As wonderful as it is to be in a romantic relationship, there are times when all of us are “alone”. Being single is both a blessing and a curse, as is being in a relationship. It is impossible to imagine a person who never lives a single day without a lover — even the most attractive Don Juan will have a dry spell or two. It is important to appreciate the the advantages of being single, just as it is important to appreciate your life in a relationship.
What Are The Advantages Of Being Single?
To understand the advantages of being single, we must understand the sometimes negative aspects of romance.
When you’re dating someone, your time and money are spent cultivating that relationship. Male or female, regardless of who pays for dates, being in a romantic partnership can be very expensive. Men and women seem to feel the need to make themselves beautiful with cosmetic products, new clothing, even fancy cars or apartments in order to make themselves more attractive to their partner. This is all well and good, but if you don’t make much money or are between jobs, a romance can literally bankrupt you. An advantage of being single is enjoying the frugal life you can live. Women — skimp on the makeup and perfume. It can be a very freeing experience to go out of your house “just as you are”. Men — take yourSELF out for a steak dinner. Even if you order a more expensive cut of meat or a slightly nicer bottle of wine, the bill will still be half has expensive as it would be with a partner. Take the money you save as a single person and stick it in a savings account or a financial investment — you’ll need it as soon as you get involved in your next romance.
Benefits Of Being Single
One of the benefits of being single is indepence. Quite often, boyfriends and girlfriends feel the need to be accountable to their partner for their actions. How many times have you had to call and update your lover as to your whereabouts, your plans for the evening, or just exactly where you were last night? While this need to be in constant contact with a lover is not healthy, it is very common. Having responsability for your self is a good benefit of being single — no one will call and want to know why you spent six hours at the bar throwing darts, or why you and your girlfriends walked around the mall for the entire afternoon. In short — you can do what you want, when you want to do it, without having to fess up to anyone later. There’s no asking for permission, no guilt to deal with later, and no feelings of remorse to ruin your night out with friends. We all love the responsibilities that come with love, but enjoy the benefits, being single can be a time for you to enjoy your self. There will be plenty of time for guilt later.
One of the first things sacrificed when you enter into a romanctic relationship is time spent with your friends. Think back to your last serious love affair — how many of your friends complained that they didn’t see you as much anymore, or that you were spending all your time with your new lover? Being single means having all the time in the world to develop those important friendships that will be with you your whole life. A girlfriend or boyfriend may come and go, but your friends will always be there for you, and using your single time to cultivate their friendships will pay off in dividends the next time your heart gets broken.
Enjoy The Single Life
By examining some of the drawback of being in a relationship you can learn to enjoy the single life. Another aspect of a relationship is that you lose time to develop your own interests and well being. It seems that every time I get into a relationship, I work out less, I read less, and self improvement gets put on the back burner, or even worse, gets tossed out the window altogether. If you find yourself suddenly single, take the time that you would normally spend with a lover and use it to make yourself even more attractive. Take a college course, read that long novel you’ve been staring at in the bookstore window, do some yoga, go on a diet — anything to make yourself a better person. Not only will you be better of for it, but you may find that this increase in your charisma will attract potential future partners. Working out, increasing your brain power, etc. will only make you more attractive to potential mates. Of course, this means that eventually you’ll give up these new pursuits — but the improvement you gain while single can’t be taken away. Being single is the perfect time to work on the most important person in your life: you.
Being single doesn’t have to mean being lonely. Casual dating is a vital part of your development — believe it or not, it is possible to date without the serious commitments that get in the way of your life. In other words, being single frees you up to date a variety of people. You might consider dating someone you would never think of as a “partner” — you never know what you can learn about yourself and other people by expanding your horizons. By taking a variety of people out on casual dates, you’ll expand your future pool of romantic partners, and at very least you can make some new friends. Dating new people also opens up new activities, things you may have never tried or even considered. I once went on a casual date with a girl from Ethiopia who wanted to take me to an authentic Ethiopian restaurant. This is not a type of food I would normally seek out, but I found out that I LOVE Ethiopian food. I now seek out Ethiopian restaurants in every city I visit. This is just one small example — perhaps you’ll take a very adventurous friend out on a date, and he or she will want to go sky diving or take a hot air balloon ride. The adrenalin rush will not only increase the sparks between the two of you, but its good for your mental health and well being. Being single doesn’t have to mean being lonely — it can simply mean a wider scope of potential partners.
Last but not least another advantage of being single is that it’s a million times less stressful than being in a serious relationship. Many of our relationships cause stress, and stress is just plain awful for our physical and mental health, causing depression, changes in blood pressure, a weakened immune system, and all sorts of potential nasty side effects. The single life is a relatively stress free life. You can enjoy your time alone, lounge around the house naked, take part in your favorite activities without wondering if your partner is enjoying it, and just generally relax. People pay good money to therapists and gyms to avoid stress, when simply living the single life can do much to relieve stress.
There is nothing wrong with having a serious romantic partner. In fact, I firmly believe that healthy relationships are the greatest gifts we can give ourselves. But its just as important to recognize when we need to be single, and to acknowledge the positive side of the single life. The next time you find yourself “alone” consider this — you’re never alone if you’ve got yourself, and being single can be the best way to really learn who you are. So cheer up — all is not lost just because you don’t have a boyfriend or girlfriend. Now — I’m off to go bowling with my buddies, but first I have to call my girlfriend and make sure its okay. Man, this single life is looking better and better all the time…