got 24 hours in a day and limited energy. If you aren’t giving love and attention to a SO, you simply have more to share with your friends and family. And with yourself.
- You leave room for the right relationship to come along. If you’re a hopeless romantic, being single is still a blessing. Why? You’re leaving room for the right relationship to come along. If you haven’t met your soulmate yet, you’re much better off single and available than stuck in a relationship that you only started up for fear of being single.
It may not seem like being single is a blessing, but when you pay attention to the small gifts, you’ll realize it really is.