12 Tips For Embracing Being Single, Even When You're Not Thrilled About It
If you miss your ex, if all your friends are cuffed up, or if your sibling got a plus one to your distant family member's wedding in Ohio because they have a partner (and you didn't because you don't) and now you're going to sit at a weird "singles" table, sometimes it feels like a total bummer to be a solo bird. And sometimes, you'll find yourself needing some tips for embracing being single, some reminders of how amazing you are, and some validation that everything is eventually going to be OK.
Sometimes being single comes as a surprise. Sometimes it comes from intentionally and mindfully taking time away from sex or dating. Whatever the reason, whether you're newly a party of one or if you've been flying solo for a while now — sometimes being single is not exactly thrilling. Of course, you are complete and whole and good, no matter your romantic status. And you will live a long and vivid life, full of people that love you regardless of who you are or aren't dating.
If you're looking for daily practices about embracing being single, here are 12 tips to recenter your attention on yourself and all your bring to the world.
1. Take A Social Media Break
Deleting social media apps from your phone for a set day, week, or month (or just until you've taken an amazing pic that needs to be shared) can be really healthy and helpful for staying in the present. Giving yourself some structure — like, no Insta for two days, and literally taking the app off your phone — can combat the FOMO and keep you from creeping on your exes or their new boos, or the Instagram store they run together.
2. Try Going Phone-less As A Practice
Go to a coffee shop without your phone. Run to the store without your phone. Leave your phone at home and go enjoy some time with friends or a new sushi place or get your nails done. If you don't have your phone on you, you can't be bummed about who is or isn't texting you. Going places without your phone lets you really experience things as they come.
3. Find Your Version Of "The Runaway Bride" Eggs Scene
If you haven't seen the Julia Roberts classic, the idea is that Roberts' character always orders the same breakfast as her boos, and has never taken the time to discover what her fave is. The iconic scene in which Roberts eats a dozen kinds of eggs, makes clear that she's discovering who she is, for and by herself. If your ex always ordered for you or chose where you went, now is the time to try your dozen eggs. Maybe you like different food from them. Maybe you like wearing heels during the daytime.
4. Call In Backup
Call you friends. One day or three months post-breakup blues, your pals are there for you. If you're used to always having a partner to do things with, it can be an adjustment to be flying solo. Go out to dinner with your friends. Have a sleepover in your jammies.
5. Aim To Pass The Bechdel Test
"The Bechdel Test" is an assessment about how women are depicted in works of fiction, stating a work passes when has at least two named women characters talking to each other about something other than men. Now, gender is a social construct. But I try to see it as a reminder to have conversations that aren't about your ex. It can be healing to discuss the relationship — but it's also important to remember how powerful and interesting you are and how much more you have in your life to talk about than your romantic relationships.
6. Feel Yourself
Feeling yourself can mean literally touching your bod, or it can mean wearing your favorite outfit, dancing to your guilty pleasure playlist, or baking a cake. Do what makes you feel good, what reminds you that you are alive and amazing. Make yourself feel strong, beautiful, and powerful.
7. Find Things To Celebrate
Maybe your baby cousin dressed up as an astronaut for Halloween and the pictures are literally the cutest thing ever. Maybe you're just happy you're alive, happy you got your morning coffee from your favorite spot, or happy you showered today. Celebrate yourself for the small things. Find joy in the little victories. Let yourself be happy and smile.
8. Cultivate Gratitude
Your friends could be your support system, or your mom, or your coworkers. Think about what you do have and what you are grateful for. Remember the things you like about yourself, and cultivate gratitude for yourself. Be thankful for those who love you and care for you, and thankful for your own strength and resilience.
9. Let Yourself Be Petty
If you need to write angsty poems, draw mean comics, talk a bunch of sh*t to all your friends about your ex, let yourself be petty. If you're in pain, you're allowed to be childish, mean spirited, or just kinda dramatic sometimes. You don't need need to be chill or cool all the time. You have permission to make a scene, make a big deal, or to be really angry.
10. Listen To This Song
Cyberbull Mom Club is so iconic and after a disappointing relationship ending, the repeating line, "I thought you were better than that" is healing. Frankly, any song about resilience will do the trick. Destiny's Child's "Survivor," T-Swift's "Begin Again" or anything by Alanis Morissette. Listen to songs by powerful people about the power of leaving behind relationships that were no longer serving you.
11. Do The Stuff You Compromised On
Relationships take compromise. Maybe you never got to go to the neon bar by your house because your ex hated fun, or maybe your ex was a health nut and you could never eat burgers on date night. Go to the places you always wanted to go. Wear the outfit you always wanted to wear. Take the road trip you wanted to take that they never made time for. Do it with friends, do it with your mom, freaking do it by yourself!
12. Remember You Don't Put Up With BS
You are doing what's best for you. You are not going to settle. You are not skating though life because it's easy. You are putting your heart out there, you are living a life that's real and hard. You're not staying in a relationship that's not serving you just as you're not going to date someone just to say you're dating. You know what you want and what you deserve, and you're not going to settle for less.
If you're not amped to be single, remember the things you are amped about. Be kind to yourself, and take time to figure out what it is you really want from life. You are strong, unique, and a force to be reckoned with, and that is super thrilling.