We live in a society where social media and the music and movie industries emphasise the idea that a ‘significant other’ is someone we just can’t survive without.
Nearly every song I hear on the radio is about love, heartbreak or ‘the chase’ of winning that one person’s heart; not many songs embrace singleness – no wonder it’s so difficult to see the beauty of it!
Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE belting out Whitney Houston’s ‘I Will Always Love You’ on the karaoke machine but there is a fundamental issue that urgently needs to be addressed here – singleness is NOT a burden.
Being single is actually a great means and a real opportunity to develop one’s character and determine the fundamental things that build up the human person.
Don’t believe me?
SO… here are some reasons why I think the single life is great:
It’s an opportunity to get to know YOU
Often if one doesn’t take the time to establish themselves as an individual – especially during their teen years – relationships can become the main thing they seek to shape their own identity.
Personally, I’ve had several conversations with friends who’ve come out of relationships puzzled about who they are as a person when it all ends.
But how can you determine if you’re compatible with someone else in the first place and be in a relationship if you’re not even aware of your own interests, values, beliefs and goals?
Were your interests, values, beliefs and goals really yours to begin with – or were you simply reflecting someone else’s?
If you’re not really sure in the end, take advantage of the times of singlehood as an opportunity to reflect and really get to know yourself.
Being more available for others (not just one person) and the needs of the world
Whether it be going on a mission to help end world hunger, accompanying the elderly at a nursing home, raising awareness for an important cause or volunteering to work for a charity organisation – the world can always use an extra helping hand.
The truth is, this stuff is hard work and demands our time and effort … as well as a big heart.
Travel is such a big thing for young people these days; and no doubt there are many of us who’ve contracted the highly-infectious travel bug.
Why not take advantage of the single life to travel and give yourself to others who honestly need you?
There is always someone in the world that needs our help. There is always some injustice that needs to be fought.
Last year, I ventured off to Chile to help in disadvantaged schools and teach the English language (and Aussie culture!). My group and I also volunteered at a mental health clinic where we accompanied patients and helped run the place.
Next year, my travels will take me to New Zealand where I’ll be working as a volunteer at a refugee centre.
I, myself, have found singleness to be very rewarding in this way.
Singleness allows you to give your time unconditionally with undivided attention. The world will thank you for it!
The experience of learning independence
Singleness allows you to experience what it feels like to be alone … and that it’s OK (and not a tragedy).
Learning to be independent allows you to learn to support yourself emotionally, financially and in everyday life.
Conquering independence means you’re able to make better and clearer decisions for yourself, maintain high morale, have confidence in taking risks, and are able to believe in the power of your own capabilities more.
SO … the next time you’re ever burdened by the thought of singleness or being ‘forever alone’, ask yourself why you feel the need to be co-dependent on another. Is it out of a free choice or out of a feeling of necessity?