Spend some time getting to know YOU.
When it comes to relationships, Hollywood and television have done an extraordinary job of hyper-romanticizing love, romantic relationships, and marriage.
Love addiction is becoming more and more recognized as people feel the ‘need’ to have a partner in their lives.
Many women think that their worthiness as a person comes from the number of carats on their finger, rather than their innate traits as a person. Top fashion designers such as Vera Wang create magnificent and extravagant wedding gowns and engagement rings that create the high-priced "must-have" looks her celebrity clientele crave (i.e. Hilary Duff, Mariah Carey, Victoria Beckham, etc.)
I speak from personal experience — I decided to take a long break from dating, and during that time, I learned to live very happily on my own. Even though from the outside, it's hard for others to believe I was truly happy on my own, I really was. I learned to be my own best friend and ultimately it was a truly liberating experience. And here's why:
1. You learn who you really are when you spend time alone
Spending a significant amount of time on your own allows you the freedom to really get to know yourself. I find that most people who rush into marriage and having kids never really get to know who they are as an individual, and this (many times) leads people into what we call a "midlife crisis" later on down the road.
Taking the time you need to really get to know yourself is a wonderful gift you can give yourself. What are your likes and dislikes, your interests, favorite hobbies and core values? Taking time to yourself helps you learn what makes you "tick". It makes you understand yourself and take time to change yourself into the kind of person you want to be.
Learning about yourself allows you to become your best you, and, learning to be able to spend time on your own — really liking your own company — will make you less needy in a relationship down the road (which is a SUPER attractive trait to your future partners). Someone you eventually date will love that you want to be with them but don't NEED to be with them.
Nothing is as unattractive as desperation.
2. You won’t have as much debt as your friends in relationships
According to Debt.org, debt is much less of an issue for single people — who typically carry around 21 percent of credit card debt — than for their partnered counterparts, who carry an average of 27 percent of debt.
Whether you're living together or married, relationships have a negative impact on your financial status. And worse, if you end up bearing a child, your financial debt can climb as high as 36 percent. In a report filed in 2014 from the Department of Agriculture (USDA), data showed that with one child born into a middle-income family can cost around $245,000 from the time they are born until the day they turn 18 years old. It's easy to see that staying single until you are financially stable (or better!) is a wise way to make sure you are on track.
3. You have all the time you need to find the right person
It's a natural instinct for most people to seek a true loving relationship, but you have to answer some important questions before you're ready to date again:
- Are you mature enough to know what you expect from a relationship?
- What (and how much) are you willing to commit to?
- Are emotionally ready for a real relationship?
- Can comfortably make concessions with a partner?
It's important for you to take time to know yourself deeply. The longer you're single, the better chance you'll have to learn about yourself, your goals, and your expectations.
4. Your life goals are easier to accomplish
If there are certain things you want to do such as travel, live the European life for a while, or even do something to expand your career like work with an endangered species, or go on an expedition — it's going to be a lot easier to accomplish your goals when you're single.
You don't have to worry about anyone else's schedule or future plans except for yourself, so you can take as much time as you need to do what you want.
When you take time to know and really understand yourself, love will come.
If you eventually want to be happy in a committed relationship, then I suggest making yourself happy first. Looking to another person to make you happy puts a lot of pressure on them, and really, it's not their job to make you happy. If you are confident on your own and you know yourself and what makes you content, you will attract someone just as happy and content. That, in turn, will make for a happy, lasting relationship — one that was worth the wait.