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15 Ways to Enjoy Being Single

15 Ways to Enjoy Being Single

Being single is awesome. Am I right? While it can be a drag third-wheeling and Tinder-ing your way through life, being single is, overall, a great experience. Not only does it let you have a little fun, but it can be a great way to date the number one person in your life: yourself. Here are 15 ways to make the single life the best life.

1. Be spontaneous.

Without a significant other, you don’t need to run things by another person before you jump in. Suppose you want to get a pet: no one is stopping you! (Except maybe your landlord, depending on your lease…) The point is, you can make snap decisions and enjoy them, because there’s no one there to consult. The only feelings that matter are your own!

2. Travel.

Traveling alone can be an incredibly rewarding experience. Go someplace you’ve never been, either solo or with a bunch of pals. You’ll be amazed at how much fun you can have. Leave relationship traveling for another time. After all, traveling as a couple is what honeymoons are for!

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3. Spend time with those who matter most.

Relationships come and go, but friends and family are often around for much, much longer. Your singleness is an opportunity to spend quality time with those in your life that matter the most to you. You don’t want to look back and regret not having spent enough time with someone when you had the chance.

4. Read.

Reading is one of the best ways to entertain and educate yourself at the same time. We all give the same excuse: I wish I had the time to read more. Well, without a special someone in your life chewing up time, spend it instead with a good book. Better yet, some of the best relationships are the ones that you will forge with fictional characters.

5. Work hard and play hard.

Live it up now that you have the time and energy to do so. Don’t let anything stop you from tackling everything head on, whether that’s in school, at work, or in play. Start now! (That is, by reading the rest of this article–we love that you’re playing hard by visiting Lifehack!)

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6. Reflect.

In between all that working and playing, make sure you reflect on your choices and yourself. Are you happy with what you did today? Is there room for improvement? Don’t criticize too harshly, but remember to take the time to think about yourself and your life. It’s important to let these reflections guide you.

7. Take up a new hobby.

Is there something you’ve been dying to try recently, like yoga or knitting? Stop stalling and do it already! The single life is all about you, so try something new and really sink your teeth into it.

8. Stay out and sleep in.

No one waiting at home means no getting home by a certain time at night (or morning…). So stay out as late as you want and don’t come home until you’re ready. Sleep ’til the afternoon and laze around all day. No one will know!

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9. Learn how to be alone.

While singleness is great, it can be hard sometimes to be alone with your thoughts so often. However, learning how to be alone is important. Not only will it let you be comfortable in most situations, but you can prove to yourself that you’re independent and don’t need to rely on a significant other to be happy.

10. Find your “thing.”

Everybody has something that they really enjoy doing. Whatever that is for you, this is your chance to focus on it as much as you want. It’s yours, and you don’t have to share it with anybody.

11. Say yes.

Take advantage of opportunities that come your way by saying yes! No matter how big or how small, commit to saying yes whenever you can. It will open up more doors than you think!

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12. Figure out who you are.

This is your opportunity to get to know yourself and really connect with your values and thoughts. Use this chance to assess these. Later, you’ll need this information about yourself when new love interests enter your life.

13. Get out there.

Really put yourself out there. It doesn’t matter how or in what way, but use this time to really make yourself open to possibilities and up for anything. There’s no time like the single present.

14. Enjoy the freedom.

You can do whatever you want, so figure out what that is and go do it! Take advantage of this time and make it count.

15. Be single.

The best way to enjoy being single is by…being single. Don’t go looking for love just yet. It will come along, and when it does, you’ll be ready for it.

Featured photo credit: Characters/Chris Chabot via flickr.com

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Last Updated on May 21, 2019

How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

For all our social media bravado, we live in a society where communication is seen less as an art, and more as a perfunctory exercise. We spend so much time with people, yet we struggle with how to meaningfully communicate.

If you believe you have mastered effective communication, scan the list below and see whether you can see yourself in any of the examples:

Example 1

You are uncomfortable with a person’s actions or comments, and rather than telling the individual immediately, you sidestep the issue and attempt to move on as though the offending behavior or comment never happened.

You move on with the relationship and develop a pattern of not addressing challenging situations. Before long, the person with whom you are in relationship will say or do something that pushes you over the top and predictably, you explode or withdraw completely from the relationship.

In this example, hard-to-speak truths become never- expressed truths that turn into resentment and anger.

Example 2

You communicate from the head and without emotion. While what you communicate makes perfect sense to you, it comes across as cold because it lacks emotion.

People do not understand what motivates you to say what you say, and without sharing your feelings and emotions, others experience you as rude, cold or aggressive.

You will know this is a problem if people shy away from you, ignore your contributions in meetings or tell you your words hurt. You can also know you struggle in this area if you find yourself constantly apologizing for things you have said.

Example 3

You have an issue with one person, but you communicate your problem to an entirely different person.

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The person in whom you confide lacks the authority to resolve the matter troubling you, and while you have vented and expressed frustration, the underlying challenge is unresolved.

Example 4

You grew up in a family with destructive communication habits and those habits play out in your current relationships.

Because you have never stopped to ask why you communicate the way you do and whether your communication style still works, you may lack understanding of how your words impact others and how to implement positive change.

If you find yourself in any of the situations described above, this article is for you.

Communication can build or decimate worlds and it is important we get it right. Regardless of your professional aspirations or personal goals, you can improve your communication skills if you:

  • Understand your own communication style
  • Tailor your style depending on the needs of the audience
  • Communicate with precision and care
  • Be mindful of your delivery, timing and messenger

1. Understand Your Communication Style

To communicate effectively, you must understand the communication legacy passed down from our parents, grandparents or caregivers. Each of us grew up with spoken and unspoken rules about communication.

In some families, direct communication is practiced and honored. In other families, family members are encouraged to shy away from difficult conversations. Some families appreciate open and frank dialogue and others do not. Other families practice silence about substantive matters, that is, they seldom or rarely broach difficult conversations at all.

Before you can appreciate the nuance required in communication, it helps to know the familial patterns you grew up with.

2. Learn Others Communication Styles

Communicating effectively requires you to take a step back, assess the intended recipient of your communication and think through how the individual prefers to be communicated with. Once you know this, you can tailor your message in a way that increases the likelihood of being heard. This also prevents you from assuming the way you communicate with one group is appropriate or right for all groups or people.

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If you are unsure how to determine the styles of the groups or persons with whom you are interacting, you can always ask them:

“How do you prefer to receive information?”

This approach requires listening, both to what the individuals say as well as what is unspoken. Virgin Group CEO Richard Branson noted that the best communicators are also great listeners.

To communicate effectively from relationship to relationship and situation to situation, you must understand the communication needs of others.

3. Exercise Precision and Care

A recent engagement underscored for me the importance of exercising care when communicating.

On a recent trip to Ohio, I decided to meet up with an old friend to go for a walk. As we strolled through the soccer park, my friend gently announced that he had something to talk about, he was upset with me. His introduction to the problem allowed me to mentally shift gears and prepare for the conversation.

Shortly after introducing the shift in conversation, my friend asked me why I didn’t invite him to the launch party for my business. He lives in Ohio and I live in the D.C. area.

I explained that the event snuck up on me, and I only started planning the invite list three weeks before the event. Due to the last-minute nature of the gathering, I opted to invite people in the DMV area versus my friends from outside the area – I didn’t want to be disrespectful by asking them to travel on such short notice.

I also noted that I didn’t want to be disappointed if he and others declined to come to the event. So I played it safe in terms of inviting people who were local.

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In the moment, I felt the conversation went very well. I also checked in with my friend a few days after our walk, affirmed my appreciation for his willingness to communicate his upset and our ability to work through it.

The way this conversation unfolded exemplified effective communication. My friend approached me with grace and vulnerability. He approached me with a level of curiosity that didn’t put me on my heels — I was able to really listen to what he was saying, apologize for how my decision impacted him and vow that going forward, I would always ask rather than making decisions for him and others.

Our relationship is intact, and I now have information that will help me become a better friend to him and others.

4. Be Mindful of Delivery, Timing and Messenger

Communicating effectively also requires thinking through the delivery of the message one intends to communicate as well as the appropriate time for the discussion.

In an Entrepreneur.com column, VIP Contributor Deep Patel, noted that persons interested in communicating well need to master the art of timing. Patel noted,[1]

“Great comedians, like all great communicators, are able to feel out their audience to determine when to move on to a new topic or when to reiterate an idea.”

Communicating effectively also requires thoughtfulness about the messenger. A person prone to dramatic, angry outbursts should never be called upon to deliver constructive feedback, especially to people whom they do not know. The immediate aftermath of a mass shooting is not the ideal time to talk about the importance of the Second Amendment rights.

Like everyone else, I must work to ensure my communication is layered with precision and care.

It requires precision because words must be carefully tailored to the person with whom you are speaking.

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It requires intentionality because before one communicates, one should think about the audience and what the audience needs in order to hear your message the way you intended it to be communicated.

It requires active listening which is about hearing verbal and nonverbal messages.

Even though we may be right in what we say, how we say it could derail the impact of the message and the other parties’ ability to hear the message.

Communicating with care is also about saying things that the people in our life need to hear and doing so with love.

The Bottom Line

When I left the meeting with my dear friend, I wondered if I was replicating or modeling this level of openness and transparency in the rest of my relationships.

I was intrigued and appreciative. He’d clearly thought about what he wanted to say to me, picked the appropriate time to share his feedback and then delivered it with care. He hit the ball out of the park and I’m hopeful we all do the same.

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Featured photo credit: Kenan Buhic via unsplash.com

Reference

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