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October 28, 2013

Use Being Single To Your Advantage

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Written by: Laura Baines
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Three female friends having fun at beach

Ugg…to be single. What a drag right? You have no one to share your deepest thoughts and feelings with, to spend time doing romantic, cheesy things with, or to “make love” with (no, that hookup with the rando at the club doesn’t count).

That’s one way to think about the single life—but what if you shifted your thinking? Could being single actually be enjoyable and good for you and your future relationships? Yes—that is, if you use this time productively:

#1 We have to start off with the messy stuff—sorry, no fun yet. You must first grieve the loss of your ex. Have a funeral if you need to—anything to get you over that last relationship. Once you’re over crying your eyes out and associating everything you see with his amazingness—it’s time to start the rebuilding process.

#2 Self-care time!

  • If you feel this break up is negatively affecting your life, or if you’re feeling hopeless in your relationships or as an individual—see a counselor.  Almost everyone should see a counselor at some point in their lives—going to one doesn’t mean you’re crazy, despite common belief. It just means you’ve noticed an obstacle or two that you need help overcoming and you’ve chosen to do something about it. There is nothing crazy about that. After a handful of sessions, you’ll probably begin to feel like a weight has been lifted. You’re making headway and are ready to enjoy life!
  • Hang out with your friends: Doing this helps relieve a good amount of stress. Celebrate with them and tell them what’s going on in your life—just knowing you have these people to turn to in good times and in bad makes everything a little easier and happier.
  • Have a spa day: treat yourself to a massage or a mani/pedi. You will come out much more zen and content than you were before.

#3 Figure out what you really want out of life

  • How do you want to be remembered? Find what you’re passionate about and make that a huge part of your life. Use that passion as the fuel to make a difference.
  • Don’t become invested in something you hate. If your parents want you to be an accountant, but you couldn’t think of a more boring job, don’t make that your career. Who cares if they throw a fit? It’s your life. Although they may love showing off that career to their friends, it’s not worth it if it makes you miserable. The same goes with anyone else trying to control your life. If you’re already invested in something you hate, find a career counselor who can help you make a change.
  • What are you long-term and short-term goals? Think not only about your career, but also about relationships, travel, your personal bucket list, kids, marriage, cohabitation…the list goes on.

#4 Put those goals into action!

  • Draw yourself a timeline if that helps organize and motivate you

Once you know what you really want in all areas of life and pursue those goals, you will no longer have such a huge void to fill in your heart as a single woman. Although you may still want a partner to share your life with, you won’t have to fully depend on them for your own happiness because he is just one of many things that make your life amazing.

This single life process will also help you to better select a mate when you are ready. After this process you will be so confident that you won’t let other men undeserving of your attention take that away from you. Therefore, you’ll be more likely to date men who love you for who you really are.

Although this process may be long and grueling, being confident and having a good sense of your life goals will keep you happy and well-rounded—with or without Prince Charming by your side.

About the Author

Laura Baines
Coincidentally born on Valentine’s Day, Laura has a passion for playing cupid by helping others find love. She has a degree in psychology from CU-Boulder and aspires to earn her masters in counseling.

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