A beginner’s guide to making the most of being single
If you’ve suddenly found yourself single, or been that way for a while, it doesn’t mean you should stop enjoying life. This is your time, so make the most of it. Charly Lester explains how
Being single doesn’t need to be an ordeal; as I’ve said time and time again, it’s not a permanent status. You’ll be surprised how quickly things can chance, and one day you’ll find yourself reminiscing about your single days. But how can you make this time in your life memorable?
Buy yourself flowers
A bunch of carefully chosen flowers can bring a smile to almost anyone’s face, but why should you have to wait for someone else to give them to you? Most people don’t get given flowers enough, even when they’re in a relationship, so why not make a point of regularly giving yourself a bunch?
People often complain that single life is more expensive than a life shared with someone you love. While that may be true, especially when it comes to shared rent and food shopping, take a moment to think about how much money you’d normally spend on someone you’re dating. How much would you spend on gifts, treats or evenings out?
Just because you’re single, it doesn’t mean you should go without. Spend the money you’d spend on a partner on yourself; buy yourself a birthday or Christmas present, pick out a piece of jewellery or clothing that you really love and treat yourself the way you want your future partner to treat you.
Spend time with friends
If you’ve just come out of a long-term relationship, life can feel rather lonely – particularly if you spent most of your evenings and weekends with your other half. Just because your ex is out of your life, it doesn’t mean that you can’t continue doing the things you love. If you regularly went to the cinema or theatre with him or her, or played sports together, then find someone else to do those things with. Couples often complain that they don’t get to catch up with friends as often as they’d like so while you have a flexible schedule, make time to fit into other people’s lives.
Don’t go it alone
There are certain times of the week when being single can feel tough. Friday and Saturday nights and Sunday daytimes can be particularly lonely if you don’t have plans. Find a single friend (I promise you do have at least one) and make a point of spending more time together during those tougher times.
Be honest with each other about the things that you find difficult and agree to be there for each other when you find yourselves at a loose end. And if there are times when all your friends are too busy, use the opportunity to join a club or group and make new friends and connections – you never know who you might end up meeting!
Once you’ve adjusted to your single status, it can offer one of the best opportunities to declutter your life, both literally – throwing out mementos from the past – and figuratively. Think carefully about the person you were in your last relationship. Do you like that person? Is there anything you’d like to change? Anything you’d like to try? Things you always wanted to do but couldn’t because your partner didn’t want to? Travel, try new sports, join clubs, make new friends and don’t be afraid to move on from the aspects of your life that no longer make you happy.
I know it sounds cliché, but being single is genuinely something that you should embrace. How many other times in your life do you get to spend with complete strangers? Make the most of the opportunity; meet up with new people, give others a chance and leap into the dating world with energy to really make the most of the experience. And when you’re on a date, have fun! Enjoy the experience of getting to know new people; choose which stories you tell about yourself and how you portray yourself to strangers; be a tourist in your own city; explore your own comfort zone and encourage yourself to say yes more.
One of the things you notice the most when you find yourself single again is how much more time you have. Don’t waste it – use your time in ways that make you happy. Lounge in a bath, go for a pedicure, plan a spa trip or just veg out on the sofa with the book you’ve wanted to read for ages. You can be complete selfish and not feel remotely guilty for behaving that way. Enjoy – lie I said, it won’t last forever!