First and Foremost
Everyone's view on being single is unique to them. My job here isn't to persuade anyone to think the way I think. I want to share my beliefs and thoughts about this topic because it's important to me.
For a long time, I had a skewed mindset about being single. So if I can, I'd like to shed some light on a topic that's usually talked about in a negative context. My opinion about singleness has changed throughout the years, influenced by numerous relationships, my spirituality, and accepting myself.
When I think about how my personal experiences have shaped the way I look at being single, I feel as if I have three different experiences.
I first viewed singleness like a sitting area while I wait for my significant other to come through the door and call my name. This time of singleness came before I had any relationship experience. I was in high school, focusing on school, basketball, and friends.
But my mindset about being single was extremely negative. I thought that since I didn't have a boyfriend or no one was interested in me, there was something wrong with me and I just had to wait for a guy to pick up interest. Now when I look back, it was a weird and unhealthy place to be in.
The second story is sad, depressing, and the result of my first breakup. During that time, I was miserable and couldn't understand why anyone would want to be in that position. It's funny: before I ever had a boyfriend, I was never this sad and unhappy. But being in a relationship, breaking up, or doing anything for the first time can change your entire perspective on that thing, which is what happened to me.
The third experience is the one I'm in right now. I can honestly say I'm living my best life. My Christianity has heavily influenced my current mindset about singleness. I came out of a relationship and into a great place of freedom, security, and happiness. I understand that my being single is not a bad thing, nor is it a place to go out searching for someone else who will be there to fill the times I may be lonely.
Being single is a label, not who you are.
Don't get it twisted - being single does not define you! It's not something you need to point out to everyone you meet or use as a characteristic when you describe yourself. I made the huge mistake of thinking that because I'm single, it's something people need to know because that's just who I am now. But it's not.
Just like when it comes to putting so much meaning behind labels like "boyfriends" and "girlfriends," the same thing happens with the word "single." Sure, you can bring it up if you're actively getting into a relationship or dating, but it's not something the changes your personality. You should be yourself whether or not you're single or in a relationship.
Your singleness is a special time for you and you only.
I cannot stress this enough. There are so many pressures and stereotypes that circle around what a guy or girl should do while they're single. Some say being single is a time for exploring your sexuality and finding what you really like, while others say it's the time for dating and sleeping around. And some say singleness is a time to try every risky opportunity you can before you settle down.
I disagree with all of these. Being single is a learning process. Whether you come at it from different stories like I did or you've embraced it from the start, being single is time for you to dive deeper into who you are as a person, alone.
Find your strengths, weaknesses, and everything in between. Set standards and boundaries for yourself for the people you're going to meet in the future. Become a strong, independent person for your goals, wants, and needs. Stand up for yourself when you face hardships and work them out. Find people who genuinely love you and have your best interest at heart.
All in all, the choices you make during your singleness should benefit you extensively. You aren't responsible for anyone else except yourself and that kind of freedom is unmatched.
My religion has definitely influenced my perspective on singleness.
My opinion on being single may be different from other people due to my faith and what I believe in. According to my spirituality, singleness is not just a time for you. It's also a time for you and God.
Having the time while you're single to focus on your personal relationship with God is extremely important. It makes sense to focus our freedom on the person who set us free from the beginning. With God on your side during your singleness, it allows you to stay on the right track and do all of the things I mentioned above.
But in reality, it is hard for us to always do the right things and not make bad decisions. We're human and it's inevitable. However, there's a way that's been carefully designed and created to help us: the word of God.
The way I see myself as a single Christian is amazing. I'm not worried about what my future holds or the downfalls I may experience in my life. Why? Cause God's got me. Yes, I have my moments where my faith is low and I sin or mess up and find myself more lost than I was before. But there's beauty in that too. There's hope in the messing up because I know God forgives and can wipe my plate clean.
Before you get it mixed up though, this isn't like a free pass to do whatever I want, whenever I want. That's not how God intended forgiveness and repentance. God wants us to know that the plan He has for us relationship-wise is already taken care of. As long as we live according to Him, which to be honest is a great and safe way to live, He has our best interest heart and will love, protect, and care for us no matter what.
(You may have noticed how I haven't talked about all the things that could go wrong when you're single. That's a long conversation for a whole other article.)
Being single is not a bad thing. It's a time for you, to learn who you are and what you want from life. Embrace that.