Baby, it’s cold outside, and you know what that means? It is couple hell in the hallways. At least, that’s what it may feel like. I know that when I am longing for someone to hold hands with during sweater weather, it seems like the amount of couples there really are get multiplied by three in my mind, making it seem like EVERYONE has at least a fling to spend time with during the holidays, while I’m forever alone, petting my cat and crying as I eat mouthfuls of cereal straight from the box while watching Girls. Um. Yeah.
But that’s not actually how it is, and that’s not how you have to act if you’re going be single this year (or maybe this is your second year…or your third. No shame, no matter which year it is). Because the reality is that there are so many things that you can do when you’re single that are less accessible when you’re in a relationship. Often times, we lose track of this and just focus on how lonely it feels to not be in a relationship. But you’re a Prospie, and Prospies don’t spend their holidays weeping over their lack of a significant other. Prospies recognize that there are things that you do better when you’re single than when you’re half of a couple. Here are some of them.
1. Spend Time, Not Money
The fact of the matter is that dates can get EXPENSIVE. Of course, there are free dates like going on a run together or the option to not go out on a super regular basis, but that does not mean that it isn’t a pain in the wallet to be in a relationship. When you’re single, you don’t have to feel guilty about not spending more money on another person, because you are in full control of how often you spend money. In a relationship, I find it difficult to say no to spending time with my boyfriend over hanging out with my friends, but when I’m single I don’t have to feel guilty. As a single man/lady, you are a better friend and have better time management skills, because you don’t have one person demanding large amounts of your time.
2. Focus On You
You know how exhausting it is to agree on a movie to see together? That’s not a problem when you’re single. If you want to see the latest Ryan Gosling movie, but he wants to see Step Brothers, things can get ugly very quickly, as movies require a lot of compromise. When you’re single, you get to see the Ryan Gosling movie, and you get to see it with no bickering or pouting to spoil it.
3. Focus On…Not You!
You were so psyched to go volunteer at the animal shelter this weekend, but something came up with the S.O., so you were unable to go, and you haven’t been able to set up another time slot because you’re just so. darned. busy. While it isn’t your S.O.’s fault that life happens at inconvenient times, when you’re single you only truly have to worry about when your life and your immediate family’s life happens. That means more time for doing things like volunteering and other service-related activities you love.
4. What You Want
Being single means being able to kiss three different people within a time period of two weeks and not feeling an ounce of guilt about it, because you are serious with none of them and you aren’t hurting anyone (ideally). It means seeing people on your own terms and making your own decisions without having to compromise. It’s being completely honest with yourself about your needs and desires, because your conscience isn’t clouded with the need to please someone else.
5. Focus On Your Career
You have always had big dreams for yourself, as well as loads of ambition, but your ability to focus fully and completely on something as demanding as rising through the ranks of your high school is seriously hindered when you’re spending study/personal development time eating at Subway with the S.O. When you’re single, you have the time to be the best version of you that you can be, inching you closer and closer to the person that you want to become.
While this article does seem super negative about having a significant other, I do not mean by any of this that it is bad to feel love and affection for someone else and that things are so much better when you’re single. Being single has its hardships too. But instead of focusing on those negative aspects of being single, you should realize how liberating it truly is. Compromise and harmony with another person is beautiful, but so is the independence and personal growth that comes with being your own best friend.