For many of us out there, we treat singleness as some sort of disease. How long have you been “in remission,” asking yourself why you aren’t dating, engaged, starting a family? Pause. Take a deep breath.
Look, I get it. We don’t like to be defined. It’s bad enough that your aunt pokes and pries every holiday wanting to “fix you up.” Just as haunting, you are constantly reminded of your marital status with every wedding invitation, couple’s photo shoot, and baby announcement. Today I am here to empower you. Define your singleness; do not let singleness define you.
This season of your life can be truly rewarding and immensely edifying. Here are ten ways in which you can make the most of it:
While this might not apply to everyone, there is a chance that your heart needs to heal completely. I would be doing you a disservice if I didn’t disclose that the next one-night-stand will leave you feeling more empty (for both men and women alike). Really though, healing takes time, self-awareness, and sometimes professional mediation. The road to healing can be a long one but you will never regret the process.
2. Learn about yourself.
There are many personality tests, such as Myers-Briggs or Enneagram (free versions), which can get you started. While not the be-all/end-all, these results might peel back the curtain and allow you to get real with yourself.
3. Take a course/ workshop in emotional intelligence.
Trust me, it will help your personal as well as your professional life tremendously. Instantly recognizing your emotional state and its influence on your behavior is not generally practiced with intention. Rest assured this content is a game changer.
4. Forgive and reconcile.
Once you learn about yourself wholly, you may receive insight into why past relationships went awry. With complete humility and candor, you might admit to partial fault. Be courageous, ask for forgiveness, and attempt to make amends. Yet some of you are casualties of an abusive or traumatic relationship (in any capacity). I’m sorry that you experienced that pain. Without opening old wounds, I do want to share that there is freedom in unshackling chains, forgiving and moving forward. You have to believe me in this.
5. Find your spiritual identity.
Your singleness can be a great opportunity to crawl deep within your mind and soul, evaluating the condition of your heart. Is there more to life than where you are right now? Why not find out? Discover a holistic approach to your life. Just a tip: Do not ever feel pressured by anyone as you search. And do not take this feat on by yourself; enter into this space with a friend or mentor.
6. Hang out with more couples.
Yes it might involve some third-wheeling. But there is much you can learn about healthy relationships when hanging around a committed or married couple. Be mentored from near and afar. Learn from successful relationships and ask them hard questions.
7. Create deep, rooted, platonic relationships.
This might be the hardest thing for a millennial to do because we spend way too much time reading in between unwritten lines instead of having intentional and forthright conversations. Accept great friends into your life and better yet, be a great friend with no strings attached.
8. Hold authentic two-way conversations.
Some how between Gen X and now, we lost the ability to hold conversations—wholesome, vulnerable, real, and authentic dialogue. Stop relying on emojis, acronyms, and hashtags.
9. Invest in a skilled hobby.
But please, not drinking. A skilled hobby requires training, learning, and growth in a physical or mental capacity. Pick up an instrument, learn how to invest wisely, try a new sport or physical activity, or hone your craft in dance or the arts. Whatever you decide, make it a priority in your life. Take ownership and be proud to try something new. Do not pencil it into the calendar; put it in ink.
10. Love again.
It is so important to learn how to love others without any expectation of receiving love back. Centering yourself in love allows love to move through you. Start with loving yourself. Fill yourself up with positive affirmations. Be disciplined in that practice. You will find that you will have a larger threshold to love even your enemies.
Extra credit: Encourage your peers in their singleness. Believe it or not, you are not alone.
At the end of the day, I am trusting that you conquer singleness from here on out. I can confidently say that you are more than what you say of yourself, and I am looking forward to hearing about all of your flourishing in your season of singleness. Blessings.