I used to be a serial dater, much like Kim Kardashian in her pre-Kanye days. It was a constant cycle of dating apps and breakups until one day, someone broke my heart and I decided things had to change.
Instead of diving head-first into the relationship world again, I decided to ride solo for a while.
To my surprise, I found that being happy while you're single will help you find true love much easier than constantly being in a relationship.
1. You can be yourself when you're single.
I used to change my looks and personality depending on what man I was dating. I know it's stupid, but it made sense at the time.
When I dated a conservative guy, I threw out all of my provocative party dresses and stopped drinking.
When I dated this guy with a great sense of humor, I used to crack jokes all the time and try to be a clown as much as possible in order to appear like a good match.
Being single, I realized that all of this was just a pointless show I was putting on. It was toxic. I let my personality disappear in the shadow of whoever I was dating.
It took me a year of being alone to recognize and accept my strengths and weaknesses. I finally stopped pretending.
Ever since that happened, I have been able to choose guys who are truly good matches for me and who accept me for my real self.
2. You need time to achieve your goals.
I'm not saying that being in a relationship and achieving personal goals are two polar opposites, but I must admit that being single makes it a lot easier to focus on my goals and be way more productive.
I love to travel. I take every chance I get to spend a weekend in Malta or to photograph the English countryside and it makes me truly happy.
Constantly dating someone caused me to turn down incredible opportunities just because my partner would say I was selfish or because I didn't trust him enough to leave him alone.
Being single has allowed me to travel as much and as often as I can, and I'm happier than ever. That isn't to say that I'm lonely. I meet people all the time and have had some of the best conversations and flings at exotic locations I could ever wish for.
Having time to focus on yourself will really help you focus on what it is that you like and will allow you to pursue it without holding back. Then one of those days, you will meet the one who shares your passion and interests.
3. You will learn the true meaning of happiness.
Happiness is a rare thing. Most of us consider ourselves "happy" simply because we have an apartment, food and the ability to buy something nice or go on a vacation every once in a while.
I hate to be the one to say this, but this is not happiness. This is comfort. Comfort is the powerful drug we get addicted to that keeps us coming back to desk jobs so we can earn some money to buy more comfort.
I used to feel uncomfortable on my own. I thought dating equaled happiness, but it didn't.
Being single taught me the difference between comfort and happiness. Now I can truly tell when I seek company out of fear versus dating someone and feeling true love and happiness.
4. You will let go of the past.
In order to find true love, you have to make sure your mind is no longer occupied by that one guy you dated in college who you never got over.
I used to google "how to win your ex back" (like an idiot), thinking that this was true love. Like I was in some kind of a novel where he'd realize I was "the one" all of a sudden, just like Big did in Sex and The City.
What a waste of time that was. Being single taught me that I have so much to love in myself, that I should not be pursuing someone who can't see that.
I'm by no means self-absorbed, but being single finally helped me develop a healthy self-esteem and realize my worth.
5. You won't feel any pressure.
We are all under pressure to hit milestones in life in an acceptable order. Graduate college, get a good job and find a partner. This is the norm, right? Wrong.
Being single lifted this pressure of finding "the one" off my shoulders and I have been able to breathe easy ever since.
The moment you let go of the pressure to accomplish what is expected or needed from you is the moment you will ease into yourself and attract the right person. Now that will be true love.