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The True Story of Why Being Single Is Awesome.

December 14, 2010

I wrote this while ago at one of my conferences, and am finally posting it.

I was recently asked by a great bloggess, Skye Blue of Met Another Frog, if I was interested in guest blogging for them. Of course I was, and still am, but, also of course, if you haven’t noticed (and of course I hope you have because then that means you’ve been checking in on me, right!), I’ve been a bit MIA as of late. Of course.

I blame… oh yeah, traveling and a lack of internet access. And now I am at a conference (and should be reviewing my talk for tomorrow) SO I missed her e-mail inquiry. Of course.

Bummer. Although clearly I would have failed miserably at guest blogging at present. Due to the whole no-internet-traveling-should-be-practicing-talks…thing.

Anyway. Skye asked me about blogging on the joys of being single. Hell yes I want to blog on the joys of being single because I think being single is pretty much kind of awesome.

Although I was unable to get her a post, her inquiry got me thinking… why do I think being single is awesome? Even if I missed my window with Another Frog (ha ha ha – see what I did there?… ok… my brain might be a lil fried at present…), what would I write about any way? I mean, I can say “yeah my life is pretty much sweet jams” but… if I want other people to understand that, or take on some of that attitude themselves… I should probably know why

Because, you know, I think the typical reasons for why single is cool are kind of…well, typical. I don’t think the reasons most people think of really get at the whole Joys of Being Single story.

For instance. I will let one cool chick sum up some typical single-is-cool things…

“There’s something about an afternoon spent doing nothing
Just listening to records and watching the sun falling
Thinking of things that don’t have to add up to something
And this spell won’t be broken
By the sound of keys scraping in the lock

Maybe tonight it’s a movie
With plenty of room for elbows and knees
A bag of popcorn all to myself,
Black and white with a strong female lead
And if I don’t like it, no debate, I’ll leave…”

(**side note: this is a fucking awesome song for anyone dealing with the end of a relationship that needed to end. Check it – awesomely ’90s vid too.)

Yeah. Those things are great but… they’re not the entire story. Now are they.

Being single isn’t just awesome because you get to eat all the popcorn. It’s a way bigger deal than that.

Sure, some of the reasons it’s awesome are you don’t have to deal with anyone else’s bullshit or baggage. Or with someone who is a pain in the ass and generally not good for you.

But. Being single is also awesome because you can be completely one-hundred-percent absolutely positively fucking selfish.

And I don’t mean that the way it sounds – as in, you always get to decide what to eat for dinner.

What I mean is you don’t have to think about anyone else to figure out what makes you happy. To learn what you want to do with your life. To determine what things you think are absolute crap. To make decisions about where you want to live and what you want to do today and if you actually want to go for a fifteen-mile-hike-up-this-awesome-trail-and-let’s-leave-at-5am – because maybe you’d actually rather take the entire fucking day to read the paper and drink coffee instead.

To figure out how you feel and what you think and the answers to questions and the questions worth answering.

When you’re single, there is no one else you need to consider. No one but you. You are all that absolutely positively fucking matters.

Does that mean that your shit isn’t flexible? That it is the end-all-be-all of life? Hell no. You can certainly compromise and discuss and negotiate and evaluate and reassess when and if such things become necessary.

But. Being single means you don’t have to do any of that shit right now.

Furthermore. It helps you figure out the shit that isn’t flexible or negotiable. You learn the things that are always going to be no-budge bottom lines. You learn the things you can’t tolerate and don’t like and won’t accept.

Guess fucking what. Those things are important, too.

These are the things that make you, YOU. They are the things that define who you are and what you love and where you want to live and if you like dogs or cats or actually you prefer chinchillas.

I argue that you cannot really truly one-hundred-percent-absolutely-positively figure these things out and one-hundred-percent-absolutely-positively know who you are if you have to consider someone else at the same time. You just can’t – and you shouldn’t (because no one should be that selfish while in a serious relationship – that’s just mean). And while knowing who you are and what you want your life to be made of had better fucking be negotiable and flexible in some respects (not only for the allowance of another partner, who guess what won’t be you, but also to allow for fucking life to happen. Because, also guess-what newsflash, life gives way less of a shit what you want and love and need than a true partner will), having someone else to even think about means you can’t be really truly one-hundred-percent absolutely positively selfish.

Now does it.

In addition,  being single also means you learn how to make yourself happy – all by yourself. You aren’t happy because someone else is happy, or because someone else is just effing present.

Furthermore, you can’t be happy all the time, so being single helps you learn how to deal with the days that are just shit, helps you learn how to pick your own ass up off the floor.

Or. It allows you to lean on those people who will help pick your ass up – you know, the ones that won’t cheat/lie/be emotionally unavailable/run off with the secretary/have a drinking problem (ok they might have a drinking problem – but they probably won’t leave you on account of it). Because they’re not your partner – they’re your friends. Being single means you abso-fucking-lutely learn how important and dear they are – and you foster those relationships for that reason. Which, sidenote, is something some people can’t really do while in relationships (and, to be fair, can be more difficult to do while in one, so establish that shit first).

BUT. While single, you learn, or at least you should, that you know better than to ever let those relationships die, wither, or otherwise be left unattended or abused.

And that, my friend, is the true story of why I think being single is goddamn mother fucking awesome and why you, instead of fearing it and loathing it and running from it screaming into whatever warm arms you can find (yikes), should goddamn mother fucking embrace that shit.

Oh. And you can also have as many random hookups as you’d like. When you’re bounding around Europe. Um. Or whatever the case may be.

I’ve been searching for myself
And I know I’m gonna find her if I break away from everyone

– Alana Davis
(I’m apparently into the ’90s today)

For more on why Single is Awesome (etc), I highly recommend the following:

The great guest posts on Met Another Frog.

My petition for Single Segregation ~ Jill the Duchess/@jilltheduchess guest post on Sex, Lies & Dating

Being Single Kicks Ass ~ Feisty Woman

Do you believe in Love and Unicorns? ~ Jess from CityGirls World

27 Comments leave one →
  1. December 14, 2010 1:32 pm

    Good post! I truly believe that unless you have spent quite some time single then you will do yourself (or anybody else) no favors when entering any relationship. I never understood those girls (or guys) that went from one relationship to the next from when they were teenagers and that almost panic when they are single for a short time.

    To be honest, being single is great and so much easier than being in a relationship because of the very reason you mentioned… you can be a as selfish as you want, when you want and how you want.

    Crap…now I am missing being single…..

    • December 14, 2010 2:28 pm

      Ha ha! Thanks, lady!

      Obviously, I completely agree – and I don’t understand those people either. I’m also terrible at judging my friends that bounce from one relationship to the next. They’ll tell you how much I harp on them if I think they haven’t been single long enough (because I am everyone’s life coach – duh).

      Maybe it’s time for a girl’s night out! 😉

      • December 15, 2010 3:48 am

        A girls night out is definitely on the cards! Oh and also a night out with the lads from the club… different dynamics when going out with a bunch of guys but can be just as fun. 😉 Come on party season! – need to stock up on Berocca…

  2. December 14, 2010 5:00 pm

    Well Nikki you seem to have a definite handle on being single. As a newly reformed bachelor (read in a relationship now) I know both sides of the equation well.

    When I lived alone I revelled in coming and going as I pleased, leaving the seat up or down as I preferred and becoming a mad scientist in the kitchen!!

    But after a while it gets old, cooking for one, repeating the same patterns. Even though I sometimes dread that key scraping on the lock I know that it’s someone I love coming home.
    Many were the night that I would be desperate for someone to knock on my door, all of my friends paired off and out on the town or home with the kids.

    Most of the time left to my own devices I would crank up the tunes and fall asleep on the couch, much to my neighbours delight. I drank too much and had countless affairs with everything and anything on two legs. Some of them still send me Christmas cards. GRIN 🙂

    I must admit that some days I miss that time in my life but like anything we must grow or stagnate. I chose to grow with someone, how life evolves from here is up to us.

    And most of the time thats a good thing. Although I do like it when she goes shopping for a long weekend away too!

    • December 14, 2010 6:05 pm

      Ah yes. The pleasures of being IN a relationship. Good to remember those as well.

      I, for one, am not entirely sure I’ll ever end up in something that lasts for a long period of time. Sure, maybe I haven’t met that person yet but… I am a-ok with that. Further, my standards are pretty high at this point, and I prefer my singledom to sacrificing them.

      To each their own! Cheers to our lives – be them shared with lovers, friends, or partners!

  3. December 14, 2010 9:03 pm

    Why being a single woman is awesome?

    Denny DelVecchio.

    • December 15, 2010 10:46 am

      Add it to the list, Denny. I can’t believe I forgot! 😉

  4. December 15, 2010 2:11 am

    Agree! Being single is awesome. And if I’m in the mood for dating and relationshit, then it’s easy enough to find (usually!!)

    • December 15, 2010 10:52 am

      I am never in the mood for relationshit – but that seems so easy to find, it usually finds me.

  5. December 15, 2010 8:46 am

    Inspiring! The part that really hits home for me is the bit about where we learn to pick up our own asses off the floor. This should be in some sort of singleton’s survival guide.

    • December 15, 2010 11:00 am

      It’s not just about being fabulous and happy all the time! Mostly… but not always!

  6. Esme permalink
    December 15, 2010 8:08 pm

    I have to say…when I am ‘seeing’ someone casually, and they mention wanting to get serious, I tend to run. There is so much about being single I enjoy! I think men and women should live next door to each other and just visit when they are horny…I REALLY LOVE my own space…

    • December 16, 2010 8:11 am

      ME TOO.

      I think the “horny visiting hours” is a fantastic idea. Now… we need to develop these neighborhoods so I know where to move..

      I don’t know if I will ever be about to give up my own space. Seriously.

  7. December 15, 2010 8:57 pm

    Screw the popcorn! What about eating all the dessert?

    You said “chinchillas.” Those things are so soft. I would never let anyone else pet it. I would keep its soft, fuzziness all to myself.

    • December 16, 2010 8:12 am

      Obviously eating all the dessert is far far better than eating all the popcorn.

      Chincillas are freakin adorable. I have a friend who has rescued (yes that’s correct – people are lame when it comes to buying pets they don’t actually want) two of them. As if their soft, fuzziness wasn’t enough, they eat food with their little tiny paws and it is the cutest thing EVER. “Hey – thanks for the raisin! Nomnomnomnomnom…”

  8. January 4, 2011 10:17 am

    A thousand times yes! So glad I stumbled on this through your resolutions posts. Love it! Will bookmark it. So true about learning to make yourself happy. I have found that living alone (and without a roommate) really stimulated that process for me. And I am so glad that I had that time because once you DO have a partner you have to consider their wishes too. I sputtered my coffee when you wrote, “and if you actually want to go for a fifteen-mile-hike-up-this-awesome-trail-and-let’s-leave-at-5am – because maybe you’d actually rather take the entire fucking day to read the paper and drink coffee instead.” VERY relevant to my current situation, hahaha.

    • January 4, 2011 12:15 pm

      Glad you enjoyed this post too!

      Living alone absolutely helps – I adore living by myself, actually – and helps with learning to be alone without being lonely, which I think everyone should do.

      And yeah, part of it is knowing what’s actually negotiable, because you will have to take in someone else one day. If you want to have a partner, that is.

      Some days you need to spend all day reading, damnit.

  9. January 13, 2011 9:56 am

    I LOVE this post (just read it after reading CityGirlsWorld today) and totally agree with you…this is what I have loved about being single, and probably why it has almost been a struggle to fall in love, even though I absolutely wouldn’t change a thing about it. Great post!

    • January 13, 2011 10:17 am

      Hey thanks! It’s difficult for me to really engage in a long-term relationship, too. Probably because I’m not willing to sacrifice my singledom for something I don’t think is worth it… Maybe that’s weird, but I think being single is something to cherish, and give up for something special, not something you’re desperate to give away free.

      • January 13, 2011 11:01 am

        it isn’t weird, because I agree…until it IS worth it, it’s not worth giving up that freedom. For sure.

  10. March 15, 2011 6:34 am

    So I have a question for you guys… I have always been one of those girls who went from relationship to relationship and not alway on purpose… i left my ex 2 months ago.. i for the first time ever WANT and feel I need to be single and plan on sticking to this path… in the whole process of this last few months ive met a few guys (of course) and like a human i still talk to them feeling like its also important to get to meet different guys… one of them i really like… and dont get me wrong… i dont want a relationship but this guy is (if i wanted a relationship) seriously someone I can see myself being with… so my question is… do i blow him off because i want to be single so bad or do i stay friends and still try to live my single life… not sure

    • March 15, 2011 10:52 am

      Right now a friend of mine is on a Dating Moratorium (watch for her first post on Thursday!). She has sworn of dating and physical contact for three months so she can work through her shit. Sure, she may meet someone in those three months – but I argue that a good guy, who likes her for her, can wait three flipping months. AND they can use that time to get to know each other better – as friends.

      PS She’s very upfront and honest about the DM, so she’d tell anyone interested in her.

      Personally? Be single. Stay friends with the guy, but keep it as friends. Learn to re-focus your energy away from this dude and what role he could play in your future an on to YOU. What makes YOU happy? What do YOU enjoy? What do YOU hope to discover by being single? What does that mean to YOU? Be selfish for a bit! 😀

  11. GoldenChild permalink
    January 28, 2012 4:00 pm

    I’m a guy, but I resonate with what you say. I love being single, and cherish my freedom and independence, but would like to find a like minded girl. Girls, at least the ones in my life, are too clingy and dependent and always ask for “commitment” from me. I was actually joking with my cousins that if I were to ever get married I wouldn’t want to live in the same house as my spouse (similar concept to your “horny visiting hours””).

    Any tips for finding independent girls? A girl that I can cherish my time with, but don’t feel obligated to. The kind of girl that you can go a year without seeing and you both live your lives to the fullest, but when you see each other again you can pick up where you want. People like us a generally labeled “commitment-phobic” and with the taboo against being single it can be tough to find an independent girl. Help!

  12. April 10, 2012 10:04 am

    I can just one word about this article. Awesome!!!!!!

  13. Anonymous permalink
    February 28, 2013 3:58 pm

    I’m totally onboard with this. However, I made the rather horrible mistake of inflicing marriage upon someone — a very admirable, capable, lovable someone, whom I still respect and adore very much. I am now leaving her, as the lack of independence is just KILLING me. I feel like I’m in a cage, just watching my death get closer and closer. Or I did, until I realized I didn’t have to be married, and I could return to the life of mostly unaccountable self actualization and pursuit of joy and creation. The fact of the matter is, being more selfish enables you to be more happy. Embrace it!


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