Learn to be alone until you find someone who is actually good for you

You see it everywhere. People settling for relationships that aren’t really healthy for them, all in varying degrees.

From situationships, one-sided love affairs, emotional manipulation to physically abusive relationships –

All because they are afraid of being alone.


What is it about this word that scares the crap out of us?

Why is it that we’d rather trap ourselves in loveless or even downright toxic relationships, because we’re afraid of navigating life on or own?

Let’s try to unpack the baggage. Why are we so afraid to be alone?

There’s a reason why we have this deep-seated fear. The explanation is evolutionary.


When we were born, we were completely helpless to the world. We were entirely dependent to our parents.

And somehow, this fear has become deeply-rooted in our DNA. So much so that it’s still there even when we grow older and become independent.

Couple that with traumatic instances in our past, and no wonder why we are so scared of being alone.

But you shouldn’t let this fear stop you from waiting for someone who actually cares about you.

Even though this fear is biological, it is still unreasonable.

And it shouldn’t scare you into settling for a relationship that’s not doing you any good.

In fact, that’s one of the biggest mistakes you can make in life.

Choosing a life partner may be the single most important decision you can make. It can determine your happiness, productivity, and even your success.

Even science agrees that being alone is better than being in a bad relationship. A study from the University of Buffalo, New York, found that being in unhealthy relationships can damage your health more than being single does.

On the other hand, the longer you stay in healthy, high-quality relationships, the better your overall health will be. And interestingly enough, the study also shows that the sooner you get out of a toxic relationship, the faster your health recovers.

Learn to be alone, instead of being in a half-assed relationship.

Being in a relationship will not fix your problems. However, many believe that it would.

It’s easy to distract yourself from your own personal issues when you have someone else to think about. And you might think that’s a good thing.

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But using relationships as a band aid is a form of avoidance. Your insecurities, fear or emotional problems won’t automatically disappear just because you have someone. And another person will not be able to “fix” you, too.


You only end up having a toxic dependency to another person, while letting these feelings fester inside of you.

What it does, is create an imbalance in your personal and romantic life. And it’s impossible to make someone else happy when you’re unhappy yourself.

You have to put yourself first.

This means you have to think about your needs, your wants, and goals. Above anyone else’s.

Why is it important to be this selfish?

Because you need to be a whole person before you can love someone in a good way.

You can’t love or take care of anyone if you don’t have the capacity to do so. Before you can do that, you need to be a person who is content, someone who knows purpose, and someone who doesn’t need anyone to be happy.


It’s crucial that you have your own world, that you have your own identity, before you can think of being with anyone else.

And the only way to achieve all of this is by learning to be alone – facing and conquering your own fears, doing things that make you happy – without having to think of another person.

Once all the pieces click into place, you’ll be able to nurture a relationship that is healthy, secure, and long-lasting.

As cliche as it may sound, you can attract a good life partner only when you feel truly at home with yourself. You will be able to be with someone not because you need them, but because they add something valuable to your life.

You will be a complete person who doesn’t need anyone, but wants someone to share your life with, to weather all the storms, to celebrate your victories with, and to have someone who will motivate you to be the best, and happiest version of yourself.

Instead of being stuck in a relationship that doesn’t lead you anywhere, you should wait until you find someone who truly cares for you. Not someone who wants to change you, or someone who manipulates you according to what they want and need.

Someone who truly cares about you will understand that you are your own person, with your own set of wants, needs, and dreams. And someone who cares about you will support you in achieving all of this.

In the end, a healthy relationship is something that makes your life better. It’s something that adds meaning to your existence, but never takes away the important things that make you “you.”

So why would you continue being unsatisfied or miserable, when you can choose to wait for something better to come along? Why do you expend so much energy on relationships that don’t bring meaning into  your existence?

You’re not high-maintenance for wanting someone you know you deserve. And it’s never unreasonable to want someone who is good for you.

In the meanwhile, learn to take care of yourself first. You’ll find that there’s nothing more fulfilling than being completely good and alive in your own skin.

***Do you want to be a stronger person? Do you want to stare down your challenges and overcome any obstacles? If so, check out our eBook: The Art of Resilience: A Practical Guide to Mental Toughness.

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Notable replies

  1. I think this is a great message for many people. Especially those in situationships:

    However, once you’ve been single for a period of time, it becomes easier to stay alone rather than having the courage to put your heart on the line and open up to someone.

    I wrote this article a year ago:

    Many people have read the article since and reached out to me, letting me know they’re single and the message here resonated with them.

    Personally, rather than waiting for someone “who is actually good for me”, I’m going to be a little more open minded. Relationships don’t need to be perfect. It’s enough to get started and see what happens.

  2. @genefe The “You have to put yourself first” part is the essence here. Not because I’m an evil egocentric person who will always think only for him, of course. But because one needs to be aware of his own needs and get rid off someone else’s needs. We have all been traumatized in a way in our childhood and very often these traumas manifest in your personal relationships.

    I’ll give you an example with myself. My psychotherapist and I came to the conclusion that I’ve been trying to fill an invisible void because when I was a child I’ve seen how my grandma and my mother do not feel fully satisfied with their partners - my grandad and father. Still, both grandma and mum never left these relationships and thus the disappointment remained. Because I saw and felt that frustration and couldn’t figure out why things are the way they were and tried to fill the empty gap myself. Years later that resulted in my own 7 years long relationship. 7 years in which I was not fully satisfied and disappointed…but stayed there for 7 long years while “filling the void” with substances.

    So, you have to put yourself first in the sense that you need to dig deep down and truly realize what you actually need. Not your mum, dad, sister, friends or society. You. And as it often happens in life you first need to experience what you are truly NOT in order to realize what you truly NEED.

    Thanks for the remainder @genefe

  3. @justinbrown another great reminder! Relationships are not perfect. People often don’t realize that they have attracted themselves and their own fears. And once things get rough they fail to see their own image as a reflection and/or realize that the suffering comes as a remedy and that there is no growth without pain. Sometimes you just have to face the dark side in order to heal and become a more aware conscious being. It’s just that the “dark side” (your fears, traumas and things you need to work on) is so aggressively protected by the ego and often when it gets hard people leave instead of thinking more critically.

    One thing I realized for myself is that I often think for greener pastures. Many people do probably. This is often the big illusion.

    But then again you need to know what is best for you. The greener pasture will make sense not when someone tells you all the things you don’t want to hear in your face and thus grow, but only when you tried everything and approached the relationship and the conflicts open-mindedly and fully aware of your own needs.


  4. I think this highlights the big challenge. To what extent should we visualize a better future for ourselves? This creates a big illusion which takes us away from how we’re living in the present moment. But it also drives us forward.

    This is a theme I’m exploring deeply in my own life right now. Not just with relationships, but also with business.

    @Presley check out Out of the Box by @Ruda when it comes online in the coming weeks. I think it’s going to resonate with you. In the meantime, below is an article by @Ruda exploring this theme:

  5. genefe says:

    I’m glad this resonated with you @Presley. I think it’s really important to have an acute sense of awareness, especially when you’re in a relationship. It is necessary for having a healthy, long lasting relationship with someone. Even just knowing any personal traumas or issues you might have is already a good step ahead.

  6. Hi Amy here… I have spent the last 4 months totally alone discovering myself and learning who I am. It has been the best 4 months ever. I have been divorced for 25 years but had dated off and on. I love being alone!! I wouldn’t have it any other way from this point on. I have made a lot of life changing decisions. removed a lot of people from my life, I’m happy now!!

  7. Love this @Genefe Very well said! Love the concept of “waiting it out”. The waiting has shown me that “chasing”, really is an empty pursuit. Here in my waiting, I’ve found more of the response from others that I truly desire, when My wholeness and happiness piques the interests from them and not vise versa. Thank You for the Positive Energy of this brilliantly written up mantra.

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Written by Genefe Navilon

Genefe Navilon is a writer, poet, and blogger. She graduated with a degree in Mass Communications at the University of San Jose Recoletos. Her poetry blog, Letters To The Sea, currently has 18,000 followers. Her work has been published in different websites and poetry book anthologies. She divides her time between traveling, writing, and working on her debut poetry book.

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