Relationships are awesome! Well, at first. After some time, hormones die down, dopamine starts to fire less and less, and fights occur more and more.
Relationships stop looking warm and fuzzy and start to look more like The Hunger Games, where only the strongest couples survive.
But monogamy doesn’t feel so rough when you’re in a satisfying relationship. Being attached to someone can feel comforting, like living in a warm, gooey cocoon. Unfortunately, that cocoon isn’t always permanent. Luckily for me, though, once my heart splices open, I burst out of old love like a newborn butterfly.
There’s no questioning the agony of a breakup, but growing pains are a small part of the deal when starting over. The personal growth gained can be worth more than what's been lost. By examining my past relationships, I've discovered I am actually my best self when single. Here's why:
When I'm single, I'm more productive.
Let's face it, love can be distracting. Trapped in LaLa Land thinking about your person can leave you unfocused. Being wrapped under the covers with your special someone is nice, but when I'm single, I try to keep myself wrapped up with work. I freelance, set goals, and scribble to-do lists on anything I can get my hands on: notebooks, post-its, dry-erase boards, napkins, you name it.
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From being single, I've learned that books are your friends and self-care is important. Learning new things every day from reading helps keeps the fire under your booty lit while lotion, face-steaming, and masks keep your face fresh. I feed my brain and take care of my body better when I’m not drooling over some dude.
When I'm single, I meet more people.
When I'm not counting the freckles on a lover's face, I'm out and about greeting new friends and potential partners. Being single leads me to push myself to go out and in turn meet more people and network. Sometimes I even go to parks and bars solo. By taking chances and being extroverted, I have met some amazing people around the world. This might sound corny but think about Ash Ketchum from Pokémon. He set out on his journey alone but found his life-long amigos, Misty and Brock, along the way.
When I'm single, I try new things.
When my hands are not being held, I find new ways to occupy them. I take new classes and throw myself into situations I've never experienced because I have nothing to lose. I’ve traveled the world alone to countries like Greece and England. I’ve tried new foods in Israel, had a teapot of shots in Australia, and danced in nightclubs in Tokyo. When trying new things by myself, I get an adrenaline rush that makes all the extraordinary things I've seen and experienced feel even more amplified.
When I'm single, I feel more relaxed.
When I’m locked down, my eyes are usually fixed on my phone. I'm either texting or waiting for a text. This technological game is frustrating and gives me anxiety. To put it plainly, the waiting period in modern-day communication sucks.
On the flip side, single me is completely free from the shackles of my smart phone. I look up more and notice more. Not only that, but the clouds shine brighter, the wind feels gentler, and everything overall just seems great without the stress, anxiety, and uncertainty that tends to plague my mind when I have a partner.
When I'm single, I learn more about what I want in a partner.
Being out and about has led me to a lot of different men. Even from solo traveling, I’ve stumbled into a new guy every day, sometimes even a few guys a day. Plenty of personalities have come close to what I want in a man but haven’t exactly fit.
However, by taking the time to be single, I know that when I finally do want to settle down, I’ll have the exposure and background needed to know that I’m making the right decision. I’ll be able to be the best partner I can be because I will have become my best self before getting involved with someone. Hopefully with a little luck from Father Time and Cupid, one day I’ll be able to find someone who has done the same.