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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 January 24, 2021

How to Say No When You Know You Say Yes Too Often

How to Say No When You Know You Say Yes Too Often

Do you say yes so often that you no longer feel that your own needs are being met? Are you wondering how to say no to people?

For years, I was a serial people pleaser[1]. Known as someone who would step up, I would gladly make time, especially when it came to volunteering for certain causes. I proudly carried this role all through grade school, college, even through law school. For years, I thought saying “no” meant I would disappoint a good friend or someone I respected.

But somewhere along the way, I noticed I wasn’t quite living my life. Instead, I seem to have created a schedule that was a strange combination of meeting the expectations of others, what I thought I should be doing, and some of what I actually wanted to do. The result? I had a packed schedule that left me overwhelmed and unfulfilled.

It took a long while, but I learned the art of saying no. Saying no meant I no longer catered fully to everyone else’s needs and could make more room for what I really wanted to do. Instead of cramming too much in, I chose to pursue what really mattered. When that happened, I became a lot happier.

And guess what? I hardly disappointed anyone.

The Importance of Saying No

When you learn the art of saying no, you begin to look at the world differently. Rather than seeing all of the things you could or should be doing (and aren’t doing), you start to look at how to say yes to what’s important.

In other words, you aren’t just reacting to what life throws at you. You seek the opportunities that move you to where you want to be.

Successful people aren’t afraid to say no. Oprah Winfrey, considered one of the most successful women in the world, confessed that it was much later in life when she learned how to say no. Even after she had become internationally famous, she felt she had to say yes to virtually everything.

Being able to say no also helps you manage your time better.

Warren Buffett views “no” as essential to his success. He said:

“The difference between successful people and really successful people is that really successful people say no to almost everything.”

When I made “no” a part of my toolbox, I drove more of my own success, focusing on fewer things and doing them well.

How We Are Pressured to Say Yes

It’s no wonder a lot of us find it hard to say no.

From an early age, we are conditioned to say yes. We said yes probably hundreds of times in order to graduate from high school and then get into college. We said yes to find work, to get a promotion, to find love and then yes again to stay in a relationship. We said yes to find and keep friends.

We say yes because we feel good when we help someone, because it can seem like the right thing to do, because we think that is key to success, and because the request might come from someone who is hard to resist.

And that’s not all. The pressure to say yes doesn’t just come from others. We put a lot of pressure on ourselves.

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At work, we say yes because we compare ourselves to others who seem to be doing more than we are. Outside of work, we say yes because we are feeling bad that we aren’t doing enough to spend time with family or friends.

The message, no matter where we turn, is nearly always, “You really could be doing more.” The result? When people ask us for our time, we are heavily conditioned to say yes.

How Do You Say No Without Feeling Guilty?

Deciding to add the word “no” to your toolbox is no small thing. Perhaps you already say no, but not as much as you would like. Maybe you have an instinct that if you were to learn the art of no that you could finally create more time for things you care about.

But let’s be honest, using the word “no” doesn’t come easily for many people.

3 Rules of Thumbs for Saying No

1. You Need to Get Out of Your Comfort Zone

Let’s face it. It is hard to say no. Setting boundaries around your time, especially you haven’t done it much in the past, will feel awkward. Your comfort zone is “yes,” so it’s time to challenge that and step outside that.

If you need help getting out of your comfort zone, check out this article.

2. You Are the Air Traffic Controller of Your Time

When you want to learn how to say no, remember that you are the only one who understands the demands for your time. Think about it: who else knows about all of the demands in your life? No one.

Only you are at the center of all of these requests. You are the only one that understands what time you really have.

3. Saying No Means Saying Yes to Something That Matters

When we decide not to do something, it means we can say yes to something else that we may care more about. You have a unique opportunity to decide how you spend your precious time.

6 Ways to Start Saying No

Incorporating that little word “no” into your life can be transformational. Turning some things down will mean you can open doors to what really matters. Here are some essential tips to learn the art of no:

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1. Check in With Your Obligation Meter

One of the biggest challenges to saying no is a feeling of obligation. Do you feel you have a responsibility to say yes and worry that saying no will reflect poorly on you?

Ask yourself whether you truly have the duty to say yes. Check your assumptions or beliefs about whether you carry the responsibility to say yes. Turn it around and instead ask what duty you owe to yourself.

2. Resist the Fear of Missing out (FOMO)

Do you have a fear of missing out (FOMO)? FOMO can follow us around in so many ways. At work, we volunteer our time because we fear we won’t move ahead. In our personal lives, we agree to join the crowd because of FOMO, even while we ourselves aren’t enjoying the fun.

Check in with yourself. Are you saying yes because of FOMO or because you really want to say yes? More often than not, running after fear doesn’t make us feel better[2].

3. Check Your Assumptions About What It Means to Say No

Do you dread the reaction you will get if you say no? Often, we say yes because we worry about how others will respond or because of the consequences. We may be afraid to disappoint others or think we will lose their respect. We often forget how much we are disappointing ourselves along the way.

Keep in mind that saying no can be exactly what is needed to send the right message that you have limited time. In the tips below, you will see how to communicate your no in a gentle and loving way.

You might disappoint someone initially, but drawing a boundary can bring you the freedom you need so that you can give freely of yourself when you truly want to. And it will often help others have more respect for you and your boundaries, not less.

4. When the Request Comes in, Sit on It

Sometimes, when we are in the moment, we instinctively agree. The request might make sense at first. Or we typically have said yes to this request in the past.

Give yourself a little time to reflect on whether you really have the time or can do the task properly. You may decide the best option is to say no. There is no harm in giving yourself the time to decide.

5. Communicate Your “No” with Transparency and Kindness

When you are ready to tell someone no, communicate your decision clearly. The message can be open and honest[3] to ensure the recipient that your reasons have to do with your limited time.

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How do you say no? 9 Healthy Ways to Say “No”

    Resist the temptation not to respond or communicate all. But do not feel obligated to provide a lengthy account about why you are saying no.

    Clear communication with a short explanation is all that is needed. I have found it useful to tell people that I have many demands and need to be careful with how I allocate my time. I will sometimes say I really appreciate that they came to me and for them to check in again if the opportunity arises another time.

    6. Consider How to Use a Modified No

    If you are under pressure to say yes but want to say no, you may want to consider downgrading a “yes” to a “yes but…” as this will give you an opportunity to condition your agreement to what works best for you.

    Sometimes, the condition can be to do the task, but not in the time frame that was originally requested. Or perhaps you can do part of what has been asked.

    Final Thoughts

    Beginning right now, you can change how you respond to requests for your time. When the request comes in, take yourself off autopilot where you might normally say yes.

    Use the request as a way to draw a healthy boundary around your time. Pay particular attention to when you place certain demands on yourself.

    Try it now. Say no to a friend who continues to take advantage of your goodwill. Or, draw the line with a workaholic colleague and tell them you will complete the project, but not by working all weekend. You’ll find yourself much happier.

    More Tips on How to Say No

    Featured photo credit: Chris Ainsworth via unsplash.com

    Reference

    [1] Science of People: 11 Expert Tips to Stop Being a People Pleaser and Start Doing You
    [2] Anxiety and Depression Association of America: Tips to Get Over Your FOMO, or Fear of Missing Out
    [3] Cooks Hill Counseling: 9 Healthy Ways to Say “No”

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