Think about the things that make you happy on your own. It could be a sport, a hobby, a time of year or in my case at this moment, adult coloring books. But when it comes to your happiness, it’s crucial that you’ve created most of it as an independent.
Lift your head up, stay smiling and keep doing you for reasons that benefit you. People will generally appreciate you more for it, but most importantly, you’ll learn to appreciate yourself more.
1. I tend to be attracted to those who aren’t necessarily right for me.
I realized at some point there are two major qualities a guy must have in order to be a good fit for me. One of them is the ability to have an intellectual conversation.
I like talking about the world, the future, the point of it all and other philosophical questions that wander into my mind on a daily basis. I think about things a lot and it’s so important for me to be able to share that quality with someone else and actually have an intelligent conversation with him about it.
The second quality I need is the ability to make me laugh. I love to laugh and I have an extremely versatile and mixed sense of humor. I’ve dabbled in sarcasm, irony, one-liners and bold and blunt comedy.
It’s really not that difficult to make me laugh, but it’s extremely therapeutic and refreshing for me to do so. I couldn’t imagine dedicating my life to someone with whom I couldn’t roll on the floor laughing hysterically.
But I discovered that I’ve made excuses for a lot of guys who were without these qualities, even when I’ve been blatantly aware of how important they are to me.
I justify the absence of these qualities with a form of cognitive dissonance, the type of unrealistic thinking that in a perfect world would parallel with a happy ending.
I convince myself that it’s okay. This person has other great qualities that make up for these two big ones, so it balances out, right?
A hint of advice: if something is important to you, never settle for anything less.
2. Females and males will always think differently.
One thing to a female might, and usually does, mean something completely different to a male. Biologically, we have very different brains and we interpret social situations and cues in distinctive ways.
Have you ever found yourself in an argument with your guy, feeling mind-blown at the fact that he completely misinterpreted something you said? I know, it’s really frustrating. But chances are, it’s not your guy’s fault. It’s just that males and females have polar opposite thought processes. And honestly, he’s thinking you’re just as nuts in this argument, too.
You can’t rely on someone to be happy when his terms for happiness are most likely completely different thank yours. Even your best girl friend probably has a differnet way of thinking than you do. This is why only you have the ability to meet your own standards for happiness.
3. We mature at different speeds.
This isn’t a sexist comment; it’s the factual truth. Males tend to mature at a slower speed than females. Something we as females might be ready for at age 23 might not occur to him until the age of 26. Again, it’s not his fault, it’s just biology.
I’ve found that I become frustrated when a guy doesn’t seem to be looking for the same things in life as I am at the time. But the truth is, most guys my age aren’t in the same exact place as I.
If you put your whole happiness into your guy’s hands, you’ll most likely end up disappointed when you realize he’s not quite on the same page as you. Even when in a relationship, always be sure to keep chasing after your own dreams. You’ll never want to look back and ask yourself what could have been.
4. Self-made happiness is the most rewarding.
It’s simple: would you rather a guy buy you a yacht, or work hard, become successful and make enough money on your own to buy it yourself? Hopefully your answer is the same as mine.
There’s something so satisfying about crossing off tasks on a list that we’ve independently created and achieved on our own. When you’ve attained happiness on your own terms, with your own actions and your own determination, it’s a hell of a lot more satisfying than having something handed to you without effort.
5. There will always be disappointment to face.
It sounds pessimistic, but it’s the reality of dating. Of course, there are the select few who meet the ones they’ll spend the rest of their lives with at age 14 and never look back. Even though it’s surely possible, it’s unlikely, and most people undergo their fair share of heartbreak before settling down.
If you maintain a consistent independence while being single and being in a relationship, the ups and downs that come along the way won’t feel so drastic in the end.
6. I can’t be the reason for my own heartbreak anymore.
I herby promise to never be the cause of my own disappointment. After past relationships, I’ve reflected and realized that my justifications and disregard for major red flags were actually the main reasons why I ended up with a broken heart in the first place.
I need to be more aware of my expectations and make damn sure I’m in it for the right reasons. If I get my heart broken for causes that are outside of my control, that’s fine. That happens. But in that situation, I can take a deep breath and move forward knowing there was nothing I could have done.
7. I truly only trust myself.
Let’s be honest, would you rather get something done yourself or trust that someone else will do it for you?
You can always rely on yourself to follow through with things and if you have some sense of responsibility and levelheadedness, you’ll rarely let yourself down.
When it comes to happiness, self-reliance is key. When you’re married, committed and in it for the long haul, you can choose to trust that person with your life. But until then, you must maintain your sincere obligation to be your only, legitimate sidekick.
8. I know myself better than he ever will.
He may know my favorite flavor of ice cream or that sometimes when I’m really warm and comfortable I squeal and giggle with joy, but I’m the only one who has spent every year of my life in my own body.
One of my favorite things about being in a relationship is learning new things about that person as time goes by. I love the little things: their habits and ticks and favorite words and foods are my favorites when it comes to growing familiar with one another, and I want that person to learn all of my “little things”, too.
But even after a long-term, committed relationship where I’ve shared everything there is to know about me, I’m still the only one who’s truly aware of everything that makes me, me. I know who I am as a person inside and out and no one else can genuinely compete with that.
So if you’re with someone and you’re really not sure why, or you feel that if you were to be on your own you’d spend days on end in bed with Ben and Jerry’s, tears and Netflix, it might be time for self-reflection.