It’s a Friday night and you’re alone. Again. Maybe you’re watching a cheesy movie alone on your couch and wishing you had a partner sitting beside who had just as much disdain for Adam Sandler as you do. Or maybe you’re daydreaming of a romantic dinner for two that will end with mind-blowing sex. Basically, your thoughts revolve around how it would it to be, you know, not alone.
Because, the truth is, you want to fall in love. Like that kind of Carrie Bradshaw “all consuming” love. You’ve got #couplegoals and you just need a plus one to do them with.
But here’s the thing. If you’re too consumed with the idea of falling of love and thinking that singledom is some illness that you need a cure for, then you’re seriously doing yourself a disservice. Here’s how to enjoy and embrace the journey of being single and letting love happen to you.
Use This Time to Learn About Yourself
Being single means you have more me time. There are too many people who try to find themselves in a relationship—you don’t want to be one of those people. Instead use this time to discover who you are. Do you have any untapped talents and passions that you’d like to explore? Are there any hang-ups or old patterns that you would like to investigate in therapy? Remember: despite what Tom Cruise said in Jerry Maguire, no one completes you.
Use This Time to Learn More About Who You Like
Dating doesn’t have to be a dreaded chore; it can be a fun activity that you do whenever you want to. How does it become fun? When you start viewing it as a learning experience instead of something you need to get through. Meeting new people and getting to know them allows you to decipher traits and tics in others that you like or don’t like. Treat every date as an opportunity that allows you to get closer to who you’re ultimately looking for. If it doesn’t work out with a date, you’ve just crossed another off the list. If it does, then, amazing! Keep on learning with this one until you’re absolutely sure they’re a keeper.
Enjoy Your Own Company
Many people, especially single people, have trouble accepting and loving their own company. You could be in the middle of doing something super awesome, like, climbing Mount Everest or eating nachos with Beyonce, and you’ll think, “Oh, this would be better with a partner!” No! You can have a good time with yourself; in fact, you must. Learning to enjoy your own company is essential when it comes to self-confidence and security. When you learn to embrace and love your solitude, no matter what you’re doing, then you will learn to love yourself and come to the understanding that you don’t need someone to experience life with because you’re your own best company.
Keep it Positive
Your vibe attracts your tribe. If you’re focusing on what you don’t have and the negativity of being single, then guess what? You’re putting some bad energy out there, which will affect those around you. Also, you’re putting out a “I NEED TO FALL IN LOVE” vibe, then, believe it: potential dates will smell that neediness and insecurity a mile away. Instead, focus on what you do have in your life. A fulfilling career, amazing friends, a loyal dog, Postmates—whatever! Keep your energy positive and grateful, and you’ll attract more of the good stuff, including love, in your life.
Learn to Love YOU
People can’t love you if you don’t love you. Love in all forms starts with self-love. During this time, figure out what that means to you. How can you treat yourself with more kindness and respect? How can you quiet the negative inner critic and replace it with your own personal cheerleader? If you’re looking for a healthy relationship, a potential partner needs to know how you need to be loved. So it’s up to you to figure that out. And then go show yourself that good lovin’ first.
Your big, squishy heart deserves to find the best person to hold it. But don’t make your quest for finding love distract you from the amazing journey you’re currently on. Being single isn’t a state of limbo as you wait for the love of your life to complete you. You’re complete right now. So keep learning and loving you and your life, and before you know it, you won’t be saying, “I want to fall in love” because you’ll already be in love—with yourself and/or your perfect match!