Lesson 20: Take a personal time-out.
So, you’re single, huh? Maybe it’s time to reevaluate whether or not you’ve really taken advantage or it. I know what you’re thinking, “What could I possibly have to take advantage of besides the sale on single serving frozen vegetables?” And while I fully support fulfilling your five servings a day, I think it’s time to branch out. Alone.
This past Saturday morning, it was a particularly gorgeous sunny day in my city and I knew I wanted to spend it outside. I called the guy I’ve been seeing recently and asked him if he wanted to tag along but his hangover had the best of him (over the toilet) so I wished him luck and decided to hit a local greenbelt solo. With my iPod, a Nalgene water bottle and time on my hands I wandered down the trails and couldn’t help but feel like I never wanted it to end.
As incredibly cheese-tastic as it sounds, Mumford and Sons serenaded me as my inner child took pure joy in the simple act of climbing on rocks and laying the grass alone. I got a chance to get back to myself which is really important because when you’re single that really is all you have – yourself.
It blows my mind that single girls are conditioned to spend so much time with others, with their girlfriends or out on dates, because that time and energy could just as easily be spent on themselves. Being single is all about finding a balance, but most of the time we forget to implant ourselves in that balance. Instead we tell ourselves we can use the 15 minutes between classes to get our lives together and then we wonder why our lives crumble and burn around us.
Taking time for your self is not the same as taking time by yourself. Somewhere along the way single women picked up a stigma that going out alone as though it’s an embarrassment. Don’t bind yourself to the confines of your couch and Chelsea Lately. As much as going out in public alone may make you reach for your Secret clinical strength deodorant, it can be a really empowering thing as a single chick.
If you’re just starting out, I suggest hitting a local trail with earphones or a dog if you have one. Not only is it totally normal to hit a trail alone, it’s incredibly refreshing to get off campus and get your mind off all of the little annoying things that bog you down during the week, like your roommate’s delusional hipster boyfriend.
Take advantage of Groupon deals at casual restaurants and sit at the bar for a quick bite or linger at a table and catch up on the latest issue of Cosmopolitan. Whatever you choose to do be sure to tuck your cell phone in your purse. This is your chance to totally disconnect from everyone in your life to really just focus on yourself for a while and the time you spend clinging onto your Blackberry is no different from the time you spend with your girls.
So go on and get out there, don’t be nervous or embarrassed, it’s just as much your world as it is a couples’ world!
Got it? Now get the first 19 rules of the Single Girl Society right here.