Single, But Not Lonely

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Single, But Not Loney

By: Tori Glaude

"At the innermost core of all loneliness is a deep and powerful yearning for union with one's lost self." -Brendan Francis

Some like to equate being single with being lonely when in reality, those are two different situations.

You can be in a room full of people that you know and still feel lonely. Take it a step further, you can be in a relationship and still feel lonely.

Before you proclaim that you are lonely, ask yourself what have you been doing to keep your mind off feeling like you need to be in a relationship?

Here are some ways to enjoy being single without feeling lonely:

1. Get into writing – Journaling can be a great way to release some of your thoughts and feelings. Open your word document or grab a pen and paper and start scribbling down the first words that come to mind.

Another benefit of journaling is it can turn into a great time capsule. It gives you the ability to capture your thoughts and feelings at those moments onto a page that you can always turn to. Going back to the day in your journal that you felt a particular way about someone treating you unfairly makes it easier to analyze the situation with fresh eyes. Some questions that may come to your mind while reading your journal entries are:  Was my anger misdirected that day? What things actually make me happy/irritated? What feelings have changed from February 1st through March 1st? Has it gotten better or worse? 

2. Get into an activity – this is important to do. Think about it, most of us decide to hang out with someone we know we shouldn't or aren't interested in hanging out when we are either trying to be nice or are just bored. Commit yourself to an activity! It can be something you used to do, such as swimming or attending cooking classes. Or it can be new, such as going to a different networking event, reading a new book, or hosting "girls’ night out" events with your friends. Often times, new activities are a way to meet others who share common interests with you. This, in turn, can have two great benefits: a.) more time out the house or b.) more time with someone else to keep you company. This new activity doesn't have to be something you do every day, take baby steps and see if whatever you choose actually works for you.

3. Accountability and rewards - Reward yourself when you do something right and create consequences for getting off track. This could mean getting a friend to call you up every day to check that you followed a good diet. It could mean rewarding yourself by going to a movie with friends when you've followed your plan, or an extra half an hour of exercise when you have cheated. 

4. Improve other areas of your life - Think about what you really want and think about what weaknesses might be getting in the way of you getting that. Maybe you want to save money but always end up overspending when you are bored. So, you could work on other ways to distract yourself when you are bored and really get started on a real savings plan. Another benefit of rewarding yourself is that you're really giving yourself a chance to work on yourself. I know that this is a phrase that we too often use without really thinking about what it means, or following it up with action, but the only way to change your life is to work on improving yourself.

Contrary to what you may have heard or how you may feel, you are not lonely if you are single. Being lonely is a mindset. Just as being happy, sad or hungry. You can be single and happy. Ultimately you can decide to be happy as you are – whether that means in a good place as a strong, single woman, or as part of a healthy relationship. 

And, to be honest, if you cannot be happy as a single woman, you will never truly be able to be happy when you are in a relationship either. If you want someone that you can always rely on to make you happy, look in the mirror.