It can be difficult navigating how to be happy single, especially when movies and TV push the concept that “happily ever after” means going off into the sunset with a significant other on your arm. However, being single gets an unfairly bad rep. While the media and our culture might paint single people as unhappy that doesn’t mean it has to be true for you.
In fact, a study found that single people’s self-reported levels of well-being were similar to those participants who were in relationships. The truth is, happiness isn’t defined by another person. You get to define what happiness means for you. And while it’s perfectly normal to want a partnership while you’re single, it’s also equally important to know that your happiness doesn’t depend on another person.
So instead of having your happiness hinge on your relationship status, turn the tables and take charge of your happiness. Here’s how to be happy and single, and yes, it’s possible
How to be Happy Single: A Roadmap
Focus on your goals
So often in relationships your goals quickly become “our” goals and the plans that you made as a single person are put on the backburner, sometimes never to be visited again. However, when you’re single, you get to selfishly focus on what you want without any compromise (or shame).
Do you want to go back to school and get another degree? Or do you want to quit your job and travel the world? Have a book you’re dying to write? Now is the time to do it.
Immerse yourself in meaningful activities
How to be happy single? Immerse yourself in activities that engage and inspire you. Whether that’s through a new hobby, sport, artistic expression, or volunteering at an organization that inspires you.
Research shows that happiness is contingent more on how you choose to spend your time and not whether you’re in a relationship or not. Be conscious of where and how you’re investing your time and energy. Commit to doing things that fully light you up, and you’ll definitely feel the #goodvibes.
Enjoy the clarity and peace of mind
Let’s be honest, most people in relationships are stressed out about their relationships. They’re annoyed about compromising with a partner over something they don’t want to compromise, worried they might upset their partner or have upset their partner, or ruminating over a fight. They might even be stressed over chores and errands, and other little things that, guess what? You, as a single person, don’t have to worry about!
Instead, you have the space in your mind to think about big visions and things that truly inspire and delight you. Remember: we get to choose our thoughts. So don’t fill them up with panic and anxiety over finding The One. Instead, enjoy the interim and peace of mind that singledom brings you.
Be more spontaneous with life
One of the most exciting ways you can figure out how to be happy single is to enjoy the freedom that your status brings you. Free of attachments and obligations, you can be more adventurous and spontaneous with how you spend your time. You can roll with the punches, and do things on a whim.
Whether that’s booking a last-minute vacation or moving halfway across the world for a job. You’re more likely to take big chances and carve out a free-spirited path for yourself.
Clear the past consciously
So many of us jump from relationship to relationship without giving ourselves the proper time to heal and learn from our past relational behavior and patterning. Only for the same issues to rear their ugly heads time and again and lead to more and more heartbreak. The irony of being happy while single is to figure out the sad stuff.
Journal. Seek therapy. Get curious and honest about your past relationships and your triggers. Seek to become more conscious of how you act in a relationship and how and why you choose the partners you do. By letting go of the past, you not only make room for the future, but you also allow yourself to feel good right now.
When it comes to learning how to be happy when single, it’s really understanding the fact that nothing outside of ourselves truly makes us happy. We are the authority when it comes to our own happiness, and it starts with choosing to be so right here and now with or without a partner. By being open to life, clearing our past, focusing on our goals and investing our time with the things that we truly enjoy, happy being single won’t be such a misnomer, simply a way of life.