Guest Post: Take Advantage of Yourself

The following guest post offers some tips to survive and thrive while one is single.  It’s brought to you by Erin Whitehead…

Relationships are great (or at least I heard on an online dating site). Dating is fun or can at least make for funny stories.  Having a crush can make every part of your day seem more exciting. But in between romantic endeavors a lot of people become total downers. Suddenly being single is a prison sentence instead of a choice.  Being unattached seems to signify you’re defective in some way.  While finding love may in fact be the core reason we do everything we do, it’s not the only reason. There’s a lot to be gained from being alone for a while, so many advantages to the single life.  By living it up instead of sad sacking around, you’ll not only have more fun, but it’ll likely improve your next relationship.

  1. Who do you think you are? It’s easy to lose touch with who you are when you’re in a relationship.  Even if you’re an independent person, being with someone else means compromise. At least half the time you’re doing things they want to do. You might like them to, but were they your first choice? Being single means doing exactly what you want to do. If this means lying on the floor listening to 90’s indie rock and crying about being alone, look further. The more cool, new things you figure out you like doing, the more fun you’ll have which means you’ll be more fun which means more people will be drawn to you because people like fun. They don’t like crying.
  2. Invest in your friends. Hopefully you aren’t that person who got a boyfriend or girlfriend and quickly became too busy for your pals. But if you are, now’s the time to make amends. Ask everyone you’ve been neglecting and anyone you’ve ever found interesting or wanted to get to know out for lunches or coffees or drinks or whatever. Your calendar will be full and you’ll open yourself up to conversations, opportunities, and perspectives you can’t get from one significant other.
  3. Be good to yourself. It’s easy to fall into a habit of self-improvement for the sole purpose of attracting or pleasing someone else. And while it feels great to get attention from another person, it’s not the strongest way to shine. What if you exercised knowing no one (in the immediate future anyway) would feel those hardened abs. What if you shaved your legs and did facial masks even though you’re sleeping alone? Doing things for yourself reminds you that you’re worthy of being taken care of regardless of your relationship status.
  4. Yay, project time! Please don’t take this to mean scrap booking. Scrap booking is just living in the past masquerading as glue and borders. But surely there’s something you always meant to do or thought you might like to try that always seemed to fall to the wayside when there was someone else around. Paint your bedroom a new color (avoid deep chocolate brown – just trust me on that). Start writing your memoirs. Volunteer. Learn to make ice cream. Whatever. The point is doing something simply because it sounds cool because you can.
  5. Dance like no one’s watching. And see, no one is, so it’s perfect. When you were attached there was always someone around limiting your private behavior. They didn’t do it intentionally but being in the company of another person naturally squashes your impulses. Now you can put on your terrible 90’s indie rock and dance (not cry) to it. You can walk around talking to yourself. You can practice singing while you cook. You can make faces in the mirror. You can google everyone you ever had a crush on and look at what idiots they are now. You can sit around in your underwear enjoying the cool breeze with the confidence that no sweaty dude is going to try to replace the remote with his… hand. What I’m saying is live it up. The faster you do the faster you’ll be attached and then you’ll miss these days.

Erin Whitehead is a writer and blogger for

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