Being Okay With Being Single [Guest Post]

Today I’m super happy to have my beautiful friend Cassie guest-posting for me. She’s basically my soul mate (no, really, our numerological matchings make us soul mates), and I became friends with her separately from the blog world. I ask her for advice all the time. She’s very sage. Enjoy her wisdom about something very near and dear to my heart – being single. 

cherryheart

Hi everyone. I’m Cassie, and if you are a regular reader of Nutty for Life, you’ve probably seen me around these parts. I blog about trying to grow up and be a real adult at Almost Getting it Together, but mostly I talk about healthy recipes, running, traveling and maybe occasionally something else.

In case you don’t know me, I’m 25. So old, I know. I feel like not only are Angela and I friends, but I like to think of myself as her mentor as well. She told me I could write about a recipe, running or life and I thought – why not write about being single? Disclaimer, I’m not currently single, but before I found myself with a really wonderful guy, I was obviously single and I spent a lot of time learning to not only be okay with it, but enjoy it as well.

Being single is a stigma in the United States, or at least it is in West Virginia/Western PA, where I have spent most of my life. Both family and strangers are very quick to ask if you have a boyfriend or girlfriend and often the “no” answer is met with a look of pity.

Being single isn’t a disease, it’s typically a choice, and it’s much more healthy to be single than settling with someone who doesn’t make you happy or being in a destructive relationship. People think having a significant other will always give them something to do, something to look forward to, and therefore, happiness. Yes, the person you are with should increase your happiness, but you should be capable of being happy without them as well. Never depend on another person for your happiness.

I’m not saying being single is easy once you’ve been in a relationship and especially not when you first break-up with someone. Trust me, it’s hard. Sometimes it seemed easier to have someone on the back-burner so I knew that if worse came to worst, I wouldn’t be spending my entire life alone. However, when you are thinking about how insane that back-burner person drives you (please don’t call me dumb nicknames like ‘Little Cass,’ it makes me want to throw up), it’s better to not be stressed out and to be single. You can’t meet someone new if your heart is closed trying to not strangle someone you’re not really into but is in your life.

First, you have to figure out what it is that makes you happy. Personally, I don’t like spending my Friday and Saturday nights out at a crowded bar, fighting for the bartender’s attention for a crappy drink and not being able to even have a conversation, so going out to the bar doesn’t make me happy. I realized I need time alone on the weekends – I like coming home and doing nothing but catching up on blogs and TV on Friday nights. I like to go to bed early so I can wake-up for a long run or go to yoga on Saturday mornings. I stopped feeling like I was supposed to go out every night. Even when I was visiting friends, the last thing I wanted to do was go to the bar. If I’m going to have a drink at night, I would rather it be at a cool cocktail bar or restaurant where I don’t have to hear a Pitbull song and I can have a meaningful conversation with my companions. This is where the stigma comes back – if you’re single, you’re expected to go to the bar and be social and meet guys. Spoiler alert: the chance you are going to meet your future husband at the bar is low.

Second, once you’ve figured out what makes you happy, you now have a lot of extra time to do those things. Traveling makes me happy because not being in Pittsburgh makes me happy. In 2013, I probably took twenty or so trips. Yes, a lot were random weekends visiting my friends who live in different cities and a handful were for work, but now I suddenly had both the time and inclination to travel.

Earlier this year, I wanted to take a solo trip, so I went to Nicaragua by myself. I pushed myself out of my comfort zone and forced myself to make new friends which I would have probably not done with a boyfriend (or at least old Cassie with a boyfriend wouldn’t have done). Go travel, sign-up for a triathlon, take that cooking class you always wanted – once you begin growing as a person, you don’t even have time to worry about being single or what your ex is up to (probably not anything as interesting as you).

Lastly, you can’t be afraid to be alone. Being alone isn’t scary – it’s liberating! Take a book to a restaurant and have a leisurely meal. Can’t find a friend to go to a concert with you? Go by yourself! Once you’ve learned that it’s okay to be alone, more and more opportunities will start opening up to you because you don’t have to wait for someone else to want to do something.

More places to find Cassie:
Twitter: @cpisone
Facebook: Almost Getting it Together
Instagram: @cpisone
Pinterest: Cassandra Pisone
Email: cpisone@gmail.com

Thanks for posting, Cass! I hope you all loved her advice as much as I did. And if you’re already taken… well, I’m happy for ya!
We’re also linking up with Amanda for Thinking Out Loud today. Thanks for hosting, Amanda!

Questions of the Day:
>>Are you currently single?
>>Do you think being single is a stigma?
>>Are you okay with being alone?
>>Lastly, I want to hear your thoughts!

 

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20 comments

  1. Love this, lady love!! Such good points 🙂 Technically I’m not single, but since Joe is away at the academy for weeks at a time at the moment, there are definitely periods where it feels that way, and as much as I miss him (and I do a ton), there are some parts about being on my own that aren’t so bad. I can make spur of the moment plans with friends without having to check in, I can sign up for any race I want, I can spend a Friday night reading and not feel like a dork, and anything else that comes to mind. I like doing things like going to movies by myself, taking myself out to eat, and all that jazz, too…makes things easier, and I have no trouble being by myself. I can’t wait for Joe to be home obviously and put this behind us, but it’s been nice to see that I can still be on my own and thrive!

    1. I seriously still need to go to the movies by myself… I don’t know what’s holding me back… maybe lack of a movie I want to see? It can be weird eating alone at first but now I really enjoy it. Being independent is SO attractive to boys 🙂

  2. PREACH SISTA! This is all so, so true. You MUST be in love with yourself before going into a relationship, and you can’t be afraid/angry/annoyed of being single. Being single should not feel like a disease, even when others make you feel like it is. The right person will come around at the right time, but spending every hour of every day searching for a boyfriend just to have a boyfriend is pointless.

    1. I never thought of that but “afraid/angry/annoyed of being single” is so true, because I feel like those are the emotions single girls have. And I’ve had them. But you know what… there are days that life makes me afraid/angry/annoyed and I just can’t let myself hate everything because life throws some curve balls some days, right?

  3. I love this post and have written similar things before. I am single, and I’m okay with it. Many of my friends are currently getting married, but I know that if I had married the person who has been in my life for the past three years, I would NOT be happy, so I let it go. It was hard, but it was the best decision I’ve ever made. Now that I’m moving to Chicago, I am actually making it a point of experiencing the city as a single LA-DAY because I want it to be MY city first; not ever just my city with a guy.

    1. Def just got someone out of my life who was basically soul-sucking. Neither of us liked the other but I think we were with each other since we had the same goals… or so we thought. I was actually willing to go after mine and he thought that was dumb. Anyway! You’ll fall in love with Chicago then fall in love with the right boy 🙂

  4. I’m not currently single, but since I’m in a LDR, it can often feel like I am. Truth be told, though, I’ve actually grown pretty accustomed to being alone, to the point where sometimes I wonder how I’ll ever manage to live with someone. It can definitely be lonely at times, but it can also be beautifully freeing not to have to worry about someone else’s plans or wants… I guess like everything else in life, there are plusses and minuses to both. It’s all about focusing on the positives 🙂

  5. I absolutely love this because it covers everything that I talk about with my friends! Being a young adult in any city (especially for me in NYC) is tough because everyone expects you to go out and drop tons of money on clubs and bars and drinks. I have grown so much over the past year to realize that I love my workout classes, my funky restaurants, explorations around town and long runs and am totally ok with admitting a need for a movie night or just chilling out. It is tough when people expect to be in a relationship and maybe we haven’t found the right person. Great advice!

  6. It’s really interesting for me to read this post, because I’ve always been a little bit afraid of being single. I’m definitely a serial monogomist- besides maybe a month between my last and current relationship, my only other stretch of single-hood for the last decade was about 8 months when I was 16. And that fear has definitely lead me down the wrong path before. I can’t help but wonder where I would be or how things would have different for me if I had had the realizations you outline in this post!

    1. I totally believe EVERYTHING happens for a reason. You may have never met Eric if you had those realizations, you know? It’s okay if you’re a serial monogamist – it’s for some people, and if someone wants to be in a relationship, thats amazing! I think a lot of girls have trouble accepting that it’s okay if you aren’t…

  7. Omg, just when i thought I couldn’t love you any more than I already do…

    Hell yeah, homie! I used to be afraid of being single and that acquiring “THE” relationship (or in my case, marriage) was just one of those things we were “supposed” to do… check off our bucket list.

    The reality is, most of us settle. Out of fear, or because we hear supposed ‘horror’ stories about how awful it is to be single, dating is hard/disappointing, etc. And it doesn’t have to be that way. I absolutely love my alone time because it’s given me time to reflect on years of destructive, fearful, limiting beliefs. You just have to surround yourself with good friends and allow things to naturally unfold as they should.

    So far, I’ve realized that I’d rather be alone forever than with the wrong person.

  8. This is something I actually struggled with for so long- comparing myself to all my friends who either seemed to be in a relationship, seeing someone etc- always feeling like the black sheep. I’ve come to really appreciate being single and not be ashamed or consider it a fault- it does allow for self reflection and a chance to focus on yourself.

  9. This is scary. As I was reading this u really thought I wrote this! Wow. Your Friday night is my fri night. I love my me time and alone time and I feel no one understands. I try to explain to people not to take it personally. It’s really not them. I want to be alone. I hate bars , loud music (even in the car) and the last tjing u want to do on a die night is talk talk talk. !!!! Shhhh quiet please 🙂

    I am currently single. I am so happy. For the first time in my life I have been forces to focus on me and only me. It took some time to adjust and I never thought I would be happy. Now I really am happy and have no desire to be in a relationship. I’m not looking. At all. 🙂

    I would have never faced my eating disorder or found my likes/dislikes if I was In a relationship. All of my relationships had been unhealthy. I see it so clearly now and know what I still need to do and what I want

    It’s hard at first. But so important to be single for some time. You are forced to find yourself

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