Don’t deny yourself love when you’re not in a relationship. Uplevel your relationship with love. In the past I used to reserve certain things for partners and boyfriends to do. Gift-giving, surprises, special outings all fell under the guise of showing love and affection. To be clear, that was someone else doing the showing. Breaking up, I always faced the fact I’d have to give up all the good stuff too.
When I was alone, uncoupled, I never thought to fill in the gap. I didn’t do the things for myself that I had reserved for a special someone to do for me. And this is why it hurts so much to be single and lonely, because we deny ourselves experiences and emotions that we’ve designated artifacts of relationship only.
In reality, they can be simple expressions of self-love. And when you’re alone long enough (and you are smart enough) you finally say screw it! And you begin giving these things to yourself on the regular: a romantic dinner, drinks on the veranda, long walks on the beach, a bouquet of spring flowers, hugs (yes, you can), nice vacations, a piece of jewelry, concerts, massages, etc.
I’m not saying go hog wild. I too have a budget. But what I am saying is don’t wait for it. Give to yourself the things that make you feel loved.
And what would be the benefit of learning to give to yourself these expressions of love?
Well, first of all, single people shouldn’t be denied life experience because they aren’t holding someone’s hand. We all deserve nice things and fulfillment regardless of our relationship status. It’s a myth that being coupled is always better.
Plus, the next time you do enter into relationship with another, you won’t be desperately accepting meager scraps. You won’t be plagued with neediness, anxiousness or unrealistic expectations. And if it’s not working out, you won’t feel compelled to stay just to hang onto the benefits of coupledom. You’ve upleveled your relationship with love. You will know what you can already give yourself.
You can take your time with people. You can be more selective.
Being in relationship after learning to give love to yourself will take on new dimensions. You’ll likely experience more equality, fewer expectations, genuine interest and increased clarity about why you’re hanging out with this person. You don’t need them to create meaning or bring specialness to your life. You already know where that comes from!
But until then, it’s time to start making plans for your next date with yourself. Make a list of the things you’ve been “missing out on.” What do you deny yourself when you’re single? What have you designated for relationship status only that you could give to yourself right now?
Good luck with this exercise friends!
Until next time, Tracy, a girl on her own!