It’s okay to be single–really! It is!
Have you ever felt like there’s something wrong with you because you can’t seem to find the one? Do you feel pressured to always be in a romantic relationship? To get married, have kids, and settle down as soon as possible?
In this day and age, society tends not to understand single people. People learn since they are young that the goal should be to find a spouse. That’s an archaic belief. More and more people are beginning to be happily single. The norm is starting to crumble.
5 Reasons Why It’s Okay To Be Single
So, whether you are single by choice or because you haven’t found the right person, here are five reasons why it’s completely okay not to be engaged in a romantic relationship.
1. Singles Have More Time For Themselves
Being in a committed relationship takes time—a lot of it. Constantly having to slot in some couple time can be tiring and can stop you from building the life of your dreams.
Imagine trying to pursue a dream while in a relationship. While it’s not impossible, it sure requires a lot more sacrifice when you have someone else’s needs to take into account. Say you want to travel, move to another city because of career opportunities, or otherwise follow your dreams. You can’t expect your partner to give up their dreams to follow you around the world. Thus, all your dreams will have to either be kept on hold or pursued with half-measures.
Relationship expert Niloo Dardashti, Psy.D., explains that people committed to a relationship tend to stop doing things independently. People in couples usually lose touch with themselves because they have less time to focus on personal development.
She explains that being alone makes you more self-sufficient, more willing to “roll with the punches” and take on whatever life throws at them. When your life is wholly yours, you are more likely to take risks and pursue whatever dreams you have.
What the Experts Say
Psychologist Jenny Taitz looks at singledom as a chance to figure out what you want out of life. The extra time you have compared to people in relationships allows you to understand what you want and value.
While you might think that people in relationships can do all that to understand themselves and pursue their dreams, the reality is that whatever they do in life has to consider someone else’s needs. You cannot fully understand your values while being influenced by someone you spend all your time with. Your principles and needs will always be skewed to accommodate your partner while in a relationship.
So, being single is the best way to make time for yourself. You can be who you want to be, build your dream life free of constraints. Want to go to boozy brunch with friends? No one is stopping you. Want to take a year to travel the world? You don’t have to ask for permission. Be single and go live your best life!
2. Singles Develop Stronger Friendships And Ties With Family
People in relationships tend to focus so much on keeping the flame alive, keeping the relationship intact, that they run out of time to ensure their other interpersonal relationships don’t crumble. Surely, you’ve had that one friend who got into a serious relationship and vanished off the face of the Earth. And it’s not even their fault. It’s hard to juggle managing connections with your partner, your friends, and your family.
Studies show that nuclear families living in the suburbs, the whole white picket fence married dream life, tend to have little to no connections to their neighbors than single people, who develop a large social network.
Bella DePaulo, Ph.D., is a social scientist specializing in the intricacies of single life who has extensively researched and documented truths and debunked misconceptions about single people. She has backed up the idea that coupled people tend to withdraw from social life and cut ties with family and friends on multiple occasions. Her research has shown that people who have always been single spend more time helping others, socializing, volunteering, and participating in civic activities. They are more likely to help their parents and be their caregivers as opposed to married people. She has also found that once people marry, they have less contact with friends and siblings.
A Study That Confirms It’s Okay to be Single
One study showed that couples were no happier and no more likely to have high self-esteem. The only noticeable difference was the time allotted to socializing and maintaining ties with friends and family.
So, instead of being sad about your single life, remind yourself that single people are the social glue holding everything together. You are the ones maintaining real connections with friends and family, the ones that will be there for the needy or sick, and the ones most involved in civic duties. Be happy about your relationships, and remember, people in relationships have a lot to learn about networking from you.
3. Singles Tend To Be Healthier
Health and romantic involvement seem completely uncorrelated, but somehow, they aren’t. It all comes down to what you value most in life.
Coupled people tend to value time with their partners the most. Thus they tend to give up certain activities they once engaged in. It was found that exercise is one of the first things that gets neglected by people involved in a serious relationship. The reason why is quite simple: they either have no time to be healthy, or their priorities have changed. Maybe they don’t strive for that summer body anymore.
Whatever the truth is, couples have been shown to eat worse and work out less. Research supports this hypothesis, reporting that always-single men have reported eight hours of exercise over two weeks, unlike married men, who reported a little under five hours/two weeks. For always-single women, the rate was five and a half hours/two weeks compared to the four hours/two weeks reported by married women.
Studies also show that single women have reported their overall health as better. They had fewer disability days and fewer doctor visits.
Grab a workout buddy and go for a run. Take your time to meal prep. Singles can spend as much time as they want taking care of their health without having to feel guilty that they’re at the gym instead of with their partner.
4. Singles Don’t Settle
You’ve probably seen your friends go having to deal with abusive relationships, not being able to let go of toxic partners, always rushing to be with someone that they forget to think about whether that person is good for them or not.
Studies have shown that fear of being single can make someone long for their ex-partners. Du to something called repetition compulsion, the people who have been hurt in the past tend to rush into new relationships with the wrong people in a subconscious attempt to fix the pain.
Being in a relationship is pretty complicated. Luckily, single people don’t have these issues. If you’ve been single for a while, you aren’t afraid of being alone because you are content with yourself. Not only that, but you know that not being involved doesn’t mean you are alone. You still have tons of friends and a supportive family.
Without the issues that can make people used to being involved rush into new relationships with the completely wrong person, a single person can take a step back and analyze if someone is right for them or not. You don’t feel the psychological need always to have someone by your side. Therefore, you can be pickier and set high standards to make sure that, when the time comes, you will spot the red flags and you won’t jump into something toxic.
Here’s Great Reassurance Why It’s Okay to Be Single
Being single also allows you to discover who you are and what you want, thus making you more capable of understanding what you need from a partner further down the line.
Have fun, work on yourself, remember that you are single because you have clear standards and that a relationship, when unprepared, can be destructive. The more you learn to be happy with yourself, the better prepared for a relationship you will be, and the more chances to find Prince ( or Princess) Charming you’ll have. You might even find that your knight in shining armor is none other than yourself.