Is this where I’m meant to be?
It’s been two years since I was with someone, and I’m not unhappy or sad about it, but how do I know if I’m on the right track?
Well, let’s cut to the chase. Being single in a world that idealizes relationships is never easy, and I’m not saying that you should give up on love, but a relationship is not always the answer to love, happiness, and self-worth.
I want you to stop putting yourself down and to realize that singledom gives you breathing room for personal growth and self-discovery. So, if you can be single for more than one year and are still happy, you’ve mastered these 7 life lessons that I explore in more detail below.
1) You don’t need a relationship to recognize your worth.
One of the things that many of us struggle with throughout our lives is understanding our self-worth.
If you were to rate your value on a scale of 1 to 10, what would your score be?
Low self-worth and poor self-esteem in relationships simply lead to more challenges. It becomes impossible to establish healthy limits and say “no” when you feel uncomfortable about something.
When you’re single, you have an opportunity to learn self-acceptance. This means working on strengthening your confidence by discovering new adventures and opportunities that you wouldn’t pursue if you were in a relationship.
You don’t have to go completely out of your comfort zone, either. Think about what you’ve achieved and want to achieve in your career. Discover new hobbies or do more with family and friends because it gives your life meaning.
You’ll feel good about yourself, and you’ll realize that you don’t need someone else to validate your worth.
2) You put yourself first.
When life happens, we end up sacrificing our needs and wants. And when you’re in a relationship, providing for your significant other, whether emotionally, physically, or financially, tends to take priority.
You compromise so much when you’re with someone that it becomes a habit, and before you know it, you forget to put yourself first!
I’ve been guilty of this. I believed that I had to make all the sacrifices so that my spouse could be happy. It only ended in resentment and a broken marriage.
The moral of the story is that if you feel happy after a year of singledom, you’ve managed to prioritize yourself. You aren’t stuck feeling sorry for yourself, and you haven’t accepted a partner who doesn’t meet your standards.
Singledom is never a bad thing.
It can help you discover what you find meaningful and rewarding and then share your interests in a relationship where you both compromise.
3) You don’t settle.
Have your friends arranged blind dates, or maybe they’re trying to introduce you to people who just don’t tickle your fancy?
No more toxic relationships.
Your single status doesn’t give anyone permission to tell you what to do. You’re independent, and that means you, and only you, get to decide who has a say in your life.
Singledom gives you the power to make those frightening or overwhelming changes that you’ve placed on hold for far too long. Flying solo gives you space to work on the things that make you feel good.
Giving yourself at least a year to discover what you really want out of life means that you simply won’t settle. It’s an incredible life lesson to master and a pretty important one, too.
If you’ve experienced a series of failed relationships, taking time to figure out what you want and what you don’t want in a partner will stop you from settling.
4) You know that time heals all wounds.
Going through the pain of a breakup can make you think that you’ll never find purpose or happiness again.
Your friends encourage you to get back out there and start dating, and you think it’s a good idea because it will help you get over the heartache. The truth is that rebound relationships have never worked for anyone.
It’s like putting on a bandage. All you’re doing is distracting yourself rather than using the time alone to heal. Time heals all wounds, and it helps you look at a broken relationship to understand where things went wrong.
When you work through your heartache and disappointment, it teaches you resilience. Yes, it’s unpleasant to face those emotions head-on, but it’s the best investment you can make.
Eventually, the hurt fades, and you can focus on your confidence and self-improvement before you get back into a relationship. So, if you can give yourself a year of singledom and, during this time, do things that make you happy, then you’ve mastered the life lesson of giving yourself time and space to heal.
But in those quiet moments, should you find those negative thoughts creeping in, I want you to “just shake it off,” as in the words of Taylor Swift.
Cheesy but true!
5) You’ve learned to be patient.
Aren’t you tired of rom-com movies already? It’s as if your “single relationship status” is something to hide or be ashamed of.
There’s so much pressure to be in a relationship. During my single period, if it wasn’t for my mom asking when I was going to settle down, my friends would be on my case about getting back into the saddle!
Regardless of what anyone says or thinks, you should focus on what’s good for you.
If that means being single for a year or more so that you can figure it all out, that’s fine. Singledom is not an anomaly. You shouldn’t put pressure on yourself or allow anyone else to force you into relationships, because that’s when you settle.
This isn’t to say that if someone comes along that you’re interested in, you shouldn’t pursue a connection. No, it simply means learning not to rush but to accept that finding a purposeful relationship takes time.
You would’ve mastered the life lessons of patience, maturity, and accepting what you cannot change.
6) You cannot control what other people think or feel.
Learning that you can’t control what other people say or do is not only a single thing but a life thing.
No matter how hard you try to make connections or pursue relationships, you can’t make your singledom disappear if it’s not meant to be. It’s a tough lesson to learn, but a necessary one.
Once we accept that some things, like our single status, aren’t in our control, we move from denial to acceptance. You can’t force a relationship or find yourself engaged in a week or two because you don’t have control over the way someone else feels.
What is in your control is your attitude and behavior.
Change your mindset, and if you’ve been single for a year or more, so what? As long as you’re happy and you can let go, you’ve mastered yet another life lesson.
7) You can feel loved without being in a relationship.
Do you think that being in a relationship is an indication of your worth and whether or not you can be loved?
When you’re single for some time, you might think that you’re the problem. “What is wrong with me that I’m unable to find love?”
It’s easy to fall into this trap, especially when you meet new people, and nothing comes of the connections that you’re trying to explore. Then, a shift happens.
You get tired of feeling tired about love.
Start focusing on the people who are actually in your corner. Your parents for supporting you, your family for accepting who you are, and your friends for keeping you motivated. You don’t need an intimate relationship to know how much people love you.
An important life lesson you can learn when you’re single and happy is that you shouldn’t solely rely on your partner for love. You can share the love you already have with them, and that is a phenomenal gift.
Despite being bombarded by the media about the struggles of being single and coming to the realization that you can’t control the way someone feels, you continue to persevere and work on your happiness.
At the end of the day, you know that settling is not an option, and you’re patient about finding love.
After more than a year of being single, you haven’t wasted time trying to rush relationships or become stuck in a negative mindset. You’ve worked on yourself, discovered your strengths, and you’re content with the incredible life lessons that singledom has taught you.
You should be proud of yourself.