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Why There’s Nothing Wrong With You Being Single

Why There’s Nothing Wrong With You Being Single

“I’m single because I was born that way.” – Mae West

Are you worried about being single and coping with all those rather nosy questions about your status?  Numerically, no need to worry at all because one in two people in Manhattan are actually single. Nationwide that adds up to 100 million people and growing, according to the Census Bureau.

Guess what?  Numbers apart, if you are single, you are much more likely to do better in your career, be more sociable, be healthier and also do voluntary work. These are the findings of Eric Klinenberg, a sociologist who wrote a book called Going Solo.

Still not convinced?  Read on because I am going to list 10 reasons why there is nothing wrong with being single. Welcome to singledom.

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1. Because you relish your freedom and independence

This goes for both singles and divorced women. Studies done at the Kingston University in London found that women following divorce were happier than they had ever been (for up to 5 years) after divorce. Being free of any awkward and messy ties was a big part of this. As for singles, you never have to ask your partner or spouse before deciding anything. You are totally free to spend money as you please, go to bed when you want to, and watch that late night film without having to negotiate anyone’s permission.

2. Because you know what you want

One of the reasons for so many unhappy marriages and long –term relationships is that the fear of loneliness took over when deciding to get hitched. This means that many singles made the wrong choice. But you know what you want in a partner and you are not going to compromise just because of parental and peer pressure. No, your standards are not too high and don’t let anyone try to persuade you otherwise.

3. Because you are happy

You have enough interests, friends and job satisfaction to keep you going for a long time yet. You are happy when alone and think of it as ‘restorative solitude’, rather than a negative feeling. Above all, you feel that you are self fulfilled as a single entity.  You are also keenly aware that the happiness of married men and women has been steadily declining over the last three decades as a University of Pennsylvania study has shown. Marriage does not always mean happiness and one study of over 1,000 couples found that marriage was a ‘blip’ and had no long term effect on happiness.

4. Because you know your limits and defects

You have enough self awareness to know that you are not the Mr or Ms Perfect. You are well aware of your defects and how they could be obstacles in a long lasting relationship. Above all, you are able to forgive yourself for the mistakes you have made in the past but you do not let these pollute your outlook on life.

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5. Because you enjoy the financial benefits

Have you ever thought why so much marketing is aimed at singles?  They have done their homework and like you are aware of the enormous scope for spending when in singledom. You can spend much more on fitness, clothes and holidays than you would if you were married. You do better financially when buying a house and also in planning retirement benefits. You can also save up to 5 percent of monthly salary according to Forbes magazine.

6. Because you can really appreciate your family and friends

“A single rose can be my garden – a single friend, my world .” – Leo Buscaglia

If you have maintained a healthy and affectionate relationship with your family, you really appreciate them. In addition, your friends are just as important to you as your immediate family is. If you are a woman, you have a greater capacity for making friendships with other women. Men have more difficulty in bonding with other men.

7. Because you can really work on your career

Family obligations for men and women are not always recognized in the workplace. They should be of course, and ought not to be a barrier to having a brilliant career. Recent legislation in the USA is now concentrating on how this can be eradicated.

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While singles often have to take care of elderly parents, they are in many ways free of other responsibilities such as bearing and rearing children.

While you are aware of the favorable bias towards married people with children in the workplace, you are not let that going to stop you. You are the one who is free to read, study and attend extra training skills programs. You will never have to ask your spouse for permission. Being single is going to really help you in your career.

8. Because you are healthier and will live longer

Most experts have reported that marriage can help you live longer. But this is not always true as a lot depends on the lifestyle and the mental stability of the partners in any marriage.  But look at these advantages:

  • You have a much better quality of sleep being single. No worries about having to put up with snoring.
  • You do not need to spend much time on housework.
  • You have more time for fitness, running and the gym.
  • You are much less likely to suffer from stress because of family problems, children and marital conflicts.
  • You have more time for friends than married people.
  • You can have fabulous holidays without being encumbered by a family in tow.

 9. You are in total control

Enjoying singledom means discovering yourself, your passions, what you really appreciate and what makes you happy. Being yourself is the great benefit when you are in total control. There is another wonderful advantage in that moving house, changing job and relocating all become so much easier when you are the one who decides.

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10. You can always change your mind

The greatest advantage of all is that you have the wonderful option of changing your mind, should you want to opt for a more long term relationship or even marriage. Nobody can dictate when, how or with whom you could do this. You haven’t signed anything yet!

“As a body everyone is single, as a soul never.”– Hermann Hesse

Let us know why you are happy or unhappy being single in the comments below.

 

Featured photo credit: Single tree/Martin Fisch via flickr.com

More by this author

Robert Locke

Author of Ziger the Tiger Stories, a health enthusiast specializing in relationships, life improvement and mental health.

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Last Updated on March 30, 2020

What Does Self-Conscious Mean? (And How to Stop Being It)

What Does Self-Conscious Mean? (And How to Stop Being It)

Have you ever walked into a room and felt like your nerves simply couldn’t handle it? Your heart beats fast, you start to sweat, and you feel like all eyes are on you (even if they’re really not). This is just one of the many ways that being self-conscious can rear its ugly head.

You may not even realize you’re self-conscious, and you may be wondering, “What does self-conscious mean?” That’s a good place to start.

This article will define self-consciousness, show how practically everyone has faced it at one point or another, and give you tips to avoid it.

What Does Self-Conscious Mean?

According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, self-conscious is defined as “conscious of one’s own acts or states as belonging to or originating in oneself.”[1]

Not so bad, right? There’s another definition, though — one that speaks more to what you’re going through: “feeling uncomfortably conscious of oneself as an object of the observation of others.” For those of us who regularly deal with extreme self-consciousness, that second definition sounds about right.

There are many different ways self-consciousness can spring up. You may feel self-conscious around people you know, like your family members or closest friends. You may feel self-conscious at work, even though you spend hours every week around your co-workers. Or you may feel self-conscious when out in public and surrounded by strangers. However, you probably don’t feel self-conscious when you’re home alone.

How to Stop Being Too Self-Conscious

When you’re in the throes of self-consciousness, it’s nearly impossible to remember how to stop feeling that way. That’s why it’s so important to prepare ahead of time, when you’re feeling ready to tackle the problem instead of succumbing to it.

Here are a variety of ways to feel better about yourself and stop thinking about how others see you.

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1. Ask Yourself, “So What?”

One way to banish negative, self-conscious thoughts is to do just that: banish them.

The next time you walk into a room and feel your face getting red, think to yourself, “So what?” How much does it really matter if people don’t like how you look or act? What’s the worst that could happen?

Most of the time, you’ll find that you don’t have a good answer to this question. Then, you can immediately start assigning such thoughts less importance. With self-awareness, you can acknowledge that your negative thoughts are present and realize that you don’t agree with them.[2] They’re just thoughts, after all.

2. Be Honest

A lie that self-consciousness might tell is that there’s one way to act or feel. Honestly, though, everyone else is just figuring life out as well. There isn’t a preferred way to show up to an event, gathering, or public place. What you can do is be honest with your feelings and thoughts.[3]

If you feel offended by something someone says, you don’t have to smile to be polite or laugh to fit in with the crowd. Instead, you can politely say why you disagree or excuse yourself and find a group of people who you relate to better. If you’re nervous, don’t overcompensate by trying to look relaxed and casual — it’ll be obvious you’re putting on a front. Instead, nothing is more endearing than saying, “I’m a little nervous!” to a room of people who probably feel the exact same way.

On the same note, if you don’t understand why someone wants you to do something, question it. You can do this at work, at home, or even with people you don’t know well. Nobody should force you to do something you don’t want to do.

Also, even if you’re willing to do what’s asked of you, there’s nothing wrong with asking for more clarification. People will realize that you’re not a person to be bossed around.

3. Understand Why You’re Struggling at Work

Being self-conscious at work can get in the way of your daily responsibilities, your relationships with co-workers, and even your career as a whole. If you’re facing some sort of conflict but you’re too nervous to speak up, you may be at the whim of what happens to you instead of taking some control.

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If you’re usually confident at work, you may be wondering where this new self-consciousness is coming from. It’s possible that you’re dealing with burnout.[4] Common signs are anxiety, fatigue and distraction, all of which can leave you feeling under-confident.

4. Succeed at Something

When you create success in your life, it’s easier to feel confident[5] and less self-conscious. If you feel self-conscious at work, finish the project that’s been looming over your head. If you feel self-conscious in the gym, complete an advanced workout class.

Exposing yourself to what you’re scared of and then succeeding at it in some way (even just by finishing it) can do wonders for your self-esteem. The more confidence you build, the more likely you are to have more success in the future, which will create a cycle of confidence-building.

5. Treat All of You — Not Just Your Self-Consciousness

Trying to solve your self-consciousness alone may not treat the root of the problem. Instead, take a well-rounded approach to lower your self-consciousness and build confidence in areas where you may struggle.

Even professional counselors are embracing this holistic type of treatment[6] because they feel that the health of the mind and body are inextricably linked. This approach combines physical, spiritual, and psychological components. Common activities and treatments include meditation, yoga, massage, and healthy changes to diet and exercise.

If much of this is new to you, it will pay to give it a try. You never know how it will impact you.

If you’re feeling self-conscious about how your body looks, a massage that makes you feel great could boost your confidence. If you try a new workout, you could have something exciting to talk about the next time you’re in a group setting.

Putting yourself in a new situation and learning that you can get through it with grace can give you the confidence to get through all sorts of events and nerve-wracking moments.

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6. Make the Changes That Are Within Your Control

Let’s say you walk into a room and you’re self-conscious about how you look. However, you may have put a lot of time and effort into your outfit. Even though it may stand out, this is how you have chosen to express yourself.

You have to work on your internal confidence, not your external appearance. There’s nothing to change other than your outlook.

On the other hand, maybe there’s something that you don’t like about yourself that you can change. For example, maybe you hate how a birthmark on your face looks or have varicose veins that you think are unsightly. If you can do something about these things, do it! There’s nothing wrong with changing your appearance (or skills, education, etc.) if it’s going to make you more confident.

You don’t have to accept your current situation for acceptance’s sake. There’s no award for putting up with something you hate. Confidence is also required to make changes that are scary, even if they’re for the better. Plus, it may be an easier fix than you thought. For example, treating varicose veins doesn’t have to involve surgery — sometimes simple compression stockings will take care of the problem.[7]

7. Realize That Everyone Has Awkward Moments

Everyone has said something awkward to someone else and lived to tell the tale. We’ve all forgotten somebody’s name or said, “You too!” when the concession stand girl says to enjoy our movie. Not only are these things uber-common, but they’re not nearly as embarrassing as you feel they are.

Think about how you react when someone else does something awkward. Do you think, “Wow, that person’s such a loser!” or do you think, “What a relief, I’m not the only one who does that.” Chances are good that’s the same reaction others have to you when you stumble.

Remember, self-consciousness is a state of mind that you have control over. You don’t have to feel this way. Do what you need to in order to build your confidence, put your self-consciousness in perspective, and start exercising your “I feel awesome about myself” muscle. It’ll get easier with time.

When Is Being Self-Conscious a Good Thing?

Self-consciousness can sometimes be a good thing[8], but you have to take the awkwardness and nerves out of it.

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In this case, “self-aware” is a much better term. Knowing how you come off to people is an excellent trait; you’ll be able to read a room and understand how what you do and say affects others. These are fantastic skills for people work and personal relationships.

Self-awareness helps you dress appropriately for the occasion, tells you that you’re talking too loud or not loud enough, and guides a conversation so you don’t offend or bore anyone.

It’s not about being someone you’re not — that can actually have adverse effects, just like self-consciousness. Instead, it’s about turning up certain aspects of yourself to perform well in the situation.

Final Thoughts

When you’re self-conscious, you’re constantly battling with yourself in an effort to control how other people view you. You try to change yourself to suit what you think other people want to see.

The truth, though, is that you can’t actually control how other people view you — and you may not even be correct about how they view you in the first place.

Being confident doesn’t happen overnight. Instead, it happens in small steps as you slowly build your confidence and say “no” to your self-consciousness. It also requires accepting that you’re going to feel self-conscious sometimes, and that’s okay.

Sometimes worrying that there is a problem can be more stressful than the problem itself. Feeling bad for feeling self-conscious can be more troublesome than simply feeling it and getting on with the day.

Forgive yourself for being human and make the small changes that will lead to better confidence in the future.

More Tips for Improving Your Self-Esteem

Featured photo credit: Cata via unsplash.com

Reference

[1] Merriam-Webster: Self-conscious
[2] Bustle: 7 Tips On How To Stop Feeling Self-Conscious
[3] Marc and Angel: 10 Things to Remember When You Feel Unsure of Yourself
[4] Bostitch: How to Protect Small Businesses From Burnout
[5] Psychology Today: Self-conscious? Get Over It
[6] Wake Forest University: Embracing Holistic Medicine
[7] Center for Vein Restoration: What Causes Venous Ulcers, and How Are They Treated?
[8] Scientific American: The Pros and Cons of Being Self-Aware

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